tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN September 17, 2016 4:00am-6:01am EDT
gentleman from oklahoma, mr. russell, for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and thank you, mr. cooper for you patience and also your answers that you've provided the panel to date. you alerted folks to possible breach attempts and we're concerned, obviously, about the security as we've heard in your testimony today. in january 2013, according to fbi reports, tour user logged in to president clinton's account and browsed e-mail and folders of that person's account. were you aware of that breach? that's a little different than what what was just stated to mr. walker. >> i was not aware of that breach until i read it in the same account. >> did it cause you concern. >> once i read it? >> sure.
>> sure. >> in the spring of 2013, which would have been approximate to this same thing, according to the fbi sidney aol account was hacked by goosefer and mr. clinton's e-mail exchange with mr. bloomingfal made public. were you aware of that breach? >> i was aware of that. >> what was your response to these breaches? >> at that time point in time i was transitioning out of any role or responsibility with the server as various teams were selecting, it was a fiber optic network to take over the e-mail services. i don't know that i had any sort of -- >> did you believe that there was information, certainly, it would qualify as very private being position mrs. clinton held? >> the information was properly
backed up and secured. >> and the fbi recorded finding e-mails marked "secret" on prn server and you assisted with the data transfer today the prn server. were you aware of the --? >> i did not assist in the transition. >> nor -- even with the missing laptop, which you didn't lose but apparently it got lost after prn received it. >> i have no knowledge of that. >> but you did have knowledge of providing a laptop -- >> providing a laptop and instructions on how to download e-mails, yes. >> now, mr. cooper, you conveyed to, i believe it was mr. meadows, and we appreciate the insight you've given us. that when all of this was being set up; is that correct. >> yes.
>> did you create or did aberdeen where cheryl mills or jacob sullivan have a user account on the private server. >> who did have an account. are you aware in the fbi report it states on page 10, mrs. clinton's immediate aid to include aberdeen, cheryl mills and jacob told the fbi they had no knowledge of the existence of a private server until after mrs. clinton's tenure at state, that that would have not been true, would it. >> i can't speculate on what their comments were. >> well, i know you can't speculate on what their comments were, but you just stated that ms. aberdeen knew of the server, she had an account on the server, so how is it possible that she could not have known about the server while mrs. clinton would you say at state. >> i can't speak to her recollection of when she knew. she was -- i can tell you. >> that would be contrary to the
facts, wouldn't it. >> i can just tell you that i know she had an account and that she was aware of using an account. >> at the time that mrs. clinton was there, okay. thank you for establishing those facts for us. we appreciate that. blackberries, we know that there was preferences on functions and systems and going back and forth, a lot of different devices. and we also know that there was one blackberry that was provided from state, but they've sent it with a warning that, look, all of this can be freedom of information act, therefore, go in with this understanding and they elected not to use that blackberry, there were others used to associated with the server which we obtained. were there third party obtained. obviously -- there was only one that we know about. maybe there were more. >> i can't speak to them being obtained by the state department. >> were they obtained through third party.
>> they were typically, just obtained from the service provider at&t and we had account to service those phones. >> so they were attained by third party, ebay, amazon, something to that. >> not to my knowledge. >> with that, my time is expi d expired, thank you mr. chairman. >> you said that there was an e-mail marked "secret" we wanted to noah that was because we never saw that? >> i want the record to be clear if it's not one. >> i want to nail down a little bit more follow up you first became involved with then president clinton in 1999, that was your first involvement with
the clintons. >> yes. >> at the time, so at that time you were paid by the united states government. >> '99. i was an inturn in 2000. >> what intern will lead to, huh. then when president clinton left office, from then until today, you say you worked for the clintons, but was it like the clinton's personal for two years, the foundation or the clinton executive services cooperation, who was cutting the checks from time to time. >> the organizations evolved over a period of time, which i think were natural as different parts of the operation grew for a period of time i was in the transition office for president clinton for the first six months out of office. i then worked for him in support of his efforts to write his
memoir for almost four years. >> bill, personally? >> combination with book publisher and following that worked on what was the clinton household payroll for a series of years. >> okay. could you get us a list just because i want to kind of see where you were involved in the thing. i hope it's not too much bother from when bill clinton left the office until today, who were you working for? >> we're getting like w-2s or 109 t 9. >> next question. when you interacted with the clintons, did you usually hear from bill directly, hillary, directly, who was the person you usually heard from? >> i primarily worked for
president clinton and worked with him on a day-to-day basis. >> did you get e-mails from them? >> certainly. >> once a month, once a week. >> i couldn't tell you what the frequency was. >> do you have any coordination with the foundation or the foundation? >> yes. >> you heard about the foundation, and who was your contact with the foundation, bill, again. >> yeah, over time there were a lot of -- worked with the foundation, primarily, my role was supporting president clinton's activities with the foundation. >> did you ever hear from hillary about the foundation. >> at varying times that participated foundation over the lifetime from the foundation from when we left the white house. >> when did the foundation kick in. when did that begin. >> officially, the campaign foundation was launched as we were leaving the white house in
support of the presidential library and developed programs over time during that period. >> before it became charitable institution, it became. >> correct. >> did you receive e-mails from secretary clinton or whom i connected the state department business. >> not that i recall. secretary clinton occasion had forwarded me documents to print. >> usually when they contact you, foundation business or personal business. >> i would say personal business. >> can you give me an example of personal business? >> asking where president clinton was, if he was available, something that may have been going on in their household. >> okay. i'll leave the remaining of my time to the chair. i would like -- i would like to see, you know, a chronology of, you know, this is -- we've got the w-2s in 2002, this is 2003,
this is 2004, i've got one more question. was it usually just one person cutting the check each month, were there months in which you've got a check from bill personally and the foundation? >> it varied over different periods of time? >> okay. mr. -- who are you employed by now? >> i have my own consulting firm and have a variety of clients to work with their thought leadership. >> does that include any array of clinton entities. >> no. >> or people or anything like that? >> if you can clarify, i'm sorry. >> this is not about the clintons, no. >> thank you. we'll now recognize tp gentleman from new york. plz maloney.
>> thank you mr. chairman, i would like to have begin by quoting bernie sanders. he said enough of these e-mails and i think that those of us who have sat through this hearing today can say the same. . we're see ago predictable pattern from the republican party where they come out and make all kind of accusations that i believe are politically motivated and make all kind of accusations against secretary clinton. and they claim. they make really reckless ones that are criminal accusations they call for the investigation. and then the investigation happens and what comes out of the investigation does not support the accusations. and then they move on to the next e-mail that they put
forward. -- we saw it with the hearings and accusations and reports and reviews of where the fbi and other independent investigators found no evidence, none whatsoever of a crime with the e-mails. so what do we have to gain, another accusation claiming he mail criminal activity now, this latest one is that secretary clinton and her top aids ordered the destruction of e-mails to conceal these e-mails from investigators. for example, my good friend, an he really is a good friend, representative meadows i heard him on national television where he claimed that the e-mails were deleted as a result of -- a directive from the clinton
campaign there's no evidence to support this accusation. made a similar claim in his criminal refrl to the u.s. attorney on september 6th claiming that secretary's clinton's attorneys issued this order during a call networks in march 2015. but these claims were already investigated by the fbi and guess what, there was not any evidence to support these claims and the fbi summary explains that after secretary clinton finished reducing the e-mails to the state department, she no longer needed her remaining personal e-mails. well the fbi is there for a reason. they're there to investigate, to make determinations and to come
forward with conclusions. and they've concluded that there no evidence, so why are you -- why are we here? why are we trying to contradict what the fbi found. and the bottom line is that the fbi, based on their reviews, based on the professionals that they have worked looking at this they forward and said, and director said it before this committee, he testified, we do not find any evidence of any intent and intent to obstruct justice. this is the head of the fbi relying on a complete investigation of his personnel on this issue. . he also said we did not try erase or conceal anything of any
sort. the fbi has made their determination. my one question to you, mr. cooper, in all of your work and your understanding your experience with all of this. did you see anything that contradicts the conclusion of the fbi professionals and director who testified before this congress he saw no criminal activity he saw no abusive justice. did you see anything to contradict his conclusion. to my knowledge, no. >> okay. >> i just want to remind everyone that the fbi. we're here for one day, they conducted a year-long investigation and concluded that no charges were appropriate. and they had, i would say, an
all star team. we have very good investigators here on our committee, but i would say a yearlong investigation by the fbi with their all star teams, that they are professionals, they're trained professionals, and they came forward and said, after that there was no charges, no charges were appropriate. so i just want to join bernie sanders in saying enough is enough and we've had investigation after investigation, accusation after acquisition and now we have another investigation after the investigation was completed by the fbi, which has an unmatched record in protecting our citizens, preserving the law of this country and preserving the integrity of government. and i would say, i rest my case.
i listened carefully to the director. >> time has expired. >> i was just warming up, mr. chairman. >> the je woman has yeield. we're please to have seen on today. we're thankful for the close working relation we have with the committee and now recognize him. >> thank you very much mr. chairman for inviting me to attend today's hearing the to examine the security of former secretary of state. secretary clinton's unique server and e-mail arrangement is of particular importance both to your committee and -- this siengs committee has a responsibility to examine ways in which the department and agencies and private senties can improve their cyber security practices. as part of the ongoing investigation, i have issued
subpoenas to three of the companies that performed maintenance and security work on secretary clintons two second half ink have refused to produce responsive documents both companies have missbrepted the plain language of the subpoena. and both companies have stated they do not have responsive materials which is false. unfortunately, these companies decisions to obstruct the committee's investigation and defie laufly issued continues a clinton habit secrecy rather than transparency. accounts confirmed to my staff that the clinton llc is actively
engaged and directed there responses to congressional subpoenas. this is a clear obstruction of justice. americans deserve to know the truth, which is now being blocked by the clinton organization. one of the companies data did provide responsive materials to the subpoena. these documents have shed light on the unique arrangement undertaken by secretary clinton to set up a private server. . it is inconceivable that as secretary of state would not take every available step to safeguard our nation's classified information the oversight government reform committee and senator ron johnson of the senate, homeland
security is crucial in determining the degree to which our national security was unprotected and, perhaps in danger. i look forward to continuing to work with you, mr. chairman and appreciate all the good work you have done and if it's all right i have a couple of questions. >> mr. cooper, first of all, thank you for being here today. and apparently you're not interested in helping us trying to find out the truth.
>> do you think this is standard practice of the clinton organization? >> i'm sorry. i'm not in a position to comment on that or have any knowledge. >> have you seen any other instances information from getting to a committee. >> one way or the other. >> i'm not aware at all. >> many of the documents provided by communications with networks should the networks have information. >> my interaction was simply handing over passwords. beyond that or data. >> can you say whether or not they're likely to have information about the server or not? >> i have no knowledge. >> what information have you handed over to them? >> i handed over some user name and passwords at the beginning
of the transition process. >> thank you, mr. chairman, that completes my question and i appreciate the opportunity to be a part of your committee's hearing today. >> thanks, chairman, we do appreciate it. i'll recognize the gentleman from georgia. >> thank you for being here and thank you for staying as long as you have. mr. cooper, did she have a personally owned desk top security inside the secured areas? >> we discussed earlier. i know were in the rooms that became gifts, predating the time. >> how do you know that. >> before became skips, there were both offices which i had to case to work out. >> you said what kind of computer was there. >> who was able to open it. >> they were there for the purpose of staff visit lg the home or the book, staff that worked in the home. >> was it ever left unsecured. >> secured, sorry?
>> just left out where someone could get to it. >> these were personal computers in their home secured by secret service. >> and who did you say had access to it. >> the clinton family and their staff. >> let me ask you about two occasions in 2011 where you were concerned that someone was trying to hack into hillary clinton's private e-mail server, what made you concern that someone was trying to hack in and describe the e-mail you s t sent? >> i think my my concern was i was colloquily, we were dealing with it by shutting down the server for a period of time she should expect her e-mail to be off line for a period of time.
>> later on that day you e-mailed her and said there was a second attempt. you said we were attacked again so i shut the server down for a few minutes. >> yes. >> when i think of attack on the computer, i think that's somebody who is trying to get in unauthoriz unauthorized. >> i understand. >> so that's not what you meant when you said attack. >> these were multiple failed log in attempts on the server. >> wouldn't you describe that as someone trying to get unauthorized? >> i would describe it that way, yes. >> was it the same attempt as was the previous day? >> i can't recall whether it was the same attempt or being able to determine whether it was the same. >> did you shut the server down on that day in january 2011. >> to the best of my recollection, based on the e-mails that you have, that you were describing, yes.
>> what good would that have done? what was the purpose in doing that? >> my understanding is that these were automated attempts. once they did not ping a server on the other side, they would stop and that seemed to be the practice of what happened? >> we've had reports and we've read numerous reports that they arranged for you to receive notifications when there were attempted hacks on the server, did you receive any notification of any attempted attacks on the serve. >> he never said to alert if there were any failed log-in attempts which could be from users who are not users. >> i'm struggling here. tell me the difference between the failed log-in attempt and a hack. >> a failed log in attempt when someone tries to log in in one form or another into an account or the server itself. >> what's an attack? >> with a user name or password that's not valid, that could be a legitimate user who has
mistyped their password or legitimate user whose password expired. >> define an attack for me? >> again, the word attack is -- >> no. describe what you would define "attack" as? >> multiple failed log-in attempts trying different user names in no specific pattern. >> would you agree that attack much more than that. >> i would agree with that? >> okay. >> we discovered that hillary clinton's old phone was destroyed with a hammer. were these phones connected to the private e-mail server in question? >> i described earlier, would transition from one device to the next, we would take the old device, back it up, make sure it's all transferred on to the new device, linked with the server so any information that came from the server was on the
new device, once that was completed, wipe the old device on equation i would render them unusable. >> why did you use that kind of method? it seems barbaric, hammer to a phone? >> i think it's practical to device in some sort of garbage and try to use it. >> here we are the definition of attack most people have are completely different and we take a old phone and destroying it by a hammer, with a hammer, are you instructed to do that -- >> that was not something i was instructed. >> you say that was normal procedure, you do away with everybody's old phones. >> i felt that was good practice at that time. >> okay.
>> mr. chairman, i've exceeded my time and i yield. >> a few other questions, i give you great credit for being here and answering the questions, i do appreciate it. why were there no back up images prior to june 3rd as part of the criminal investigation? >> that's not something that i have knowledge or insight to. >> you you were running this ship here, so why -- i'd rather no back up? >> technically he handled that of the server and i was not managing the back up. >> the fbi report states that the so-called server was backed up to an external hard drive between may of 2009 and june of 2011, is that your understanding? >> it's only my understanding from reading the same report
that you have read. >> the report further states that you would delete the records as disk space printout. >> you didn't do any of those deletions. >> no. >> was there any consideration to get a backup or external hard drive. >> i believe at one point we upgraded the back up system that was attached to the server. >> rather than backing this stuff up, you went ahead and deleted it. >> i was not the one responsible or doing any deletions? >> the fbi was unable to locate or procure any of the 13 mobile devices used by secretary clinton -- during your tenure, are you aware of the location of any of these devices. >> i'm not aware of location of any of these devices. >> secretary clinton, did she ever use the computer that you set up for her?
>> the computers that were in her home? >> yes. >> did she know how to use the computer. >> i don't know that she did? >> you bought the computer and set up the computer and never saw her use it? >> she has household staff in each home and i think her personal aids who would come to her house before or after she traveled who would predominantly, to my knowledge, use those computers to print off, you know, clips and briefing materials. >> and they could access that via skip? >> i don't know if that was the situation. >> you were there, you're in the household on a regular basis, did you ever use it in a skip? >> i don't remember using those computers once they were in the skip. there was a separate computer that was not in the skip that was used for printing purposes. >> would it print her e-mails? >> i can't say that to know they would print her e-mails? >> i don't know that it printed
her e-mails. >> okay. but did you ever see that a computer in her skip? >> i've seen the and i know their computer was in there, it's hard -- >> you've been -- >> from those rooms, you know, which i spent time in over many years. >> right. >> prior to them becoming skiffs. >> you put a qualifier on there. you tell me for four years you never went in that room? >> i can't recall a specific occasion where i walked into that room. >> you're talking into the secretary, she walks in that room. she stopped at the door? >> i don't recall a specific situation of that type. >> do you know how it was secured. >> i was there when it was set up and they believed they had locks on the doors. >> what happened when the fbi
showed up? >> were you there when the fbi came. >> to. >> to her home in new york. >> are you aware that they seized anything. >> i'm not aware of that. >> let's go back one more time, the very same day that started her senate confirmation is the same day that you set up the server, correct. >> i'm not sure that's the day we set up the server. >> why that day, i mean, what was she doing three days before that? >> i have no recollection of where she or i were three days before that. >> why not set up a gmail account? >> i think the consideration was there was an existing server used by president clinton's small group of staff that provided an personal e-mail address using that system.
>> did she have a personal e-mail address before she got clinton e-mail.com. >> she was using blackberry address which had limited ability to retain e-mails or view them in any other way besides on the blackberry. >> okay. we have some -- do you still advise tanao holding? >> yes. >> i want to appreciate you being here. it's not comfortable thing. i'm sure it's not something you set out in life to do. you're here and you've answered your -- you're attempting to answer all of the questions and for that we're very much appreciated. it's the way the system is suppose to work. let me recognize, before we
recess here. >> how is your business doing? >> okay. i ask that because a lot of times we have these hearings and a lot of people don't realize there's life after the hearing. and you have a family? >> i do not. >> and then, you know -- i do want to thank you for your testimony i think you've been very straightforward. i thank you for your cooperating with the fbi and been very helpful. having practiced law for many years, it's painful, i'm sure, to have to pay legal bills
because it's expensive and that's money you could probably could be doing other things with. but, you know, sorry you have to go through all of this. the fact is i guess it's part of life and i want to thank you very much and i can understand based on the testimony why he came to the conclusion he did, particularly with regard to you. thank you very much. >> it is the intention of the chair to reconvene. we'll provide ample notice. the committee stands in recess.
this weekend on american history on tv. >> in any war in any time weapons dictate tactics you've probably heard that the civil war was fought with modern weapons and antiquated tactics, and that's not quite true. the civil war is actually an evolutionary war as both weapons and the men who employ those
methods learn different methods to fight with. >> battle tactics and formations. then at 9 clob military historian talks about his book, about the 1945 meeting of harry true man, to negotiate the end of world war ii and the reconstruction of europe. >> the states of europe didn't interact enough. they weren't cooperative enough. so the power in europe became a zero-sum game. the way to solve the problem under this viewpoint was to merge europe together. and the phrase is already out there. so that france, germany, russia, poland, do not see it as a zero sum game. >> on sunday night at 8:00 eastern. >> the idea that the person president have always gotten the very best health care available in whatever euro they live. well, i want to tell you that this is a charming miftd and problems began almost
immediately with george washington. >> parkway central lie briarian richard, on myths surrounding presidents and their health. he'll talk about how doctors have sometimes contributed to a president's death or saved them from dying without public knowledge for our complete american history tv schedule, go to c span.org.
we're in the tunnel, connecting the cannon building on the house side of the congressional institute. here to talk about the competition that his group runs, the art competition explains who it is that can apply for the competition and how long it's been around. >> hour competition is for all u.s. high school students and that includes public school, private school and home schoolers. we estimate about 30,000 per year participates. they send it to washington and the pictures hang in the hallway of the capitol for an entire year. which is pretty amazing, for the state to get a piece of art takes a vote of the entire congress. so this is quite an honor for these students. >> you say each district picks one winner, but i imagine several students participating for each district, how is that winner chosen. >> each member of the congress decides how to pick it. most of them tend to get like an
art teachers or professional artist in the district to judge it for them, you know, you're the member of congress and you pick the winner, you make one grateful -- but most of them do have some sort of system by which they pick the artist and it's a competition they spread throughout the high schools and it gives them a chance to go into the high school and talk to kids and make this opportunity available for them. >> are there any restrictions on what you can make your art piece about what sort of materials you can use. >> you know, it's restricted to two dimensional art and -- but there are no restrictions, it can be pass tell, oil, colored pencil, whatever the artist wants to use. there's some creative photography in this, too, that's artistic. and it's limited to 28 by 28 in the dimensions. but the students come up with some incredible things. and one of the things you get a sense of when you look at this art work, you have to keep
reminding yourself these are it's from people talking about experiencing to people who are extremely patriotic and talking about beautiful things. and the diversity of different art work that's done is incredib incredible. >> do you keep track of the student artist and have any of them gone on. >> there are a million people who travel this hallway over the course of the year. so you stop and think, some of these students from rural areas, from native american reservations get an opportunity to store art they would never get anywhere else. the one that brought the audience possible, and so it's just the opportunity for these
kids is outstanding and so, it's really great. >> and we've seen it, as we were waiting to start filming, that several tours that come through, staff-led tours, stop along the way and point out for their con tich we stitch wents. >> one of the things like about that. this is how the members get together on both parties. it's like a celebration. it gives you an idea of what congress is suppose to be about. it's a democrat and republican cochair and they get excited about it and you get members of congress doing what they do best, serving their constituents. >> so explain what the congressional institute is and how you got involved in this. >> well, the institute is designed to help members of congress, better communicate.
>> and this has been going on for 35 years, we've been involved a little over a decade. over that time, more and more officers have participated. they're up to 427 to the 441 to count the delegates not participating. >> what are the excuses. >> vast majority participate. it's talking ability they get a great deal. they enjoyed the members themselves. they like to show up their district's picture, you know, and he's just, you know, some of them can be very kind of different, esoteric. that's one of the things that makes it so great. >> thanks so much for the time. >> my pleasure.
>> for campaign 2016, c span continues on the road to the white house. >> we all want to get back to making america strong and great again. >> i am running for everyone working hard to support their families, everyone who has been knocked down but gets back up. >> ahead, live coverage of the presidential and vice presidential debates on c span. the c span road app and c span.org. monday is the first presidential debate. live from hemp stead new york. on tuesday october 4th. vice presidential candidates, governor mike pence and senator tim kaine debated university. on sunday october 9th, washington university in st. louis hosts the second presidential debate leading up to the third and final debate against hillary clinton and donald trump taking place at the
university on october 19. live coverage of the presidential and vice presidential debates on cspan. listen live or watch live or any time on demand at c-span.org. and now for immigration policy institute hosts its annual conference for look at immigration issues. this portion featured illinois senator dick dervin who talked about the future and dream act. the bill he cosponsored. it's about 45 minutes. >> i want to add by welcome to all of those here today including the students, imespecially pleased for georgetown to post this annual conference which brings together experts from government, advocacy, the media, think tank
and academia to address the most challenging immigration issues facing our country. and i'm particularly delighted to welcome back one of our graduates, senator derbin. he earned his under graduate degree at georgetown school of service and his law degree right here. >> elected to the united states senate and re-elected in 2002. 2008 and 2014. he sits on the senate judiciary. appropriations and rules
committee. you may not know how that came about. the story reflects how much care he and his staff give to individuals and constituents. patio prodigy who was undocumented and applying the colleges. the young woman was accepted at a number of leading conservatories including juliard. she thought she was american, which would make her eligible for college financial assistance. but because she was undocumented, that assistance was not available to her. the senator's office investigated everything they could think of in her case led
the senator to develop legislation to assist young undocumented immigrants in similar situations. continues to vigorously promote the dream act. the senator continued in this leadership role as a member of the so-called gang of eight senator r who drafted reform legislation which passed the senate on a strong bipartisan vote of 68-32 in 2013. this year, the senator cosponsored the fair game for kids act which mandates representation, government expense, for unaccompanied children and other vulnerable populations in immigration removal proceedings who could not afford council. given the focus of this
conference on major problems in the u.s. immigration system, we are very fortunate to have senator derbin share his wisdom and experience about these issues with us today, please join me in giving a warm welcome to the senator. >> thank you. the university i went to, i'm not going to get into the old stories. i will tell you the dean started about the first dreamer, her name teresali, korean. the happy ending is two families in chicago, one of whom i knew personally, decided to pay for her education because she couldn't get any financial assistance to go to school.
she went to the manhattan conservatory of music and played in carnegie hall. she now has completed her phd in music. she had the good fortune and wisdom to marry jazz musician and now she's totally legal. and she did, in fact, inspire me to write this bill and introduce it, a little political footnote, when i introduced them, i got a call from my colleague on the senate judiciary committee and he said, what are you doing stealing my idea. i also want t
recognize a young woman who i said hello to walking in. her name is ester lee. ester where are you? ester's a dreamer, born in taiwan, came to america at the age of two with her mom and her two older siblings. they were fleeing domestic violence. when their visas oh pierd they stayed in america. ester worked as a nanny, a house cleaner and a mandarinor while
earning a masters and bachelor's degree. in 2010, six years ago i led a letter calling on the president to grant temporary legal status to dreamers. today president prak -- because president barack obama has the vision and courage to establish kaca, earther is an immigration reporter. welcome, ester. [ applause [ applause ] any other dreamers? welcome, too. when i first started this, i would give speeches in chicago about the dream act. largely to hispanic audiences, because they are affected more than most. an interesting thing would happen when i'd give a speech. i'd go out to my car afterwards,
there would be a young person, usually a young woman, waiting to see me in the darkness and shadows around my car and she would look both ways and say senator, i'm one of those dreamers. i promised my mom and dad that i would never say that to anyone because i'd get deported. that was the state of play 15 years ago. it changed as it usually does when young people are warned not to say things over and over. they start to say them and dreamers said them loudly. they spoke up and gave me their stores. i'd been to the floor of the senate, i think, a hundred times to tell the stroers. without nail, i can tell you, because i do this for a living, people listen. because they love stories, number one, and number two, these are real stories of some amazing young people who just need a chance to become part of
america's future officially. i will tell you that the dreamers themselves have become my greatest allies. we just had one speak at the university of philadelphia, now an american citizen herself. the dream act is one of the reasons why i decided to run for re-election. sure, it's a nice job and everyone would like to keep it but i wanted to have a purpose. but when i sat down to spell out the purpose, the dream act was at the top of the list. doris tells me we're up to 800,000 now, do you think, doris, dreamers that have signed up for daca. there's an estimate that there might be another two million eligible for this. as long as i'm around we're going to protect them and give them a chance to become full-fledged citizens. we all were moved yesterday when the president addressed the nfl football games across america and the general population
marking the 15th anniversary of 9/11. i'm sure everyone here remembers in some way or another what they were doing that day. i was in the capital in a meeting with the senate democratic leadership with the majority leader 2078 dashiell. tom was calling us together at 9:00. as we got on the elevator to come to the meeting we heard a plane has struck a twin tower in new york. there was a lot of talk about what we were going to do. then someone looked down the mall from the capital and saw the black smoke billowing across the potomac. everyone stood out on the grass not sure what to do. tour irss and staff and members
of congress and we heard what we thought at first were bombs. they were sonic booms as they were scrambling fighters over the capital for fear that tha te plane was coming. we can never forget that. the next day, september 12, 2001, i had scheduled the first-ever congressional hearing on the dream act. it was canceled, for obvious reasons. i was determined. the plan would have included a path to citizenship. but on that blue sky morning 15 years and a day ago, it seemed sbierg possible, even likely that such a plan was within reach. then the planes hit. nearly 300 innocent americans died. and our immigration debate turned into a security debate.
it wasn't until 2011, 10 years later that the senate finally held the first hearing on the dream act. instead of moving forward on comprehensive immigration reform after 9/11, congress turned its attention to security. we tightened up nonimmigrant visas for visitors and students, the sort of visas that the 9/11 terrorists had abused. we enhanced security measures for u.s. citizens. we spent hundreds of billions of dollars and changed our life plan. changes in our immigration law and policies have focused offender whemgly on keeping people dangerous people out of america. how do we fix our system to let the right people in or let them stay if they're already here. how do we align america's
immigration policies with the real needs of the future? instead of forcing people to live in the shadows at poverty or near poverty. a number of events have made passing comprehensive immigration reform more challenging. let me tell you three. first, the global economic meltdown in 2008 an 2009 cost millions of americans their jobs. when the president was sworn in, it was a month we lost 700,000 jocks. life savings were disappearing. many americans felt economically embattled. who could blame them? some fear that immigrants might take their jobs or they might be a costly drain. that makes reform harder. second, the global refugee crisis is causing anxiety in america and in much of the rest of the world, especially europe. look at the uk and the brexit
vote. the lead forces in the uk succeeded partly by demonizing immigrants. they persuaded a bare majority that the only way the to save britain was to wall it off. the leave campaign is really the trump campaign with better hair. and britain isn't alone. angela merkel announced that her country would take refugees. it was a stunning act of statesmanship. look what happened last week. the backlash. senator merkel finished a dismal third place in an election in her home constituency. anti-immigrant parties and politicians are gaining new supporters in france, italy,
austria, holland, greece, poland and hungary. even attitudes are hardening. it is fed by not only economic anxiety but by fear and anger in the wake of uncon shan rabble terror attacks in brussels, paris and elsewhere. a third factor that makes many in congress hesitant to take up reform is frankly, did bigoted bloviations of donald trump and his followers. can we return to that larger debate or is the ugly anti-immigrant rhetoric that we naer the presidential campaign poised the debate and will we remain stuck in stalemate? i think there's a reason to be hopeful. you may have seen a cnn poll
that was released last week. let me caution you in advance. i never use a powerpoint, so you're about to see the only powerpoint i've ever used in my life. heaters. people were asked, thinking about the way the u.s. government deals with the issue of illegal immigration, which should be the top priority? if you read from right to left starting in early -- or in september of 2015, then december 2016. 51% of respondents now say up in 49, the tom priority of america's immigration laws and policies should be developing a plan to allow those who have jobs to become residents, a pathway to legal status. 51%. that's up 5% from a year ago. another interesting point. look at the percentage of respondents who se the drop policy should be deporting
people. a year ago 14% ranked that as a top priority. today, 11%. out of three possibly priorities, deporting undocumented graentsds comes in a distant third. instead of poisoning, perhaps mr. trump's ugly rhetoric could build momentum for a balanced immigration program. a bill passed the senate 68-42 with 14 republicans on board. that was a little over three years ago. if republican leaders had allowed the bill to come to the house floor, it would be the law of the land today. it dpint happen. they wouldn't let any immigration bill come to the floor. last year was tough. republicans gamd control of the senate and they threatened to shut down the department of
homeland security unless they deported dreamers. i'm not making that up. we won in the standoff. i'm ready with the gang of eight to suit up again. two of the four republican gang of eight members are still publicly supporting our work, the other two, missing in action. but the two who are supporting are lindsey graham and jeff flake, whom i want to say i amire very much for standing up for this concept for immigration reform. i hope to join them in congress to help the next effort. i hope the election results and numbers like those in the new cnn poll will persuade our neighbors to join igs. it has to be a expanding party reaching out to new populations.
when president obama was re-ele re-elected, naturally, expectedly, came from african-americans. third highest, hispanic americans. second highest, asian americans. why? asian americans. they heard every word that was said between romney and obama in that election campaign about immigration. though they are by nature more conservative in their thinking and background and families, when it came to immigration, they knew where the parties stoods. there were times when john mccain and others would stand up and say we've got to be open to new populations. they've taken a reverse thal time. whether or not the anti-immigrant hardliners continue to block reform in the next congress our nextant needs to be prepared from day one to use her legal authority to make our immigration system fair and more rational. i've heard the tired argument that president obama has
poisoned the well. nonsense. he was using his well established legal authority. congress had its chance to lead. let me mention three important steps the new president should take. one, the president should authorize all qualified dreamers to serve in america's armed forces. immigrants have fought and died to defend america's freedom since the revolutionary war. captain khan who's parents spoke so eloquently is part of that tradition. it was a week ago, ten days the islamic foundation had their convention in chicago. i heard that mr. khan and his wife were going to be here, the man who spoke at the democratic convention. i changed my schedule and said i have to meet them and i did. sat down with this gracious man, this well-spoken and educated man who with his wife lost a son in service to our country.
and has continued to be dedicated to the young men and women who are joining our armed forces. he entertains them at the university of virginia campus, at his home and he gives a copy of the constitution to each of him. you may remember at the convention when he held up his copy of the constitution. i thought to myself, what do i need from this man? i know what i need. i need him to sign my copy of the constitution, which he did. the first american service member killed in the war in iraq was sergeant goo tesh easy. he was awarded u.s. citizenship po po . the law is clear the president can do this. i have been begging this president whom i dearly love but
can't quite get across the finish line. tunld current law any president can make the decision that vital to national interests they would accept dreamers in the armed forces, allowing them to enlist would give us a new pool of homegrown talent. makes our military more diverse and inclusive. i've met young men and women who are anxious to serve. they've been in rotc programs and they want to serve. second action the president can take to break the stalemate on immigration refugees, she could dramatically increase the number of refugees america accepts to 200,000 a year, including 100,000 from syria. two weeks ago the obama administration met the president's goal for this fiscal year of accepting 10,000 syrian refugees. the administration haled it as a major achievement.
maybe it is. but i understand it's controversial. the unease that's stirred up intentionally or not by people who wrongly conflate immigrants with terrorists. you know who i mean. there are 65 million refugees in the world today, the largest refugee crisis in recorded history. they've been driven from homes in syria, iraq, gene and farther. south sudan and beyond by wars, famine and drought. today lebanon hosts over a million syrian refugees. to put that into perspective, that would be the give lentd of america taking in 64 million refugees. here's a number to think about. last year ten nations with an average gdp per capita of about
$3,700 were hosting 45% of the world's refugees. america's gdp, nearly ten times. canada has now accepted more than 30,000 syrian refugees in the past ten months, pledged to accept even more. i support creating safe zones in syria. i hope this effort at demille tarrizing or bringing syria prevalgs but we need to protect the victims of war from that country and also ease the burden on front line nations. the third action ourselves president can take on her own to break america's immigration reform stalemate is to help ease a desperate refugee crisis in our own atmosphere. there are 10s -- hemisphere. in el salvador, honduras and guatemala, there are some of the highest homicide rates, highest
child murders in the world. i'm strongly opposed to immigration raids targeting mothers and children who have left everything behind and may face arrest and deportation. this creates fear. dedeter children from school. they deter from reporting crimes when they're victimized. i'll tell you what ice agents and raids don't deter. they don't deter terrified mothers and children from fleeing violence in their homeland. we know some have been killed often just days after their deportations. a -- i recently read a letter from the president asking the administration to stop deportations of vulnerable areas. the next president should use
her statutory authority to bring a temporary protected status to recent arrivals to the northern triangle. tps would affect children and adults from being returned to dangerous situations. how can we ask our allies in the middle east and europe to keep their borders open to syrian refugees if we return desperate children and parents at our own borders back to lawlessness and lethal violence? action from the next administration guaranteeing refugees from the northern triangle and fair representation in court will show the world that we are who we say we are, a desent nation, a nation of greergets. taking these three actions may not second the next. 's poll numbers soaring, not at first, anyway. history shows us that americans are often slow to come to this issue. there's the historic tale of the
ss st. louis, a ship which sailed in 1939, a german ocean liner that left nazi germany with 908 jewish refugees aboard. the st. louis was turned away at cuba, canada, and the united states. the refugees were returned to europe. it's estimated that a foourt of them died in death camps during world war ii. america learned something from the bitter experience of world war ii and after that wore our attitude toward asylum and refugees started to change. not without some resistance. in 1979, 62% of americans opposed a plachb to take in refugees from vietnam and undero china. look what's -- indochina.
we've accepted them and made them a vital part of america in its nuch. we believe somewhere in the range of 300,000 juz who came to the united states from the soviet union which was our bitter enemy in the cold bar r war, brought here so they could practice their religion. we took in vietnamese refugees. today's immigrants and refugees have the same potential to strengthen our economy and enrich our culture wherever they come from. for those who say we have to build walls, get your facts straight. study after study shows that immigrants are more law abiding that native born americans.
let's be clear. refugees are the most carefully vetted of all coming to the united states. they must pass careful, rigorous security screening that can last 18 to 24 months while they languish many times in refugee camps. all of that takes place while they're stillove overseas. of the thousands of syrian refugees admitted to the united states not a single one has been arrested on terrorism grounds. not one. of the 800,000 refugees admitted into the united states since 9/11, not one has engaged in domestic terrorism, not one. if it's terrorist threats we're worried about, let's be honest. let's focus on real threats and vuler n
vulnerabilities. a third of all the visitors to the united states travel without visas, they arrive without undergoing fingerprint scans or other biomet rick checks. the 9/11 co-conspirator tried to enter through that visa. so did richard reed. if we're really concerned about protecting america from terrorists, we should be strengthening the visa waiver program and requiring biomet rick checks of passengers before they reach the united states. whether you arrive at the airport, what do they ask you for? your password and their fingerprints. not too much and it's pretty quick.
we could be doing the same thing. we could ask if we ask for buy metric checks, they'll ask the same of us. it's not a major inconvenience and doesn't slow us down at all but it adds a level of security. instead of picking on the rev jees and need our help in finding a peaceful place to live, let's make security stronger when it comes to travel by looking at this program in a reasonable way. we're serious about taking care of americans congress should also close the loophole that lets those who enter the simplt through the visa waiver program buy guns and assault weapons and even if they're on the fbi's terrorist watch list. what are we thinking? i support the second amendment but i agree with abe rahm ham lincoln, the constitution is not a suicide pacts. we must also address the root causes of the global refugee
cries its. let me close with a story. when i went to jorgetown school of foreign service i had a professor in my first year. he was in the government department teaching a course called modern foreign governments. his name wassian karski. he showed ep every day in a suit, a clean white shirt, sat there and lectured to us about governments around the world, particularly in europe. that was in 1963. now i am dating myself. my first year at jorngtown school of service. i knew he had been a polish army officer during world war ii but i didn't learn the rest of the story until much later. he'd been a member of the polish underground. we didn't know that they had sneaked him into a warsaw ghetto so he could see it firsthand as
yous were being harassed and violated and killed. and they snuck him into a nazi death camp as well so he could see it firsthand. why? because they wanted him to come to the united states and tell the story. he had been a courier for the polish underground. he sought and received a meeting with president roosevelt, justice frankfurter and told them what he saw. for many years he couldn't bear to speekt his roll and how his warnings had fallen on deaf ears. there's a quote from professor karski i think about. it echoes the quotes of men and women of great moral courage. he says self-imposed interest or hypocrisy are heartless
rationalation when others are suffering is a single. i believe americans are good and decent people. although the campaign might lead you to think otherwise, we're prepared to accept immigration reform now. i hope our new president will use her authority to help. i hope my republican congress and senators for political reasons are for the right reasons. sometimes they're both, will join us in a bipartisan effort to get it done. that, let me stop and answer a few questions. [ applause ] thank you so much. senator. i'm sure there will be questions. we -- >> i always got nervous when i
was called on at georgetown. >> hello. i'm a congressional reporter forecast hispanic outlet. i want to ask you about the dreamers. does that include the children of temporary visa holders or is it only for the children who are here illegally? >> maybe you know the answer to that, doris. i don't -- joe, where are you? >> no. you're asking about the -- >> i'm talking ability the dreamers. >> in your dream legislation. >> does it include children who are here under temporary visas, who may graduate as valedictorians but they don't get the pathway to citizenship that someone else does. >> the visitors visa, the student visa -- >> but they're here illegally. it's only for people here illegally. >> yes. >> hi. what kind of universities and
institutions do children part of the dreamers program -- >> i'm sorry. what kind of university what? >> the children a part of the dreamers program. >> yes. >> what kind of universities and institutions are they having the opportunity attend? >> a lot. >> ok. >> many of these universities don't publicize it. i'll give you an example. the stritch college of medicine, loyola college of medicine decided to allow dreamers to compete for admission to the medical school. for many of them this is the first opening ever for them to compete. 20 of them are now -- dreamers are now in the medical school. they don't get any help from the government, being undocumented but they have a program that if they will pledge a year of service to illinois after they graduate from medical school, they'll forgive the expenses for a year and eventually for their entire education. i've called other universities in my state. i'm going to hold back from
naming names to ask them to have give a chance for dreamers to enter law school and they've done it. i think there's a mood in a large part of higher education that they want to be cooperative and helpful. >> i'm 17 years old. i'm a freshman in college right now and in the fall i was accepted into new york university. but i cannot afford to go there. both my parents, police officers in new york's police department. my mom's going back to work so she can afford to put me now through public college, very nominal televisiexpense comparee of the places i've been accepted. why donald trump's rhetoric is resonating with so many americans? for me, it's not a question. i mean, i grew up in a very middle class neighborhood where
the -- weren't poor enough to get financial assistance but not enough to get them on our own. we're wondering why there's so much xenophobic running through the united states. i'm not a trump forrer. it's not a question for me. as one of the other panels was saying how as well in middle america there's this view that immigrants are coming into america and taking our jobs. so i don't know if you had any response to that. >> thank you for what you said. i really think you put the finger on it. based on your family and life experience. the uncertainty about your future, where you're going to be going to school, and i'm sure your farnts are sharing it with you, because think want you to succeed. and they listen to the
politicians. they might have listened to my speech and said wait a minute, what about my daughter. she's not here illegally, she's here legally. why wouldn't she get the first chance? i don't think it's a matter of choice between fairness to the dreamers and fairness to you as well. we've lost sight of our nation if we reach that point. it's a relative small percentage it will have an impact on. i think they'll be very successful in school and in life. i have a larger view of things, much like your own in that students like you, mom and dad both meksz of the police force, have every right to a good education in this country. i don't think there should be any obstacles to you and they are. cost is the first one if you're admitted. you just mentioned noshlg university and the challenges you fashion. it's really shortsighted of us as a nation to think this is a static pool of tuptd.
i think it's an expanding tool and -- pool and should be. i might add that those who are dreamers going to school get no government assistance. they really have to do it on their own and it's very difficult and challenging. [inaudible]. -- >> i'm sorry. i have to actually stop this because we need to let you go and -- >> well, i -- >> if you'd like to talk about it further on the side, we can do so. >> thank you. >> what i'd like to do is allow the two people behind you to quickly state their point or their question quickly. >> ok. >> thank you for your comments. thank you. >> my name is nicole crawford from the state of ohio. i own a cristian early learning center. i serve about 43 immigrant families from rwanda, ba rundy, the congo and beyond. and my program is in the process of -- they're trying to close me down and i am going to a hearing in the next four days to fight,
of course, but i know that i'm here for a reason and i wanted to see if there was any feedback that you could give me in terms of because of the population i serve being so large with the immigration community and what -- if there's anything that you might suggest that i could utilize as a resource so that i -- when i go into this hearing can approach it from this perspective, because i serve the whole community but my largest portion is immigrants. >> do you think most of the immigrant families are undocumented? >> no. they actually come through catholic social services. we are the primary for my community. they come through by early learning center before being moved outward. >> the choice -- i would say if i were in your shoes, if the choice is to take somebody in america and can work but needs a
safe day care, if the choice is if they should work or stay home, we want them to help, right? to help our country and pay taxes and making sure people have a safe place to put their children, that makes imminent sense. thank you for what you're doing. >> thank you for being here and all your work on behalf of immigration reform. do you have any suggestions for us add katsz who want immigration reform to work with people who are on the other side and help convince them, especially your colleagues in congress, what would our best arguments be and how can we best address the blockages as stitch went as people who care? thank you very much. >> thank you. there was a fellow named jack va lenty. he was around washington for a long time and worked for president lyndon banes johnson
and became a lobbyist for the motion picture association. he was a pretty big deal and a very interesting guy. he used to say sever speech should include six words, six words. let me tell you a story. ok? and the reason that he said that was that people hate speeches but they like stories. ok? and what i have found when i was arguing for the affordable care act against tea party folks standing in front of my office in the street with television cameras going, i would just say well, what about so and so in lincoln, illinois. you know what they happened to her? then they started saying stop telling stories. we don't want to hear anymore stories. i tell stories about dreamers. i go to the floor and toll stories about dreamers. kay bailey hutchinson, a conservative texas republican senator came to me and talked to
me about how we're going to pass the dream act. kay, you're not even voting for it. well, i could vote for it. she would turn to her staff and say, would that take care of maria? she'd met a dreamer that made an impression on her. this is a very personal issue, an issue of stories. i tell them on the senate floor, you need to tell them to people as well. idea do you think we have marriage equality in this country? because more and more young people got to know people who were lesbian, gay, transgender and others and wanted to know why should we keep this from them. i think that ultimately that is the best weapon we have and thank goodness these dreamers have such spectacular stories to tell. thanks. [ applause ]
book the brings you 48 hours of nonfix books and authors every weekend. saturday at 8:00 p.m. eastern, book tv talks with the new librarian of congress, carla hayden. she's the first woman and african-american to hold the position. then at 10:00, new york times president and ceo mark thompson looks at what he calls the erosion of language. he's interviewed by ariana huffington, founder of the huffington post. >> politics, firstly, has changed in very substantial ways. the kind of natural shape of politics based on class and very
clear ideology has become more disrupted and all over the western world you can feel the big traditional parties, the mainstream parties under pressure. >> sunday at 10:00 a.m. eastern book tv is live from the brooklyn book festival. the festival is the largest free lit rash event in new york city. featuring national and international emerging authors. ralph nader looks at political parties and elections. military and war with molly crab apple. daniel padilla. go to book tv.org for the complete weekend schedule. the smithsonian museum of aump
culture opens its doors on saturday september 24 vtd. we'll be live from the national mall at 8:00 a.m. eastern leading up to the dedication ceremony. speakers will be lonnie bunch. and mrs. obama. u.s. supreme court chief justice john roberts, congressman john lewis and smith ownian secretary. live september 24th at 8:00 a.m. eastern on c-span 3. >> coming up next, a hearing on the effectiveness of border checkpoints. it's about two and a half hours.
>> committee on border and mayortime security will come to order. the subcommittee is meeting sfoor defense in depth strategy and its effect on communities. i recognize myself for an opening statement. thank chief mark morgan who is testifying before congress for the first time. i'm sure you'll be spending frequent visits to our subcommittee as we discuss very important questions related to border security. things like what does secure border look like, what are the right tools and strategies to achieve a secure border and how do we measure success or failure? defense in depth, specifically the unintended consequences a strategy imposes on border residents, including many of my stitch went. in 1999, they were outmatched
both between and at the ports of entry. yet despite having a smaller border patrol agents an helped thousands of people. this led to operations hold the line and gatekeeper that sent resources to the border. in the short term it stemmed the tide. however, it had the . the shifting car telehistory gave the border patrol the advantage of time to interdict people. border patrol leadership has explained that in urban areas they had seconds to minutes to interseptember the legal activity. in suburban areas minutes to hours. in rule areas they had hours to days to interdict the illegal
activity. ceding territory has helped. on a routine basis our fellow residents are exposed to this, trespasses on their land destroys their property and puts their lives at risk. mall businesses and tourism suffer from if lack of tourism. to be clear i'm not asking agents to link arms across the border 2,000 miles shoulder to shoulder what i am asking for is we focus our resources of manpower more along the line of scrimmage, not five, ten, a hundred yards inland. using the overwhelming majority of agents and technology as close to the line as will be
allowed. i've spent countless hours at the worders. in many instances i've observed miles-long stretches of the border with little to no agent activity patrolling the road near the fence. i've also seen whole sections of fence cut out a i allowing untold number of vehicles to come across. mindful that geography has an effect on where we interdict narcotics and apprehend individuals. but we can't see waiting for the actors to be caught at a time and place of our choosing. instead, we have to take the fight to them. in tuscon, 48% of the total number of an hences took place more than five miles from the physical border. compare that with yuma or rio grande valley in texas, where
it's the first five miles. for citizens who live along the border, five miles is an eternity. they've created challenges for the men and women i was sent here to represent. the border patrol uses a variety of tactics. checkpoints are designed to push the traffic around the checkpoints into areas where the border patrol has a better chance of interdiction. it's introduced the inconvenience, hassle and threats for law abiding americans who live near these places. to add insult to injury, the checkpoints are closed when it rains to prevent a traffic accident. all the carr tels have to do is wait for the weather to dhieng bypass there.
the national center for security conducted a study. the report makes a series of recommendations to develop measures of effectiveness and impact the checkpoints on communities. i don't think the border patrol has followed or implemented the recommendations but i look forward to talking about that today. we have a university of arizona representative on the second panel. defense in depth and related approach to gord r border security sounds good but there are real world negative impablgts for american citizens who live at or near the border. i look forward to discussing looking at a better approach. gentleman from texas, any statement you have? >> thank you. i don't have a whole lot more to add. i want to welcome you chief morgan to this hearing and cl t congratulate you on your appointment. my view comes from having t
falfurias checkpoint almost weekly. i used to get frustrated having to go through the checkpoint, because to me it didn't make sense that i as an american citizen born in brownsville would have to be asked whether or not i was a citizen two hours north. however, my father was a federal judge with jurisdiction over the salita checkpoint and when i would often voice my frustration, he would remind me of the volume of an rehengss that he would witness, so over time, i kind of softened my reaction, but your agency is vich a part of life in -- across the entire u.s.-mexico border and definitely for those of us
that live in south texas. over the course of the last year, i can tell you, i talked to uruguay agents on an official basis sometimes, but more often on an unofficial basis, because they live all around us. they're part of our social fabric and i can tell you that you have some challenges ahead because over the course of the last year, there is hardly an agent that i have run into, many of whom have been member -- part of the agency for many, many years, who have are expressed a level of dissatisfaction, just feeling a lot of low morale with many of the people who work with the agencies. so i look forward to working with you as we move forward and with the rest of the committee and -- to see what we can do
about improving morale for the agents on the ground and doing what we can to make your agency as effective as possible. but i yield the balance of my time. >> thanks. other members of the committee are reminded that opening statements may be submitted for the record. we're pleased to be joined by two panels. the seoul witness of our first panel is mark morgan, the chief of the united states border patrol, a position he assumed earlier this year. before that he served in the federal bureau of investigation, the los angeles police department and the u.s. marines. he served in charge of el paso and the deputy assistant director for the inspection division. his full written statement will appear in the record. the chair now recognizes the chief for five minutes.
>> good morning. thank you for holding this important hearing today. this is a proud moment for me. this is the first appearance at congressional hearing representing the dedicated and talented men and women of the united states border patrol. during my first two months here as chief i've had the privilege to meet thousands of agents, staff, and trainees along the northern, southern, coastal borders, united states border patrol academy and headquarters here in washington. i can't think of a better way to start my tenure to listen, learn and observe. it's exceeded all my expectationings. two facts have been crystal clear to me. one i have a heck of a lot to learn and two, the men and women to which u.s. border patrol have one of the toughest jobs. in my 30 years of my career, the
threat is big. this was never before evident as my assignment of the fbi specialist in charge of the el paso division in texas. the unique environment facing law enforcement and intelligence community along the southwest border are unparalleled. it was there that i first learned about the vast and challenging border patrol mission. i was astonished at the magnitude and i wasle equally impressed with the men and women serving honorableably every day to carry out the complex and never ending mission. i can tell you they are hard working dedicated to this mission and their country and have and continue to make personal sacrifices to protect the citizens of this great nation. so i set before you -- sit before you today honored and privileged to be part of the united states border patrol team. the numbers we often hear associated with the united states border patrol are the
numbers of annual apprehensions of those attempting to illegally enter the country every year. it's hundreds of thousands. i'd like to take a few minutes to also share some other numbers that we don't often talk about. i've learned that the united states border patrol agents are among the most assaulted law enforcement personnel in the country. there have been 7,542 assaults against agents since 2006 and 30 agents have died in the line of duty since 2003. the recent passing of border patrol agent manuel alvarez serves as a vivid reminder of the unique environment border patrol agents are asked to experience. another number which often gets little mention is how often border patrol agents put themselves in harm's way to provide emergency medical care and assistance to those in need, to include those who are illegally trying to enter the
united states. every year, the border patrol is involved in the rescue of thousands of victims of human smuggling and people attempting to illegally enter the ugsz. in july, the laredo sector border patrol agent risked his life jumping into the river to save individuals who were attempting to illegally enter the united states. just a few months ago, units made landfall on the canadian shore in the middle of the night after observing a house was on fire. they made landfall and alerted the resident's family and escorted them safely as the home became engulfed in flames.
today's hearing is to discuss border patrol ags and the strategic use of checkpoints. i think it acknowledges that the tiftd can occur away from the immediate border. the posture includes a threat-based intelligence-driven multifaceted approach such as checkpoints that are strategically located on routes on the border to maximize our resources and prevent a single point of failure. a border agent k-9. along with sophisticated technology enhanced infrastructure, personnel and partnerships, the checkpoint is a component to protect this
country's national security and ensure the safety of the public we are here to serve. thank you for the opportunity to testify today. i look forward to your question and having dialogue concerning whereas an agency we can get better at what we do. >> thanks, chief morgan. i now recognize myself for five minutes for questions. so as a relatively new chief of the border patrol and one that wasn't an agent first, you mentioned in your opening statement that you've taken time and toured the different sectors and taking a fresh look as to the mission they have, the challenges that they have, so based on that and the topic of this hearing, which checkpoints is one element of it but really we're looking at the full defense inspect depth strategy kchlt you share what did you learn about the strategy and do you agree that this should continue to be the approach that we take, especially in rural communities? >> yes, ma'am. i think i first learned that -- probably going to start refusing
to it as death and defense strategy. i think there's been a perception where we're intentionally ceding ground and territory. i don't think that's what i'm seeing. i think what i'm seeing -- and after too much -- i have a lot to learn. i'm asking a lot of questions. i think what i'm observing is that the strategy really as i said in my statement is trying to come up with a comprehensive multifaceted layered strategy that prevents us from having a single point of fill yoailure. there's ways that that may be achieved and we need to take a look at that. i think the border patrol is going in the right direction, being that threat-based focused organization that's supported with infrastructure, technology and personnel, but also that -- i think part of that strategy,
we know that regardless of -- as we continue to grow on that operation we focus approach supported by technology and people, things are still getting crossed. that's what i saw, too, and that's what is i'm learning. we're getting better. we're not where we need to be but we are getting better. but things are getting across. as i'm looking at that, what do we do to prevent the things that do get across and do get bias? how do we have a strategy that gives us a second look at that? gives us a second chance to eliminate that single point of failure? i think that's what i'm seeing with respect to to the strategy. >> thanks, chief. during your time in your discussions and your visits were you able to see or do you agree that again, if you see the vast majority in the tuscon sector, anyway, apprehensions taking place north of five miles from the border that the illies et
activity does have some serious repercussions to border communities and residents? >> yes, ma'am. absolutely agree. i've been to del rio. i've been to rgv. i've sat with the ranchers. one night i had dinner with the local ranchers there, have great barbecue. and i sat and i talked with them in the -- tanned elements you mentioned in your opening comments are exactly what they're saying as well. and i think they're absolutely legitimate in everything that they say. if i was a rancher and i hear they talk about the things that they do from what others may seem a small gate left open. it's not small as a larger. cattle can get out. it can have devastating impact. they have seen people that passed on their property. their property is getting broken into. things are being stolen, yes, ma'am. so it's absolutely a serious
issue. i can say my tour being out in the field, especially on the southwest border, i have not met a boarder patrol agent yet that doesn't understand that and take it seriously. >> great. thanks. as part of your assessment. do we have the correct number of agents to protect the border? i guess the other question related to the strategy is of the agents you have are you looking at where they are assigned? we hear a lot from the agents themselves about those that are being defailed away and not enough are mustering tuflg to be out patrolling on a daily basis. the percentages we've visited and talked to people seem to be a little bit lopsided as far as those that are out in the field versus those that are in other assignments? are you looking at that and what have you learned from the number of agents and where they're actually assigned?
>>y, ma'am. i'm looking at in a crass did board. there's a couple of things. do we have enough? my first immediate answer is i don't know yet when it comes to the personnel, because i think we have to do -- also what you said is take a look at the resource allocation and where are they at? i think also it's a layered approach. i think to answer that question hojszly, it's a little premat e premature, i think, to give you those numbers. part of that is increasing our ability to identify and understand the threat and have the situation a.m. awareness to be able to be -- continue to grow, being intelligence driven and focus our operations towards that threat. there's also a combination of infrastructure and technology through the use of infrastructure and technology it could impact the number of the need for agents. i'm looking at that. i think you hit the other element right on the head.
that's basically where vr are the agents where they need to be? i don't know. i'm asking those questions. if you look at the history, as you mentioned as well, hold the line gatekeeper, if you look at the history of the border patrol, resources had to be shifted as the threat shifted. i think that's hard for an organization that's static. but also being agile and mobile enough to be constant, having that constant fwloilt go where the threat is. we're looking at that. we have mobile response teams. some sectors may see some agents leave. i don't know. may see agents leave the tucson sector, for example, but they may be going to rgv, which they're getting hammered by the influx of folks crossing. we have to take a look at that. i think in a wholistic approach but absolutely we're taking a hard look at that. >> thanks. one more quick kwep on the checkpoints and we'll get
another round because i want to go deeper into it. we've got these permanent checkpoints on most roads in arizona, and i know across the rest of the border. i mean, look, if you are a hardened carr thel operative and you drive through a known border patrol check point, you should get the darwin award. ok? so as i've talked to agents and your predecessor, you're picking up the low-level criminals who don't know better, don't have good sfwhems but not the serious carr teles. you intend that the transnational criminal organizations are going to go around the checkpoints. and that pushes them into our communities. we'll hear from the second panel about some of the impacts of that. we'll get this discussion out in this first panel. so and then we talked to whoogts say they don't have enough manning to control the walk
around. if the agents are at the checkpoints but not fanning around for those going around it, you're still not accepting them and they're being a public shaift threat. can you just talk a little bit about that checkpoint strategy, the fact that they're fixed versus roaming, they close down when the rain comes? the bad guys know exactly when to go around. just what your assessment is as how we can improve or take a frern look at the use of these checkpoints. >> yes, ma'am. absolutely we should take a look at this 100%. and i am and we are absolutely looking for every opportunity we can approve. i think that's why great organizations get better. i think it's a great organization but i think the way we improve is continue to chejs challenge ours and asking can we get better. absolutely, i'll be asking those questions. more specific, i'll have to do a little bit more work to be able to provide you a solid answer
whether, you know, specific cartels are using the checkpoints. i can tell you from my experience 20 gleers the fbi as well as what i've seen thus far in the border patrol is that serious drug cartels do use lower-level modullecul mules to transportation. so they are getting serious amounts of drugs. now the change of ttps, sometimes the loads are smaller but that doesn't mean it's not coming from a serious drug trafficking organization. the other part with respect to push around the community, i think i'm seeing there's some truth to that. what i'm seeing that border patrol's part of the strategy is they do have roving patrols around the checkpoints for that and they base that on intelligence and the traffic
flow. they can society up intermediate or temporary checkpoints as well to try to stop the flow of people going around. i think they do have a strategy trying to address that. holistically, how effective is that? i still need to get some data on that. >> i will tell you that some checkpoints in arizona they don't have the manning to do roving patrol. do you have the manning to address those issues and the impact on the private property and the local communities when the bad guys are going around. i'm going to yield to my ranking member for his opening questions. >> so are you making a distinction between the effectiveness of the check points in terms of catching people versus catching loads of narcotics? >> i'm not sure what you mean by
making a difference. >> i guess what i'm curious about is we see statistics when we cross these checkpoints in terms of pounds of cocaine that have been you know, that has been detected and so much marijuana. i'm just trying to get an assessment as to whether -- what your sense of how effective the checkpoints are with respect to apprehension of narcotics versus apprehension of people. >> i think at this point i've seen the checkpoints that are an effective part right now of the strategy to prevent us from having a single point of failure. i am seeing that. i'm not saying that there's not alternatives that we should look at or we could look at as part of the strategy to prevent us from having a single point of
failure. but currently as a structure right now, the statistics are showing that they are effective at the immigration enforcement of which their primary purpose is. last year, checkpoints across southwest border, i think, it was r was about 8,000. this year i think we're on track for that same number as well. so on its face, they appear to be effective as that part of the strategy to prevent us from having a single point of failure. now, ancillary, in addition to that, yes, they're being -- i would categorize it as very successful with respect to drug seizures. i think they're also being sma successful in catching people, criminals that have outstanding warrants, state and federal, local warrants for some pretty violent, heinous crimes, as well as those convicted in the past. that's also happened at checkpoints as well.
>> i didn't mean the question to be critical. i was just trying to get your assessment of the effectiveness of the checkpoints with respect to those different tasks that the agency has at the checkpoints. >> yes, sir, and -- so i think right now i would say they appear to be effective, especially with the resources that are actually dedicated to the checkpoints. it's actually a very small amount of the border patrol resources that are dedicated to checkpoints overall. i would say the statistics that are being produced by those checkpoints, i would say at this point, knowing what i know now, i would categorize them as being successful. >> so back on the issue of morale, just to give you an ideas of how entrench the border patrol has been in south texas and in my life there, your agency