tv Washington Journal Rep. Al Green CSPAN December 6, 2017 1:21pm-1:55pm EST
two-state solutionings we recognize the importance of jerusalem and our position on that has not changed. >> later today here on c-span3 the house rules committee will meet to take up a short-term government spending measure as well as other government proposals. current spending expires on friday. the house rules committee will be today on krrk span 3 starting at 3:00 p.m. eastern. the house today is considering articles of impeachment against president trump. texas congressman al green crafted the resolution and presented the document on the house floor just a short time ago. he joined us on this morning's washington journal to talk about why he wants the president removed from office. >> congressman al green is back at our desk, author of articles of impeachment against president trump and. congressman, how do you intend
to do that and when this is all going to happen? >> thank you, please allow me to say that i love my country and i don't do this with any degree of solace. this is not something that i came to congress to do. it's being done because i believe that the president is truly unfit to hold the office. and i can say more about that at a later time. but now to answer your question. at or near the 12:00 hour, we will go to the floor and present a privileged resolution. this will be a resolution to impeach donald john trump, president of the united states of america, for high misdemeanors. when that is presented, that simply means i will read it and give notice to the congress of what the intentionality is. once it has been read and the notice has been given then the speaker decides when the actual resolution will be read again,
and he decides whether there will be motions made to either table the resolution, to send it to committee, to there may be a motion to vote it up or down. my hope is that we will have a motion to vote it up or down because i'm going to support impeachment. if a motion to table is made then i will olz that because that would prevent us from having the vote to actually impeach the president. so the vote to actually vote it up or down, a vote to table would be antithetical to this. a motion to send it to committee would be antithetical. i don't want to see it send to committee, i don't want to see it tabled. i want to see it voted up or down. i will say this. i know this caused consternation. to all those who suffered consternation you have my regrets. i'm a person who travels the road less traveled. and i know this is a bumpy road.
it has lot of curves. it has a lot of potholes full of racism and bigotry and hatred. so i travel this road and i don't encourage anybody else to join me. >> impeach men on the group of high misdemeanor, you said. >> yes. >> what specifically? >> well the president is unmindful of the high duties of his high office, of the dig knits and proprieties therefore. he has brought shame and dishonor on the presidency. he has brought ridicule. and he has, under the guise of political correctness, he has espoused words that do more than insult. he has caused harm to people. by way of an example, he called a member of congress performing her lawful ethical duties a whacky person. and in doing this, this member has received a lot of animus, a
lot of hate has been thrown her way to the extent that she's had to take extra precautions. and that's a member of congress. but on other occasions he said things that impact other people. when he said that there were some very nice people among the bigots in charlottesville, the kkk, the anti-semites, those who preach and teach hate -- when he said that, he aligned the presidency, the magesty, the dignity of the presidency, with hate mongers. and when he did this, my dear friend, he allowed those persons who were there shouting blood and soil to go back to their jobs with some degree of comfort knowing that the president had aligned him self with them. and let me tell you that, when he did that, those people went back to jobs working in restaurants. people go in and buy food,
people who they have this hatred toward. they work in jobs as loan officers. people who are trying to get loans probably encounter-erred difficulty because of who they were, how they look or what their religion was. >> the president unlikely to get impeached by this congress. we are not even sure you are going to be able to get a full vote today on this. why do this? >> first of all, there will be a vote. and the vote to table is still a vote that relates to impeachment. >> you will still get people on the record if it's -- >> that's right. >> just a vote on tabling the articles -- >> or sending it to committee. there will be a vote. so i want to make that clear. now, having said that, the question is a most honorable question. why do this? and the honorable answer is this -- when rosa parks took that seat on the bus, i'm not sure -- in fact, i would suspect that she didn't think she would
end discrimination that night but she knew she was doing the right thing. and by doing the right thing she ignited a spark that started a civil rights movement event ally the bus was integrated to the extent that blacks didn't have to sit in the back and then surrender seats if whites needed the seats that the blacks were authorized to sit in. sometimes you just have to do the right thing for that reason more than any other. and when you are doing the right thing you have a good deal of comfort in knowing that you may not be judged properly by the people who are your contemporaries, but those who look through the vista of time, they will judge you properly. >> before he takes the house floor today, congressman al green with us on the washington journal taking your calls. republicans 202-748-8001.
democrats, 202-748-80202-748-80. independents, 8002. starting with the democrats. are you there? are you there? >> going to your line for independents. >> how are you doing this morning. >> all right. >> caller: i have a couple of comments for the representative. one, articles of impeach men, will that include anything that was discussed when devin nunez moat with some individual at the white house and he then negotiated with the white house in a private room to give out information? >> i have no information about that in the articles of impeachment. >> caller: what about president trump's handshaking of president erdogan after erdogan send his security forces out in d.c. to attack u.s. citizen's peace
protesters? >> no, sir. i'm sure there are many other things that i won't have in the articles. what i have done is provide his own words such that people can understand how he incites hatred and hostility. >> caller: also, i just wanted to correct you earlier, when you said charlottesville, i think you called those individuals bigoted. they were actually nazis, they were raising foreign flag of a swastika. >> got your point, malik. >> i don't differ with you on what you said, sir. >> white plains, maryland, eric, also an independent, did go. >> caller: good morning. thank you for giving me the opportunity to speak. i would like to make a comment and with a question. i'm an african-american. and i voted for donald trump. and i know that will come as a shock. but the reason why is that i think that the democrats took the black vote for granted.
i'm saying because when you look any major city in america, whether it's baltimore, where it's chicago, atlanta, black on black crime is just off the hook. but i don't see our leader talk about it. they only get mad when it's a white man who kills a black man. what is going on when it is a black man killing a black man? donald trump was voted as the president of these states. donald trump was not voted by russia. he was voted because both democrat and republican are so out of touch with us. do you really understand what we want? do you think that it's so urgent to impeach donald trump than to really take care of what is going on in our african-american community. >> thank you for your call. i do believe that there is an urgency. i do believe that the framers of the constitution provided a remedy for a president who
commits misdeeds. misdemeanors means misdeed. and the remedy is impeachment. this is not about democrats and the actions or inactions of democrats as it relates to crime or many other things or republicans in terms of their actions or inactions. this is really about democracy, not about democrats. it's about our government. it's about government of the people by the people for the people. it's really about our republic and what frank lip said when he reminded us that we have one, if we can keep it. i choose to do all that i can to keep the republic. and i understand that these high misdemeanors are creating harm within our society that may be very difficult to cure if not impossible in some circumstances. >> i want to talk about the -- your party's leadership reaction to these articles of impeachment. this was nancy pelosi last month during an appearance on cnn. >> senator lindsey graham says if you and the democrats take the house back in 2018, the
first thing you will do is impeach president trump. is that true? >> no. i believe that whatever we do, we have a responsibility first and foremost to unify the nation. second of all you can't go down any path without the facts and the law f. that's there, perhaps it will come out in these investigations. i've been -- the left of our party is still annoyed with me for not impeaching president bush for going into iraq. what could be worse than that? but the fact is that we have got to really be saying what this election means to people in their lives. somebody has some facts that come forth about president trump, let the chips fall where they may. but it's not someplace that i think we should go. >> not a priority for you? >> no. >> okay. >> and again, i don't want to dampen anybody's enthusiasm for what they believe because a lot of people in our country think that the president should be impeached pt but that's not a decision. that isn't what our election is about, our election is about
meeting the needs of the american people, stopping this tax bill right now which is an insult to the intelligence of the american people, an assault on their financial security that's what we should be talking about. >> congressman green, that was nancy pelosi last month. does she want you going forward with this action, this vote today. >> first of all let me acknowledge that i have great respect for the leader, and there are a good many people who share that view. prominent people, a good many. that's not a view i've heard from many quarters, but it's not about them. it's not about the republicans or the democrats. this is really about our country. and it's about justice. and it's about what george mason called to the attention of the framers when they were devising article four section two of the constitution. it wasn't really about whether a president could be above the law, and shouldn't be. it was about whether a president
could be above justice. all laws have to be just. but some laws aren't. as was evidenced by the civil rights movement and some of the laws that perpetrated and perpetuated segregation. so it's really about justice for people in this country who are being harmed by the facts. and the facts are these. the president has said things that have incited hatred and hostility among the american people. andrew johnson in 1868 was impeached for the high misdemeanor of saying ill of congress, by saying bad thing about the members of congress. he was impeached in article ten. you can't, as president, be unmindful of the high duties and the high dignity associated with your high office. what he did when he retweeted those three tweets with reference to what we'll call
muslims in england, in another country, that incited a lot of hatred. so it doesn't only impact us in this country. it impacts our relationship with our allies. he has brought shame and dishonor on the presidency. so i have no quaurls with what other people will same i have great respect for them. but it's not about them. >> we talked about the president's duties in the constitution, the president, the chief law enforcement officer in the country. the president's lawyers have argued in the russian -- the russia investigation that the president can't obstruct justice because he is the chief law enforcement officer. do you agree with that view? >> here's what they have done, a good many lawyers have, too. and by the way, they are lawyers what have gone to great law schools. i went to thorough good marshal school of law and i had otis kipg as my law school professor. we learned that a president can
be impeached for his high crimes and misdemeanors which is a political action. and only the house of representatives has jurisdiction over the impeachment process. there are 435 members. each will have a vote. and we learned that this impeachment is something that any member of the house can bring before the body. high crimes and misdemeanors. these lawyers, a good many of them, tend to conflate criminal law, the additional aspect of the law, with the political aspect. in the house, we deal with the political side f. they want to get the president indicted for obstruction of justice and they want to use the judicial process, let them do it if they would like to. i'll leave that to them. but the political side in the house says this. the president committed an impeachable act when he fired comey, went on national tv at primetime, and indicated that he was thinking about the russian thing when he did it.
now, the house of representatives can impeach the president for that. all of the investigations are great if you want to bring criminal charges. but i would warn people, i would give this admonition, be careful about putting you will a of your eggs in the basket of criminal charges because at the end of the day, if there are no criminal charges brought, are you still going to say that the president shouldn't be impeached for the dastardly deeds that he has perfected? i think not. so i'm not one of those who believes we ought to outsource the investigation of it's okay that it's done. i welcome it. but i think the judiciary committee has a duty responsibility and obligation to the american people to fulfill its mission its duties and did judiciary committee ought to be looking into this for the purpose of ascertaining whether or not the president committed an impeachable act. >> to louisville, kentucky,
steven is a democrat. good morning. >> caller: good morning. and i wanted to first start out by saluting the patriotism, courage, eloquence, and wisdom of congressman green and people like him in my party. miss pelosi i have no use for. as far as i'm concerned i think she's a wimp quite frankly. with all the stuff going on right now in north korea and with the way this man is trying the rattle the cage overseas with that nut case over there, we have every right to want something done about this issue, first and foremost. but let me just say that i am a democrat, but i do care about the health, safety, and welfare of my country. and i put that number one. also, i'd like to point out something, if i could. i don't think -- i don't want just impeachment. i want indictment. because this man has committed crimes for many years. we all know in our hearts that
he has. i knew -- hello health, i smelled two bit scoundrel all over him last year when he was running. i knew that he was evil. and i just do not understand how people can sit here and talk about all of this. we see what he has done with ar packageio, pardoning him. we've seen what he has done with roy moore, supporting this pedophile. and not to mention the fact that he's planning on trying -- they have been talking about how he has planned on firing mueller, somebody doing the job that the republicans in the house and the senate should have been doing to begin with. >> got your point. congressman? >> yes, i would say this. honorable people can have differences in opinion. and without making this about speaker pelosi, i think she's an honorable person. and i don't have a quarrel with her at all. or with anybody else who differs with me. as a matter of fact, if people vote against the impeachment res
loose i'm not going to be offended by that, it's 434-1, i understand and we'll go on. but i do want to say this, i think the lady imminently correct about the assessment of president and what he has said and how it has impacted us. let me give you an example of something that he did before becoming president, with the central park five. five young men. minorities who were accused of doing very ugly things to a white female. they were convicted. but later -- and the president, by the way, was one of the big cheerleaders pushing that. spent money to have ads after they were convicted there was a finding later that they were not guilty. the president never retreated, never said that he was wrong, spent all of that money, never recognized the fact that they were found not guilty. now, there are some people saying they were probably found
not guilty on a technicality. not so, my dear friends. they were found not guilty based upon dna evidence. dna he had. they were not the people who perpetrated the crime. and the president has stood his ground on something that he now knows or should know was an inappropriate position. >> michael on twitter wants us to talk about exactly how high of a hurdle impeachment and conviction is? >> well, impeachment is in the house. and conviction is in the senate. if the house impeaches, then it moves to the senate. and the senate will have a trial with the chief justice of the supreme court presiding. if two thirds of the senate say by their judgment that the president should be impeached pursuant to the articles from the house, then the president will be removed from office. the senate can also decide that he cannot hold any other office related to the government in the future. in terms of the standard in the house, a majority of the members
of the house voting can cause the president to be impeached, which means indicted and then sent to the senate. similar to an indictment but not quite the same thing, because it's political. >> to evansville, indiana. charles is a republican. good morning. >> caller: honorable representative green. >> yes, sir. >> caller: thank you for your service down there in houston, texas, i know they took a hit from the hurricane. >> well, thank you, sir. >> caller: i don't believe whacky is an impeachable slur. it's not racial. i am a bipolar vietnam skpret have be -- vet and have been called worse. i think president trump has adolescent behavior, but, you know, several presidents have ignored the middle east for so long and it's become a turmoil,
and he's -- he's putting more troops over there and taking care of the north korean situation. thank you for taking my call. >> and thank you, sir. and thank you for your service to the country. i don't know that we can ever thank you enough. and quite candidly speaking i don't think we have properly accorded you the thank that you have richly earned and deserve. in terms of being called worse, i have been called a lot worse than whacky. i grew up in the segregated south. i'm a son of the segregated south. the rights that were recognized by the constitution for me, my friends and neighbors denied me. i know what inindividualious discrimination looks lick. i know what it smells like. i know what it sounds like. i each know what it tastes like. when i speak of this i speak of it from the point of view of understanding how words can
impact others, how they can incite others. emily dickinson reminds us that a word is dead some say, i believe that it begins to live that day. when they come from president the chief executive officer, the high magistrate of the united states of america, when it comes from the mouth of the president and you say whacky congress person, there are other pulmowho will take that language and see it as a license to do harm to someo someone, to do harm to people in ways that we can't imagine. we are all having to have additional security now. and we don't need the president inciting people to do dastardly deeds. that's what this is all about. and i do thank you for your service to your country. you are a person to be properly honored and recognized. >> take you back to the lone star state. anita is in san antonio.
on the line for independents. good morning. >> caller: good morning. good morning, congressman. yes, i do salute your bravery for fighting this. i do agree. i do think that he should be impeached. i think it's totally unfit to be president. i don't just think he is whacky i think he is mentally unstable and he has the nuclear codes and he has a lot of parp power and he goes on twitter and he insults other nuclear powers like north korea. i just -- there are so many things that bother me about him. his misogyny, his xenophobia, his racism and the way he divides this country. i just -- i don't -- and by the way, he has only a third of the support of the american people right now. so a third of the american people are deciding for everyone else. and that bothers me. and he lost the popular vote. and i think he was installed by russia. i don't think he won the
election fairly and squarely. >> well, thank you. you have triggered a thought that i haven't shared. and it is this. this we have allowed our civility to allow the president to perpetrate this hateful incivility. and there's a standard now that has been imposed that is quite onerous. here is the standard. the president can call senator a liar. he can call a candidate running for president, as he did, a bigot. but if we tell the truth about the president, if we speak truth to power and define him properly, we are somehow not being properly civil. for example, if i call the president a bigot, there are people who would say, a member of congress should not call the president a bigot.
notwithstanding all of his actions that would indicate that that, in fact, is what the president is. so he has the authority now, it seems, to use his incivility to our detriment because we have to maintain a level of civility that is antithetical to the best interests of the people of this country. and my friends, like it or not, we have elected a bigot as president. >> we are running out of time. want to get to kathleen who has been waiting in los angeles for the line for republicans. kathleen, thanks for waiting. >> caller: good evening or good morning, i'm calling from california. i'm a black american woman. and i voted for president trump because, you know, you say some fancy words -- this is rhetoric. this is opinion. this is not facts. data is facts. and you say that it's not about democrat or republican.
but you know, the democrat party has had the support of black america for five decades. my people, we do not understand what politics is. it's about power, and the economic well-being of black americans. i'm assuming you should -- you were elected to represent the economic well-being of black americans. i just came from skid row in los angeles. there's rows and rows and rows of black men on skid row in los angeles. for five decades, the democrats have had the loyalty of black americans. and democrats have failed to -- democrats have kept black americans uneducated, ill informed, incarcerated, and poor. and that's why on mad day for trump here we have all these black americans calling in giving their opinion about
trump's personality. it will take 228 years for black americans for the average black family to catch up to the average white family, 228 years. we have been in this country 500 years. we built america. our ancestors built america along with white americans. >> kathleen, got your point. want to give the congressman a chance to respond. >> thank you very much kathleen. and i don't differ with you about the role of african-americans in making america great. i don't differ with you about the notion that the democratic party has not done all that it can and should do for a loyal constituency. you did not mention it but i would not differ with you if you had said that the republican party ignores democrats. one takes us for granted and the other ignores us. i would not differ with you on those points. i would also add to you you are
right, democrats are loyal. they are loyal americans. we are the once who made cotton king and america great. so we don't differ there. here is where i would share some information that you may not find favor with. the facts are president did say there was some very fine persons in charlottesville who were neo-nazis, bigots, person whose were not the kind of people, if you will, that will make america great again. the facts are that the president has called a member of congress wacky. has said that professional football players are s.o.b.s. the "d" is a dog. he called them mothers of these professional athletes dogs. that's not acceptable. finding very fine people among those people who were in
charlottesville is unacceptable. sending out that tweet is unacceptable, to tweet about the muslims. he will tolerate the k.k.k. to a greater extent than he will islam. that's all unacceptable. this president is unfit. he has committed high misdemeanors. andrew johnson was impeached for less. and articles of impeachment will be brought against him today around noon. >> congressman, i know you have to go. before you do, did want to ask how's houston? are you getting what you need? >> no. the state of texas isn't, but florida isn't and certainly the islands in puerto rico, they are not. this congress seems to be bent on returning billions to billionaires at the expense of the person whose really need some help right now. it seems to be a notion in the congress that the very rich need
more to do more and the very poor can do more with less. there seems to be a belief that if you give money to the people at the top, somehow they willful fill a social responsibility or some kind of obligation to make sure it gets down to those at the bottom. my friend, if they were really sincere with this legislation, they would have included raising the minimum wage. raise the minimum wage and make it a living wage. they could put that in this legislation making the minimum wage a living wage. if you want to make sure the money gets to the people at the bottom, make the minimum wage a living wage. i don't find favor with what they're doing and texas is still suffering. you ride the freeways, you think things are great. but when you go into the communities and the neighborhoods and you see people who still have their homes gutted, you understand the problem. may i say this to that final caller? this is really important. she mentioned people that i
represent. me and my office, there is a place for people who are asking for help. i pulled up and stopped. and the man who saw me said to me thank you for what you're doing with the articles of impeachment. people in serving lines have said it. a lady at a church as i was leaving the church. not a very rich person said this is the right thing to do. so i represent those people and i thank you. >> congressman al green. he'll be on the floor around noon today if you want to watch his actions, his efforts when it comes to his articles of impeachment. we'll talk to you down the line. >> thank you, sir. the house rules committee meets this afternoon to take up a short term government spending measure as well as other legislation. current government funding expires friday meaning that without action by congress the government could shut down on saturday. the house rules committee is live right here on cspan3 at 3:00 eastern. that's about an hour and seven minutes or so from now. this morning prime
minister's questions in the b t british house of commons. trees say was asked about the u.s. recognizing jerusalem as isreal's capital. >> the recognition by donald trump of jerusalem as the capital of isreal will do grave damage to the prospects for a just and lasting peace settlement between the israelis and the palestinians which has been british and indeed american foreign policy for decades. was she consulted about this announcement? and if so, what does she say and will she here and now clearly condemn it? >> well, i'd say to the honorable gentleman that i'm intending to speak to president trump about this matter. but our position has not changed. we -- our position as he says it's been a longstanding one and also a very clear one. that the status of jer