tv Washington Journal CSPAN July 11, 2010 7:00am-10:00am EDT
host: among the issues that lawmakers will be facing in the week ahead. sunday, july 7. live coverage under way in about two hours here on c-span of our nation's governors in boston. the deficit, spending priorities, and state budget. we want your thoughts and comments. short on money, long on problems. that is how they put it in ""the washington post." for democrats, 202-737-0002. for republicans, 202-737-0001. for independents, 202-628-0205. join the conversation online as well as firstname.lastname@example.org -- as well at twitter.com/c-spanwj or send us an e-mail at journal@c- span.org.
beginning with a political note this morning, dan brown says " the battle for congress will play out between now and november, indicating how president obama might govern the second half of his first term. but no one underestimates the significance of the state falls. one way that the government will make changes is redistricting. new governors being reelected, short on money and lots of problems. more in a moment. joining us from new jersey, angela who covers politics for "capital press." what is happening in new jersey? there is a piece on the front
page apologizing to chris christie, including taxes in the deficit. >> this is the first time in new jersey that the government has been split. this is the first time i have had a republican governor in years. host: what is happening in terms of the budget deficit in new jersey? how is a governor handling that? guest: they just passed a budget that he proposed. there was no government shut down.
he came in with a structural deficit. some of the layoffs, $50 million or so through privatization. they did not contribute anything in the coming year. host: they pointed out that next year the budget deficit will reach $11 billion in new jersey, the worst in the country. what is the back story on those numbers? caller: the governor is a big
person with a big personality and a big agenda. he had a mandate to change things, change the habits as described, unseating an incumbent democrat. the deficit has been around for awhile. something different to get the spending under control. host: what does it mean for the rest of the country? caller: new jersey has the distinction of being one of only a few states that elected the governor one year after the presidential action. and he has also had some left over going his way, attempting to trim unemployment benefits.
i think that the most interesting thing that has happened so far is that new jersey just passed a property tax and spending tax on the local level. again, we will see how this works. whether or not citizens see relieved in property taxes. new jersey faces the highest property taxes in the country. host: let me put one other issue on the table again from "of the philadelphia inquirer." bowling to reintroduce any blueprint, several weeks before the real debate governor chris
christie detailed the tax, but it was clear from the start that they would not succeed. the politics are behind this issue. guest: this was a case where the democratic priorities were for funding programs to remain intact, cutting spending, even when it is reinstated with a one-year surcharge on income earners over $1 million. chris christie said from the beginning that he would not cosign any such tax. at the end of the day i think that the democrats decided that it was less obstructionist to pass this budget and allow the
republicans in the new governor to zero net. attacks that they were ultimately not able short the they could do in the majority. even in the legislature they are fighting for a much smaller restoration, $7.5 million restored for family planning centers, which the governor also cut from the budget. it was not included in the list a supplemental appropriations that the governor agreed to as a part of compromise. women senators and assembly women have been holding a press conference every day, urging the governor to restore what was mutual at this point. host: thank you as always for your time and the background on what is happening in the garden state. caller: you are welcome.
host of this story this morning from "the washington post." states dealing with the issue, short on money, lots of problems. speaking yesterday at the meeting in boston. >> i want to start by offering my condolences to all of you. all of you have picked a very unfortunate time to the governors. this is the worst fiscal crisis we have seen since the great depression. as you all know, it looks like it will be very prolonged. you might be seeing some pickup in revenues. whenever you are seeing coming in will probably be taken out at the same time. job growth, judging from the latest numbers nationwide, but
it is very slow. it does not look like it will pick up for a long time. on top of that you have a health care funding crisis layer on top of it. host: alice from our coverage of the nga meeting taking place in boston. for democrats, 202-737-0002. for republicans, 202-737-0001. simple solutions to the money shortages? todd, brentwood, california. caller: states are short on money and long on problems? what could a person really say about that. we are in bad shape.
we were in a very low situation in the economy over the last year. the future looks worse. we have health care that was not paid for. the double counting of 1/4 trillion dollars. we have the european union situation. he present -- pressured angela merkel according to "the new york times." the stimulus did not work. in california we are reaching the point where we have no hope. no one has any hope in sacramento. this time you have been in california a few years?
caller: i have seen the situation many times in california. i have been teaching for a long time. host: there's also a piece this morning in the front page of the week in review session of "the new york times." "governor schwarzenegger has tried to be non-partisan in politics, but it will love the view many friends. the lesson may be this, being independent in an election or reelection is not the same as people liking you. everyone loves what they promise but dislike them intensely when they have to live with it.
margaret is joining us from chicago, democratic line. states are short on money and long on problems. your take? caller: the problem is, from the top, i have thought about this a lot. countries that succeed do not halvve the 50 states. we need a country that deals with education. constant raids from the capitalism where they pay the
price for that. health care, and selecting dutton. -- things are not getting done. host: wall street is hiring, according to "the new york times." "wall street is hiring against the recovery. while much of the country remains fixated on the bleak picture, hiring is picking up in the place that led the economy into recession. wall street. the shift underscores the remarkable recovery of the biggest banks and brokerage firms since washington rescued them in the fall of 2008. the most ever since employment bottomed out in february, new york securities firms have added nearly 2000 jobs, a trend playing out nationwide." scott, louisiana, good morning.
caller: good morning. i used to call once per month when i lived in new york. there is a solution and i have been pushing this for 10 years. i think that god and man will push us to this limit where they will have to listen to me. if we could legalizing and control the truth on the war on drugs, legalizing marijuana and putting a tax on it. i am the louisiana right now is hitting us bad, this oil spill. but the whole ocean will be messed up by it, not just us. if we ran our vehicles off marijuana refined gasoline, that would solve the problem.
if the guy in california would jump on board, it would do a complete turnaround for their budget. marijuana as a cash crop, it would purify the air -- no other plan does this on earth. man has got to get his head out of the sand before it is too late. host: from "the new york times, this story is getting a lot of attention this morning. the initial cap has been removed in place of a new containment cap. from "the new york times," beginning what they are calling an ambitious engineering effort, making some matters worse temporarily." there's also a web site featured in the latest edition of "the national journal," it features a
map of the gulf of mexico oil slick. he writes in the national journal -- "if you type in your address it will place the oil spill where you live. how might encompass parts of washington, northern virginia, even in ohio. some public policy issues, especially those from technological failures, there have been social and political consequences beyond who is up into is down and how it will play out in november. the deep water rise and will change the country as a whole, although it is impossible to predict what and how profound the changes might be. check out the web site, type in your zip code, transforming the gulf spill over your area of the country to give you a sense of
how wide and far it is." back to your calls, short on money, lot of problems. democratic line, good morning. caller: thank you for letting people like me voice my opinion. last year there were questions, the republicans were so much against our president and letting our people suffer. for example, we have millions of people out of work. the republicans are not happy. do they not know that there is an election and we are taking notice?
host: jerry, republican line. good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call, this is the first time i have called. sitting in the hands of the secretary of the treasury. here it is, there are three aspects. if fannie mae had the ability to transfer the toxic assets into foreclosed homes, of red tape being held up by one kind or another second, if a chunk of stimulus, the first sustainable
because the transfer out runs sufficiently, unsuccessfully allowing the capability of the successful, necessary to remove local banks in stockholder risk before the title passes. if fannie mae came in on a first-come, first-served basis at 55% of the bank approved, higher appraisal prior to any recession with the requirement
licensed in a bonded contractor bid for a minimum purchase price upgrade, jobs would explode. not to mention the quickly expanding taxpayer rolls. host: in the latest edition of business week, james warren writes "the primary goal for businesses of all sizes and business owners of all political beliefs -- now the the stimulus is winding down they might have something else in common." this quote from dennis lane, "we can no longer for the government that we have, maybe they need to hire more workers to get even less done." speaking about the budget
deficit on the states, here is part of the summer session from saturday. >> this is how we are positioning our states for success in the future. it will be important. successors and future generations can have a more sustainable state governments in their place. >> it will take a modification and expectation of the public based on what the government does. this is how they maintain the capacity with states going to the federal government for money to meet the expectations of
roads or anything else. we are dealing with historical patterns based and what would be funded. it seems to me that we are avoiding the basic question of what government will pay for. host: we will have more of that later today here on c-span. "we have another casino being built in illinois, it seems that that is the only thing that state governments can come up with. we are getting more calls and comments. tina, new york city. welcome. are you with us?
caller: can you hear me? host: yes, please go ahead. caller: i find it strange that people are more concerned about the deficit than helping people or hurting right now. instead of looking to tax millionaires, where they can get a lot of revenue, they instead plan on taxing people like myself. half of my paycheck goes to taxes. i have to struggle to bring home enough money to survive. i think that if the government and these wealthy businesses would stop being so greedy and take more concerned for the normal, everyday person in america, we would be able to get back on track. host: focusing on the arizona situation, from "the washington
post," "washington is for obsessed with fall -- solving the big problems with one big move, legislators that passed big, the finding laws, passing the compromise of 1850, temporarily resolving disputes gain in the mexican war that came together after a large omnibus bill failed. smaller bills each best separately." more on reforms from that section of "the washington post." john, connecticut. what is your take? john? good morning? caller: yes, good morning.
the problem is that it comes down to welfare. there is no control over it. i work in a store where they have a 12 pack where the money is wasted. we cannot wait for people to remain on welfare their entire lives. having the taxpayers feed and clothe their own children, but other people as well. host: we will go to michael vincent, joining us from new york. good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. good to hear from you and see
you. i wanted to thank the operators or assistance that take their calls behind-the-scenes. they do not get the gratitude they deserve. host: thank you. caller: i just said one of the operators, for about six weeks c-span to and c-span 3 has had a wonderful closed captioning. sometimes the calls come in and you do not want to lose the flow of the conversation. closed captioning, being disabled myself in certain ways, if management can hear me and this can be directed as i am putting it out, we want to respect the america with disabilities rights with it the money that c-span is sending to the contractor, get the closed captioning fix please. short on money, logon problems.
i want to take three points to turn it around. i do not think we are short on money. i think it is a myth that divides us. when you count your problems you stop at one or two. when you count your blessings, as the governor of massachusetts brought up yesterday for those that follow this program, sometimes it is when you are in a crisis that is a crossroads that there is an opportunity and it depends on the decision is made. first of all, i think that we have the money. 35 years ago, 25 years ago, i worked the same feat in washington, d.c., which advocated getting rid of nuclear weapons and catholic bishops. we are working on moral issues and immoral policies. rather than making judgments about people on welfare and this
and that, i think we have to ask if our policies are moral. are we morally bankrupt? we have to say, in the first stance and this perspective, we have two occupations. we do not have wars. we have occupations. the first started will oil going to afghanistan. we have to reinvest how much we are putting into making war around the world and against the people of those policies. host: thank you for the call. we want to move on with others. i promise i will follow up with closed captioning tomorrow morning. he discusses himself as a maverick on our twitter page, taking a second look at state lotteries, which do not seem to bring in much for administration costs. the focus this sunday morning in
"the los angeles times," meg whitman, having spent millions, the headline says "the friction getting into the race has them both smiling now." bea, victoria, texas. good morning. caller: buying and an old lady. when i went to school we were told to keep your nose out of foreign affairs. my husband died for this country. i think that we have no business giving up the lives of our men. we do not have enough for the people on the streets to get food. but we spend all this money on more.
-- war. why can we not just take care of our own country? we are taking care of these people in [unintelligible] but i cannot see our boys getting killed every day. i cannot understand it sometimes. i think -- look at all of the money that we have. what if we did not spend it on this war? host: robert worth has an extensive piece in the sunday "the new york times," magazine. "yemen, the next afghanistan"? a couple of the points that he makes include this -- "al qaeda has sounded more confident than ever in recent weeks, publishing its own internet magazine and its own english only magazine."
as you to see from this piece, "al qaeda may have found the perfect combination of political chaos, tribal hostility, and military opportunity in yemen." james, good morning. caller: good morning. i am here to tell you that of law of unintended consequences is alive and well in georgia. let me just say that i know something about the prison system down here. we want to make prisoners pay for the stuff that they do. to large degree it makes sense. in many ways it has gone overboard. many prisoners who are more than eligible for parole are opting not to go on parole. they are going to get hit with child support off the top, 60% of the gross.
standard payroll taxes, another 20%. they have to pay for parole officers, some of which do not have to pay reparations on top of that. it is not worth it to go on parole. instead of going on parole and getting out of prison, which is a massive cost, they stay in prison. it is ludicrous. they are trying to get prisoners to pay pennies it is ridiculous how they are getting the taxpayer on the hook for this when these people could be contributing to society, but they are worried about a nickel and diming the prisoners. host: thank you for the call and the comments. for republicans, 202-737-0001. for democrats, 202-737-0002. former governor rod blagoevich's trial continues in chicago this
morning. this is from "the new york post." "nothing but appreciation. if you thought that we had a monopoly on crazy governors in new york, look at the federal corruption case against rod blagoevich. carrying on in this melodramatic way for at least a month is not the trial of the century, but it is the most comical. rod blagoevich seems almost delighted to be in such a pickle. he has been shaking hands, posing for photographs, opining for any reporter that will give him a microphone. the prosecution is likely to rest its case later this week. governor blagojevich will testify in the trial as well.
more on the blogo blog." back your phone calls, the issue we focus on this morning, writing about it at the nga meeting, j is joining us this morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. we have been through this before with respect to the federal budget. when clinton inherited a relatively large deficit from reagan-bush, he and the democrats -- without one single boat from any republican, basically that budget act solved the debt that we were in. this is no big secret how this all this.
whether or not president obama will be able to do anything about it with this political climate is a different story. looking at the tax bracket, this is nothing new. raising the bracket up to the level, looking at how much revenue is taking it in, paying off the deficits. of course, you have got to come out of the so-called wars. we have got to come out of them. that is where clinton was wise to avoid getting involved in expensive military action. i think that these are senseless military actions. raise the taxes for those that can afford it. as you know, reagan gutted it.
raise it up to the appropriate level. spend all of that in that revenue. -- in debt revenue. i think we could do that. host: thank you for the call that. james warren in the latest edition of "business week," "does stimulus worked"? "that depends. do you own a business"? but go to a republican caller, al, north kingston. caller: she knows that. host: you are on the air, go ahead. caller: thank you, steve. every person listening to c-span today should pick up their phone book, go into the white pages and look for state government. they will know why we are in the fiscal problems that we are. our country has gotten so far
away from the constitution, we pay for everything. if you look at what is in the phone book for state government it is beyond the pale. this country, the only people having children today are the people that do not pay for them. average family is, if they are working they can afford have one child. we are supporting people from cradle to grave. it cannot go on like this. we cannot have a government that takes care of everything that people want. we have a country of 300 million people. we are beginning to get close to a south american way of life. this is very dangerous for this country. obama does not care. republicans and democrats do not care. i am a conservative, but you have got to get these people out of office. they are losing the value of this country. thank you for c-span.
host: thank you. check out the website,da,ily.com -- website, politicsdaily.com. "los states did privatize and it cost tons of money." -- "most states did privatize and a cost tons of money." robert, good morning, thank you. caller: a few comments about the state being out of money, so on and so forth. i'm not know how it works in other states, but in new york the governors and senators that have not pass the budget, if they have not passed a budget but they still get their full monthly pay retroactive, if they did not do their jobs they should not get paid.
anyone in a private company that did not do their jobs would be fired. all that money would be put back into government and set of payroll. -- instead of payroll. they would make a bigger percentage of payroll. if they know that they would get their money, there is no incentive for them to do their jobs. host: on the front page below the fold, justice sotomayor, " her first term on the court was like many that came before her. she worked constantly, turned down interview requests and most speaking engagements for and glamorous and largely not controversial opinions. she voted with but justice ruth baker ginsberg more than any other colleagues on the court."
there is a pace here -- a piece here on elena kagan, jeffrey smith riding "beginning this week on the supreme court nomination of elena kagan, skeptical lawmakers could not resist the opportunity to search for a weak point that might -- that might provoke controversy. six republican senators submitted questions that produce 74 pages of written responses. her answers, released friday, more finely sanded to avoid any clamor. elena kagan carefully hewed to the themes he struck at last month's hearings. in cases in which she was the opinion, she said, it was that the supreme court's justice thurgood marshall." jerrick is joining us from maine, good morning.
caller: good morning. myself, i am a moderate fiscal conservative. happening at the federal level and at the state level, there are too many executive agencies. to many executive agencies that are spending money when we can combine all those into larger departments to save money. i am a student here in washington, d.c. i am studying political science. it is one of the things that i see, there are many executive agencies that can be folded in
to save money. a lot of these states have executive agencies that can be combined. host: "politicians are constantly keeping -- making promises they cannot keep just elected." the author of the so-called " rule -- volcker rule, writing in the business section of "the new york times," "he made periodic visits to washington to persuade members of congress to make the legislation more far reaching, emphasizing that he never
engaged in lawmaking. for everything that he described as the strengths, it does not go far enough in curbing the potentially problematic bank activities like investing in hedge funds." hope you join us tomorrow morning on "washington journal ," 7:00 a.m. eastern time. lackawanna, new york. caller: i feel that i can use my real name today. let me just say how i feel about this. i feel that we cannot take care of everyone. i do not believe these people that say that we cannot take care of people from cradle to grave, we have trillions of dollars running through this country. a sorry group of people, that is why the states cannot say
anything. they are unwilling, if the people who had the money, paid the taxes. they pay 70% of the taxes? they have got 90% of the money. it is only right. they never goteborg. some of those -- they never go to war. some of those lives start and end at 20 years old. someone has got to carry the weight. these rich people and companies who get money, they are so ungrateful. they get these giant pensions, taking it to the european and asian rim, giving them european -- universal health care. but they cannot do it for us?
we cannot take care of our own people? they want people to work until they're 70. most black people die in their 60s. one point is there to working if you cannot sit down? host: "if you like paying taxes, be ready to pay more. obama is going to raise yours and everyone's." as u.s. troops move out iraq, many more are moving into afghanistan. one of the best-seller lists on the "the new york times" best seller list, the laura bush biography is that no. 5. no. 12, "change your brain, change your body." "born to run," is no. 13.
we encourage you to check out booktv.org in our weekend programming on c-span 2. taking a look at the other issues and guests making up the sunday morning conversation, bobby jackson. caller: the white house and congressional agenda, congress is returning this week. the midterm elections and the gulf coast oil spill. the guests on "meet the press" include robert gibbs. on abc this week, talking with david axelrod. luis gutierrez and bryan bill bread. the guests on "fox news sunday," hosted by chris
wallace, david axelrod and jon kyle, as well as an interview with benjamin netanyahu. on "face the nation" on cbs, eric holder. on cnn's "state of the union," guests include david axelrod, new mexico governor bill richardson, a trend frank, and kenneth feinberg, administrator of the gulf coast oil spill victims compensation fund. youkilis and all five of the sunday morning talk shows starting at noon eastern on c- span radio. 90.1 fm in the washington, d.c. area, channel 132 nationwide on xm satellite radio. follow us on facebook and twitter. >> what world leaders from the white house the parliaments
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>> this week, on "the communicators," of mine safety and safety issues in europe. tonight on c-span 2. >> "washington journal" continues. host: a live view of the main ballroom at the meeting in boston, the 102nd annual meeting. the coverage today includes the comments of alan simpson and erskine bowles, cochairs of fiscal responsibility forums. the topic is the federal budget deficits, the risks and impact facing states around the country. live coverage gets under way at 9:30 eastern here on c-span and c-span radio. jill lewis is covering the story, thank you so much for being with us.
guest: thank you for having me. host: you have been posting some of the headlines from the meeting. what are they? guest: some of them are policy oriented. governors are here to talk about their challenges with fiscal situations, layoffs, talking about homeland security, health, and medicaid. the political headline is the new head of the governors' association is in the thick of a lot of political intrigue right now. since senator byrd died, the senate is one short. we have been waiting for west virginia to clarify its election succession laws and for the governor to declare a candidacy for the u.s. senate. that has been an interesting subtext here. the head of a non-partisan organization, he intends to stay
leader. he becomes chairman today. he has been running for the senate. host: if you saw earlier promotion, we had scheduled governor joe manchin. we hope to have him on, he canceled yesterday late in the day. that was part of the intrigue that was coming out of the meeting in boston. there is some thought that the term for senator byrd expired in 2012, but the election could be held this year. does that help or hurt governor joe manchin? guest: he will have a busy rest of 2010. i think that what will happen, according to the interpretation from the attorney general in west virginia, the way it was explained to me, everyone knew
the law was confusing and no one wanted to fix ships because it would have been a sign of disrespect. the weighted and now they are scrambling. he is hoping to fix all by sunday. at that point they hope to name a democrats until the primary and election. i think that this is good for him. he would not have named himself. he will name someone else, and then he can run the way he has made it clear that he wants to. host: comments from governor devolve patrick this weekend became the subject of a turnaround spot by the republican governors association. let's show it and get your
comments. >> duval patrick spends too much. your taxes have gone up and up because of it. wasteful spending, higher taxes, fewer jobs. host: will that be a theme we hear from republican governors over the next few months? guest: i think that it will. the timing of this advertisement was striking. it went on the air just hours after the governor had welcomed all of the other governors to boston. declaring the organization to try to be very bipartisan, but it was a pretty slashing attack ad right in his state. jokingly urging him to spend money on. i ask the governor in mississippi about this advertisement, he said it was a coincidence and that if anyone had thought about it they
probably would have held it for a few days. there is a lot of partisanship below the surface. governor patrick is involved in a very close race with charlie baker. there is politics going on. shocking. host: there is a rematch in terms of governments -- governors in maryland, bob ehrlich trying to reclaim his seat from martin o'malley. in california there's a lot of concentration on jerry brown, who served in the 1970's through the 1980's, trying to come back in -- against meg whitman, who last cal spent $81 million of her own money to become governor. guest: that is right. and she will be spending $120 million before it is all over. there have been candidates in the past in california that have
spent hugely and lost. michael huffington and darrell i saw come to mind. it is not any guarantee that she will win. democrats think that they have a fairly good shot because she has moved to the right to win her primary and because voters in primary may not think it is time for an outsider. they tried that with governor arnold schwarzenegger. the experience may not be negative for former governor brown. it is not a great landscape for democrats. but there are some bright spots and possibilities. host: we spoke to congressman beryl eisa -- darryl isa, he was asked about the immigration issue and the impact in
california and how it plays out in other parts of the country. here is part of what he had to say. >> arizona is not incarcerating people for being in the country illegally, they are being offered up to the federal government to take their responsibility. giving them on a silver platter, if you will, the job already done. audit -- arizona is not apprehending people running over the border. they are enforcing it at the worksite and when people are apprehended for other crimes. there are already a number of laws passed to support exactly that. the administration cannot have it both ways. they cannot have these programs where they are supposed to take criminals and pass them over to the federal government if they are there in the country illegally, but to a wholesale and say that if it works we will come after you. it is a misuse of the closet and i am convinced that the supreme
court will rule that way. you cannot stop the state's as long as there is some state nexus, which clearly there is. host: how does the immigration issue stack up with weak economies, rising potential deficits, and a shortfall in revenues? guest: is a complicated issue that can be cut a lot of different ways in an election. but california's history of perceived hostility to immigration, with propositions and laws that have been very hostile to immigrants -- or at least perceived that way by the people there, it could mobilize latino voters to come out for democrats. on the other hand there are lots of polls showing that the arizona laws are very popular and people are not thinking about the niceties of federal supremacy laws and the
responsibility of the fed over the states, challenging our responsibility, a constitutional issue that the government has raised. it is very inflammatory. the president pretty much said the other day that it cannot be fixed until he has bipartisan support for a solution and i do not see that happening anytime soon. probably a good issue for republicans on the one hand, but it could work for democrats on the other. host: earlier you talk about the governors that were there in boston and some of the reasons why some of them might be missing this weekend. guest: well, there are about three dozen here. some of the ones who are missing are from the gulf coast. charlie crist, bobby jindal. according to news reports, rushing off to new hampshire -- he was here for a homeland
security panel and then he went to a picnic in new hampshire yesterday. there are a lot of reasons why governors are not here. host: in talking to a reporter from new jersey in terms of the impact on the budget deficit, governor christie is facing an $11 billion deficit this year and next year. whether it is new jersey or another state, in most states you must balance the budget before the end of the fiscal year. guest: it is interesting, chris christie was talking about the need for unions to share in the sacrifice. that is where he is aiming to make some cuts. .
for taking my call. two comments -- as far as the states being short on money and long on problems, basically i think this will not be corrected. i feel like there will be no recovery because the state of california and north carolina depend on hispanic labor to do this below normal labor costs. the contractors make out because they give below normal wages. the work these folks longer hours including weekends and they have no holidays. also, it will take a major overhaul in taxation because these folks get paid in cash. we're given the political words that they do pay taxes. if they do generate a paycheck, the only thing they pay would be
taken now for social security because every one of the workers are crushed to put down nine dependence on their w-4 form, regardless of their age. the employers are not allowed to question how the 20-year-old could have nine dependence because then that would be against their civil rights. so, all the big time folks in agriculture and building make money, then pay off politicians to vote so that they don't cover our fannies, so to speak. host: thank you for the call. this is written about this morning in "the washington post." there are 37 states that will be electing governors this year and new ones like those in power will spend much of their time managing states short on money
and long one problems. your comment? guest: that is very true and some analysts consider this the worst job in american politics right now, but a lot of people want to do it. many people have ideas to fix it. you can count on the cycle. things could get, or will get better. it is only a question of who will be presiding when it happens. there are more democratic governors now, and they are in greater danger of losing. bill looks like many republicans will get a chance to try their theories of have to create jobs, but it will be challenging for the next couple of years. host: what gubernatorial races are you keeping your eye on? guest: there are some interesting ones, beginning here in massachusetts. the texas race is interesting. gov. rick perry had a primary
with kay bailey hutchison, the senator. he moved to the right and was even talking about the secession during the campaign. then democrats looked out with a pretty good candidate -- the former mayor of houston, bill white. so, he is a stronger candidate than i think they had hoped for. they are feeling pretty good, especially because the demographics in texas are ginger. there are more minorities, hispanics. we saw them come out during the presidential election. not in enough numbers to give the state to barack obama, but they did turn now -- they're feeling pretty good because the demographics in texas are changing. it will be one to watch, to see where the demographics go and whether they can register in mobilize. another one is in mexico where
the republicans have a good candidate in suzanne m. martinez. this is a woman against a woman. diane is the lieutenant governor. you have a female and hispanic actor of work in new mexico. also, california. if there are any incumbent's not exec will like an incumbent, that would be jerry brown. he was very unconventional in his first run. he can argue he has experience, and is also different. host: the edition of newsweek is focusing on the south carolina race. she is 38 years old. the current governor mark sanford is that the nga meeting. what kind of reaction is to getting, jill? guest: to be honest and not have
not encountered him at the conference. but the phenomena is interesting because it is a symbol above all others that the party is moving on from white, male governors. it may have taken a situation like the one in south carolina to pride republicaprod republicy something different. not in the elegy, but in who she is and how she came up, her history in the state. it did not in ideology. it would be a real sign for the republican party nationally. the cover of newsweek which now comes out on thursdays. marya joins us from new york on the independent line.
-- mario join us. caller: thank you. i have more of a comment. all the money they spend on the state representative the country, it is just ridiculous. new york, california, illinois, massachusetts are basically destroying the country. not only do they spend so much money with so many pensions, but by the time we send people to washington, they are correct. we have these wackos from california. i am from new york and for these four states to collapse would be the best thing for the country. we're spending money, coming from a corrupt system to send people to washington. host: things for the call. also this comment from twitter.
your comment? guest: the governors are questioning it in mentioning a. medicaid is a federal program. during the downturn many people are eligible for it. with the coming of the new health law phasing in by 2014, there will be millions more eligible for it. the federal government has promised money for that transition, but right now there is a shortfall. the states are mandated to provide this program. they are trying to get the money promised. there has been trouble in congress. the feds have a deficit, so there have been arguments over where emergency aid to the unemployed and to the medicaid programs should be offset by cutting other programs. it has not been easy for either
party or those states or federal government. i think they're is our real bottom-line moment coming when both must ask what the top priorities are. will we help the unemployed? then we will have to cut the weapons program, or something else. there is more concern over the deficits and what they could do to the country. host: this, it says eventually there will have to be a segment on what obamacare would do to the states. do you have any sense of what the impact of the from this piece of legislation on the states? guest: i think state insurance regulators will give more power to enforce, and to examine the performance of insurance companies. if they want, states will be
running if changes which are marketplaces, so people will have competitive choices of plans to enroll in. if they don't want to, then the federal government will run those exchanges. the main impact will be medicaid which will be much larger and catch more people. so, there will have more people to administer. that will probably be the biggest change. host: his michigan your home state? guest: no, my home state is the york, i went to school in michigan, and washington has been my home for a long time. host: 11 of rust belt, michigan has been a symbol of the tough times. as you travel through detroit, it is apparent, and we ask what
is next for the state of michigan? guest: the governor plans to transform the automobile industry and to that of the future with battery technology and electric cars. also, there are plans to reclaim a lot of the land in detroit for farming. it is an interesting plan. it would be an amazing transformation. i guess the land used to be farm before detroit develop. people are thinking creatively. i don't know if this is good news, or bad, but it now has the second-lowest unemployment rate in the nation. nevada moved to north 1. -- to number one. obama has been trying to find ms. again with this stimulus money, and talk about the
future, energy sources, looking towards the future technology industry. host: jill is joining us from boston where the nga meeting is wrapping up today. she has written for "usa today" among other publications, and now writes for politicsdaily.com. good morning, a caller from california. caller: good morning. i'm calling you from orange county which is heavily republican. i have been republican for many years, however, myself and my family as well as my brothers and sisters have been republicans, we're not going to be joining the democratic party.
due to the fact that we have now come to the conclusion that the republican party has some about the latinos. they are completely against latinos. they have enacted laws, are not against the arizona laws, and are trying to portray latinas as the bandits of this country. they have totally degraded our society. i just cannot believe the way the republican party has been portraying the latinos, so we have to abandon the republican party. in this next election we will be democrats. i'm sorry that this happened, but we no longer believe in what the republicans have to say, really.
host: jill? guest: i should said don't think most republicans are against immigrants or latinas, but your caller is the perfect example of the political danger for the party. there are few people who use very anti-immigrant rhetoric. some of these laws confirmed that or be firstoror reinforce t impression. many states tip on the edge. all the southwestern border states -- many that democrats did well in during the last presidential election. so, if this is how the man feels, it is emblematic of how many people feel -- bad news for republicans. the last president george w. bush understood and reached out tremendously.
he was the instigator of comprehensive immigration reform that would have provided a path to citizenship for something like 12 million here illegally. many people think it is impractical to just tell them to leave. the problem, as president obama island, is that the political climate now is very different. 11 republicans who voted for that type of reform in 2006 -- many no longer supported, or at least not at this time would be involved in crafting a bill to get these problems. host: the full name is the national commission on fiscal responsibility and reform, and is being called the deficit commission. she will be speaking to the governors today. what is their message?
guest: that everything is on the table and that they are serious about this. unfortunately, they cannot control what congress does or the politics, and the politics are complicated. republicans were against forming a congressional commission like this because they were afraid it might recommend raising taxes. it probably will, and also some cuts, because there are structural deficits that are continuing through time and aggravating the problem. they will probably have a reassuring message -- we are working on it. we understand it is an unsustainable path. we know that you are fiscally responsible. we will try to get this country on a path to fiscal discipline.
that is probably what they will here. it is possible they will speak of specific things on the minds, but many are controversial. for instance, raising the retirement age for social security benefits. we will see what they say. the more you get into specifics, the more you have made yourself a target. host: the subject is on the front page of the sunday "denver post." here is the headline. bernard joins us on the democrats' line from jacksonville, fla.
caller: our governor charlie crist -- and seems as if there is a dilemma here because he lowered the party taxes and now the mayor is talking about going up on those property-tax is about 9%. he has levied all these taxes against us. it seems like they are in a dilemma against each other. nothing will change if we keep, if no one is held accountable. everything going on -- and i think governor charlie crist will get quite a few democratic votes. he is running for senator. he is right in the middle. he is not for one way or the other. i am a democrat and have always been, but i would definitely vote for gov. charlie crist. the mayor in this town -- his republican as well, but he is ruining the town.
host: are you following the primary for the democratic governor? guest: yes, i was remiss in not mentioning the florida race is because they're very interesting. that comment by the democrat is the real indicator of the problems in the primary. it involves a late breaking millionaire candidate -- last night he was there even are closing in fast and spending huge amounts. many democrats down there, the pennant-types see a lot of defections to charlie crist because the candidate has not caught fire with voters. i think he is below 20% the last time i checked.
that is an interestin situation. the big question on charlie crist is if he did when which is possible, because now he is new and different, independent -- but who would you organize or caucus with in washington? would he be part of the harry reid caucus or the mitch mcconnell caucus? the smart money is he will wait and see who was in control, or whether his choice will determine who is in control. that is the party will hand out the committee chairmanships and set the agenda in the senate. he could end up with a lot of leverage if elected. host: there is a piece this morning in the we can review of "the new york times to get it is lonely outside -- gov. schwarzenegger has tried to be non-partisan, but that will not when you many friends.
for everyone loves what independent promise, but disliked intensely when they have to live with them -- just like as with diets. if gov. chris wins in november, let me return to this piece, and ask you? guest: the governor's race is similar to the senate race in florida. there is an independent in that race, the son of the former governor and senator, also there is a primary for the governor's race. the attorney general has a wealthy primary rival. there will be a three-way race. in some peoplplaces people catc,
in some places they do not. in new england there is a tradition of electing independencts occasionally to gov.ships. ross perot got 19%, which was huge. others have not done as well. people get frustrated by the two parties, but when it comes down to it, the parties have organizations, money, confer a certain amount of legitimacy. host: let me conclude where we began -- a guest over the weekend, being governor right now in the current climate is the worst job in american politics. why then do so many individuals
want the child tax guest: people like it because it is a ceo position. it is very clear if you accomplish something, and clear if you cannot. it is like having a corporation, but not with the pay. you do some hands on work, are very connected to the people. from time to time you can put politics aside and be very pragmatic, and try to solve probms. you can experiment. you can ask fellow governors what they're doing that might help. it can be very appealing. for people who like a challenge, this is a challenging time. if you can fix things in your state, that will be a very good challenge, and be good on your resume. the president we have now is an exception. they are usually former governors.
so, that is also desirable as a situation. host: thanks for being with us, jill lawrence. our apologies. we had scheduled joe manchin of virginia and hoped to share insight into his announcement as to the replacement for the late senator robert byrd. we do expect an announcement tomorrow from joe manchin. robert byrd was laid to rest just over one week ago in his home state. in a few minutes we will turn our attention to iraq, and later, it is called resurgence republic. a board member will join us concerning this new offshoot of the gop and its impact on the republican national committee. it is sunday, july 11. back in a moment.
since 1986 jorge ramos has anchored the nine winners on univision. -- encourage the nightly news on the univision. we will speak to him tonight at 8:00 p.m. >> this weekend, fox news analyst andrew and the soliton no -- andrew napolitano. he is interviewed by four time presidential candidate ross nader. nonfiction books of this weekend on c-span2. you can check the schedule on booktv.org. this weekend on mine safety and the cable industry in europe. the maryland attorney a general and the cable europe president monday night on c-span2.
>> "washington journal" continues. host: we want to turn to iraq. all the mulally is the former minister of trade, defense, and finance -- ali allawi is the former minister. a government has yet to be formed. why is it taking so long? guest: the factions are evenly balanced. we have four different groups and each of them form they can -- believe they can form the winning coalition. the other groups have enough power in a sense to block them. there is no natural majority. you have this jockey and four policy. -- jockeying for policy. host: when you think it will be resolved? guest: it looks sticky. it may t weeks or even months.
maybe by late august or early september. host: president biden made it a visit over the fourth of july weekend. what did he take away? what did your people take away? guest: the major point of the visit was to ensure the process of forming a government is done in a sense that does not lead to serious repercussions, increasing violence, and so on. the subtext was that the u.s. wants to create a coalition between the two largest blocks and from there from the basis of a new government. whether they will succeed in this grand coalition exercise is something else, but that is it the policy in iraq host. host: the people of your country will see a peaceful transition. is that what will ultimately
take place? guest: i think so. you can always say the glasses always half-empty and point to the bombings, but i think the democratic process has taken reasonably deep roots. it is highly improbable we would have another way of reforming our government. in the beginning there will be a process to enshrine elections, the rule of law, so it is not yet clear. i think we're moving in that direction. i think it is very important. host: it has been several years since saddam hussein has wrote your country. he has since been killed. i do not want to use the word "legacy," but does he still have an impact on the psyche of the country. guest: i do not think he will be resurrected as a hero by any
people. by and large, i think his individual legacy is gone. many people compare and contrast, for example, the level of basic services that exist now education and electricity. compared to what it thought were higher standards in the pre- occupation or liberation days, whatever you want to call it. there is a sense that somehow the post-2003 environment has not completely live up to the expectations of people. they have fallen quite short. there is not nostalgia but a constant reference one times when a better at least in material times. in time as the new order begins to set rates and people began to see the attack of this issue, especially services, i think it will be seen to be a significant change, as an work to the makeover to the country.
host: will there be western best in the country outside of oil production in iraq? the other companies invest? guest: i think so. one week ago there was a major conference. nearly 40 companies came from across the world, arab countries, europe, and from the united states. there is, i think, a general interest in being involved with the country that has the means to pay for that and also has the great need for it. it is a matter of just getting the ducks lined up before large go for investment can take place. as it stands right now, there are some serious obstacles. in time, i think they will be removed. host: we are talking about iraq. our foreign lines are open. you can go to twitter
.comm/cspanwj. preside bush will talking about iraq as a decision. was the invasion iraq the right decision? guest: that is a very difficult question. you have to ask about what point of view you are looking at this from. had the dictatorship been removed, but if you look at it in the terms of overall u.s. interest and advancing that, it just depends from which perspective you look at this and which i go. by and large, i think, i do not want to sound too equivocal, but i think it would be seen to be a major shift in the structure of power. possibly if things appropriately aligned, i think we can have -- we can see this as a positive change. host:mr. allawi uses the word
"occupation." guest: i said occupation or liberation depending which angle you look at it. at some point it is an occupation. it is an occupied country on the u.n. security resolution. if you felt you were living under a terrible dictatorship and you are unable to extricate the country from the hold of the dictator, then it would be seen as a liberation. whether it continues are not as a function of how things pan out. in some ways it did not go according to plan. host: if you can look ahead five or six years ahead, what will the city of baghdad look like and what will the country of iraq look like? guest: it will probably be more of the same.
there will not be a landscape change overnight. it will be gradually improving so as we were a theme -- so as we improve the material conditions of people and as the government begins to establish a routine, i think you will see it changing. it will not be a huge reconstruction site. it will become i think -- it will be, i think, a big change moving towards reconstruction. host: whether the arguments is that iraq will be a democracy in a very important region in the world. will that be that? guest: democracy in the full sense of the word with a very strong judiciary, probably not in the short term. if you look at elections as the cornerstone of the order, that has been established.
we need to strengthen the rule of law and the judiciary. if we are able to create these powers within the government, that i think, yes, democracy is understood. host: from riverdale, ga., on the democrat line with ali allawi. good morning. caller: i was of course against the invasion of iraq in the first place. now that we are supposed to be getting out, i believe that we need to, by this time next year, i do not mean leaving 50,000 people, but we all should be out of there. we have spent billions of dollars and we should let the iraqis by the whole area, the green zone and we should be
totally out of there. we should let them take over all of their problems with the curds and iran. the refugees they had in syria, ga., and elsewhere, i think the money has been overspent. our time there is long overdue for getting out. i think it is best for them to take care of their own cause. anytime you have an election and you still do not have a president, you still -- definitely have a problem. guest: there is no doubt about what the caller was talking about. it is a series of issues. the way the government has now made confirmed decisions about making do with forces, there is a plan to reduce and mention the time the presence of military forces. in iraq.
what you have right now was a significant change or handover of large swathes of a forces. the iraqi government is taking responsibility for more and more aspects of the country with security, the economy. and is moving in that direction. we have a very, very unusual set of circumstances where one country basically took over another. in the process, new institutions have been created. new security systems are beginning to show their mettle. they are beginning to take over bigger and bigger areas of responsibility. whether we can do this effectively is another matter, in terms of the u.s. doing the heavy lifting, i think that phase is now well over. host: two questions on our
twitter page. it is the sunni shi'ite shift aggravated by outside forces? and can iraq restore the government in the next two years? guest: the ethical sectarian divisions is a big problem. they did this -- they exist and are real. there will be decisive factors but they were exacerbated as a result of the events of 2003. the way that politics began to unfold in the post-to thousand three environment, a big emphasis was placed on leave ethnic sectarian says people. in the way the various communities and direct with each other and engage with each other, it was quite a wide extent of a collaboration,
intermarriage, and the people living essentially next to each other without any of serious aberration or incident. the s&l-centurion basis of iraq has become -- the ethno-centar ian basis has become very important. we need to confront this if we're right to build a functioning democracy where these are not the most important factors behind people's loyalties. host: our guest has taught at a number of american universities including harvard and princeton. he is a former minister of trade for the iraqi governing council. our next call for ali allawi is from indianapolis. caller: good morning, sir. i guess my question to you is
everybody over there thinks the i reinstate the jewish people of israel, but i do not believe that at all. i think it is a possibility that the iranians as soon as they get the bomb will use it on you. guest: i suppose you mean iraq. i personally do not believe this should be the case. whether iran is armed and on which nuclear bombs is not really determine its policy vis- a-vis iraq. we have deep groups with a number of political leaders and a number of political parties. iran has an extensive network of influence in iraq. whether it is strange and further by the development of an atomic bomb does not really see -- is normally change the
situation in iraq. there are large number of political allegiances that of their power to iraq. we need to be clear that the independence of the company requires independence and the stands from all regional and international powers to be able to create a sovereignty. host: one of the lease and the ideology of the sunni verses the shi'ite? guest: these are scissors that took place 1400 years ago. they have evolved into different perspectives akin to the protestant and catholic divisions in the world of christianity. the different perspectives between ways in which your value and you express the ideas and
perceptions. these were, in my mind, legitimate ways of expressing differences of views on religious issues and questions, but when they become politicized and when they become a source of political identity and therefore friction, that is when it becomes a very dangerous moment. and in and of itself, religious divisions and schisms are natural. host: donna is wondering if iraq is wondering -- if iraq is going to pay the u.s. back. guest: not think we have the means or the ability to pay them back. even so, there is no way that iraq can generate the funds to pay any kinds of this kind. the total oil exports of the country are insignificant compared to the total amount of resources the united states
uses in the war which is something like $2 or $3 trillion. whether it is legitimate or not, i do not think it is that the iraqis should pave the united states back for this. even if it seems to be legitimate, we do not have the means. host: larry joins us from university park, illinois. good morning. caller: good morning, mr. allawi. i hope you can answer this question on your own. the united states was engaged in a civil war in the 19th century. no country -- france, germany, spain, intervened. do you believe we should be intervening in the conflict over
there in the middle east? guest: it is not so much intervention. it is a question of the involvement of a great power in a crucial part of the world. the u.s. is involved whether they like it or not. there are serious and long term interests involved. none the least be an oil. there are other interests that require a continuing u.s. involvement and engagement. it is very difficult for the united states to withdraw from a part of the world in which it has such key interests. i think there is no question that the united states must be engaged there as they are engaged in other parts of the world such as europe and asia. the question whether or not should be -- they should be involved directly as a party in domestic or local conflicts, there i think you have to be very, very careful before you take sides in local conflicts.
ultimately you might be dragged as one of dean competence as one involved in the dispute which may not necessarily be your overall interest of the united states. it is a question is at what level. host: we are talking with ali allawi. dennis is with us from california on the republican line. good morning, dennis. caller: can you hear me? i would like to go back in history a little bit. after the fall of the shot of miron -- shah of iran. i believe he assisted us in going after the ayatollah. he was in favor at that time,
from the western powers. guest: yes. when the iran-iraq war started, that was -- caller: i am not saying he was a good guy, but he fell on a favor for whatever reason. that will naturally cause hostility. he was a sunni, correct? my point is, how can we expect to go in there and remove him and then expect your country to become democratic without the struggles between the different factions? they all want the power. guest: this is, i am afraid, the
reality. when the u.s. entered iraq, it was primarily for weapons of mass destruction. there are other factors that drove the u.s. into war. in the process, a great deal of the apparent stable structures in iraq became very, very shaky. a lot of conflict that had remained hidden and out of sight for a long time emerged to the servers. unfortunately, from an iraqi point of view, and the u.s. did unleash forces that had been dormant for a long time. the subsequent violence and even the conditions or to some extent prompted by the acts of provision and occupation. there were unintended consequences of the war and these very conflict emerged. once you remove the the
dictatorship and is heavy layer of control that existed. it is not something the u.s. plan for what had to face the consequences. host: that the get you to comment on ambassador christopher hill which is currently the u.s. ambassador to iraq. >> with regards to government formation, what we have our coalitions that came in very close in the elections. there are a lot of politics going on. there are a lot of discussion about who will be the prime minister. he has 89 seats and wants to stay. mr. allawi has 91. you need 163 for a majority. i think we need to stay tuned. i cannot tell you when it will end, but it is continuing and the pace has quickened in recent days.
at the cabin the vice-president here was a further impetus -- i think having the vice president here was a further impetus. host: was that an end to this? will it move forward by the end of august? guest: the visit by vice president biden will meet -- will move this in a certain direction. but i do not think this will take place in the next days or weeks. it was an important visit in the sense that it made clear how the united states perceives the political dynamics of the country. in terms of actually creating the circumstances for a new government to emerge, i do not think it had that effect. i think it is important because it made it clear that the u.s. form a government that would be representative of all the factions under a grand coalition. host: this has been getting a fair amount of attention over the weekend. this is in "the washington
post." 50,000 dogs have been killed as a way to decrease the number of stray dogs blamed for a tax on residents. can you give us a sense of what is happening in baghdad? guest: most of the cities of the mail -- of the middle east in the poorer countries to have a problem with pacs "of stray dogs and so on. they can be a great menace to public health and can attack children's in packs. they have gone out of control in the last few years because there have been no attempt to call or control them. now i think they're going about it in a brutal way, but
nonetheless it was necessary because of public health reasons and because of the serious risk that the post to small children. host: when you return to iraq in an official capacity? guest: i was there one month ago but more of a personal than political capacity. my political career is subject to weather inappropriate government is formed and led by people who are dedicated to the development and progress of the country. if that happens and there is an opportunity to serve, i certainly would serve. by and large, at the present moment i am more involved in the academic and scholarly affairs, writing, and so on. host: please ask mr. allawi about mr. chalibi. what is the latest? guest: he was elected to
parliament as a member of the iraqi national government. he has managed to recover some of his political authority and leadership. my belief is that his role in the country is not as essential as it was, say, in the time just before and after 2003. he is an important political player and, to some extent, a significant pawnbroker in the country. he could emerge to a cabinet seat in the new government. host: from hendersonville, tenn., on the independent line. caller: good morning. how are you? my comment is after 9/11, i was all for the united states going after bin laden in afghanistan. the moment we went into iraq is the moment that we started to destroy our country.
we have wasted trillions of dollars in countries like iraq and afghanistan to our 13th and 14th century -- who are at 13th and 14th century cultures. they will never change. we are kidding ourselves and we have wasted our money, treasurer, and lives for nothing. thank you. guest: i can sense what the caller thinks about the inappropriate use of resources are and obviously the lives given in the iraq war. relatively, the matter is if you believe the arguments of the u.s. government that the war was driven mainly by concerns about weapons of mass destruction, then there was a legitimate, from the u.s. government's point of view, factor behind the intervention in iraq. the subsequent deals have shot
it is an accurate assessment. what you can do is to ensure that mistakes in judgment were made and are now rectified and we start with basically a platform that allows both for an honorable withdrawal of the united states as well as a platform for reconstructing the country that has been devastated by years of dictatorships and war. i think the united states has a very important part to play. but once again over the focus on a rack in terms of security, warfare, bombings, and so on and look towards the other aspects of the long term relationship that can evolve between the united states and iraq especially in the cultural and educational areas in which iraq can both benefit a great deal and provide, i think, an important, i will not say ally,
but a very strong friend of the united states. whether this is justified by these trillions of dollars or not, history may judge otherwise. nevertheless you have to deal with these facts. i think we should deal with the more positive aspects of the future relationship especially at, as i said, on the economy, education, and cultural aspects. host: what is the population of iraq it? geographically, how large is your country? guest: we've not had a sense is in a long time but it is probably between 25 and 30 million. the size is maybe the size of california, maybe smaller in terms of the geographic size. host: nancy joins us from california. caller: it is a pleasure and an honor to speak with you.
i am sorry for some of the calls that have come in, but you are very diplomatic. there is a very large majority of american people that understand what is going on and do not listen to the rhetoric here and know that this is something to be seen a very long time. like you just said, there are other cultural aspects between america and a rock that will be very beneficial to both countries. i especially want to apologize for the american who called in to is on educated, which we have a lot of people do, believe it or not, are very uneducated. during our revolution, france was pivotal in helping us at a time when we were losing the revolutionary war. france helped us and save us. we had great allies from other countries during the formation of our country. all i can say is the people who call in and have an attitude, it
is their agenda, and it is not the agenda of the majority of the american people. we bless your country and your people. guest: thank you for the call. i can understand the passions of the people. they may not have the full facts at their disposal. they may not have a deep understanding of the region, but they are asking questions as to the nature of american power, american involvement, and what is to be gained from it in the long term. while it is true that they may have the full facts at their disposal, nevertheless, i think they do reflect a deep concern about their country and about this engagement. host: yet there is this sentiment saying the book -- saying the army now we are fighting for corrupt dictators and the other 99% do not care.
guest: i would not characterize the iraqi government as dictators. whether they are practicing muslim or not is one thing. there's no doubt corruption stretches from the highest to the lowest portions of government. it is not a dictatorship. i would be very emphatic about that. it may be a very chaotic form of democracy at the current moment in time, but it is certainly not a dictatorship. we did not have one person calling the shots and forcing people to conform to what ever the party or the individual in power wants them to do. so, we have moved away from lot. i must say it is a government that has to spend a great deal of time improving the quality of the government which is the
nature of the effectiveness and productivity of government. this will take time. unfortunately, it is not something that can happen overnight. host: oscar joins us from maryland on the democratic line. good morning to you, oscar. caller: thank you for taking my call. one of my main concerns is that we went into the war mainly because of the disaster of george bush and dick cheney who now own curdish region of iraqi oil. his father was pushed into going to war. now they are in the curdish region and owns the oil. as soon -- as long as he is there, they will be there to
protect the interest of the one american. i would encourage everyone to go them and see the fascinating articles that come up. what is your stance regarding that? guest: there's no doubt that oil is an important economic asset. i would just like to clarify that most -- the majority of the major oil fields in a iraq are under the country. nearly all of the oil contracts were awarded to various international countries. only one of which is american. you cannot really equate the search for oil directly with american policy. there are other companies involved, some of which are american. the scale of the involvement cannot be compared to the amount of oil. trying to make an easy equation
with u.s. military involvement, i think the equation is perhaps too simplistic. i think the proof is very clear. it all up -- in the south of the country, nearly all the oil contracts were given to anglo- dutch company's, bp, a total, the russians. the only major u.s. companies involved in the region were exxon and chevron. in terms of the size of the oil fields, i would not be too keen about making the relationship. host: one final question from our trigger page. we hear a lot about the young people in iran.
is it similar in iraq? guest: i would say no. in iran there is a mass movement for the population is more civic minded and more politically active. in iraq, the young have not formed a kind of youth movement and have not really challenged, in a positive way, the way in which the power structure is evolving. the history of the two countries are drastically different. the scale of the civic movement in iran cannot be compared to what we have in iraq. it is in the early days. civil society movements in iraq are very weak. host: ali allawi and has served in the number of different capacities is now a teacher in great britain. thank you, as always, for joining us. guest: thank you for having me.
host: with a preview of what you can hear later today on c-span radio, bobby jackson. >> steve, good morning. the topics on it -- on sunday will continue debate on immigration and the agenda for the white house and congress. midterm elections and the gulf oil spill. the guest on nbc's "meet the press," include robert gibbs. on abc's "this week" jake tapper speaks with david axelrod and brian billbray. the guests included david axelrod and jon kyl. also there is an interview with the netanyahu. on "face the nation" interview
air colder. on the "state of the union" david axelrod and bill richardson. kenneth feinberg, the administration of the bp compensation fund. you can listen to all five of the sunday morning talk shows starting at noon eastern on c- span radio. that is 90.1 fm in the washington, d.c., area. also on the web at cspanradio.com. i can follow us on facebook and twitter. host: coming up, leslie sanchez, a new spinoff, the dean resurgent republic. we will learn more about that in a few minutes. geopolitics coming up on "newsmakers." there is not a morning hearing because of our live coverage of
the nj summer meeting. in our conversation with darrell issa, this came up. >> michael steele, the head of your party -- the head of the national republican national committee. >> is this someone who should remain as the top executive of the rnc? >> michael steele is supposed to reflect a consensus of republican platforms and policy. if he does that, he certainly can remain. if he is not willing to do that and he wants to be a political leader on his own, there are plenty of seats open in november. i suggest he runs for one of them. i feel very strongly that he is not my leader. he does not make policy for me. the fact is that the national republican congressional committee is made up of elected republican leaders, 178 or so,
and we elect our own leaders. we figure out what our policies will be going into november. we are figuring out how to get jobs going in america, get the government out of owning corporations, and distorting markets. that is what we're focused on. we are focused on jobs, the business of the people from a congressional standpoint. i am sorry that michael steele has become the news because he is a bubbling up of state committeeman. he is supposed to execute on behalf of their decisions and platforms. he does not represent me. i do not side with the statements he has made. at the same time, i hope he realizes that he should be a consensus explainer for the republican party across america which i think would be very helpful. he was a chairman realizing he spoke on behalf of the consensus. he did not make a policy.
>> so it is not your position that he should step down? he should stay there. >> i think he needs to make a decision and everyone at the rnc needs to make a decision. will this become the consensus of republicans? if so, that is great and he can stay. if he is not willing, he should resign. keeney this to decide what he will do. the national committee, as far as i know, has ever said anything about afghanistan. obama's war at all. i suspect that you can find lots of those. he is not supposed to be, nor am i supposed to become a single spokesperson for the party. host: the comments of a congressman issa that will air on c-span's "newsmakers." leslie sanchez is one of the board members of the resurgent republic, an offshoot of the gop party. your comments on congressman
issa's comments? guest: we are a nonprofit 501c- 4. there are a lot of conservative messages. if you think of the opposite, it would be the democracy corps. we are the counterpart to that. it is a very interesting statement the congressman made. there is a lot of frustration in this election cycle. republicans have a lot to look forward to and the jazz and 10. they do not want to be distracted. in many ways, on the debate about the chairman is not a distraction. doocy conservative leaders calling for him to step down. he has indicated he will not. look at virginia and the governor's race in new jersey. he will point to massachusetts and say it was all done under me. money is being raised. i think it is important
personally that the party stays focused. we are a short number of months away from 2010 and could look at what could possibly be a historic victory. the less we do to inflate or put gas on the fire relating to this, the better off we will be. host: part of your mission statement is to cede ideas to office holders? guest: we want to test the role of government especially amongst swing voters. we look at a lot of independent voters, a tea party, hispanic voters, voters older than 55. we are able to identify patterns in the electorate before i think a lot of others had seen them. we were one of the first to say independent voters were kind of moving away from the obama message. at first it was like reading tea leaves. now it is a developed type of pattern and the independent
voters. it is an important step to the data out there. that is what is unique about resurgent republic. and is very transparent, the good and the bad. we test the messages. we put them out there and see where the voters fall. anyone can look at it for themselves and analyze the data. host: michael steele getting some attention when he called the war in afghanistan "obama's war." michael steele was out west in denver and in nevada at the state party conventions. >> now, some of you may be worrying that too much damage has been done in america. then we are so deep in the hole that we cannot dig our way out. some comments that i have made recently may have gotten some people to thinking that i feel that way about our efforts in afghanistan. i want to take this moment amongst friends to clarify
because i know that my remarks may have been a little confusing or misunderstood. afghanistan is a war we can win. it is perhaps the hardest place in the world to win a war, but this is america. with the right leadership, the right resources, the right rules of engagement on the ground the bill not only -- it we cannot only win but we will win, we must win. we will not leave our soldiers alone in the battle. host: our guest is the board member of a new organization called the resurgent republic. will michael steele stay on as party chair after the midterm elections? guest: it will really depend on the elections. if we will do as well as republicans hope we can do, it will be a different game. they will put this behind them. they will look at retooling and
preparing for 2012. midterm is a report card on the president, his agenda, on how republicans organize themselves. there is a lot of the frustration, but there's also a lot of enthusiasm. despite the inner party politics, people are excited and want to get out there. host: we have been hearing from president obama. he was in kansas city. he is painting the republican party as the "party of no." they have been trying to fix the parties on --? healthcare and the problems with wall street. guest: that is not a new message. to some extent they thought it works. at the bottom line, if you look at independent voters, there's frustration with any incumbent. even our service will tell you that. there was one number who said favorability and -- the unfavorable was 49% for
republican and democrats consistently. we have seen that for a while. it is going to be, i think, how well the republicans move that message. what can republicans do with the radical pull to the left? republicans have solutions. they did when it came to the stimulus efforts. they're talking about extending unemployment insurance. i do not know if the message is resonating, but they are trying to but different solutions on the table. host: what are the solutions if there is no way to pay for it? we have a $13 deficit -- $13 trillion deficit. guest: to be fair, a lot of people, especially in our data, they will say president obama inherited this kind of a vast expansion of spending. many conservatives are frustrated and many will say it started with bush.
the danger for democrats and obama is the trend of amassing spending -- is a massive spending. republicans are saying, "wait a minute." they want to freeze federal spending for the next five years, freezing federal salaries, looking for the ways they can eliminate before they continue to write checks without being able to finance them. go back to offsetting. they made a commitment to do that with the pay-go after. they have stepped away from that. host: we welcome your phone calls as always. the numbers are on the bottom of your screen or you can join us on twitter.com/cspanwj. caller: good morning. hello? sorry about that. i want to talk about the arizona law they just passed. why would mr. obama tried to
make it a race issue and then it is something totally different now? this is dividing and the country. they have done that with health care, too. i am glad republicans said it note because that will cost us a lot of money. -- i am glad the republicans said know. what bothers me is he is trying to claim that all the states should have a similar law. will he man up. after the state's -- will he man up and go after these states? guest: he raises a very good and important point. unfortunately, the issue of immigration, every time it comes up is a very difficult one to deal with. it has to deal with race. it deals with fear. it has to deal with promoting that. i think you are hearing on the
right and they laughed a lot of political spin and theater when it comes to the issue of immigration. the sad part about the immigration efforts, even on the federal level, when they try to fix the very broken system is that you were trying to get enough votes to pass that it will not really pass reality. the reality is these states are in crisis. you are seeing them pushing back and the -- they are not responding. you can hold some meetings with hispanic leaders and faced based leaders to say you want to get something done. there has been a lot of people in this administration saying this is a downward economy. you were getting a mixed message at best. they're still talking enforcement. they will have to come together and find a way to solve a very real problem. host: there are quoting the
american enterprise institute and he takes the conservative movement back to the 1960 proxy with the nomination of goldwater. he is saying it did not flourish until ronald reagan took on washington and the attached minutes in 1980. the new conservative populist needs of their own positive vision, one can turn that the public sentiment into an enduring public force. guest: it is very true. if you think about the three legged stool, economic conservatives, national security, and he managed to bring all of them together. you see the zeal and intensity. that is the conservatives to party movement. it is energizing not on a particular candidate but campaigns and it is getting republicans excited to. is the kind of excitement you saw in 2006 and 2008. host: and we will see that with
the 2012 presidential election. this is in "the national journal." some republican strategists worry that if both parties pushed back, but democrats might leave them exposed. on the iowa, nevada, new hampshire, and south carolina can hold contests in february. other states can vote before march 6. other states have laws requiring them to hold primaries in february. host: very true -- guest: very true. they are putting pressure to respond. the candidates with the biggest coffers, you will be able to have more candid its be viable further into the process. it has been supported by the party and it will be interesting to see how the states will be able to respond. host: our guest is leslie sanchez. our caller is from euless,
texas. caller: referencing your enthusiasm derive from the tea party, the tea party movement is one of malignant ignorance and fueled by racial hatred. let me be specific. the center for budget policy and priorities the just released here shortly a while ago a study on what the cause of the deficit is. the first cause bush tax cuts. the second cause worthy wars. the third cause was the decline in the economy. when the republicans come up with your "new ideas," i would then your new ideas to have marshall rate tax cuts for the wealthy, reduced regulation for industry, and i suspect that is what your "new ideas" will be is what drove us into the abyss as
we speak. guest: it is good to talk to a texan. i will say that. with respect, i do not think we can categorize all of the tea party as one or another. many are, i would say, politically engaged. they are aware of public issues. there are more involved in the issues. with respect to republican solutions, i think you're correct when it comes to taxes. one of the areas we have talked about is concern about the 2001-2003 tax cuts that are about to sunset. the capital gains tax cut the dividend taxes, cutting the corporate tax rate. we have one of the highest in the global competitive government -- doublcompetitive l business environment. it is coming back. it will come back if they do not know -- if they do not do something. it has a more direct effect.
in terms of fiscal responsibility, sir, i think you're correct. there is blood on the boots of republicans and democrats in that. -- i think there is mud on the boots. host: when george bush was in the white house leaders included mitch mcconnell and john boehner. does this require new leadership? guest: i think it requires new majorities. very much like you saw after bill clinton after 1994 being able to push through welfare reform, telecom reform, some of the things that were really important. instead of one-party rule, it is forcing the parties to come together and end the gridlock to do common good. host: if you want more information about the resurgent republic, you can check out their website resurgentrepublic.com.
from grainger, indiana. good morning to you. caller: republicans have got to start fighting back against the democrats. one. i have learned is democrats are exceptionally good liars. even other democrats will say that. this downturn started when the democrats took over both houses of congress. i was working then. what did we have? we had 4.9% unemployment. when did it go down? -- when did it go back up, six months after the democrats came in. if the republicans do not start pushing back against this socialist regime, we are in a lot of trouble. thank you. host: thank you, bob. guest: there is a lot of energy among the candidates who are hearing these voices
especially on deficit and spending. that is a strong area we have seen in the research for the last year, the number of people who were not only frustrated. they understood that this is worse here, but it was the massive spending, foreign entities taking control of our debt, the impact on future generations. it was also with respect to health care. many people did not like the process and it would lead to higher taxes, reduce the quality of care. there's -- those were very real things. now people are still ambiguous about the good and bad about health care. one thing that is interesting in our most recent research is we have about 53% in our latest survey that want to repeal and replace the current health-care system. among independents it is 52%. that is incredibly high. and has a lot to do with them not liking the process. host: you wrote a book about by
the republicans and hispanics need each other. what impact is that debate have on your efforts to get hispanics to vote republican? guest: immigration is the lands with which people view the republican party. is the town. when we had a very visceral, heated debate that in many cases focused on race and ethnicity, it sounded seen a phobic and with deadly to our efforts to appeal to all -- it sounded xenophobic and was deadly with our efforts to appeal. unfortunately, if you look at the spanish language news of the time were just listened to a few different sound bites, you would think it was all the party. it was not. to some believe we have shown that hispanic values and american values -- consistently we have shown that hispanic and american values are the same. how will be addressed the
problem? it is not the top issue for hispanic voters. the economy, jobs to health care, education, national security are the top issues. we have a lot of common ground, but the tone of the immigration debate makes it an impact. the issue of amnesty, i will say that, when it becomes to who will be allowed to be a citizen is an area where hispanics are completely divided on the issue. among hispanic democrats, they want to see this as open borders, full-blown amnesty but not the middle of the road. swing voters, independence, and not conservatives. host: you have also written the book, "you have come a long way, maybe." guest: she has done a lot of media. it will be the first with two women competing against each
other. a lot of strong candidates. it does not match 1992, but even down the ticket is remarkable. there are more open races and fewer incumbents. republican women are benefiting. it is a very interesting statistic. if we look at the congressional side, the house women that were running and pursuing a house seat, they had to pass the threshold. could they raise money? that was the test in 2008 when we dealt with hillary clinton and sarah palin. they had the jobs to raise money. they are not running on the woman platform. they are running on an economic and fiscal policy platform. what is interesting about this new group of women, six out of the top-10 star republican women running for house seats are in health care or related fields. it shows that as the issues affected the home, more women are putting their hat in the
ring. host: that basket put your partisan hat to the side. she has put $120 million of her own money to be elected governor. at some point, is there a political detriment if you have an individual candidate who has that amount of wealth spending that amount of money on his or her candidacy? guest: the candid it has to have a tremendous amount of grass roots support beyond their ability to write the checks. that is what is unique about the situation. i think it is interesting that she is building coalitions with smaller groups, latino business owners, women, tech individuals. she is reaching out to a broad spectrum. that is truly the support you will need. historically, you cannot always write your own check. there is a whole line of candidates sitting on the sideline wishing they could have written a check.
host: on the republican line from new york city. good morning, grant. caller: i am wondering why we are blaming the president or so much. we need to understand that the mayor and the governor have a wrote -- have a lot of responsibility for what is taking place. guest: there is an interesting aspect. just to that point, there is a series of these focus groups we did in swing battle districts talking particularly about, and i will bring up a bp and the oil disaster, they had seen a lot in the news about the coverage but did not know where state and local municipalities were in terms of their response. there is a very limited amount of information out there about what states are doing to be proactive, not only in terms of the crisis but also leadership and fiscal responsibility. states are bearing the burden of a lot of these federal mandates and how are they responding?
host: has lesley ever listened to talk radio? republicans blew the working majority in 2006 when they went ballistic on immigration. guest: 0, yes. i was on top radio during the time. i wrote a couple of pieces and there were one in "the washington post" talking about how some of the rhetoric did such a damaging drop on the right. a diluted our efforts to build a broader coalition. i do not think that is a pattern that republicans are interested in falling again. my time talking to members of congress back then, when we were moving with mccain-kennedy emigration efforts and the flip- floping happening on all sides, and now. now we have members of congress that our republican who say we do not want to see a repeat and this is not pete wilson in 1994.
we want to find an inclusive, sensitive way to talk about this, a humane way to talk about immigration. i think we are learning from the past. host: mark from florida on the independent line. go ahead, please. caller: i have a comment and then i have a question that i would like ms. sanchez to ask of our politicians. my comment on the arizona law is there is a big roar about officers. able to arrest illegals -- are officers of being able to arrest illegals. the officers are in touch with them every day. they have more contacts and more chance of being arrested and deported and whatever steps need to be taken to make them answer for breaking the law. my question is what makes an
illegal alien -- let me see if i can get this right. what makes them good enough to take my job but they are good enough to take a politician's job? guest: i do not know about the part about not being good enough to take a politician's job. there is a tremendous frustration with the number of undocumented in this country right now. the system is broken. if you look at 20 years ago when they were passing the big immigration bill in 1986, they really didn't think they were solving a lot of the crises involving with force -- interior enforcement. the employer would be able to verify. as long as you did not knowingly hire someone that was of undocumented alien. what we found is that it generated a whole new industry of counterfeit documents. and in 1992, you could get a fake social security number,
different i the's, and a new driver's license for $50. it created its own little industry. the counter for documents were a problem. now with technology and is more so if problem. we need to get serious about interior enforcement and really matching the needs of labor with employers and doing so in a legal ways we can protect american jobs. host: jennifer stein howard writes about this in "the new york times." she points out that since may of last year, gov. schwarzenegger's approval rating has not been above 30%. if a real lack of_- guest: now lack of frustration
there. there is a lot of hope about california. they are in such economic dire straits right now which has to do with their economic policies. i would argue that. that is why they are pulling hard for fiscal responsibility and leadership. people that understand budgeting, whether in the public or private sector, and i think you are seeing that among a lot of candidates. they know how to grow private sector jobs and have solutions in that space. host: are we seeing that in new jersey? guest: yes. it is turning out to be a model program. the governor has taken those steps. that is where you will see the disparity. is it private sector job growth or is it the public sector with a temporary stimulus? it might help with unemployment on the short term but it is not a permanent job. host: jack joining us from san antonio, texas.
caller: thank you. i agree with your guest's the point that republicans need to reach out to hispanics because of the shared values, hard- working, christian, strong family values. i think republicans need to push the idea that we really do not want to deport people who have children who are american citizens. that would be an impossible situation. also emphasize the sentiments, like president bush had, when he said if i were a poor mexican father i would bust a gut to get to the united states. it is so frustrating when you see the democrats pushing racial division because they know they have to get a huge majorities in order to win. guest: i completely agree with what you are saying.
then gov. george w. bush took a different approach than people in california. he said that we were not california. they were much more open to the idea of finding a way for the system to work. immigration reform was that be one of the things -- immigration reform was going to be one of the big things before 9/11. hispanics want to be treated like any other american. we want to have a seat at the table and share the values that you were talking about. that is one reason i am excited about the growth of this party. it is changing. it is really evolving. we have some more leaders that want to be inclusive, not just to latinos, but too many diverse communities. women are a part of that coalition. i am excited to see that. i agree with you on the democratic side. it is almost like a both parties looked at the latino politics of the 1960's and a 1970's. they are using the same old
lines and the same mantra. host: our guest has worked on capitol hill and the white house. she has written books on the state of the republican party and you can log onto res urgentrepublic.com. steve joins us from phoenix. good morning to you. caller: good morning. how are you? dovetailing on the last caller, i read your book, and i mischaracterized it please help me. what he said was that many of the moral things, like they were christians and work hard, how is it that the republicans are looked down as being anti- immigrants when i run if they they share the same values of many of the people that come
over from mexico? people that i have talked to that come over from mexico say that. their government is more harsh and more "republican," excuse the term, but they are used to fighting for themselves. can you help me? guest: sure. thank you for reading the book. i appreciate that. you are on to the right thing. the republican brand is that there is not a monolithic group or a singular hispanic voter. it has a specific brand in the big community. it was a white party that was not inclusive. it was the oldest from before. i grew up in a family of democrats. there are usually one or two freedoms, at it -- one or two reasons, economic or freedom. it is the opportunity for a small business, to live the american dream, and be part of a
legal process. that inspires hope in a lot of people. a lot of people used to be republican that were latina because they serve in the military. that was the beginning of the hispanic-republican efforts. what is different now is you have that new immigrants who still need to learn about the process and the parties. i conduct focus groups in spanish all the time people. a lot of people did not know the difference between the elephant and the gawky, even the symbols are the colors. who was red and who was blue? in latin america they mean different things. we went into it with the assumptions that they knew with the party stands for. education is key. it is important we reintroduce ourselves every day. for the college educated, upwardly economically mobile, they're with us on economic stance is that we're concerned with and student financial aid. that is not the truth.
there are misconceptions on both parties. the political maturity is there. host: your web site has a number of polls. 52% of those questioned said it the health-care bill should be repealed. should have spending be frozen? who are these independence? -- who are these independents? guest: we have conducted surveys believe different places. the most recent set of focus groups that we conducted in the battleground areas in five different states -- iowa, ohio, new jersey, arkansas, and florida. we brought in the small business leaders, independent women of -- independent women were much more conciliatory in giving him the benefit of the doubt. where they showed a real frustration is leadership. they were concerned about his
leadership with bp. he took too long to respond and they were concerned about the stimulus. they did not think it with the right fit. when it comes to leadership, they were saying things like they have some apprehension if there were a national larger security threat. does the president have the leadership skills to make the right decision? that is consistent with of the script i have been doing for over 10 years with the soft democrats, republicans. the have always had the issue of, "can get the job done"? host: we have georgia on the line. good morning. caller: how are you doing today? first, i have a comment about some of the hispanic population not knowing the difference between the do and the elephant. we have our fair share of americans who do not know that. number two, what is your opinion
on this. the easy way to solve a problem with the illegal immigrants is to make immigration illegal. guest: certain parts of it. certain parts of it do need to be legal. the system does not work as it is now. personally, i think there needs to be stronger enforcement at any compromised port of entry. it can be air, land, or sea. it does not make a difference. terrorists or people with intentions can come and leave from any of the open ports. -- can come in from any of the open ports. we need to make it easier for employers to verify and have a system to make sure people can work here illegally. the issue of what to do with the individuals who are here, we need to find out why they are here. are they paying taxes? there are many -- there are many who went to work here and go back to their country of origin
and continue to send money back. have a legalized way for them to work. for individuals who want to start a family here, have children here, want to pursue the american dream, there needs to be a way where we determine that they can be in a system legally and be legalized to some extent and then a legislators need to make decisions. i do not think you just hand out lollipops and amnesty to everyone. host: what is the mission statement of resurgent republic? guest: we want to offer research on free-market principles, economic growth, and allow people to see how those principles align with where the american electorate is thinking right now. host: think you for joining us, leslie sanchez.
continuing coverage of the national governors' association in boston. today they will talk about deficit. they would get under way in a moment or two. he will hear from alan simpson, the co-chair for reform. this is the commission that was organized by president obama after congress rejected plans to form a congressional commission. the other co-chair serve in the clinton administration. they will brief the governors on the federal budget deficit and some of the risks and challenges facing the federal government. the session will be getting under way in a moment or two. we will continue until about 11:00 p.m. eastern c-span's "newsmakers" will air at 6:00 p.m. eastern. we will see you tomorrow. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
next year's executive committee and officers. please find a seat and we will get the session under way. we are honored this morning to have senator al simpson for the co-chairman of the fiscal responsibility and reform. they will talk about some of the options we need to consider to rein in the federal deficit. they have not been given an easy assignment. i think that is an understatement, but we're grateful that have undertaken it. everyone here is well aware that not since the end of the world war when our ratio to debt -- a ratio of debt to gdp rose to about 9%. at that time we were able to grow our way out of the debt crisis, but given current global conditions the prospect is not as likely today.
our federal debt to gdp ratio ranged between 25% and 50%. it is now to 62%. the gao projects if we maintain our current spending that we will surpass the high we sent -- was set in 1946 within a decade. that is about 115%. that is not a formula for long- term economic success. the commission faces a daunting challenge and is suggesting a path forward towards is the responsibility that is both realistic and politically achievable. it is not easy, but something that governors are used to doing it. as we have said a number of times to write our meeting, we have to balance our budget and as we have been working for the greatest fiscal crisis since the great depression, a lot of governors have been getting some practice implementing a lean government. we have some ideas will come out
this morning with our distinguished panelists that will be helpful to them and helpful to the future of our country's this condition. on to call on our colleagues to introduce their constituents who are our distinguished presenters today. we will begin. >> thank you. it is a delight to get to introduce out. -- introduce al. have known him for a long time. we are very collegial. if you have heard him before, you are likely to hear it all again today. [laughter] i first became acquainted with governor since then when i was 24 years old and working for a democratic governor in wyoming on his staff. senator simpson, then in the
wyoming house, in the republican leadership he would sit around and plot the course of the state in a bipartisan fashion. i would never accuse al of being non-partisan, but he does know how to work in a bipartisan manner. i think he is the right guy for the job. she has both the knowledge and wisdom, but he also has a trait which is a sense of humor. you have to have humor in order to get through what it is what we deal with and the seriousness with which we take it. i am proud without. i am glad he is no longer in politics in wyoming. [laughter] if you turn up your hearing aid, you could hear me. [laughter] we are delighted. he is one of our own and he was a successful senator. he has done lots of things in his life. most of what he does is try to do the right thing by his
country, and our state. we are delighted. i think i look forward to hearing you, al. [laughter] >> thank you, governor. >> i think we all look forward to hearing senator simpson talked, too. you will love hearing from one of north carolina's strongest leaders. you have known him probably in his role as head of the small business administration under president clinton. he was the president's chief of staff. after that, we lured him back to his house state where he now serves as president of the greater university system. he has taken on this role as co- chair of the national commission on this responsibility and reform because he believes in this. i have had the opportunity for several years and almost 1.5 years as governor of north carolina to watch his every moment, his decision making, the
fact that he is not just going to talk the talk with us. he has walked the walk. that me tell you what i mean. as president of one of the largest constituent university systems in the country, we would like to tell you is the best because it is. he has had to cut his own budget. this is what he has done. she has cut $575 million over the last three years. the system today is 30% smaller than it was when he was sworn in as president five years ago. 23% of the cuts came from administration. i can attest as someone who loves the system and understands the value of education in a new economy that he has not harmed teaching and learning. he has simply done things that really in lieu of destroying our academic core. -- he has simply done things differently in lieu of destroying our academic core.
we have laughed and said this is painful. he has gone forward in lots of critical storms and has endured the criticism. he will do that as the co-chair of this committee. he has figured out a different way to incentivize teachers compensation, for the professors, the work force. she has developed in a paradox around health care. he understand in our state, one of the fastest-growing states in america, that he cannot rely on the old way, the bricks and mortar to educate the people. as a result, he has been passionate about distance learning. we have not when her 35 distance learning degree programs -- we have 135 distance learning degree programs. as larger than the university of the phoenix. we have done that very quickly with his leadership. the best thing i can tell you as someone who calls erskine
bowles, what will you do? he understands the seat we are all sitting in. he understands the jobs, that we have to continue to grow this economy now we continue to downsize government. he is a great leader. he is a great american. i am so proud he is a great north carolininian. he, too, as a sense of humor. just tell them that right now i am at the chairman and president of the university system but i am actually between forces. i have lost one and a need to make another one. erskine bowles, thank you for doing this for our country. >> thank you and welcome, gentlemen. [applause] i bough>> i wish you had introdd me. [applause]
[laughter] it would have been much more charitable. the introductions -- of all of the introductions, that was the most recent. [laughter] i will tell you a little bit about dave. he was a 24-year-old chief of staff for a wonderful democratic governor, the longest serving governor in our history, 12 years. people look at wyoming as a republican state. that is not true. anyway, they think with the dave is his father and mother were our co-chairman when we ran in 1978, we being the woman i lived with for 56 years. but she said living with me was like a living experience of living in hell. [laughter]
dave has been a wonderful governor, a tremendous force. he has a lot of guts and it takes on the tough ones. i admire him greatly. i got to know his wife. she is a district -- a federal district judge. she is a superb woman from my home town. this last 10 minutes, hang on tight. erskine and i travel only as a pair. we ride shotgun on each other. it is a lonely life out there in hostile territory. all of you know the feeling. i did want to address when i walked in here, someone made a comment and i was taken aback. yes, i did sleep in this suit. [laughter] i hope that takes that off of the table. [laughter]
i could not have a finer companion in this cause than erskine bowles. he is a man i trust completely and admire and respect. he is a grand gentleman come in the. a personal note, my dear dad was the governor of wyoming. he was also a u.s. senator. he loved the office of governor. he could lead and he could see the results. he said in the senate he could never see the results of anything. after everything disappeared into the rabbit hole, usually from a brilliant staffer on either side of the aisle. as governor, he loved the fray. he loved self-deprecating humor. his favorite was this. he would tell it often. this old guy is out driving his pickup down the road. he has everything in it that he
owns. highway patrolman stopped him. he says, "you're going a little fast." who would believe that? you have a lot of stuff but there do you? where are you going? haven't you got a governor on that cutbacks -- on that truck? he says, "no, that is manure used now -- you smell." [laughter] this commission has one tough goal. i have been addressed as a republican toadied covering for president obama to get him off the hook. i honor the office of president. if the president asks me to do something, to pitch in and help our country, i will always respond regardless of party differences. [applause] i think it is