Skip to main content

tv   The Contenders  CSPAN  October 7, 2011 8:00pm-10:30pm EDT

8:00 pm
and a foreign policy speech on -- by a presidential candidates mitt romney. then, presidential candidate rick perry at the bodies voters conference. and now live from washington, d.c., a profile of the life of charles evans hughes. >> it is what we claim we want in the presidential candidates and president. >> and man named charles evan bayh -- charles evans hughes. woodrow wilson thought he was beaten. >> american history goes on in several different directions. what is he doing for foreign policy?
8:01 pm
he is the one you could write novels about. >> he was on the supreme court. he left the supreme court. he ran for president. then he went back to the supreme court. when of the finest minds on the court's. >> why use? >> andrew jackson said that "he looks like god and talks like god." >> charles evans hughes -- the republican presidential nominee soon after the national convention. tonight, we looked at the life and legacy of charles evans hughes who was a two-term
8:02 pm
governor, secretary of state, and twice a supreme court justice. he was perhaps best known as one of the co-authors of the new deal. we're broadcasting live across from the capitol. he inaugurated this building when it first opened in 1935. let me introduce you to our guests this evening were joining us to talk about the life and legacy of charles evans hughes. my first guest is an historian, and bernadette higher -- bernadette tyler is a professor at cornell law school. i want you to set the stage for us. 1916, woodrow wilson wants to be reelected. frame what was going on in the country and the presidential campaign. >> president wilson said it
8:03 pm
would be a tragedy if his administration was defined by foriegn policy. it turned out to be just that. america starts his term focusing on the progressive era, the income tax, lowering the tariffs, the federal reserve system. changes that after 1914. we have the war in europe. america is fighting to stay out. but there is a question of preparedness for the war. are we prepared? are we being tough? are we week? the secretary of state resigns from wilson's cabinet because he thinks we're being too tough. is really a question of war and peace in europe, war and peace in mexico. aside from all the domestic issues. war overshadows everything. >> how does he get from the
8:04 pm
supreme court to the nominating process? >> he gets there somewhat reluctantly because he enjoyed his position as associate justice of the court. but then he felt called by duty after several candidates did not pan out for the republicans. he felt called to accept the nomination for president. in a sense, he was not a particularly gung-ho candidate. >> what was the republican party like? >> it fractured in 1912. there was the great teddy roosevelt/william howard taft split. teddy ran as the bull moose party candidate. there is a real question. are they going to be able to put the republican party back together again? do you take roosevelt? roosevelt is still radioactive with the old-guard.
8:05 pm
if you take someone to progressive, then they will not come back. you have got to pick someone who is respected by both sides. someone who is not some wild man from the prairies or from the west like johnson, someone who was not a conservative like roots, and the man to do it, also the man who has been in politics -- has been out of politics since 1910, he was on the supreme court. he was not part of the 1912 battle. that is mr. hughes. and he is respected by just about everyone in the party. >> what were the politics of the time? >> his politics were mildly progressive. he is not a wild man from the west. but what he is, he had moved from the practice of law. he was never interested really
8:06 pm
in being part of politics. when he first comes to new york and establishes his law practice is -- "would you like to run for judge?" "no." but he is asked to investigate the gas monopoly in new york city. they come to him and they say, do you want to take over this investigation? "no, i really do not. but he does. he asks how much time he has to prepare testimony for the hearings. they say "a week." but with the brilliance this man had, he was able to pull it all together, to go through all the papers, grill the executives on the stand, bring the whole thing down. ultimately what this leads to is of public service commission in new york state, and to have the gas bill and electricity
8:07 pm
rates cut by a third, and then he moves on to fixing the insurance agency in new york state and really becomes a national figure. this is 1906 until just before 1906. he is a progressive-type candidate who is opposed to the machine of the democrats in tammany, because they are protecting these monopolies, but also the massive new york state's political machine. and teddy roosevelt would defer to the bosses to some extent. hughes with through the hole puncher reforms. then he moves on to the core for the first time. >> this would be unimaginable for someone to resign from this position and run for a national elected office. what was the reaction of the time? was a surprise? >> i think some were surprised,
8:08 pm
but i think the office of the supreme court justice was not quite what it has become now. i think part of the reason people would be shocked if a justice resigned as the process is so much more difficult to get through and some much more difficult to confirm any justice. justices are appointed young and expected to stay for the rest of their working career. his first appointment as justice was actually quite an contentious. his second one was almost too beginning of the contentions within the appointment process. in occurred early soon after there were new rules on the senate debate for nominees and garnered a lot of criticism from progressives, actually. >> we are on the plaza of the supreme court. beautiful early october night here. we will be here for two hours tonight.
8:09 pm
14 men who ran for the presidency and lost but changed political history. charles evans hughes made his mark through many positions, but particularly in his role as chief justice. in the second half of our program, we will focus on at that and be a new deal. he was at the helm during that. we will open up our phone lines for each of these programs that allow you to offer your questions and observations as part of our discussion. where was the republican convention that year? >> i think it was philadelphia. there were two conventions going on within a block of each other. that is the real interest in geography that year. the republicans went through a series of ballots. i think hughes's third on the first ballot. he moved up until he is on the first ballot.
8:10 pm
meanwhile, the progressives are meeting just a short ways away, and what they are doing is debating who they can accept. t.r. is basically saying "i am not going to do it." he throws out a couple names. leonard wood, a big army general. fort henry cabot lodge -- or henry cabot lodge. neither one is accessible -- to the progressives. in the end, the only one they can agree on, a progressive, to any extent is use. but they still are in a great tiff, and they kind of dissolve the party. the party of that operates. they go way. this is one of the great things of the legacy of hughes' race.
8:11 pm
we take the republican for granted as a continuing string -- continuing thing since 1916, since lyndon. maybe the progressives go back and we do not know what happened. maybe the republicans do not go the way of the whigs. maybe the progressives replace it. who can say? the thing is, hughes' take the position. he did not want to do it. he is uncertain what to do. he walks away from the supreme court. what he had said when he had taken it and they were talking in 1912, he would be the compromise candidate. he said no, no, no, i will not do it. the democrats fully criticize dominating a judge for the presidency. and there is our reason for
8:12 pm
that the bank in 1904, they take alton b. parker and run him for the presidency. >> this denomination on the first ballot? -- does he get the nomination on the first ballot? >> parker? no, hughes. be elected candidates would not go to the convention. there was a nominating process. a week later, they have a speech and, surprise, you are our nominee. the fellow doing it that year was warren harding. the chair of the convention. he was really undecided. his family members, his closest associates are not sure what he is going to do. they had people in the early days of the republican party. there was a david davis bid to a
8:13 pm
judicial senate nomination back in illinois. but not since then, and not sent to use. -- and that not since hughes. >> can you tell us -- how was he as a national campaigner? >> that campaign is probably the worst thing he ever does. in his life really. not just his public career. he excelled at everything. that campaign, he got off the mark slowly. he is doing a dance. it is the dance that jack kennedy and richard nixon due in 1960. we have the black vote in the north, the southern white vote. kennedy carries both. the same thing occurs with the peace votes and the pro-war people in 1916.
8:14 pm
wilson runs a campaign "he kept us out of work." and its use is doing this dance. and he ends up losing both sides really. he loses the pro-war people and the people who want to stay neutral. he is branded as being pro- german. you see these editorial cartoons. with the irish nationalists and all those. and the other day, the german- americans vote goes to wilson. it does not elucidates -- he does not elucidate the campaign themes while. is opposed to the terror of. there are labor issues. there are labor issues that are very important. there are two things that prop him up. even though as governor of new york, he has an admirable
8:15 pm
record. he establishes cases, that entire system. there's also labor regulations put in place for the first time. he is really a champion of labor. but then the infamous california trip, which we will get into later, there are two things that happen. the one thing that is never talked about, he blunders into san francisco, and the chamber of commerce tried to do this in the restaurants and wanted to be open shop. in other words, you do not have to join the union. where did they schedule in his appearance? in a restaurant. not only in california, but around the country. union members around the country. also, in september, there is a national rail strike threatened. the administration and congress
8:16 pm
passes the adams map which establishes the eight-hour day, first time nationwide. the constitutionality is threatened later. hughes opposes it. again, this cuts into his labor vote. so he has got problems and he really does not -- he is not able to come out and say what he would do better than wilson. >> here are the phone numbers. we will get calls in a few moments. in addition to labor issues, there were also women's suffrage issues. women did not have the right to vote at the national level. can you tell us about that aspect of the campaign? >> wilson had already changed his position to some extent on women's suffrage. initially he was opposed to the notion women would have the vote. both of his wives were actually
8:17 pm
of this view. one of his daughters though became quite active in the suffrage movements, and his views were gradually shifting. at the time of the election campaign in 1916 he still believe women's suffrage should be decided on a state-by-state level. and use went far beyond that. and far beyond all the republicans. he claimed that there should be a women's suffrage amendment. and this is puzzling because the states where women could vote actually went for wilson rather then hughes, which is somewhat paradoxical. there could be many reasons for that. >> 12 states have given women the right to vote at that time. for his support of women's
8:18 pm
suffrage, a group of supporters of the charles evans hughes it formed a club, campaigned for him, and they went by the hughesettes. kind of modern if you think about it. one of his nieces had put together a hughesettes website. we are showing new some history of her aunt in the 1916 election. and his law firm where he practiced in private practice to exist today. we went there and spoke to one of the senior partners to talk a little bit about charles evans hughes and his support for women voting. >> also very proud and the
8:19 pm
original edition of the independent weekly magazine that came out the week after justice used to see the republican nomination for the presidency. -- justice hughes got the republican nomination for the presidency. mrs. hughes, she is on here in support of women's suffrage, which she supported as well. with the things we were not aware of -- the republican party platform in 1916 was that each state would have the right to determine whether or not women would have the right to vote. does this hughes -- justice hughes said he would go beyond the republican party platform and support the susan b. anthony and in the to the constitution
8:20 pm
that would give women the right to vote. >> and from not we will move to the election. i read that woodrow wilson went to bed on election night thinking he had lost. >> i would not say he was resigned to it. he was about ready to either give up the presidency nobly or in a huff. is your call. he has a plan where it is like, ok, i have lost. i am getting out. they had to wait until march before they left office. you had a big interregnum. you had a situation or the country was moving towards war. what do you do? his plan was he would appoint hughes as secretary of state because secretary of state was second in line to the
8:21 pm
presidency. once hughes -- or secretary of state lansing was shuffled aside for hughes, then the vice president would resign and then wilson -- it was sort of a three-point plan -- and hughes would become president until he formally took his term. >> what happened was it was incredibly close election. >> oh, yes. >> tells about the electoral vote. >> it was about a quarter of a million popular vote. what it is, it is so close in california. that is the key. it is/13 electoral votes, and that is what the situation was in california. the second incident that occurs in california, and really the nature of the incident is overplayed, because again, back to that progressive party
8:22 pm
convention that kind of dissolved and left the field open to hughes. they're in a bad mood. they are not resolved. one of the people with a bad temper was the senator hiram johnson from california. he is a very ordinary guy. -- or marine -- ornery guy. hughes has to get to the east coast. he swings the california before the prime up -- he swings through california before the primary. johnson is the governor. that cannot make decisions of who will escort who. is worse than the palestinians
8:23 pm
and israelis. the feelings are so bad. finally what happened is, there is an incident in long beach, california where hughes who heads the not met johnson goes in to rest in the hotel, does not know johnson is there. johnson knows hughes is their. they leave the hotel. they never meet. it is claimed that hughes had alienated johnson in this. really johnson could have made the moat. right after that, hughes through an intermediary invites johnson to chair a meeting in sacramento. johnson refuses. and hughes loses the state by about 3000 votes. they do not know until let -- until next friday he lost the state. bernadino he lost the election until that private. meanwhile, hiram johnson wins
8:24 pm
the primary and the state of california by something like 300,000 votes. so, a lot of people blame hiram johnson, the pacific incident, but in fact in the first meeting of the progressives when johnson goes back to california, they endorsed him, but then they split up. they split up and hold separate meetings. he could not have swung all the progressives if he wanted to, but he might have swung more than 1600. >> wilson won nine of the 12 states. what does it say about charles evans hughes, that he was not as much of a political tactician? >> i think he was much more of a principled person and a principled lawyer than a politician in certain respects. i think part of what i mentioned before -- some of the women did not vote for him.
8:25 pm
wilson had promised -- pledged to remain at peace. but one of the things about the that itohnson incident shows about hughes's character is he was not interested in currying favor with other politicians or the party machine. it shows in a very demonstrative way through the gubernatorial career, he tries to oust some people within the administration, and that is met this favorably because people think -- disfavorably because people think they deserve loyalty from the republican party. i think that cost him the election. >> we have our first call of the evening from duncan.
8:26 pm
hello. >> hello. i was curious about any bad things trawls evans hughes might have said about woodrow wilson -- any bad things and charles evans hughes might upset about woodrow wilson. >> any bad things he might have said about woodrow wilson? >> he criticized wilson for preparedness, not having an army ants navy up to speed. he was also very critical of the wilson policy in mexico. or you have the revolutions overthrowing the diaz administration and the country devolves into chaos. you see the movies, "viva via" or "viva zapata." one revolution replacing another.
8:27 pm
hughes is very concerned that general guerta not impose another dictatorship in mexico. he sends marines. there is -- there are these crazy incidents over will they come in? of flag here or not their. but the troops go. mexico gets worse and worse. and then you get the columbus, new mexico into that we're pancho villa -- whereupon trivia killed some american national's. that is another disaster. there is a lot of controversy about mexico. there's a lot of criticism about preparedness and the wilson administration. these are things that hughes played on.
8:28 pm
>> welcome to the conversation. this is curtis. >> thank you. i just wanted to talk about a very important assertion that hughes wrote about. i will get through this quickly. the national recovery act was ruled unconstitutional in 1935 and a year later the national labor relations act was passed and they thought that was going to be ruled unconstitutional, but then it came to the high court in 1937. i think the high court was under pressure to change their position from ruling new deal laws unconstitutional, and hughes wrote that decision. i think the moral to that story is even the high court can be put under political pressure to change their position. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> it is a crucial point and a
8:29 pm
crucial point of contention among historians, the question of what's defeated the court packing scheme that franklin roosevelt had proposed. was this consistent with an evolution of some of the justices, including chief justice hughes. i think we will get into that later. >> louisville, ky, what is your question? >> i am just wondering what did -- what were hughes's views on the new deal? what were his views? and thank you for "the contenders." >> at the beginning of the new deal, there were striking down a lot of new dual registration. predict legislation.
8:30 pm
-- new deal registration. others of the justices, like brandeis, were quite far to the left. others were swing votes. they might strike down various new deal legislation. then there was a fairly radical switch where the new deal programs began to be up held. >> we will talk a little bit more about charles evans hughes the man. he was described as looking and sounding like god. ". he was 5'11 interestingly enough, he was very slight as a young man. he weighed 127 pounds. they would not write an
8:31 pm
insurance policy for him. that would give him the physical and say, we cannot find anything wrong with him, but he is just too thin. said it would not give him up a life-insurance policy. so, he was very vigorous, very active. he reaches an adult weight of about 173 pounds. it was measured very carefully. at breakfast he would have a pile of toast in front of him. if he was putting too much weight, he would remove a slice of toast. if he did not win enough, he would put another slice on. but this fellow was so slight and not vigorous, but he was of good mountain climber. when he was selected to the legislature in new york, after the gas inquiry, he goes and says "i need a vacation." he is climbing the alps.
8:32 pm
he loved it public service so much. this is a point that is very important. this guy keeps coming back to public service again and again and again. and after he was knocked out of the presidency, he might have said the hell with you people. i have done my time. i have fixed this and that and it has cost me money again and again and again. when he was governor, he poured his own expenses on so many of the trips. when he was on the supreme court, that did not pay a lot. even before he became the great crusader, he did not take the big cases. one of his great rivals worked for hearst and said at the time he became chief justice, public service at cost $6 million -- public service had cost hughes
8:33 pm
$6 million. he gave up so much in time and money to serve the public in job after job, which he did so well. now, his intellect, his brains. he had this first-class brain. robert penn warren said that. it was the same with hughes. 6 years old, goes off to school. he comes on, he says "i am not learning that much there, dad. i can learn more here." "yes, son?" and he lays out his plan of study hour by hour how he is going to do it and he does it. home schooled. a couple years later, he moves around again, maybe he is going to go back to school. same thing. he is basically home school for
8:34 pm
home schooling was cool. it completes high-school studies on his own. he is too young to get into college. he has to run around new york city for a year before he can go in. there are stories where -- i think when he was secretary of state or governor, what ever. it does not matter. he handed a three-page memo of four -- he was handed a three- page memo before going into a meeting. the stenographer transcribes what he says. is off by one word. you see stories like that over and over again. >> at the age of 19, he graduated from cornell law school. >> actually, he taught at cornell law school for two years and he gave up a very lucrative practice in new york which was supervised by his father-in-law in order to take by health
8:35 pm
break and also to become an academic. he ended up leaving cornell law school, partly because his father-in-law thoughts his grandchildren should not be raised in such a remote location. he often said amongst his happiest times were the times at the cornell law school. >> it was the president of columbia. i apologize. we have a clip of him we want to show so you can get a sense of him. he was considered quite a great orator. let's listen to what he sounded like. >> bigotry and racial animosities and intolerance are the deadly enemies of true democracy. there can be no friendly cooperation if they exist.
8:36 pm
they are enemies more dangerous than any external force. they undermine the very foundation of our democratic effort. >> and we're going to go back to telephone calls. your on the air, frederick. >> i would like to ask a question about where charles evans hughes was born. and did he come from a family of money? where was his family reported his family get the money? >> born in 1862 in new york. >> his father was a baptist. they were not particularly affluent. they grew up in humble circumstances. he was quite influenced by the baptist background he enjoyed from going up. in fact, his father hoped to become a religious man himself. he was disappointed that he decided to go into law instead
8:37 pm
of religion. his background did influence his jurisprudence later ron. we can argue that. he was quite favorable to religious liberty claims and several opinions where he upheld a very strong view of religion under the second amendment. >> this is daniel. welcome. >> thank you for taking the time to let us get in on the conversation. i have a question about if the federal reserve would have been created under his administration, and if it had not have been, where might we be today? >> with the federal reserve cut been created under charles evans hughes? but it would not, because it already existed. >> there you go. frank? >> wilson ran on a platform
8:38 pm
against the war, and there was a tremendous explosion in new york harbor, and after the war, the court ruled that german agents had in fact caused the explosion. in the 1970's the german government finally paid the government and indemnity. a wonder if you can comment on the role of the wilson administration in covering up the explosion and its effect on the election. i will hang up and listen on the tv. >> that was a massive explosion of a ship that actually damaged part of the statue of liberty, shattered windows as far north as 42nd street. wilson administration did downplay this, because they were trying to keep us out of the war at this point.
8:39 pm
now it was very difficult for hughes that year. he is fighting two things. the country is very prosperous. there was a slight downturn, but with the war, neutral parties tend to do very well in wartime. there is great prosperity. he is fighting back. he is fighting the fact that we really are at peace. the trouble that had occurred after the sinking of the lusitania, the german government comes to its senses momentarily and ends its policy of unrestricted submarine warfare. is not until after the election that it presumes that. there is tremendous sabotage going on. there is funding of german group's. one of the problems wilson has is they bring up a meeting he had with four pro-german people. one of them was named jeremiah
8:40 pm
o'leary, an irish nationalist. this is one of the issues of the 1916 campaign. why would there be sentiment along the irish population. they were still under the british flag. they wanted independence. he was basing all of these problems. the question is, what is he going to do about it? the trouble arises after that election, particularly in regard to zimmerman though, where germany was plotting to get mexico to attack us and get their lost provinces back. >> can you tell us a little bit more about -- do you know the story? >> i do not. >> was the daughter of a senior
8:41 pm
partner -- >> yes. >> another thing we want to highlight was the importance of wasis used importancejus -- the importance of mrs. hughes in his life. she was the daughter of walter carter, the senior partner in the hughes law firm. he met her at an office holiday party. issue was a very educated woman, influential in his life. he also had three daughters who together with mrs. hughes, i think they have a great effect on his views, including women's suffrage among other things. >> the partners were not
8:42 pm
partners in politics. there were out campaigning all the time. >> getting back to their marriage, their courtship is very slow. they need a few times. like every few months or something. and because she is the boss's daughter, he will not go near her. people say, "you married the boss's daughter?" is really a distortion. is only when he is awful partner that the courtship really begins. -- it is only when he is a full partner that the quarter chip really began as. they are really deeply in lot. they go around the country on a train, almost like a pro eleanor roosevelt.
8:43 pm
-- proto-eleanor roosevelt. stuff that was not done then. >> you are on the air, jack. >> my question is about charles evans hughes's perspective on racism at the time. >> he was actually pretty progressive on race. his first term as associate justice, he actually wrote an opinion that suggested it was not valid for railroads to fail to create first-class accommodations for african american passengers coming even if they did not have enough passengers to fill those accommodations. it is actually more egalitarian than a lot of his contemporaries. later on he would be a supporter
8:44 pm
of the separate, but equal doctrine and pave the way for brown vs. the board of education. >> i have a question that may be a little bit off the beaten path. this is about the institution of the personal income tax. which party was against it, and which party was for it, may i ask? >> income tax comes about as part of the revenue act of 1913, i think, and that is important because that is part of the underwood tariff. the democrats lower the tariff. they have to make up the revenue. they passed the 16th amendment. that all folds into the income tax. i would say because the republicans are the terror of the party, that the democrats --
8:45 pm
the tariff party, that the democrats -- hughes that is opposed to the income tax. he reads it and he is a lawyer. he is always reading every word, no matter where those words go. and he says "all revenue." and he says that means they're going to be able to tax the tax refunds of municipalities and states and destroy the balance of federalism. he opposes the 16th amendment. i believe that new york state's rejects the amendment. >> you're on the air, joseph. >> good evening. >> in light of the other
8:46 pm
television programs this week on prohibition, did he have any attitudes or feelings about that ugly affair? >> great question. is talking about the pbs series about prohibition. >> neither he nor wilson would be regarded as drys. he started to take a step during the insurance investigation. he said it was his nurse. this humanizes him. he was very high strung. he started taking a drink then. he was never a big drinker. there is a story told at the havana conference of latin american nations around 1924 or so. he asked the secretary of state whether he will serve booze or not. he walks over there and takes the first one. he is not a prohibitionist.
8:47 pm
>> it is time for us to dive into more of his supreme court years. we are going to say good bye for now to david. we will see him later on. to begin our discussion, we will show you president franklin roosevelt in 1937, his take on what was commonly called the court packing plant. after that, you will see chief justice john roberts. first, a newsreel from that time introducing us to each of the members of the supreme court in 1937. >> associate justice sutherland. it became a senator from utah. the only supreme court catholic. a democrat who supported president harding.
8:48 pm
from wyoming -- 78. 56 years on the bench. james reynolds of tennessee, 75. confirmed bachelor. has voted against every new deal measure. benjamin nathan -- benjamin nathan cardozo, a 67 -- 67, appointed by president hoover. arlen of new york, a former dean of the university law school. justice brandeis of kentucky. wilson dared not appoint him
8:49 pm
attorney general, but did reported him to the court. -- the did appoint him to the core. and justice roberts. at 61, the youngest justice. long a conservative. and charles evans hughes, 75. chief justice since 1930. sometimes conservative, sometimes liberal. >> president roosevelt goes on the air in an appeal for popular support for his plan to reorganize the federal judiciary. it is his second such appeal within six days. he tells the people that his plan would protect them. >> those opposing the plan have sots to so prejudice and fear
8:50 pm
by saying i am seeking to pack the supreme court. what did they mean by "packing the supreme court"? let me answer this question with a bluntness that will and all honest misunderstanding of my purpose. is by that phrase it is charged -- if by that phrase is charged i wish to place on the bench spineless puppets to disregard the law and decide specific cases as i wish them to be decided, i make this answer. that no president's bid for his office would appoint and no senate of honorable men bid for their office would confirm that kind of appointee to the supreme court of the united states. we what a supreme court that will do justice under the
8:51 pm
constitution and not over it. in our courts, we want a government of laws and not of men. >> the court lacking -- the court packing plan was a very serious threat. it was proposed by an immensely popular presidents. as fdr put it "the people are with me." hughes proceeded cautiously, but with determination. he demolished fdr's efficiency argument. he showed that the court was keeping up with this work. hughes explain that adding more justices would make the court far less efficient. "there would be more judges to hear, more judges to confer, more judges to been -- to
8:52 pm
discuss, more judges to be convinced and to decide." hughes chose not to directly criticize fdr, but to expose the effort for what it was by refuting the efficiency window dressing. and it worked. >> that was a prospectus for anytime and also contemporary perspectives from the fdr era and the court packing history we have learned so much about as we grow up in this country. we are going to learn more about the biography of charles evans hughes, 1916 republican nominee for president. he failed in that big a very narrowly against woodrow wilson. we're learning more about his contributions to society. we're joined by two guests on this beautiful october night in front of the supreme court building. my first guest served as the
8:53 pm
u.s. solicitor general, and bernadette is with us throughout this program. i am going to start because he had two terms on the court. in 1930, president hoover appointed him. what is the difference between staying as a justice on the court within a 20-year period? >> he had some incredible experiences in the interim. obviously the presidential run, but also serving as secretary of state, serving on the so-called world court in the hague. he comes back to that job as chief justice, as a man who certainly had many more difference experiences. >> can you tell us a bit about
8:54 pm
the court of 1930? >> sure. the core was much less conservative than it became -- the court was much less conservative than it became in 1935 and 1936. the court did not really a strike down that much economic legislation. it up held economic legislation in particular. towards the middle of that decade, it shifted a bit. >> what was he like as a leader in those early days? >> i think he is someone who took to the administrative parts of the chief justice job right away, and that makes sense. you have someone in the modern era becoming chief justice to have mostly served in judicial capacities, but here is someone who has run the state of new york.
8:55 pm
he is a great administrator. he took to that aspect of the job immediately. he also took to the other aspects of the job. after all, he had already been an associate justice. this is only the second time in the nation's history up to this point or someone who has been an associate justice goes on to serve as chief justice. in that respect, he was the ideal to justice and he hits the ground running. >> was he i great broker of opinion? >> i think from the beginning, he was someone harder to typecast than the other justices on the court. he was coming into a court that was not as bitterly divided as it became, but still a divided court. he was essentially near the center of the core. >> this also brings up another point. he los to dissent. he wants to create harmony.
8:56 pm
-- andhe loathes to dissent. he wanted to encourage harmony on the court like marshall, chief justice marshall. >> let's take a couple calls and then we will delve more deeply into this. welcome to the discussion. >> thank you for taking my call. great program. was he not consider the god-like too because he would try to find a medium ground? was he pushed by hughes or did hughes follow along? >> thank you for watching. >> i think hughes was much more of the swing vote than roberts
8:57 pm
was. roberts tended to vote with the conservative bloc. hughes tended to be a little bit more on both sides. at least he signed himself on to more opinions. some people think that was a disingenuous move designed to portray himself as being a more liberal orientation than he was. it was called a jovian presents on the court, and that was about his administrative capability we have been discussing. he held a judicial conference in a pretty authoritarian manner. he he would go around and discuss the case after saying his views first. p kept a pretty tight leash on the discussion -- he kept a pretty tight leash on the discussion. >> what we know about his style? >> i think there are a lot of similarities, and not
8:58 pm
necessarily the point of the way the conferences were conducted on a day-to-day basis. but the chief justice hughes wrote a book on the supreme court's. that was a unique thing to get a window into the supreme court for someone who was already served as an associate justice. we know he is going to be the chief justice. he talks about the role of the chief justice in that book and the limits of what the chief justice can do, because at the end of the day, you are the chief justice of the united states, but you only get one vote and you have to lead in a way that is more subtle than the leadership you have when you're a governor or even secretary of state. he did manage to do a remarkable job of leading the court. leading by example. >> let's take a minute and talk about this building.
8:59 pm
up until this time, the court met across the street at the united states capitol building. have the court come to have the run building? >> they decided they wanted to have their own building. that is symbolic and interesting. if you think about the court, they are in constant contact with the bread centers, and they are passing each other in the halls of congress. there is something important symbolically of having a separate judicial building with a separate presence. there were, of course, criticisms. as you can see, this is an ornate and beautiful building. recollection is it came in -- my recollection is it came in under budget, which is remarkable. >> william howard taft who had
9:00 pm
been president and became chief justice argued that the court needed its own building. he did live to see at. i read that this was very controversial at the time. >> i think that was partially because you're talking about justices to are traditionalists. and the depression. i do think part of it is it was a break with tradition. death from a broader perspective, it seemed like a terrific break and a brick that was overdue. >> the architect included a picture of charles evan hughes. i think over the next call we might get a shot of that so you can see how the architects
9:01 pm
depicted him. this is harry. >> i used to study the supreme court. i think three major laws were struck down by unanimous supreme court. that included the liberals. from what i understood, when roosevelt made his court packing speech, he was one of the most elderly members of the court. he was over 80 years old. i used to do some work on roberts. the folks on the case in 1937 were taken before and the secret chambers of the court. thank you for letting me be on the show. >> set the stage for us.
9:02 pm
>> what happened in the -- i want to get back to this caller posing questions. fdr became frustrated with the fact that it lot of measures were being struck down by the supreme court. >> on what ground? >> on the ground, first of all, exceeding congress''s power under the commerce clause. the commerce clause is relevant today. it is also the source of a lot of legislation that is passed right now. under the new deal, the court basically was not s expansion in its interpretation of what the commerce power could do for congress and thought often he states on autonomy was being
9:03 pm
infringed upon by congressional enactments. another ground for invalidation was liberty of contract which was read into the 14th amendment or the fifth amendment. hughes court had been striking down a lot of legislation. after his reelection, fdr basically proposed this plan whereby the court's membership would be increased if justices did not retire in a timely fashion. under his plan, there would have been up to six new justices placed upon the court. this gets into the question that was asked by the collar whether justice roberts had changed his vote before this court packing scam was promoted. one argument is that once roosevelt won the election, the
9:04 pm
court felt there would be a lot of pressure to uphold and abstained legislation and they could no longer be striking down as many laws. the court packing scheme itself was almost irrelevant or was not the real catalyst that roberts felt he needed to change his vote because of roosevelts reelection. >> give us a sense of how engaged in the country was. it was this a hugely controversial, or was this a washington story? >> this was not a washington story. it helps to understand the stage completely which is, think about fdr at this point. he has just been reelected for a second term. he has been dealing with the great depression. this is the great depression. he is trying to deal with it innovatively, passing this legislation and it is getting struck down by the court.
9:05 pm
by the time he is done with his fourth term, he will have appointed more supreme court justices that than anyone but george washington. at this point, he is like jimmy carter. he has been a full-time president and has not put anybody on the court. he is very frustrated with the fact they are sort -- there are striking down legislation. he is with the view that they are out of touch with the country. that is the reason the country focuses on this. i think a lot of the frustration goes with what the court is doing, what the age of some of the justices. all of that well over into the court packing plant. i think it is fair to say it is a bit of a black eye to fdr's
9:06 pm
historical lettuce -- legacy that he let his frustrations boiled over and made this proposal. >> good afternoon. it is still afternoon here. i appreciate you taking my call. i presume this is a question for professor bernadette meyler. i am curious as to what she might know regarding the tie-ins between the justice hughes and the sword family. also, part of the reason i am calling is because i have been puzzling for some time. back in that era there is a speech by justice hughes that was indicating the anti recess of the community where the republicans. that seems to have switched around the time of woodrow
9:07 pm
wilson's presidency when he embraced. i am curious what you may know about that. >> i am not as familiar with the relationship. there is a very interesting story. he invited booker t. washington to an event and it was a somewhat controversial invitation. he escorted into a table. hughes pretty much retain a uniform position on race throughout his career where he was in favor of greater equality, and i am not sure what extent to full equality. it is a backdrop to the change were previously republicans had been much more in favor of racial equality and the democrats also sort of took on that mantle. >> returning to the court packing plant, charles evan hughes was how involved in
9:08 pm
lobbying or setting the stage for it being debated? >> there was as i understand the store, it was something that justice rand that was very much in favor of and suggested. the chief justice was direct in the sense school said he brought to bear in investigating gas companies back in the day. he looked at the court's docket. as chief justice roberts indicated, he took a part a neutral case for what fdr was proposing and really laid bare a more obvious motivation. >> help, and into the's relationship between the court and the legislature --
9:09 pm
>> it does happen. i don't know if this was the practice back in the day. has become the practice that basically every year there is essentially a state of the judiciary letter that the chief justice sent over to congress. sometimes it can be pointed. for a number of years, they both made a point of explaining that they were less than happy with the current state of judicial pay. there continues to be these kinds of issues between and among the branches. i also think the way the chief justice and did -- kendall the court packing scheme probably took it off the table as a realistic option going forward. >> i just wanted to also add two things. some people may criticize hughes at the time. one part of his letter which was
9:10 pm
also consulted, what part of the letter said hearing the panel system would not be constitutional. it seems like an advisory opinion. hughes had condemned other justices were trying to produce advisory opinions. >> next call from missouri. >> thank you for taking my call. this is kind of a follow up to the cornell professor comment aligned himself more with the four horsemen who were the conservative wing of the court. and after the court packing plant,roberts was part of the 9.
9:11 pm
from what i read,roberts would never admit that. do either one of you know if he did changes voting patterns? the only person who knows for sure is justice roberts. i think this is one of the reasons from an academic standpoint why court packing is so interesting. there are a lot of competing theories that are supported at a detailed level. we don't really know for sure. i think it is fair that if you look atkins justice roberts' putting record, there does seem to be a force in the road by ago in a different direction. >> he did definitely protests that he was not influenced by
9:12 pm
politics at all, but it is hard to believe that. >> we talked about the fact that this court opened in 1935 -- is a beautiful building. he spent a lot of time in that courtroom. is the court room he operated in as chief justice the same today? >> there are some minor differences. there are changes to the size and shape of the benz from time to time over the time. >> we also have a historic photograph from the supreme court historical society. it was somewhat illicitly taken. it is a photograph from inside the quarter while the court is in session with chief justice hughes presiding. as we are looking at that, you do not see that very often. while we are talking about that, we did not mention it in his
9:13 pm
biography, and between his first and second service on the court, he was a private practice lawyer much sought after. he argued 50 cases before the court. having had that experience, what were his arguments like in court? >> i think it is a really good point. it is something very similar to the situation we have now with chief justice roberts. we have somebody in him who argued nearly 40 cases when he was -- before he came onto the bench. had himustice hughes beat. i think that was part of the point that was made about the sacrifices he made for public service. he comes to the court as somebody who bought only has appreciation for the job of the court because he has previously served, but he has some sympathy and understanding as the role of counsel as well. i think he is somebody who was
9:14 pm
willing to ask questions of counsel and also had a real appreciation that kelso had prepared for the argument. they have points that wanted to make. he was ready and willing to listen to council. >> this is 10 from pittsburgh. >> i have a question about the circumstances of justice hughes ascending to the court as chief justice in 1930. i don't know if this story is true so i hope your guests can confirm it. the conventional wisdom after taft had died is that hughes would not agree to serve as chief justice because doing so would mean that his son would have to resign as solicitor general. charlesbody's surprise, evan hughes sr. decided to take
9:15 pm
his job and the sun had to be solicitor general. >> i have heard the story. i do not know whether it is true. i heard different versions of the story. he may have a perspective as to the truth of that. i will say this. i think if somebody -- if the president really thought that charles evan hughes would not take the job and was not interested in being a chief justice, that seems like a naive assumption. hughes had an interest in the job going way back. when he was first put on record as an associate justice, he was appointed with an understanding that he may be elevated very early when there was an opening at that point. he was passed over for chief justice white. president taft was the one who
9:16 pm
passed him over. i definitely heard the story. it certainly had to be a difficult moment around the family at dinner table since there is no question that chief justice hughes accepting the job meant his son would have to give up the solicitor general job. i do think it is a little naive to think he was going to turn it down. >> i think some people did think so at the time, but they were probably misled. just one more addendum about the fact that he may have had at versions to the job earlier, there was some possibility that he would be appointed rather than associate justice when he was first appointed to the court. and being passed over i have been one of the reasons he was more willing to take the
9:17 pm
presidential nomination and not. he ultimately aspire to the chief justiceship. >> one thing i wanted to talk about is, i have a problem with the justice is staying on until they are 80, 90 years old. they don't have a lot in common with the people. they still have the same beliefs than what everybody else has in this country. we ought to be able to vote them in. it might be a little more fair
9:18 pm
than the way they are in now. they would be more a part of this country. it is like they are god's or something now. >> thank you for your question. he talks about supreme court justice is not knowing much about the rest of us in society. >> i think this is part of what motivated fdr's court packing plant. part of what he was saying is the older justices had antiquated notions about society that needed to be superseded and that they were two out of touch. i think that is why all of the justices took offense at his plan. >> i think that is right. there have been ideas that maybe we should need term limits, a retirement age, some way of making the justices more responsive were you there limiting the length of which they serve. these are topics that hughes
9:19 pm
addresses in his book of the supreme court. he is certainly confident that there can be a difficulty. sometimes just to stay on longer than they should. the current system we have is the best system we can have. that is especially when it comes to indicating individual rights, it is a virtue and not a device that justices are removed from everyday politics. >> there are two very large conference rooms used often for public events. there are portraits of each of the chief justices who have served. we are going to show you the portrait of charles evan hughes that is here inside the court. as we look at that, i would like you, bernadette meyler, to talk about the opinions he offered. >> he did author a number of opinions.
9:20 pm
one opinion he is significant and i think this not discuss this bailey vs. alabama. this is an opinion he issued early on when he was associate justice. it involved in striking down a peonage lot. even though slavery had been abolished, under the 37 that it was not clear whether there could be labor in compensation to debt. he struck down a lot that had allowed for peonage and said it was not relevant that the party involved was african american but nobody should be subjected to the requirement of labor for debt. he had an output -- he had a lot of important decisions he offered -- he authored during his time of chief justice. among them were decisions on
9:21 pm
both sides of the spectrum in terms of striking down economic legislation. one case that was crucial because it signaled his willingness to understand the flexibility that was required by economic legislation early on in his term was the case of home building and loan association. this was a case involving a minnesota mortgage moratorium act. basically, the claim was this violated the state's wisconsin military not to impair the liability of the contract. chief justice hughes said in this case that basically contracts had to be understood within the context of the public interest. one of the things he kept coming back to was the way in which individual rights had to be maintained. that had to be in the context of
9:22 pm
the protection of the public interest. >> do you have anything you would like to add? >> i think those are great opinions to highlight. the great thing is, he was the chief justice for a number of years. he wrote more than his fair share of the opinions. they are a opinions we can point to. those are the ones that are pivot points for the switch in time. those are very important opinions. i also think there are some of what i would describe a civil liberty opinions he wrote. it is now hard to imagine the supreme court of the united states without the first amendment. it is an important a part of their daughter can't. --of their dockett.
9:23 pm
there is another case that recognizes the freedom of assembly and problems with laws that try to target people for being members of unpopular groups. the court has waxed and waned. in many respects, the decision he wrote was the head of its time. >> hi. i would like to ask your panel, with both charles evan hughes and fdr being a part of the aristocratic elite, both were progressive governors, one with the judicial route and one what the highest elected office, what kind of report was there between them? i was also wondering if there is any evidence of any cordiality or was fdr regarded by hughes as a traitor to his class?
9:24 pm
also, i was thinking of this while i was listening to your discussion, was there a point in which hughes realize that even though he was an elected governor, he realized his aristocratic background that he could not aspire to running for president even though he wanted to be president. i am thinking of the last viceroy of india who had the ability, but because he was from the aristocratic class he had no point -- he had no chance. >> certainly, hughes swore in fdr on several occasions. i think the court packing scheme and the various tensions over
9:25 pm
the relations between the court and president at that point in time did not really lead to a very amicable friendship between the two men. also, hughes was somewhat reserved in terms of social life in washington, d.c. he and his wife would only attend a dinner party on saturday night because he felt it would contravene his austere mode of preparing for judicial practice if he actually went out any other time. he was not as much of a figure in the washington social scene as one might imagine. >> the only thing i would add, he really was not from quite the same aristocratic roots as roosevelt's. his up -- was exceptional from an education standpoint. his parents were a remarkable individuals. i don't think it was a use of great luxury or wealth. i think most of the wealthy accomplished over his career accumulated through his own law
9:26 pm
practice and endeavors. i do think there were differences personality wise and background wise as well. >> the next call is from stockton, california. >> my question was, he said that supreme court justice hughes -- was he still the chief justice in 1948 or did he retire before his death which would have made him around 85 years old at the time? >> thank you very much. when did he retire from the court? >> 1941. >> exactly. he stepped down when he still had a few years left. i think that was probably something that was not unintentional. he had done his time on the court. he had seen some justices get to the end of their time and have
9:27 pm
difficulty issues on where they should leave. when he came back to the court even though he had been away for 20 years, justice holmes was still on the bedspread one of the things he had to do was deliver the news to justice holmes that his colleagues on the court had decided that it might be time for him to move on. i think that was one of the most difficult things he probably had to do as chief justice, especially because of the closeness between the two men. i am sure it was one of the most difficult both -- difficult things chiefs panettjustice hol. >> i think thatbrandeis rejected
9:28 pm
a lot of hughes' philosophy and was much more liberal. he respected him as an intellect. this goes back to racing meet, along a lot. >> i need to ask you, you have described his formidable intellect. if you could time travel, would you want to argue a case in front of his court? >> i think it would be fascinating. some of the other justices on the court or kind of difficult personalities from the bench. i am not sure it would be all roses. i think it would be a remarkable experience. obviously, you are talking about not just the opportunity to argue in front of chief justice hughes, but also justice brandeis, some rail lines of
9:29 pm
intellect. >> today there are about 8000 petitions to be heard. they hear about one out of 100. what was the workload of the court back then? >> it was not that many more cases they were hearing, but the petitions were much lower. when roosevelt proposed the court packing scheme, there were only 100 something that had been granted. i think that was one of his grounds for complaint against the course they did not have enough energy to hear cases. we have a much greater proportion between cases where there are petitions and granted. >> arguments are generally one hour today. what were they at the time? >> i think there were typically more constrained. in the early days, arguments would go on for days. i also think just to follow up
9:30 pm
on the very good point that was made, i think one of the stories is that more of their documents have become -- more of their dockets have become discretionary. one of the things chief justice hughes did was move the court into the direction of having greater discretion. that was a potential controversy that they were expressing discretion to not hear some cases. these days it seems quite. >> we have half an hour left to go in our two our look of "the contenders." it was a close election against woodrow wilson who was vying for his second term. then charles evan hughes went on to serve as chief justice in his second term on the supreme court. he was very much the center of
9:31 pm
restoring fdr policy court packing scheme. >> i hope you have a happy and healthy baby. i try to catch the show every friday night. my question is -- justice used sounds like a man that was for progress in. i hear you talking about how he wanted the blacks to step forward. but what you think about women stepping forward and them being on the court now. what he was think about the wrongdoings that are going on the court today. >> i think that it's a really interesting question about his attitude toward women. we heard earlier he was in question -- we heard earlier he was in favor of women's suffrage. i think he was somewhat ambiguous. he was an advocate for a lot more progressive legislation that he was later. some have argued he had a turn
9:32 pm
more toward the right leader in his career. among legislation he was interested in -- interested in at the time was to protect women and children laborers. even in his later time on the court and as chief justice, in a sense he used some what about protecting women against unfair labor practices. not just protecting any labor, but women might need special protection. on the one hand, he was in favor of allowing women more autonomy. on the other hand, he also had a paternalistic view point. >> columbia, tennessee. >> thank you for a wonderful program. i'd like to know the opinion from your panel as to what you believe charles evans hughes
9:33 pm
might make politically and judicially of what is going on and wall street right now? >> can you project? >> everybody has their own a perspective on what is going on at wall street. i do think charles evan hughes was in some respects one of the great early reformers. if you think about the trajectory of his career, he did not seek out public service for sort of his own sake or something he really wanted elective office. he came to public service through his law practice and through an opportunity to investigate industries where there was a lot of corruption. i think this is something that was a hallmark of his career. even in his presidential run, it is consistent with the idea that he was not necessarily the world was the best back flapper or do how to build alliances with people. i think he was very focused on getting rid of corruption.
9:34 pm
he did not care if a few sacred cows get slaughtered in the process. >> you mention his was one of the first controversial appointments of chief justice. i read as far as the two sides were concerned he would be too pro-business. >> this is a somewhat paradoxical concern. given his earlier term on the court and also his time as governor, he was very reform minded. i think of him sometimes as combining teddy roosevelt's reform-minded this as woodrow wilson's internationalism. people were very concerned that his time as a private attorney and time in private practice have led him into pro-business alliances that would make cam exposed to regulate companies anymore. i think the main issue was the time he had spent in private
9:35 pm
practice. i think that concern was not really warranted given his earlier career. >> we will take a call from toledo and that we have a clip about charles evan hughes and race. >> thank you for taking my call. this particular question is probably directed toward paul clement. sir, how you feel mr. hughes would have responded to unelected officials on an international scale, being able to dictate international law as opposed to an elected official who would use the congress to pass particular laws? >> thank you. >> that is a great question. i think chief justice use would have had the ones to use and not
9:36 pm
something where he would say, you know, he would be hostile to the international organizations. this is somebody who came to the chief justiceship after serving on the international court. he has been sort of an internationalist. in his writings, he has been less critical of the idea that international law is our law. in this book, he specifically says international law is our law. on the other hand, i think he would ultimately save our own elected officials have the ultimate say over what the scope of our law is. i think he would have a view that congress had a wide scope to embrace international law principles but congress wanted to say that principles of international law did not apply to the united states and that would be the last word. >> i think that is exactly right. he says congress has the last word. international law can fill in
9:37 pm
gaps in certain respects. i also think he was a head of his time in promoting u.s. involvement in the court of international justice. he was not only a judge on that court, but also he advocated the u.s. adopting jurisdiction of the permanent court. >> we have had a few callers who have asked about charles evan hughes and race. we are going to return to his law firm still existing in new york city for a story from his autobiography. >> in the charles evan hughes conference center, we try to select things that would reflect important stages of his life. we have collected a number of things including original books that charles evan hughes author. most notably is the autobiography that we find interesting. my favorite story in here is one that justice hughes tells. a visit when he was the
9:38 pm
president of the baptists society in new york city. he asked to booker t. washington to come and speak to the assembly. when booker t. washington and his wife arrived, justice hughes escorted him to his own table and sat in there. at that time, that was a controversial thing to do. justice hughes took advantage of that to speak about the importance of diversity and tolerance. he was very disappointed that a group of religious people themselves would be intolerant to having booker t. washington at their table. >> we have about 22 minutes left talking about charles evan hughes. we have brought back one of our first guest who is joining us on the plaza of the supreme court. david pietrusza, one aspect we have not spent much time on his
9:39 pm
his chair as secretary of state in his pivotal one post world war i years. would you tell us about what contributions he made in that role? >> he is regarded as not only one of the great chief justices, he is regarded as one of the great secretary of state. he is regarded as one of the top three. what he does is he inherits a great mess because of the failure of the league of nations, he was for the league of it -- he was for the league of nations, for the united states of america that entered the league, but he was not about to see sovereignty to the league of nations. article 10 said the united states would go to war if we were going to defend boundaries
9:40 pm
of the mass in europe. he thought that the league could be fixed. he planned to submit a clean-air bill treaty which could get through the senate when he became secretary of state. that was impossible. warren harding saw this a little quicker than he did. hughes recognize the truth that it was really a fool's errand to go back there. he moved on from there. he stayed. he talked about resigning. he pioneers and international disarmament in a groundbreaking navy treaty which casts the ratio of 10-10-6. he scrapped and lot of heavy battleships. this is a good deal for the united states because with our congress, we were not about to spend the money on the military. we would have lost ground to japan in that decade.
9:41 pm
he also moves on to other treaties in the far east. he gets japan to give back to china which was a major accomplishment. going into that decade, the united kingdom, britain, was united in treaty -- if they were attacked or the other party was attacked, they would go to war. the other party was japan. it was a fear that if we got embroiled in a controversy with japan, we might have to go to war with britain on that. he broke that treaty very smoothly. one thing he was not successful at was the emigration treaty with japan which was in the 1924 and was the japanese exclusion act. he tried quite hard. he was not able to do that. the senate was a great problem to him.
9:42 pm
it would be a tossup between that and france. >> this is charlie. >> what a wonderful series and thank goodness for c-span. who was the person in the 1916 election on the republican side that ran against hughes? i had heard that if the other person had been the nominee, they would have beaten. >> the contenders that year were senator fairbanks who had been a vice president under roosevelt, senator burton of ohio, the conservative candidate -- i would hesitate to say that any number -- any one of those would have run a better race than hughes.
9:43 pm
i think the deck was stacked -- it was close. if you change any one thing, maybe you do not have a railroad strike that impacted the voting in ohio. you just don't know. i don't know if you could say that anyone stronger candidate. if he had been so strong, he would have won the nomination. >> for all three of our guests, we will go one at a time. it is time to wrap this conversation up and think about charles evan hughes' legacy. how the world might have been different if he had not been here. i am going to take a call, and then i will start with you so i will give you a chance to think about that. >> good evening. i would like to ask the panelists to please explain why the hughes decided to disregard
9:44 pm
the judicial precedents, particularly the ruling in schechter and carter in order to recognize a fundamental right to organize unions and labor relations. could you please harmonize justice hughes'judicial reasoning? >> i will give it a try. there is a way to reconcile those feelings. another caller pointed out earlier. it is easy to think about decisions as the same as being5- 4 one way and then 4-5 the other. it is much more complicated than that. every member of the court said there was something wrong with the statue of there. and it leaves lawyers
9:45 pm
scratching their head. it is the first call the non delegation doctrine. from time to time, lawyers for to fit cases into the not delegation doctrine. that was really eight different doctrine that was at issue when the wagner act comes before the court. i think what is precedent setting and does break from the prior decisions in that decision is really the court in the previous decisions had distinguished commerce from production or other forms of economic -- economic activity. it is something that really bedeviled the court. these are really difficult distinctions to drop. if you look at 1957 commerce clause, it is this categorical approach that required some very thin and difficult distinctions. i do think in that sense, those decisions were not so
9:46 pm
satisfying that they were decisions that were not that easy. i think the court essentially and ultimately became persuaded that looking at the commerce clause would not work. >> i think the most important part of hughes'legacy is that basically the hughes courts created the modern commerce power allowing for the commerce power to be construed broadly. so much of the regulatory system that we are under right now or that we can enjoy really derived from congress's power under the commerce clause. i think that is one of the things that hughes shepherded into court during a difficult time and allow for this outcome to the marriage --
9:47 pm
>> hello, charles. >> i want to thank you for your record of public service. the question i wanted to ask was about chief justice hughes attitude about oral argument. he believed it should be how it is today where they are largely focused on questions or did he have another attitude toward that? >> he had a more balanced use of oral argument, i think. he understood both the virtues of asking questions and also the virtues of having lawyers have been of -- ample opportunity to explain positions. in a sense we have moved to a different place hysterically or supreme court arguments is dominated by the questions. at that time, justices and in his book, it is almost like they felt the need to explain why it was appropriate for them to ask questions at all. some lawyers had the idea that
9:48 pm
oral argument was their time. i think he was of the view that it was important for the justices to have an opportunity to ask questions and it was good for the lawyer to have an understanding of what was bothering the justices about their side of the case. >> friend from washington, d.c. welcome to our discussion. >> my question is -- i would like to know if any of the members of the panel can make a comment about the justice's view of that time between church and state court at that time any of their colleagues, what was their view? >> this was a moment in time when the notion of a wall of
9:49 pm
separation was coming inmuch moe prevalent. the hughes courts look at religion more generally. the establishment clause of the first amendment was inc. against the state to the due process called the 14th amendment. there were held to apply it from state to state action. that allowed for a lot more suits based on violation of religious liberty than previously heard it. >> how about if you take the question about it hughes' legacy? >> i think it is important of how he stopped the court packing scheme, how the regulatory nature of decisions changed. how the but the republican party back together again. i think his legacy is one of
9:50 pm
service. if he is a man at one time after and after a gain he leaves his normal state of life to serve the country and it does it with remarkable intelligence and integrity. at a time with so much fractured his and our nation, i think it is good to look back on positive examples and to take hope from them. but i read from one biographer who said he has a constant tug between the legal and political spheres. did you have the same sense with him? >> yes. i think after he left the secretary of stateship, i think someone said he was our first citizens. i think that is a wonderful thing to say and something true to say about him. again, he made some amazing sacrifices. when he left the state department, he was able to make
9:51 pm
a peak of $400,000 a year. chauncy had prior to that were in the range of $12,000. part of him leaving was that he knew he had to take care of his family. in between all of those times and even when he was off the court, if you take a look at all the organizations he was involved in including the foundation of the national conference of christians and jews to advocate tolerance in the mid 1920's, a time when it was often in short supply, the man was a powerhouse, tireless whether he was in public service officially or not. he was always doing the public's work. >> we have 10 minutes left and our program. we have time for a couple more calls. the me ask this in question of you. >> i would say there are two aspects of it. i am approaching get more from the legal perspective. what has already been touched
9:52 pm
on is the commerce clause jurisprudence. i think what makes that legacy so interesting is we are still dealing with this issue. chief justice rejected hughes the categorical approach which even he was very quick to add that the commerce clause was not unlimited. it was a limited power, the framers had enumerated the various powers in the, s -- the constitution and none of them gave the government's absolute power. he played out the basic framework we are wrestling with and we still have this idea that the commerce clause is broad but it is not unlimited. where the limits are is something we continue to struggle with. the other thing i would really emphasize is the legacy of judicial independence. i do think that the court packing idea was probably the single greatest challenge to judicial independence, at least
9:53 pm
in the 20th century. i think the way he fought that off is something -- i don't think we will ever see another court packing effort. i think that is a great legacy. i would add in her book about the supreme court, he addressed what were the three worst supreme court decisions that the court had made up to that point. one of was a decision called the legal tender -- the legal tender decision. it was for the court first struck down a statue and after changing its membership and it up upholding the statute. he said it was the core's fault for the way they handled it. he pointed out it was not president's grants faults. he uses the word court packing. he said nobody could accuse grant of packing the court. this was something that was in the back of his mind before he was a chief justice. he sees the threat to the courts and defense it off. i think that is a very worthy
9:54 pm
legacy. >> hi greg, you are on. >> when this chief justice hughes get done been on the court? >> 1941. >> was he the chief justice when komatsu vs come asa was written? >> no, he was not. "i was just curious. >> he was off the court at that point. >> how do you explain about his final years? he resigned from the court as we just said in 1941 and lives the next five or six years and it dies at the age of 86. what were his final years like? >> he is very old when he goes on to the court and very old when he gets off. two years before he gets off the court he gets a real scare.
9:55 pm
it is almost like a stroke. he recovers. when he leaves the court he is fairly vigorous. what does happen, he returns to new york. his children are up there. he remains in washington, d.c. his marriage was really a close one and very wonderful. at this point, he decided he would make up for lost time. she takes still fairly quickly. i think by the end of the war she has passed away. it is a very tragic time for him. it is one of the very few times it is recorded that he has lost control of his emotions. it is so painful for him. his health continues fairly strongly until 1948. he goes up to, i believe, cape cod. there he takes a sudden turn for
9:56 pm
the worse. he passes away. he had a fear to not be like justice cardoso had been helpless toward the end of his life. his wish was granted. he passed away with all the dignity which he had lived. >> we have about four minutes left. we have a clip of him swearing in franklin delano roosevelt. >> do you solemnly swear to faithfully execute the office of president of the united states to the best of your ability to serve, protect, and defend the constitution of the united states so help you god? >> i franklin delano roosevelt
9:57 pm
do solemnly swear that i will faithfully execute the office of president of the united states. i will to the best of my ability preserve, protect, and defend the constitution of the united states and so help me god. >> charles evan hughes swearing in franklin delano roosevelt. his legacy, especially during the court packing era, is something we have discussed. i want to go back and talk about the 1916 election. if he had one that and woodrow wilson had not won a second term, how would the world have been different? >> that is a very consequential question.
9:58 pm
it is hard to reconstruct how it would have been so different in some critical factor had not taken place. wilson was a president to lead us into the entry into world war i and move us forward. i think he is somebody that history regards very well. understanding the character of the person that charles evan hughes was, it is hard for me to think we would be poorly served during that critical time by somebody who had done some exceptionally well in such a tight. i think he would be very comfortable in leading us in our foreign affairs. >> what are your thoughts regarding entry into world war i? >> i think the exit from world war i is were the change would have been made. we are talking about the peace process. woodrow wilson boxes that
9:59 pm
tremendously. what i neglected to mention in his post justiceship years is he is called in to consult on the structure for the do you -- the new united nations. he put some things and and makes it far more workable. he is a very practical guide. he has been interested in world justice and rule of law internationally from an early point. if he had proposed a league of nations, there is a good chance it would have been approved by the united states of america. >> other than your own book, what is one of the best books on this era that you can recommend it? >> certainly on hughes, the ii volume biography is a terrific
10:00 pm
book. that is the book if you want to know an awful lot about mr. hughes. >> he brought a book of his letters i understand it? >> it is actually a collection of six different lectures that he gave at columbia university. it is really a unique insight. here is ruminations about the supreme court of the united states from somebody who had been an associate justice and soon would be the chief justice of the united states but is a candid look of what a lawyer thinks about the supreme court. >> highly readable? >> a very highly readable. it is fascinating how contemporary a lot of the discussion is. >> last question for you. when first-year law students come can, what is the one thing you want them to know about it? >> i want them to know about the time and if he had been political or may not have been and what the consequences are. >> i want to say thank you to
10:01 pm
our three guests who have been here tonight on our program. from outside the united states supreme court, we appreciate your time with us as we learned about this. of american history. we are going to close now has restarted with some archival footage from the 1916 campaign. ♪
10:02 pm
>> our live look at the contenders continues next friday. we'll take your calls about the presidential campaign. you can see tonight's program began at 11:00 p.m. eastern time. for more information, go to our web site c-span.org. you can see portions of this -- of their speeches. next, a foreign-policy speech by presidential candidates, mitt romney. after that, presidential
10:03 pm
candidates rick perry. at 11:00, the contenders: contenders to have changed history. -- who have changed history. >> i was paying very close attention to the discussion. i heard a knock on the door. both of them got up and answered the door. it made me feel about 2 feet high. >> retired supreme court justice on his new memoir. sunday night on c-span q and a.
10:04 pm
[applause] >> presidential candidate, mitt romney delivers a foreign-policy address in charleston, south carolina. this is just over 30 minutes. >> i appreciate the welcome of the cadets and friends of the community and the opportunity you have given me to speak on a number of significant items. it is a pleasure to be here in south carolina where patriotism is a passion that tops even football and barbecue. [laughter] [applause] it is a great honor to be here at the citadel. every great university and college produces future engineers, doctors, and lawyers. here at the citadel, you did that, but you have another specialty as well. you produced heroes.
10:05 pm
over 1400 of your alumni have served in iraq and afghanistan and elsewhere in fighting the war against terrorism. 16 have paid the ultimate price. since 1842, every tyrant, every petty thugs for great power that affected america learned that if they wanted to take on america, they would have to take on the citadel as well. that is a line of heroes that has never been broken it and never will be. [applause] this is a to citadel of american honor, the use, and courage. the other day i heard president obama say that americans have gone soft. i guess he was not talking about how hard it was for millions of americans who were trying to get a job.
10:06 pm
as each of you looks beyond this institution to the left before you, i know you face many difficult questions in a world that is full of uncertainty. america is in an economic crisis the likes of which we have never seen in our lifetime. europe is struggling with the greatest economic crisis since the cold war. it calls into definition the very definition of the european union. our next president will face extraordinary challenges that could alter the destiny of americans. today i want you to join me in looking forward beyond to 40 years from today, october 7, 2015. what kind of world will reid -- what kind of world will we be
10:07 pm
facing today? a nuclear ironic is an existential threat to israel. the-a nuclear -- a nuclear iran is an existential threat to israel. will israel have been forced to fight it war to protect its citizens and is very right to exist? in afghanistan after the u.s. and nato have withdrawn forces, with the taliban find a path back to power after over a decade of american sacrifice in blood? intothe country sink back
10:08 pm
world for terrorist? next door, pakistan awaits an uncertain future. the danger of a failed pakistan is difficult to overestimate. it is full of nightmare scenarios. will a nuclear weapon in be in the hands of islamic fundamentalists? china has made it clear that it intends to be in military and economic superpower. will their rulers lead the people to a new era of freedom and prosperity? or will they go down a dark path intimidating their neighbors, brushing aside an inferior american navy in the pacific and building a global alliance of authoritarian states? russia is at a historic crossroads. the brick of the soviet empire is called the great tragedy of the 20th century. will he try to reverse that?
10:09 pm
to our south, with castro's cuba undermine the prospects of democracy in the region thirsting for freedom and stability and prosperity? our border with mexico remains an open sore. will drug cartels dominate the regions that adjoining to united states and spilling into our country? it will be have failed to secure the border? will terrorist increasingly make their way into our midst? this will be a troubling and threatening world for america, but it is not unrealistic. these are only some of the very real dangers that america faces. if continue the policies of the
10:10 pm
past three years. it does not have to be this way. this is not our destiny. it is a choice for democracy. you decide. in this campaign for the presidency of the united states, i will offer a a very different vision of america's role in the world and of america's destiny. our next president is going to these many difficult decisions. few of them will be black and white. i am sure today to tell you that i am guided by one overwhelming passion -- this century must be an american century. [applause] in an american century, america
10:11 pm
has the strongest economy and the strongest military in the world. in america century, america leads the world and the free world lead the entire world. god did not created this country to be a nation of followers. america is not destined to be one of several equally balanced powers. america must lead the world or someone else will. without american leadership, without clarity of american purpose and result, the world becomes a far more dangerous place and the liberty and prosperity would be among the the first casualties. let me make this clear. as president of the united states, i will devote myself to an american century and i will never apologize for america. [applause]
10:12 pm
some ask, why america? why should america be any different than other countries? i believe we are an exceptional country with a unique and destiny and roll onto the world. -- role in the world. to president obama, there is nothing unique about the west but we are exceptional. in our fundamental documents, we are a people who threw off the yoke of tyranny and established
10:13 pm
a government of the people, for the people, and by the people. we are a people who hold certain truths to be self-evident. mainly that all men are created by their creator with certain unalienable rights. it is our beliefs in the universality of these unalienable rights that lead us to our exceptional role in the world stage. we are the champion of human dignity and freedom. we love the principles of america's founding. abbas port in 1947, classic baby boomer -- i was born in 1947, classic baby boomer. communism was a problem back then. we learned how to duck and cover in schools.
10:14 pm
we need its by place to find a little -- kitten missile bases in cuba. -- wheat needed -- we needed spy plaes to find hidden missile bases in cuba. today, our world is far more chaotic. we still face great threats, but they did not come from one country, when ideology, or one group. the world does not defined like that. what we are facing is a series of forces, one that overlaps and reinforce one another. to defend america and to secure a peaceful world, we need to clearly understand these emerging threats. me to grasp the complexity and formerly a strategy that it deals with them before they explode into conflict.
10:15 pm
it is far too easy for a president to jump from crisis to crisis. but to do so is to be shaped by events rather than to shape events. to avoid this paralyzing seduction of action rather than progress, a president must have a broad vision of the entire world coupled with clarity and purpose. when i look around the world, i see a major and full of forces to help shape the world. they are determined, powerful forces that may threaten freedom, prosperity, and america's natural -- natural -- national interest. september 11, the struggle in the middle east for those who seek freedom and those who seek
10:16 pm
to crush it. the anti-american regimes iran -- in iran. these forces include rising nations with hidden and emerging aspirations, like china, determined to be a world superpower. there is no one approach to these challenges. there is no wall that it president candy man to be torn down. -- can demand to be torn down. when america is strong, the world is safer. president reagan called this peace through strength and he was never more right than he is today. it is only america power to see
10:17 pm
it on to the broadest terms that can provide the foundation for an international system that ensures the security and prosperity of the u.s. and our friends and allies around the world. american strength rises from a strong economy. it arises from a strong defense and the enduring strength of our strong values. [applause] unfortunately under this president, all three of those elements have been weakened. as president on b-1, i will focus on rebuilding america's economy. i will reverse president obama's massive defense cuts. time and again we have found that tends to balance the budget by weakening our military only lead to a far higher price on to
10:18 pm
the future modeling in treasure, but also in blood. the strategy of american strength is guided by a set of core principles. first, american foreign policy must be prosecuted with clarity and a result. our friends and allies must have no doubt about where we stand and neither should our rivals. if the world knows we are resolute, our allies will be comforted, and those who wish as harm will be far less tempted to test that result. second, america must promote open markets, represent governments, and respect for human rights. the path from authoritarian to is some -- history teaches us that nations that share our bodies will be reliable partners and stand with us in the pursuit of common security and shared prosperity. third, the united states will
10:19 pm
apply the full spectrum of hard and soft power to influence events before they erupt into conflict. resort to force is is the least desirable and costliest option. we must employ all the tools to shape the outcome of threatening situations before they demand military action. the u.s. must always retain a military supremacy to deter possible aggressors to defend ourselves and our allies. [applause] if america is the undisputed leader of the world, it reduces our need to police a more chaotic world. fourth, the u.s. must exercise leadership on multilevel
10:20 pm
organizations and our alliances. american leadership lends credibility and breeds faith in the ultimate success of any action. it tracks full participation from other nations. american leadership will also achieve goals of democracy and human rights enshrined in the charter. the u.s. must fight to return these bodies to their proper role. while america should work with other nations, we always reserve the right to act alone to protect our vital national interest. [applause]
10:21 pm
in my first 100 days in office, i will take a series of measures to put these principles into action. i will place america and the world on safer footing. among these actions, will be an effort to restore america's national defense. i will reverse the herring of our navy and announce an initiative to increase the ship building rate from 9 per year to 15 ships per year. [applause] i will begin reversing obama cuts to missile defense and prioritize the full deployment of the multilayered national missile defense system and i will order the formulation of the national cyber security strategy to deter the growing
10:22 pm
threat of militarized cyber attacks. [applause] i will enhance our deterrent against the iranian regime by ordering the regular presence of aircraft carrier task forces, one in that east mediterranean and one in the gulf region. i will reiterate that i ran to obtaining a nuclear weapon is unacceptable. -- iran obtain a nuclear weapon is unacceptable. [applause] i will begin organizing all of our diplomatic and assistance efforts in the greater middle east under one official, with
10:23 pm
the authority and accountability necessary to train all of our resources to ensure that the arabs spring will not fade into a long winter. i will launch a campaign to advance economic opportunities in latin america. i will order a full review of our transition to the afghan military to make sure they are safe from the tyranny of the taliban. the force level necessary to secure our gains and complete our mission successfully is a decision i will make free from politics. [applause] i will bolster and prepared
10:24 pm
alliances. our friend should never fear that we will not stand by them in their hour of need. i will reaffirm as a vital, national interest israel's existence as a jewish state. i will count our special relationship with the u.k. as dear. [applause] this is america's moment. we should embrace the challenge and did not shrink from it. we should not call into an isolated cell. but not with the white flag of surrender. -- we should not wave the white flag of surrender. i will not surrender america's
10:25 pm
role in the world. this is very simple. if you did not want america to be the strongest nation on earth, i am not your president. you'll have that president today. [laughter] [applause] the 21st century can and must be in an american century. it began with terror, war, economic calamity. it is our duty to move it down the path of freedom, peace, and prosperity. my hope is that our grandchildren will remember us onto the same way that we remember past generations of americans who overcame
10:26 pm
adversity. generation that fought in world wars and came through the great depression and gained a victory in the cold war. let future generations look back on us and say, they rose up to the patient. to increase their duty. they lead our nation to safety. -- they rose to their duty. nation to tour safety. they must carry on the torch. it is an internal port of decency, freedom, and hope. it is america's duty and honor to hold the torch high enough so all the world can see its light.
10:27 pm
believe in america. thank you. god bless this land. [cheers and applause] you want a picture of me with the cadets? that sounds great. [laughter] where do you want me?
10:28 pm
♪ ["anchors aweigh" playing]
10:29 pm
>> republican candidate, michele bachmann takes part in a town bachmann takes part in a town hall meeting

117 Views

info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on