tv Washington Journal CSPAN April 10, 2012 7:00am-10:00am EDT
host: welcome to "washington journal." send us an e-mail, or go to twitter. on the domestic front. here's the "washington times" with the headline. obama presses g.o.p. to ok the buffett rule. the white house and the team launched a simultaneous offensive to pressure senators to pressure the buffett rule. the white house spokesman said yesterday this procedural vote is scheduled for april 16. he added the measure has broad support across the country. the legislation when imposed a
minimum 30% tax on wealthier americans. mr. obama is scheduled to give a speech calling out congress to approve the measure. joe biden will make another pitch for the bill thursday during a campaign stop in new hampshire. the white house is targeting g.o.p. senators in florida, ohio, missouri, pennsylvania, iowa, north carolina, and nevada. all swing states as well as tennessee, arkansas, maine, and indiana. 13 of whom co-sponsored the bill give a little chance to end the debate. democrats relish the prospects of putting g.o.p. senators such as scott brown on the record on the subject. the "washington times" saying this morning that although the president portrays the tax increases as a necessary ingredient, it would raise an estimated $47 billion over the
next decade. less than 1% in deficits projected under mr. obama's own budget forecast. and then also on the campaign front this morning, here's "the washington post" out with a new poll in a hypothetical matchup between the president and the former massachusetts governor mitt romney. a new "washington post" "abc news" poll shows president obama holds an edge over likely republican presidential nominee mitt romney on personal attributes and various key issue. but the president remains vulnerable with the pace of the economic recovery on the two most pressing issues of the race. the economy and jobs. the contest is more competitive. latest poll this morning in "the washington post." and then santorum, the former pennsylvania senator is back on the campaign trail after he took a break due to his daughter's hospitalization. and it says that he will be out on the campaign trail today,
tuesday, in his home state of pennsylvania. also this morning, it says in the papers that president obama is in a tough spot on the issue of gay marriage. in a gay marriage opinion poll, he faces pressure to declare support for gay marriage. more people think it should be legal. march 2010, 52% said it should be legal compared to 43% who said illegal. this is "the washington post" "abc news" poll conducting march 7 kim, you're up. guest: i have two comments. -- caller: good morning. i have two comments.
how it -- is it humanly possible for the conservatives, christian to entertain putting a mormon in the white house? i want them to bear in mind this question. what god will he be putting to? the one that he was able to do 14 steps to become a god? i think that's part of their ritual. also, could you guys have something on regarding that -- that's become unknown that alec organization? thank you. bye-bye. host: all right, kim, and by the way, a program note for you and others. we are going to be talking about social conservative issues, religion, coming up next with dr. richard land in about 40 minutes. let's go to chris, democratic caller in atlanta, georgia. good morning, chris. caller: yes. i just wanted to talk about how you read that obama is in trouble for that poll on gay
marriage as, you know, most americans are coming along and they're ok with gay marriage? it seems to me that ballgames closer to them than the g.o.p. some why wouldn't the headline be, you know, tough fight for g.o.p. as opposed to president obama? this is what i talk about when i talk about c-span being a right-wing g.o.p. political arm. you do "washington times," "washington post," washington journal. -- "washington journal." host: and the washington -- >> mostly are conservative and their headline news, you to do the headlines are misleading. host: chris, we do the "washington post" through the "new york times." we do a lot of papers here. the "boston globe," "pittsburgh post gazette." we don't write the headlines. we're just letting you know what people here in washington are reading and what the headlines are.
that headline actually the one that you referenced is the "baltimore sun" this morning and it says backers urged obama to support plank and democratic platform. so supporters of gay marriage want president obama to include this into the democratic platform. st. paul, minnesota, ray, republican, good morning. caller: good morning. concerning romney, he's saying he's conservative, but he's not because of the fact that he's not a christian, he's a mormon. mormons go by the book of mormons. and christians follow the teachings of christ, which is opposite of what the mormons believe. host: so ray, is this enough of an issue that you will not vote for mitt romney if he becomes a nominee? caller: well, that and the fact that i'm christian and i don't believe in abortion.
he's pro abortion. host: all right so you don't trust mitt romney on social conservative issues? caller: that's correct. i do not believe that he's -- he's moderate also, and moderates as you know, can turn around and change. host: ray, are you still there? caller: yes. host: yeah. is rick santorum your candidate? caller: yes, he is. i don't see how romney -- they already have him as a nom nittany when -- [inaudible] host: all right. ray, we'll leave it there and move on to dolores. she's in tennessee. go ahead, dolores. caller: good morning. host: good morning. what's on your mind this morning? caller: i was calling to talk about the g.o.p. and the negative ads that those rich men are -- they could put all the money they want out there.
but when people was looking at just going on in their lives. they want to control the women's reproductive organs. they don't want to help people get jobs. they can bring these factors back but they want to destroy obama. they're not thinking about the working class people. they're not think about the poor people. they're taking all that money, the $200 million people can be used to be effective to people. host: you and others might be interested in that poll that i gave you. there's a no-double-digit candidate for either candidates on certain issues. one of them is creating jobs. president obama in this survey gets 46% to mitt romney's 43%. on social issues like abortion,
same-sex marriage, president obama comes in with 46% of those. and he leads over mitt romney's 38%. so no double-digit advantage when it comes down to those issues. and michael girth writes romney's woman problem. and he writes this. the media ever drawn to simple explanations that reinforce their own cultural expectations have diagnosed romney's gender electoral weakness as the result to his mandate. this is both initially plausible and false. more than 60% of american voters don't even know romney's position on the mandate --
host: stamford, connecticut. bud, a republican. we're in open phones this morning. go ahead. caller: ok, thank you, c-span. i'm really against the idea of legalizing gay marriage. first of all, just hijacking the word marriage. marriage has been, you know, a union between a man and a woman for the purpose of having children. so hijacking the word marriage just grips against my brain. what about aids? did that just suddenly go away because all of a sudden now it's going to be socially acceptable so somebody gets elected to the white house or for a second term? i'm just totally against it. host: all right. let me go back to overseas to
for the situation in syria. syrian's foreign minister says the government has withdrawn their forces. we will continue to watch this story. this comes as the headlines in the papers this morning say this. here's the "wall street journal." syria fights bills over borders. shots killed in civilians. today is the deadline, april 10, for that u.n. brokered peace plan, special envoy, kofi annan brokering that with the leader of syria but it looks like according to "wall street journal," the u.s. said it was absolutely outraged by the cross-border attacks. turkey condemned monday's crashes and says tuesday's cease-fire deadline was now void. and also lebanon's prime minister calls for the prosecution of those responsible for the cross-border deaths. and then "the washington post"
and the "new york times" weighing in on the situation in syria. both of them saying that this u.n. brokered peace deal is a failure in syria. a civil war is taking place in syria. mr. obama may figure that by fleeing -- he's avoiding millry san diego. -- military san diego. the "new york times" says president obama's latest bluff saying russia is still supplying syria with arms. other iran states are supplying the opposition with weapons zhefment u.s. is offering non-lethal assistance -- we'll talk again. more about the situation in syria as well as afghanistan
when we go live from the united states institute of peace, located about 20 blocks from where we are up on capitol hill. it is close to the state department and across the river from the pentagon. it's a new permanent home for this quasi federal agency. so we're going to talk about the new building. and what it does on its own, as well as the money that it receives from the federal government. first, we're on open phones. ben in tennessee. good morning. caller: yes. host: yeah, you're on the air. go ahead. caller: ok. dolores, a couple of calls back was talking about obama and the jobs. he is a union president. he turned down jobs for south carolina, tennessee, and the pipeline.
how can we live another four years under president that wouldn't even give the people a raise on the social security yet the senators and the house of representatives, all of those got raises? and the poor people, they didn't even get a raise for three years and only reason they got a raise on their check this year was because it's election year. and now he's got the job bills going. host: all right. earl, democratic caller in st. louis, missouri. you're on the air. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i was listening to the previous program with the latino americans and i want someone to explain to me the difference between an illegal immigrant and an undocumented worker and a hispanic and a latino american. host: all right. caller: what is the difference, please? >> why is this important to you? caller: because we grew up a
certain generation in america and we're seeing a definition of rules change over the past. so if illegal -- illegal is undocumented, someone who's come to the country illegal don't have papers, and what's the difference between a hispanic which most of us consider those from mexico and latino, we normally think about argentina, somewhere like that. host: which party in your opinion is better on this issue of immigration? caller: which party is better? host: uh-uh. caller: on the issue of immigration? i think the democratic as a whole is better but i also understand the republican part -- in many ways, i am conservative. i look at both points of view and they both have certain things going for them. republicans are looking at it as a way of maybe retaining power
in certain areas because latinos or hispanics seem to vote democratic. and the democratic party is looking at it as a way to gain more votes. but i don't think they take into consideration the broader american people's point of view is that at this time in america, illegal immigration with killing jobs. it's a job issue with the majority of americans. it has nothing to do with what country they come from. host: ok. so earl, when you go to the poll on november 2012, where does this issue rank for you in how you're going to vote? caller: when i go to vote in november, i'll vote democratic. host: no matter what? caller: i won't say no matter what because you have to go pretty far to the -- either side to change my point of view. host: all right. caller: on immigration, i'm
about 50/50. because i've seen things happen in the past in america that was pro and some things that were non-pro. i'm either way on that but thank you. host: let's hear from a republican, jimmy, in lavern, minnesota. jimmy, you're on the air. caller: gordon. how are you doing? host: good morning. caller: it's so interesting that people like democrats always complain, they don't have enough money to go around but yet, we won't control all the border. now to central america and mexico. you know what, all them black people just keep on voting for obama and get that obama money and eventually, they can return to slavehood. it's been 40 years since the war on poverty. there's more people on poverty in the black population now percent-wise than there was in 1964 when lyndon johnson was president.
host: all right. front stage of aww "today," birth rate for teens is the lowest in history. the report by the national center for health statistics says the actual number of teen births in 2010 was the lowest since 1946. people are calling this remarkable. the announcement comes at a time when contraception was a hot debate of whether federal money pays for abortion to some church leaders over an obama administration mandate that paul administrations -- health insurance cover birth control. teen birth rate dropped 9% from 2009 to 2010 to a historic low of 34.3 births per 1 now, teens. that's down 44% from 61.8% in 1991. the article goes on to say in "u.s.a. today" that according to analysis of federal data for a report in december found no change in the percentage of
sexually active teen girls but significant increases in the use of conception which suggests conception is -- concepcion is driving the numbers. -- contraception is driving the numbers. autism hustles is coming together. yesterday, linking obesity to autism rates. today, front pages of the papers, brain scan may give researchers and a jump on the growing problem. still a mystery across the country for researchers. autism which now affects more than one million children is associated with the spectrum of disabilities including repetitive behaviors and problems socializing and communicating. business-day section of the "new york times" this morning has this story about the minimum wage. it says the minimum wage in most states is $7.25 and is based on
the prevailing federal law. but 18 states have minimum wages that are higher, new york, new jersey, massachusetts, connecticut, and illinois are among the states considering raising their current minimum. some to $10 an hour. we'll go to willy in jacksonville, florida. caller: good morning. host: what's on your mind this morning? caller: yes, ma'am. i want to say all the folks on the trayvon martin case, i want to say that the people who think mr. zimmerman was correct in his actions, they don't have nothing to worry about because they got this lady angela cole from jacksonville. she's a black d.a. or something? and they got 105 justifiable homicides here in jim. nobody's been prosecuted for it. so for the family and friends of zimmerman, don't even worry. when she's finished with him,
she's going to have it just like you want it. host: are you referring to the stand your ground laws that florida has? caller: yoom. i'm referring to that and -- yes, ma'am. and i'm referring to the integrity of the people that they're governing in florida. we've got some serious case here. and in jacksonville, she can't even handle. and now you're giving her like a world -- this is worldwide, ma'am. this is worldwide. host: all right. in the hmm you're referring to, willy, is this one. florida prosecutor skips grand jury review in martin's shooting case. that's a story that's in all the papers today. sioux falls, south dakota, richard, democratic caller. caller: yeah. say attorney general holder, you know who he is, correct? host: right. caller: go back to the election of 2008 and there are some misappropriate people at a
polling place. i believe it was in philadelphia. a bunch of black hoods and they kept people intimidated them from voting. and then they dropped that case when holder was up. now they're fighting drugs, supposedly. the worst drug in america is alcohol. and nobody does anything about fighting that. but attorney general holder, he's got all the money in the world to go party over in europe. you know what, you people in washington, especially people on c-span now has gone so far to the left. it used to be open phones for everybody. now you don't even take calls in the order they're giving them. you folks are a joke. host: ok, rob in florida. good morning. caller: i have to say that you guys are probably the most fair balanced and gives everybody a chance for their opinion. you're probably one of the few outlets that normal people, common people can call. so that last caller is way off
base. but this is regarding to a call, a couple of calls again saying the "washington post" and the right wing conservative newspaper. i guess they've never heard of ben bradley. he's probably one of the most left wing guys out there. i don't know. host: all right, rob, thanks for calling in. independent in philadelphia. caller, what's your name? we'll go to philadelphia. you help me with your name? [inaudible]? i don't think i have the right phone number. caller: hello? >> hi. what are your thoughts this morning? caller: i'm brandon simmons from dover, delaware. host: ok. caller: i was calling for two things. i think the one caller that was calling about that just called in about taking phone calls, i think he was partially right because i get kind of upset because all i hear is people calling and fussing and telling their side of the story. but nothing ever happens. you know, so i almost feel like
it's a waste of time of me calling in because nothing ever happens. host: what do you mean that nothing ever happens? caller: i mean, the stuff that everybody calls in everybody basically has a same problems with illegal immigrants, jobs, things like that. to me, it seems like an easy fix but the people in washington are making it harder than it actually is. i think we're living in a olig garkey. everybody are on the same team in washington. you'll never have one that is like abortion and -- doesn't like abortion and doesn't like the death penalty. they all switch up on what they like and what they don't like. none of them stick to their true actual values that their religious preferences are. they can't. because this world is too diverse. you see what i'm saying? if obama says he's a christian, he should not be for gay rights period. should be no questions asked
about it. but he can't because he won't get no votes. the same as other, you know, people that's running for president. there are certain things that i don't care what their religious preference is, they're not going to stand by it because they need the vote. host: all right. and speaking of washington and who's in power here, front page of the "washington times," most tenured g.o.p. senator. that would be senator richard lugar in indiana. -- host: here's a look at the two republicans inside the papers this morning. mr. murdoch lags seven points behind the incumbent there, senator richard lugar whose
approval ratings has been in 70-75% range for many years is being hurt by anti-moderate sentiment on the right. it has now dropped to -- or struggling to reach even 50% of support. front page of the "boston globe" has this story about the senate race up there between the incumbents, scott brown and elizabeth warren. it says that warren is setting the pace nationally among senate candidates in 2011. a national official said the party expects warren will outrank all other senate candidates from both parties.
this is inside the "new york times" this morning. votes to win. either the republican nominee or mr. obama will probably need to win at least half of the 151 electoral votes in these states. north carolina, florida, ohio, virginia, colorado, iowa, new hampshire, pennsylvania, nevada, wisconsin, new mexico, and michigan. those are the battleground states for the "new york times" this morning. miami, florida, cecilia, democratic caller. go ahead. caller: yes. i'm calling in reference to mitt romney and them picking mitt romney as their frontrunner. he passed the same health care policy that obama did. but they are picking them as their president. that's so -- it's not about the self-care for republicans. it's about the man. and they need to cut it out
because due to the fact that this world is gone -- because the republicans because they don't want to help the poor. they don't want to give us jobs. and they're even talking about now, the immigration part? now, please. latinos and all you all who really think they want you here is crazy. go back to africa. they're saying the same thing about you. you need to rise up and let them know you're not standing for it. they don't want to help poor or immigrants. we all are immigrant that is came to this country and now you want to say that oh, you want to send them back where they came from? because you don't use them up or you don't want to have nothing to do with them anymore. now you want to send us back? really? host: democratic caller in miami, florida. here's a story in the "washington times." made news yesterday. south korea says north korea about to test its nuclear weapon there. a report says north korea is
preparing to test a nuclear weapon as the regime ready to launch a long range rocket as early as this week. we'll talk about this issue when we go live from the united states institute of peace this morning. we'll bounce that headline off of the experts there to talk about the latest situation in nuclear weapons there. the united states institute of peace is located across the street from the state department. there it is on your screen. to the left as we pan out is the usip, the institute of peace. and up the road there over to the right is the state department. so located literally across the street from the state department. so we'll talk about how it works with the state department, what is its role, what does it role that's uniquely its own. let me just show you on google map the location here in washington, the u.s. institute of peace. here is where the usip is and as
we show you, the state department just up the street. and across the river is the pentagon. and so you can see the proximity to those two agencies. and then about 20 blocks up constitution avenue, this way is -- you make your way to the capitol where your studio is located close by. jim, a republican in south carolina. you are up next, jim. we start our look at the united states institute of peace at about 8:30 this morning eastern time. go ahead, jim. caller: to the last caller about mitt romney and it's a big difference between obama care and the state issuing their own health care. that is the difference between obama and romney care. excuse me, romney and obama care. that caller should know that or be able to deduce that. if a state wants to get together, i have no problem with that, making people buy insurance but the federal
government can't get that. why is it so important for people to understand that? he wants federal government or is botching education and misaligning money at will and saying more money should go to washington, d.c., for example, where the school system is completely ineffectual. who wants them running the national health care plan and that's what obama care, regardless of what the left is saying, that's what health department, a national plan. i as a republican have no problem with the state running it because you could complain at the state level, and you say republicans never want to help poor people. republicans get more percentage of their income to charity than democrats. i've seen many studies on that. we just think it could be handled by local charities more efficiently and more with care and discernment than the democratic party who's giving money for 50 years for the great society and actually made the situation worse. so i don't understand how people can't understand that romney is
not obama care because it's at a different level and it was a lot more effective and she said that the republicans never help poor people. george bush passed that drug bill to help poor people. sadly, he gave it to wealthier people too, but you can't pick and choose sometimes. so we do do things sometimes to help poor people and she's wrong and she's wrong about romney versus obama care who wants a national health care plan if you don't want it, that doesn't mean that you don't like helping people. that's crazy. you just think it would hurt them because it would -- host: on the health care front, here is "u.s.a. today." the bottom line for president obama's health care law, a leading conservative economist estimates in a study to be released today that the over haul will add $340 billion to the deficit, not reduce it. the economist also suggested that federal accounting practices have true fiscal
impact. the fate of which is now in the hands of the supreme court. we'll go next here to long island, new york. peter, an independent caller. caller: yes. hello, good morning. host: good morning, peter. we're on open phones this morning. what's on your mind? caller: ok. just want to make a brief comment to the last caller. the republican call give more money to charity because it's a tax writeoff. you say -- i would answer that caller to this. keep voting in a republican party who wants to destroy medicare and get rid of political party because rich people don't need it. you think they -- you know,
typically, they represent you more. let you keep voting for them and this is why the rate of poverty in this country is gaining exponentially. the people in poverty because people don't wrote -- they vote for republicans like a non-rich white people. or the evangelical, the meatless bone of being anti-abortion and pro second amendment, anti-gay marriage but then when -- after they get you and chewing on that meatless bone behind the scenes, they're destroying the economics. they're voting against the economic interest. so let this be clear by -- to me, the people in the united states don't understand that the democrats are controlling the government.
you have all these organizations like alec and americans for protest -- prosperity who are being funded by the cult brothers, whatever they want to call it these people are out to get rid of social security, get rid of medicaid, they are out to destroy yoins. you know, to bring us back into the gilded age. host: the new york sometimes. food stamps helps reduce the poverty rate. a new study found that food stamps from the country's largest safety net programs reduced the poverty rates substantially. --
host: freddie mac homes in on the next c.e.o. donald leightons the former chief executive of e*trade has emerged as the frontrunner as the top job for freddie mac. the government controls mortgage finance giant. take a look at the salary, the executive paid. total compensation, bonus and deferred pay for fannie mae and freddie mac, chief executive through the years, $21 million back in 1998. in 2003, franklin reigns, $24 million. $12 million for daniel mudd. and in 2011, michael williams, $5.3 million. you can see how the salary has gone down. freddie mac in 2001, $8.3 million. and then $10.5 million, syron. today, 2011, $3.8 mill. -- million.
baker, louisiana, bob, a republican. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you? host: doing just fine. what's on your mind this morning? >> caller: well, i would think that video with that guy trying to vote for holder should stop all that stuff about no voter i.d. and another thing, we've got a president that has shown us three different birth certificates and all three of them are bogus. they don't -- the last one that he showed, it's been proven that it's manufactured. host: all right, bob. "new york times" front page. facebook to buy the start-up of instagram for $1 billion. those are the two founders of
instagram. now worth many millions of dollars. also another headline in "u.s.a. today." hilary clinton not attending the convention and aides saying this will be her first that she will miss, possibly going back to 1968. says the state department says it wouldn't be right for her to attend such a partisan event and it wouldn't be legal either. the observer point out that the law prohibits the attorney general, now eric holder from attending political gatherings including conventions and campaign appearances. but they know that does not stop the former president bill and hillary from attending. william, democratic florida, in florida. you're last. what's on your mind? caller: good morning. i see this morning, they're up in arms just like the therapy.
first thing, that lady way back, a while back ago that called your show from alabama. she said she will never vote for a black man. again, all these people need to stop going all around the bush talking all this crazy mess about obama, socialism, obama, food stamps and everything. one thing about obama was obama was a hard-working man. when he first came into office, like more than any other president, that man got to working and working for everybody. we've had the first -- when george bush and all the rest of the president was in office, they took care of themselves and everybody else their own status first. while we sat here, white and black. host: all right, william. we'll have to leave it there. coming up next, dr. richard land, he's the president of the southern baptist convention in
liberty commission. first, last night on america history tv, c-span sayered african-american life in washington, d.c. you can watch the entire series on c-span.org. here's a little bit of it. >> i was lucky enough to been at the groundbreaking for the national african-american in culture and what it reminded me of is the idea that american history and african-american history are violently entwined. they're one and the same. but we can't truly understand our history as a nation without including the diversity of stories and individuals who should be a part of that conversation. african-americans have been involved in nearly everything that happened in the history of this nation. they were at its founding. they were at its growth. they have been a part of everything this nation has done. and i think our task is to make sure we understand that role but
also recognize how it's helped to enrich this nation as it's developed into one of the most foremost places in the world. this fact, i think, is important because we need to know that our history, african-american history is american history. and as we learn more about it, we learn more about who we are as an american. we learn more about what this nation has to offer in terms of its diversity and its richness and it makes us a better nation in the nation of the worlds around us. and i also think that it's important for us to think about african-american history in connection with the white house, in this neighborhood that's near us. it's the issue of race. it's the issue of america. it's the issue of what we stand for versus what we sometimes represent to the rest of the world. and i think the white house in
particular, we look at its history and understand what it's been through and where it's been, i would begin to see that irony. now we also understand how the neighborhoods around it play an important role in shaping its history and shaping the destiny of this nation. >> "washington journal" continues. host: and we're back with dr. richard land. thank you for being here. you made a little news on sunday. this is cbs' website. religious leaders to santorum exit the race. you said, maybe about time that rick santorum think about leading the g.o.p. race. did you talk to the former senator? guest: i have not talked to him recently. i've left a message for him, praying for him about his daughter and her situation. you know, this is an interesting example of how the news gets distorted. because i was there on "face the nation" to talk about separation of church and state and the role
of religion in america. so bob asked me a question. he says you're a friend of santorum's. do you think it's time for him to get out of the race? and i said well, you know, if i were his friend, and he called me, and he said what should i do? i would advise him he's resurrected himself. i mean, rick santorum has become a major figure in the party against all the odds, started out with one aide and a truck in iowa and he could undo a lot of that if he loses his home state in arizona which he could do because he's such a tremendous funding disadvantage. that it's been a great time to think about getting out, you know, cash in your gains and remain a major figure in the party. but it's a personal decision. and it's one, you know, i can't imagine what it takes in terms of personal sacrifice to run for the office. and once you've made that
sacrifice and you've done so similarly well, so similarly better than anyone thought you could do, it must be hard to come to the place where you say ok, it's over. host: have you made a phone call to senator santorum? guest: no, i haven't. host: the -- mr. santorum met with conservative leaders last week. you were there? guest: i was not. i was in texas at a board meeting of a college. host: do you know what sort of consensus was coming out of that meeting? guest: i don't. i know that some of his advisors who are close advisors -- i don't endorse candidates. i'm not on the inner circle but some of them were saying it's time to think about getting out. and others are saying no. you need to stay in. you need to keep pressing romney to talk about our issues, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. so you know, but senator santorum is a guy who, you know, i read an article that said his
speeches over the years has been consistent that's because he comes from a world view. rick santorum is a conviction politician. so he's in this because of his convictions and, you know, he's going to do what he thinks is best for his world view. host: would you say the same about mitt romney, a conviction politician? guest: not as much. not as much. i mean, obviously he's changed his views over the years and, you know, look, that's admirable if he comes to a place where have made a mistake and youed in the to change your mind, rather than being a slave to a previous position. but i think that if you look at their records, governor romney is more flexible in his viewpoints and his approach to problems than senator santorum. senator santorum reminds me a lot of george w. bush. they are in this for a purpose.
they want to do something and they want to move the country in a better direction. i think governor romney is more aghast at the direction that president obama has take the country and feels that the country economically can't sustain four more years of obama's policies and so he wants to come in there and move them to a far more favorable climate towards business and toward job formation and job creation. host: on the issue of conviction, especially on social issues, we've already had a couple of callers this morning mention mitt romney's religion and say that they don't trust him. one of those callers saying i'm for rick santorum because i feel like i can trust him on religion and on social issues. what do you say to those callers? guest: well, i would say i understand that. i don't necessarily agree with it but i understand it because, you know, if we elect mitt romney, we're doing something
new. we've never had a president before that was a mormon. and for many, many, many evangelical christians, mormonism is not a christian denomination. it's not like electing a methodist or a baptist or even a catholic. this is a different religion. this is a new religion. it's like is lamb or like buy dism. it's a -- buddhism. it's not a christian faith so i was being interviewed by turkish television and they say what's the big fuss about electing a mormon? i said would there be a fuss in turkey if you elected a catholic or baptist? and their eyes were just -- i say this will be the first person who is not -- either not from the christian faith or no faith.
jefferson was -- if i were beginning to describe jefferson, he would be a unitarian on steroids. host: this is michael girth's column on the gender gap issue. romney's woman problems. he says g.o.p.'s main problem is not the concept tiff issue but it is the perception of it becoming too ideal catch. independent voters have seen a party confirming its most damaging stereotype. the composite republican candidate reflecting the party's means has been harsh on immigration, confrontational on social issues and silent on the struggles of the poor. how many women find that profile appealing on eharmony? guest: well, i think that is unnecessarily harsh. i think that first of all, i disagree with all of the candidates, on immigration.
i think we need competitive -- competitive -- comprehensive immigration reform and a majority of the country is ahead of its leadership both democratic and republican. when it comes to being ready to forge a policy. the poughkeepsie -- pew poll had a poll saying 750% being more candidate. the problem is the big bulk that comes from infancy who done -- independent who is don't vote on the primary. i predict the first party that after the primaries moves to a expressive -- comprehensive reform is going to get a significant leg up. and i think that's why so many people are eager for mr. romney to consider rubio who would be the perfect person to use as a pivot to having a more
comprehensive immigration reform policy. host: so he's your choice for v.p.? guest: well, i would certainly not be unhappy with him. i wouldn't be unhappy with paul ryan. i wouldn't be unhappy with any pro-life social conservative candidate who people felt was qualified to be president. host: do you think rick santorum has a chance? "new york daily news" yesterday puts his odds at 100-1 of becoming the v.p. pick. guest: yeah. it wouldn't be the first time. who thought that j.f.k. was going to pick lyndon johnson? i mean, they evidently didn't like each other very well but he needed to carry texas and he ended up help the south and johnson delivered so one never knows until it happens. and when people say i won't take it, the vice-president is the job nobody wants until they're asked. host: right. so you think though any v.p. candidate needs to be a strong pro-life candidate?
guest: must be. this is the first appointment in a prospective romney administration and if it's pro-choice, it demoralizes the base and they will never trust him again. and it will hurt him badly at the polls. i told senator mccain the same thing. i said you've got to pick a pro-life candidate because otherwise, this is your litmus test of what kind of administration you're going to have. host: let's go to phone calls. laura in pennsylvania. go ahead, laura. caller: good morning. guest: good morning. caller: dr. land, i am bothered with all this separation of the faith, mormon vs. catholic vs. christian. what i wish that all voters that are conservative would do is address the issues. mr. obama, the president, has quoted jesus when he says about his tax, policy that jesus would support it. but then he goes on with
policies that planned parenthood that kills unborn babies. thou shalt not kitchen. we need to address the issues and challenge, you know, the other side on what -- if he is calling himself a chris, how we differ? we differ because we are pro-life. we believe unborn babies should live. we believe youths need to be taught how to practice self-control. and we just need to have those differences because the conservative message of balancing the budget is important but the other ones are linked to the fiscal message because they cost, you know, $100 billion on poverty programs. we need to make those points. guest: i agree with you. first of all, let me be very clear. as an evangelical, i do not believe that mormonism is within the realm of orthodox of christianity. but that shouldn't disqualify
mitt romney for running president or being president. and i don't think most evangelicals would withhold their support from mitt romney in a general election campaign against president obama. i think that most evangelicals are more concerned about a second obama term than they are about any lingering concerns they may have about mitt romney's womanism. and i do think we need to talk about these social issues. i think the budget and the budget deficit is a moral issue when you're borrowing 41 cents of every dollar that you spend. you're practicing generational theft. we're stealing our children and our grandchildren's future. but at the same time, we spend $700 billion a year. $700 billion a year at the federal level. and another $200 billion at the state level in means tested welfare programs primarily
trying to make up for absent fathers. we cannot separate the family crisis and the moral crisis in our nation. the fact that now, 53% of babies born in america to women under 30 are born out of wedlock. that's a social crisis. and it's an economic criteria. -- crisis. we can't restore the economy ultimately without restoring the nuclear family. host: got to get your reaction given what you just said to "u.s.a. today's" front page. birth rate for teens is lowest in history. according to analyst analysts of these numbers of this data, it found no change in the percentage of sexually active teen girls but increase in the use of contraception which suggests contraception is driving these numbers. the lowest rate since 1946. so contraception education working? guest: well, its sounds as if it
is, at least in terms of not having babies. of course it seems to not be working so much when it comes to s.t.d.'s and other things that come with being sexually active. my argument would be we certainly -- i don't think teenagers should be sexually active. i think that sexual relationship is an adult activity with adult consequences and adult responsibilities. but i certainly think that we don't want to further this by having babies that are killed through abortion or babies that are born out of wedlock. i don't think most teenagers are ready to be mothers. and i would discourage them from being mothers and certainly being single mothers. this is a catastrophe for our country. when you have 53%, this is the front page of the "new york times" three weeks ago. 53% of the babies that are born to women under 30 are now born
out of wedlock. 41% overall. and the number of out-of-wedlock birth just dramatically rising except for college educated women. college jed women, it only went from 3% to 8%. but in other category of women, it's just shooting through the roof. and this is not good for the mothers. in terms of their economic prospects of the future. it's not good for the children. we know there was a pew study that showed that if you break down the american economy into three tiers, that if you're born to two parent who is stayed married to each and you're at that bottom tier, you've got a 50% chance of moving to the second tear or the first tier. if you're born to a single parent or your parents get divorced and you are raise by a single parent, off 25% chance of making it to that second tier or that first tier.
so the biggest advantage that you can have in america today in terms of your prospects of being a productive adult with a good economic future and emotional stability is to be born into a two-parent family and have your parents stay married to each other. host: jumping back to the v.p. choice. here's a twitter -- romney needs to bounce his ticket with a skill. possible woman candidate. would governor haley do? guest: well, she's a very attractive candidate. my guess is they would come after her the same way they would come after sarah palin. if romney could find a woman who was a conservative who had more experience, i think that would be probably a stronger pick. but, you know, the republican bench is really strong. when you start looking at the people that are young, that are coming up, and when we've got
some really, really attractive candidates, hispanic, african-american women, that are just tremendous candidates for the future. host: yeah, and we're showing some of the names that have been put out there, rubio, haley, martinez, and governor chris christie of new jersey. some of those names put out there. ok. back to twitter, actually. here's shorty fuse who said how many baptist churches get faith-based funding as does yours? guest: does not. most do not. our position when it comes to faith-based funding is we had very real problems with the constitutionality of it. and after we had examined it, we said there is a way to do this. so that you can have separatibility and you can maintain separation of church and state. but we advise baptist churches not to take the money.
because eventually, the government will try to exercise control with government she cannles comes government shackles. and then if they do decide to use it, that they set up a separate 501-c3 organization for whatever charitable enterprise they want to use the money for so there's a firewall between the church and between the entity. but our but, our evidence is that probably less than 2% of the 44,000 southern baptist churches in the nation had ever applied for or used face -- faith-based initiative funds. host: robert is a democrat in baltimore. caller: my father was a minister.
if they want to be merry, let them be married. as far as most people that called in about president obama, you have the house and the senate. the president cannot do anything he wants to do. i believe that they should be pro-choice. everything is about money. host: all right. gee, i think there are spiritual realities -- guest: i think our spiritual realities that are far more important to people on how they vote. every society has severely regulated marriage. who can get married to who, and under what circumstances, and the reason is because it has an enormous impact on the next generation of human beings, many
the children. this society has a right to say who can get married to a home, and under what circumstances, and we do not believe the homosexual community has the right to impose their definition of marriage and the rest of society. of course, this is a government of the people, by the people, and for the people, and 31 times people have had the opportunity to vote directly on this issue, in all sections of this country, and 31 times, they have voted against same-sex marriage, and will be four more this year, and i predict traditional marriage will win all four of those hurt -- goes. host: it looks like polls are starting to change. here is a call the baltimore sun -- "the baltimore sun" this
morning. guest: a lot times and did you not tell pollsters the truth. traditional marriage has a higher vote that it polls. we leave marriage should be between a man and a woman, and when you try to expand it, it shatters that definition, and when it comes to the pro-choice issue, i am pro-life. i believe we have an obligation to protect the unborn. this is impact will for the african-american community. african-americans make up 12% of the population and they have 36% of the abortions. abortion amounts to genocide in this country against blacks. last year, twice as many black babies were aborted in the new york city as were born. that is appalling.
host: charlie is an independent in the georgia. caller: thank you for taking my call. -interested in governor romney's momism -- mormon ism, and i have been trying to look -- learn more about the faith, and i heard that his grandfather or his great-grandfather fled to mexico from utah to avoid the government coming down on him for having a number of wives. could you elaborate on that? i was curious, how long did the rodney family stay in mexico? another question about mormonism, in this area, the
missionaries not on your door, nicely dressed, and they're nice, polite people, and then they want you to buy their book of mormonism. i would like to know more about it, but i do not want to necessarily want to buy it. could you elaborate what is in their book? guest: if you want to know what they believe, you probably ought to contact the salt lake city, the church of latter-day saints headquarters. i do not know the history of the run the family. i do know he was born in the united states, which is a requirement for running for president. look, every mormon i know is a nice person. they are the nicest neighbors
you would want to have. the coach york's son's little league baseball team. they're fine, upstanding people, but that does not make them christian. christianity has a definition. that has been pretty much agreed upon over the last two millennia, and the mormon formulation of god the father and god the son, and got the holy spirit to, do not fit the orthodox, trinitarian definition that has been agreed upon by catholicism and protestantism for the last to do all millennium -- last two millennia. that does not mean that governor romney should be disqualified for -- from monfort president. we have -- from running for president. we have a constitutional test, and as a baptist who believes in
the separation of church and state, i would defend to death his right to run for president. we should be looking at the issues. in fact, i have encouraged governor romney to take the position that if he is asked about the particulars of his faith, as i think he was asked about by some of the jewish groups, that he should say look, those questions about my faith do not belong in an american election campaign. john f. kennedy never tried to defend catholicism. he defended the right to be a catholic and run for president. governor mitt romney should defend the right to be a mormon and run for president. he should say if you have questions about my personal faith, then you need to contact salt lake city and that those questions answered. questions about what i believe
about my faith to not be long in an american election campaign. if you want to know what my positions on the issues are, i would be glad to talk about those. host: does that mean you agree with this tweet -- guest: not necessarily. i do not think you should be required to jettison your faith to run for president. john f. kennedy had it right. i think rick santorum is wrong about the speech that kennedy gave in houston. that speech was also -- was always important to me. i was living in houston when he gave the speech. my pastor was there, and he said i am not the catholic candidate, i am the democratic party president, and he said any decision that comes before me
will be made on his conscience, and no i external authority, in this case the vatican, would tell him or dictate to him what to do. then he went on to say i am not going to reject my face in order to be president. clearly, if a person is a person of faith, they will be guided by their conscience, by their faith tradition, but they are not being dictated to by any religious authorities in that tradition. now, most americans, poll after poll shows most americans want someone who has a state to be in the white house. i think it comforts them to believe that whoever is there does have some understanding that they are subject to a higher authority than the president. host: republican line.
jennifer. colorado. caller: i am a republican, but i really do believe in separation of church and state, and you talk really well, let you are speaking from the pulpit, but i do not think you mean what you say. it seems as though you're pushing a lot of your religious agenda. the religious right does not pay taxes even though they do little charity work. they use church buses to get people to political events. what they do not pay, we have to pay in taxes. they're always looking for ways to get their hands on tax money to support their profits. they are also very relentless in getting their laws passed. all you have to do is look at the house of representatives after the 2010 election. historically, the preachers in
the south did not stand up for the blacks that were lynched and gotten beaten. in fact, many teachers were complacent. guest: that as a lot to respond to. but me respond by saying you are wrong when you say they do not do charity work. conservative and evangelical churches give more to charity per capita, both religious and nonreligious charities, than liberal churches do, and conservative states tend to get more. mississippi, the poorest state per capita gives more to charity. connecticut, the richest state, and a liberal state, is one of the lowest. we will be happy to pay taxes when all other non-profit charitable organizations start
paying taxes. when the march of dimes and the united way starts paying taxes, the churches will pay taxes. we have found that giving people the opportunity to give tax deductible gifts to organizations, they end up giving more, whether they are religious or not religious, and churches should not be treated any differently. most americans believed non- profit organizations should not be paying taxes, because they do many good works and provide a great deal of the support that we find for many causes in civil society. when it comes to pushing my personal beliefs, my personal hero is dr. martin luther king jr., who was a baptist minister, and who started the montgomery bus boycott in the basement of the baptist church, and when he was in the
birmingham jail, he said he was in because he'd refuse to obey an unjust law because it does not correspond with the moral law of god. i am glad that dr. king brought his religious convictions about racial equality into the public arena and demanded political and racial equality for african- americans. i am glad that ministers, a baptist and other wives were the backbone of the abolitionist movement that said that -- and others were the backbone of the abolitionist movement that said that slavery was evil. i believe no one should have the absolute right of right and debt over another human being, even a mother. i believe a state has the right to say we will extend the protections of the law to our unborn citizens, 53 million of whom have been killed in the
last 38 years, and i believe that is a moral nightmare. host: wayne, democratic caller. alabama. you are next. caller: i am a member of the southern baptist church. you have no right to represent yourself as a southern baptist religion with your republican whatever. i am probably for getting half of what i want to say, but you have no right to represent yourself as a southern baptist. you have democrats in the southern baptist church. you have independents also. one more thing the ryan budget, i would like for you to tell me where in the bible it says you
take from the poor and give to the rich? guest: first of all, i never said i represented all southern baptists. i am elected to my position. i am the head of the ethics and religious commission -- liberty commission. if the agency heads are not doing what the best majority of southern baptists want to do, they have no compunction about asking him to retire or relieving them of their duties. i've been in my position for 23 years, and the reason i have been there is because i represent the views of the vast majority of southern baptists. no one represents all southern baptists. jimmy carter was a southern baptist. bill clinton was a southern baptist. if we look at resolutions that have been passed by boating --
voting members, we are overwhelmingly pro-life. polls show that nine out of 10 southern baptists are pro-life, whether they are republican, independent, or democrat. we are supportive of traditional marriage as being between a man and woman, and opposing the legalization of same-sex marriage. so, obviously, you are one of those southern baptists that does not agree with that. that is your right. i defend to the death your right to hold those views as i do mine, but it is not in dispute, as the late great daniel patrick moynihan said, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but not their own facts. in the 2004 election, george bush got 84% of all of the southern baptists who chose to
vote, and in 2008, john mccain got 74,000 -- 74%. most of them did not go that way because they are republican. they voted that way because they are pro-life. that determines how they vote in presidential elections. when it comes to the ryan budget, but i think you're being very unfair. he spends about the same amount of government money on the programs that the government funds in our society that we were spending in 2008. that is hardly a radical budget. our government has spent about 20.6% of the gross domestic product since world war two, and under president obama it has gone to over 25%, which has enabled him to increase the national debt by 50% in four years. it is mr. obama's budget that
is so radical that it was defeated 415-0 in the house of representatives because it is a piece of fiction. it is a non-workable budget. it is a fantasy. at least mr. ryan is trying to deal with realities. host: we want to get ban on twitter into the conversation. guest: jesus did say to turn the other cheek and to love our enemies, but in romans 13, the most sustained passage dealing with the role of the civil government, god ordained civil government for the purpose of punishing those who do evil, and rewarding those who do that which is right.
in romans 13:4, it says they dare not the sword in vain. it was a particular sort that was used to exercise capital punishment of roman citizens. that has been interpreted by catholics and protestants alike as authorizing the use of lethal force both in police work, domestically, and in the conduct of wars -- digest were theory is based upon this. -- the just war theory is based upon this. it has to be a defensive war. you cannot try to annihilate your enemy. you should try to seek as much justice as you can for all, but for instance, if there was ever a just war, world war two was
it, and i will leave you with dr. martin luther king jr.'s wonderful distinction. he was asked about abandoning passivism, and the participation in the plot to and assassinate hitler, and dr. king said if you're the enemy has a conscience follow gondi, and if he has no conscience, followed by an offer. even dr. king understood there was a time when force is necessary. host: kathy, an independent in oregon. caller: i was calling about mitt romney, but you brought in conscience.
i found this chiseled on a building in chicago which says give me liberty to argue freely according to my conscience above all other liberties. that is by john milton. i thought that was extremely important. guest: if you're asking me to disagree with john milton, you will wait a long time. he is one the greatest writers in the english language, and it tremendous christian. host: joseph wants to challenge you on twitter. guest: first of all, i believe in absolute separation of church and state, but not the separation of moral values, even
if they are religious life -- religiously informed. thomas jefferson wrote his famous letter to the baptist ministers of them very, connecticut, who were being persecuted, and he said there should be a lot of separation between the church of the state. that letter went through several drafts. he consciously used the word church and state, not religion and society. he argued that america was going to be judged because it allows slavery, hardly a disinterested in god and hardly a disinterested moral statement. we have the rights as moral citizens to bring convictions into public policy debates, and the fact that their religious convictions does not disqualify them from the debate. it did not disqualify dr. king in the civil rights movement. it did not disqualify abraham
lincoln and the abolitionists during the era of abolitionism prior to the civil war. every major moral evil in our society has been alleviated because people of religious faith brought their religious convictions to bear and said this is wrong, and it should be changed. people say you cannot legislate morality. that is nonsense. laws against murder, theft, rape, racism, they are a legislation of morality, and when we legislate laws against those claims, we are not trying to impose our morality as much as we are trying to keep them from imposing their morality on their victims because murder, theft, rape, racism are not between consulting the adults in
private. something is being done against someone's personal wealth. we believe we have the right to say you cannot do that. host: alberto. delaware. caller: i appreciate your view, but you never answered the question about the poor. the bible has many passages about helping the poor, but your organization never says anything about protecting the port. your organization never does anything about the war on women by the republicans. host: i am running out of time. we will take on those issues. guest: first of all, there are more poor now than there were four years ago, more unemployed, so the policies are not working well. southern baptists provided more disaster relief than anyone
beside the federal government. i'm afraid you are ignorant about the charitable work the southern baptist organizations are doing across the nation every day. your facts are wrong. host: chicago, betty, a democratic caller. caller: i do not understand. you said you're a man of faith. how can you uphold two people running for president who have people that they love right now, mitt romney and rick santorum, that are sick. rick santorum's baby has a precondition thomas, and so does mitt romney's wife, but they say they will appeal the affordable health care act. you're a christian man. you love a baby before he gets here, but once they get here,
you do not care. guest: i did not think jesus would support the rationing panels in obama-care. there are people that are are ready being rationed care since the new head of medicare came in, and they are being told that if they have a terminal conditions they cannot get treatment for other diseases. even mr. obama said perhaps it was not the best allocation of resources to give his grandmother who was dying of cancer a hip replacement. i guess she could hobble around in terrible pain with a bad hip while she was dying of cancer. i do not think that is very christian, ma'am. host: regina, pennsylvania. caller: i want to commend you of what you are saying. you seem to be a big proponent of george porsche.
let's keep in mind george bush and rick santorum brought in the fate based ministries with the help of al gore, and you explained how dangerous bettis and i agree with it. i wonder why you would put him on a platform in such high court because he gives us the government entities -- hi accord, because he gives the government entities that bring us in line with this evil, because when i give money to my church i truly do not wanted to go to the government. the march of dimes pushes abortion. i do not think i am in the same category as they are, and the churches should never be because people's money, forced of our pockets to give to these very people situations such as abortion is totally against us. we head -- have no where to
help the churches. i would like to see the churches get down the natural health movement, and i did not want to be personal, greta, but if you are expecting another baby, i hope you are looking into vaccinations. you have an article there about autism, and let's look at the toxins in children and adults and how our population is becoming more and more unable to think. that the toxins of your body. host: anything there you want to respond to? guest: we were very concerned about the faith-based initiatives. we criticize that when it was proposed. we asked for hedges and protections. i came to the position that we would not oppose it.
there are three things you can do in washington, support a bill, oppose a bill, or not oppose the bill. i went to the faith based summit that rick santorum held in washington. 80% of the people there were black, hispanic, and i listen to their leaders all day long talk about this being an opportunity for people that live in as a codes where the problem was come to get money without having to get the approval of the liberal establishment. as one black pastor put it to me, this is our chance to move off of the liberal plantation. i said as a middle-class, white person, i am not going to let my constitutional concerns get in no way of these guys who look as this as a lifeboat situation, and as long as constitutional
protections are there, we will strongly discourage baptist churches from taking the money because of government. host: dr. richard land, thank you 4 been at our table. next, we will turn our attention to diplomacy and peace efforts live from the united states institute of peace. we will be talking to the president richard solomon. the building is located a few blocks from the state department, and it is also across from the lincoln memorial in washington, and across the river from the pentagon. taxpayers spend about one to million dollars to build the new permanent home for usip. that is our topic. we will be right back. >> for this year's student cam video competition we asked students to create a video telling us what part of the
constitution was most important to them and why. today, we're going to texas to talk to a senior at edward s. marcus high school. how are you doing, laurin? >> i am prepared >> why did you choose to focus on the -- i am great. >> why did you choose to focus on the first amendment? >> the first amendment applies to everyone, a person on the street, a teacher, a congressman, everyone, it is a clear the same. this is a -- everyone exactly the same. this is a free land. that drew me into it. >> where did you start researching? >> i immediately went on line started to connect articles, civil rights acts locally, and c-span videos i had so much information ahead to merrill my search -- merrill my search.
>> why did you take the white -- narrow my search. merri >> what did you take away? >> in the military, it is always so strict when you are told do what you are told, and even there, a government organization, your rights and freedoms are protected. when i interviewed congressman purchase, he opened my eyes to the first amendment. you have the right to peacefully protest. if you are in phrygian other's rights the cost of your own that is not -- infringing others
rights of the cost of your own, that is not fair to others. it really opened my eyes in that we do not have limits, though we have to limit ourselves. >> what was your favorite part in creating the documentary? >> i enjoyed the interviews, going to colorado springs, finding them more about how not only the freedoms apply to everyone, but how they apply to specific people, and from there and i figured out what i believe and how much it in effect others. >> what would you like others to learn from your documented? >> i would like people to appreciate the fact that we have these rights, to know what they are coming into use them with appreciation because so many people do not. >> thank you for taking time in talking with us. here's a brief portion of the
documentary, the constitution and you. >> these amendments are known as the bill of rights. ♪ crux the first amendment. >> unalienable rights. >> exercising his right to burn the flag in protest. >> freedom of religion. >> to our country's first national document, declaration of independence spoke to on variable rates. >> the truth is our constitution says we are guaranteed freedom of religion, not freedom from religion. >> we are given rights from god.
it is in god we trust. >> you can see this entire video and always in documentary's at student c cam.org and continue the conversation on facebook and twitter. host: the united states institute of peace, a brand new building in washington, crossed the river from the pentagon, about 20 blocks away from the capital. it conducts original research, develop new techniques, produces reports all on diplomacy and brokering peace. it is active in many hot spots around the world -- the balkans, afghanistan, colombia, iraq, liberia, nepal, pakistan, etc. joining us is the president richard solomon for u.s. institute of peace, someone with deep background in diplomacy efforts.
when your expertise is south korea-north korea relations. i want to bounce this headline of a view from "the washington times ." guest: you picked the one country where diplomacy is having a tough time, and that is dealing with north korea. this is a failed state. it is pretty isolated by its own actions. the military leadership thinks that having to clear weapons and missiles are going to protect them. the fact they have impoverished the country, the chinese are begging them to open the country, but the military will not do it. they are afraid of instability because they have to impoverish the people for so long. unfortunately, this paul -- diplomacy has been discredited over several decades. we have negotiated deals of various sorts, food aid, and
they repeatedly violate the agreement. so, we are dealing with a situation where diplomacy, unfortunately, does not have a very good record of success. has it failed with north korea? this is "the washington post." guest: everyone wants to resolve this problem by diplomacy, so it is an important -- it is important for political reasons to make an effort, but as the saying goes, we've sold the same horse over and over again to north korea, saying if you will open up inspection of your new query -- nuclear program, we will give you food aid and each time the deal breaks down.
so, the obama administration has once again shown the diplomacy does not work. we're in a situation probably where containment and working with the chinese, who are into the leadership, " for the chinese will convince this new generation of leaders get their approach is not working. host: that is the headline on north korea. we showed you were as the headline on the situation in syria with cross border attacks yesterday into turkey and another country. is the usip working in north korea and syria as a way of talking about what is the role of the united states institute of peace? guest: we were set up by congress, primarily the senate, in the early-1980's. we were set up in the shadow of the vietnam war.
the feeling was if only we could strengthen our diplomacy, our use of political measures, we would not always have to send in the troops. in the over two and a half decades we have been in business we have developed approaches to dealing with a variety of conflicts around the world using political means. we are at a major break point in history. on the -- about the cold war, where we confronted in. -minded states, major armies, and where diplomacy was state- to-state, we are dealing with a world where non-state actors, terrorist groups, religiously- oriented movements better, in a sense caboclo level of state activity, are having -- movements, are you this cents below the state activity, and our having an impact.
we support our military -- military, which looks to us to try to negotiate situations that will get them out of a fight, as we have done in several insisted in iraq, and to train local people, whether it is iraq war afghanistan or elsewhere, to deal with their own conflicts by political means so we do not have to be drawn into a fight. today, the situation in syria is very dangerous. you will hear very shortly from steve heydemann on our staff who is running a working group trying to figure out ways to deal publicly with the syrian situation. there is an opposition that is not well unified. we are trying to help them approach their dealings with the president assad regime, hopefully, for some kind of negotiated settlement of the conflict, but it does not look like it is headed that way right
now, and, indeed, it might be escalating as turkey, lebanon, and others on the borders of syria provide shelter to opposition fighters. >> i want to show -- host: i want to show our viewers the budget for the united states is it to the peace. in 2010, 49 million. host: what do you do with that money? guest: we run a range of programs related to conflict management. we do research on best practices and managing conflicts. we train people abroad. we train our own people. one of the things we have been very active with is working with our military, starting in 1994. we were asked to start training marine war fighters for
peacekeeping operations. that is an activity we have been very active in. we trained civilian police to go in as they did in possible after the balkan war to stabilize local committees to reestablish several government. we train local people to try to manage their own conflicts. we can be done a bipartisan basis experts to work on serious problems of national security. you may have heard of the iraq study group that was led by former secretary of state james baker, and former congressman lee hamilton. there bipartisan group looked at ways to be escalate our involvement in iraq. we've done studies of genocide prevention, u.n. reform, and a variety of other bipartisan assessments that in a very
polarized political environment are valued for their professionalism and bipartisan quality. so, our budget is pretty minimal. it is about 12 cents a year per american. it is one-tenth of 1% of the state department budget. our work seems to have a significant impact, even though our budget is pretty minimal. host: private donations? guest: we can not use private money for our programs. the only private money was for our building and our new building. one-third was paid for by private donations. to keep us bipartisan, congress has legislated the only appropriated money out of congress can find our programmatic work. host: so, the total price tag for the new building you are in
this morning? guest: right. the basic construction was about $160 million. one-third of that was private money. the architect did a brilliant job. everybody seems very, very pleased with this building. we are right opposite all of the war memorials at the northwest corner of the mall. we call this the war and peace corner of the mall. we are here both as a symbol of our country's effort to try to deal with the world by peaceful, political means, and, of course, we are reworking center. earlier, you commented that we are just across the river from the pentagon. we're not far from the capitol building, the state department. we are a convening point. one of the strengths as we bring together people from different government agencies, from the humanitarian assistance ngo's
and international organizations that need to collaborate in dealing with conflict situations in today's world. in that sense, we help to bridge the stove pipes, so-called, of the government bureaucracies that tend to work in their own bureaucratic frameworks and helped to build a civilian capacity for dealing with international conflict. host: phone calls. randi, a democrat in illinois. caller: basically, he said they're not allowed to except private money, but one-third of the money was donated to build the building, but is his view against the war machine, or is it another government agency? guest: the private money is only allowed to finance the building. congress made an exception on the issue of private money so
that it only applies to the building project and hospitality. programmatic work is so we funded with government money. i'm sorry your second question was? guest: he was wondering -- host: he was wondering do you go up against war, that was the wording he used. guest: everyone wants to go against war, but the reality is our military head valued our work. some of our biggest supporters include admiral mullen, and others we have worked with because from a military point of view if we keep troops out of a fight, we will save lives, and as we have been doing in iraq, afghanistan, if we stabilize the situation as politically, our troops can come home, and the military values that collaboration host: mr.
solomon, -- collaboration. host: mr. solomon, because you get federal money, can the usip to take positions on u.s. policy, the afghanistan war, the iraq war -- can you take positions against those things? guest: we are and applied operation. our work is practical. it is on the ground, designed to limit violence and stabilize situations abroad, countries that have been torn apart by war. we belong to congress. we are not part of the administration, that is the state department or the defense department to might even though we collaborate with them. -- even though we collaborate with them. our position is floating between the bureaucracies, operating in a bipartisan way. we feel that is one of our great
strengths. host: richard solomon, the state department is just up the street from where you are located. let's go to joe in missouri. caller: good morning. thank you to seize them for bringing this to us. -- to c-span for bringing this to us. that is a beautiful building that you might equate to the taj mahal, as i understand cost $100 million of taxpayer money. how many people work there, are the salary by the american tax payer, and what is this man's salary? how many -- how much the people get a year? is just another bureaucracy? guest: we are a small operation. we have a little over 200 people working here. if we make generally less than
people in some of the big iraq persist. yes, this is an attractive building -- bureaucracies. yes, this is an attractive building, but ask yourself, across from the war memorials, would you want a third-class of attractive building? we are here to say that the new -- the american people want a more peaceful world. her from a national point of view, -- from a national point of view, this building says something important about our work, and we have had a lot of support for not just the work, but effected we are no longer just working out of commercial rented space. host: the caller also ask, our salaries paid for with taxpayer dollars, including yours, and can you share with us the
amount? guest: the answer is yes, this is taxpayer-supported salaries for our people, but we work for the congress, and our salaries are within the general federal pay scale. my income is at the executive level. i make something less than the secretary of state, though we are paid with taxpayer money. host: who do you answer to in congress? guest: we are overseen by several congressional committees, foreign operations in the house and the senate, and our were busy getting waited every year. we have to make our case -- and our work is evaluated every year. we have to make our case. we have found we have strong support in the house and the said. here is a -- host: here is a
tweet guest: we do so. we have internet sites. we use modern electronics precisely to encourage that kind of coalition-building, networking, however you like to put it. it is where the world is headed, and our objective is to mobilize people that want to promote reconciliation. we do work with religious communities in the middle east. we work with people who want to bring about peace in that troubled region. in that way, we, hopefully, stabilize the areas that otherwise would blow up, and lead to security problems for us and our friends. host: mr. solomon, another tweet .
host: before you respond, there have been critics on capitol hill. here is congressman jason cave fits from may, 2011. [video clip] >> i do believe we should define the united states as it could of peace. i believe every department, every agency stands for and fights for peace. we do not have to have some separate organization that is built on peace. it is the department of defense, it is the state department, it is every agency that fights for peace. that is what our country stands for. we do not need a separate organization. we have spent over $700 million on this think tank, and while their intentions are good, quite frankly, we cannot afford, and we do not need. it is the primary mission of the state department to achieve the peace.
it is that's something we ball off to some separate agency in a fancy building. if the state department is not fighting for peace, that is a discussion we should have, but it is not the only agency that fights for peace. we all fight for peace. host: mr. solomon, could you please respond to the congressman? guest: they did make the case in just heard. it was vigorously debated. the outcome at the end of last year's budget discussions was that the institute makes an important national security contribution. we supplement the work of the state department in the defense department. these agencies asked for our help. in a moment, you will hear about our work on syria and the afghan-pakistan situation. as i said much earlier, the
world has changed dramatically. the state department is structured for state-to-state diplomacy. our work, in a sense, works in an environment dealing with non- state entities, training people to work together collectively for deployment abroad, and both state and our defense people value that contribution our work, reflects, again, the way the character of international conflict has changed dramatically. again, our supporters in congress made it very clear that they value our work. earlier, the question was where did we come from? again, we were set up in the shadow of the vietnam war. a searing conflicts for the american people. the objective in the late- 1970's, early-1980's, was they wanted an institution that would
do research and training -- sings the state department and defense did not do -- things the state department and the defense did not do to come up with political approaches to dealing with conflicts, and after the cold war ended, it turned out that our work became all the more valuable because conflicts were of such a different character. host: memphis, tenn., a republican down there. go ahead. caller: mr. solomon, i just have a question in regards to the peacekeeping efforts. i find it interesting that you have an institution that is established, and of course you mentioned the emphasis placed on peace in iraq. it seems ironic that as a result of those efforts the u.s. ultimately ended up engaging in a 10-year war.
what would be the current outlook in many other world issue that can take us in a direction that will not ultimately end up in wars since this institution and other organizations are centered around peace? thank you. guest: it is a good question. our work today in some of the most troubled areas of the world like afghanistan are designed to get conflicts under control so they do not end of being a fight we have to get in the middle of. howard will lovelock program tries to establish legal procedures -- our rule of law program tries to establish legal procedures to manage conflict. in iraq, land conflict grew out of policies that created enormous tension. we helped the local people
establish a tribunal and arrangements where they could adjudicate these land disputes rather than shoot at one another. i could give you lots of examples. our work is to try to find ways to get these areas of conflict below the level of state-to- state confrontation, under some kind of political control, and minimize the need to send in our own troops. host: glenn is an independent in brooklyn. caller: good morning. i am concerned about the salaries received by these professionals. i just want to make sure your work it is promoting peace. can you give us specific examples of conflict-prevention your agency dealt with over the past five-to-10 years, and by
extension, how to you explain the long conflict in iraq and afghanistan if there were efforts behind the scenes to prevent such conflicts? guest: good question. let me give you one example from iraq. we were trained iraqis to try to deal with their own inter- religious conflicts, again, by political means. there was a situation at the university of baghdad some years ago where people were staring up trouble between shia and sunni students. some of the iraqis we trained went into that university area and they calmed what could have become a violent situation. i mentioned the land disputes we are helping to deal with through judicial means. so, given the fact that our
budget is pretty minimal, again, one-tenth of 1% of the state department, our work does seem to have, in the areas where we have people in the field, a significant impact, and, again, our military is a good example of where our work supplements the work of the major bureaucracies. we have helped mediate between different tribal shakes in iraq, and have stabilized the situation in a way that general petraeus said was helpful in stabilizing an area south of baghdad, which enabled him to both be deploy his troops, and basically eliminated casualties for american military. so, these on-the-ground programs, have had the kind of defect where, again, the big
agencies of our -- effect where, again, the big agencies of diplomacy look to us to supplement their work. host: richard solomon is the president of the u.s. institute of peace, and has been since 1993. prior to that, mr. cell phone served as u.s. ambassador to the philippines. -- solomon serve as u.s. investors to the philippines. he also helped to negotiate the cambodia peace treaty, the first u.n. peacemaking agreement, and had a leading role in the dialogue and nuclear issues. he joins us from inside of the new permanent home from the united states institute of peace. from the balcony of that building, you can see just over the tree line there, the pentagon. it is over the river.
that is from the balcony. we will try to get enough few more phone calls. sandra, grand junction, colorado. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. is there any kind of a newsletter or publication that might be put out that is made available to americans as taxpayers to see exactly who gets what and for what, and how much? guest: the best way to track what we are doing is to go to our web site, usip.org, which lists all programs, and with new technology you can follow our program. in addition, we published a range of reports that are
>> judging from the size of that building, if they only have 200 employees, they each have a individual office. i have to tell you, if these guys were in the shadow of the vietnam era conflict, how many wars have we been in? nothing has been solved. the institute of peace has not produced anything in conjunction with the amount of money that is being spent. it could be spent better elsewhere. we try to mediate the conflict. as soon as we leave, they refer to what they have been doing
for two thousand years. host: all right. we'll be talking about one of the conflicts in afghanistan coming up next with andrew wilder, the director of the afghanistan-pakistan program at the usip. he mentioned money. let me show you the budget where the request is $37 million. that is what they are requesting. that is down from what they received in 2012. in 2010, their budget was $49 million. that request comes from the obama administration for 2013. gregory. an independent in north carolina. go ahead. caller: i think that building would be just fine in addition to their regular duties they moved more away from politics and more towards research and development for alternative fuel, because if we head
alternative fuel before the bombing, -- had alternative fuel before the bombing, the war could of been won without firing a shot. host: from twitter. host: if you want to learn more about the u.s. institute of peace, go to their web site, usip.org. we continue with this conversation. we will go inside of this usip home, $100 million of which was paid for by taxpayers. it was appropriated in 2005 to build these headquarters located one block from the state department, just up the road from the building, across from
the pentagon and the lincoln memorial. we go up the road right there. the state department is to be cornered. debbie is a democrat in connecticut. go ahead. caller: are they doing anything here, and also, what do they have to do with the united nations? and they worked with them as well? host: michael, a democrat. caller: my question has to do with funds that flow into defense contractors, and also what is the status with the united states as far as being the largest defense contractor consortium in the world, and how
wars aggrandize these defense contractors, and what will this institute has in standing in between peace, which is obviously making less money for defense contractors? host: all right, michael. coming up, andrew wilder. he is joining us from the fifth floor of the united states is a to the peace. we want to dig deeper into the situation in afghanistan. what does this deal mean for future negotiations. guest: this is a significant development. it is the last, major hurdle that stood in the path of negotiating a strategic partnership agreement between the governments of afghanistan
and the united states. it would dictate. there have been major sticking points in the negotiation. one was control of the facilities. the second major one was control of the night raids, something president karzai has been critical of. it seems like an agreement has been reached in terms of more afghan control over the night raids and detention, and that paves the way for an agreement that everyone hopes will be signed prior to the upcoming conference in may in chicago. once that is signed, i think it is an important signal of a longer-term commitment. i think the big concern is that the international committee not abandon afghan -- afghanistan
again. i think this partnership agreement will be critically important to send a signal both to the taliban and neighboring countries, and the afghan people of the longer-term commitments to remain engaged in afghanistan. h of the former assistant secretary of defense in the reagan administration wrote a piece saying that it is time to let karzai take us out. host: making the comparison to
this night raid deal struck by hamid karzai to what was done in iraq, saying that this is a move toward kicking us out of afghanistan. what is your reaction? guest: i did not think that is the case. afghanistan is different and the situation in iraq where there was more of a desire to see all international forces leave. afghanistan is an ambivalent relationship regarding the perception of foreign troops. at times, they're not unpopular, especially when we have the events like we had recently, like the koran-burning incident. there is anchored directed international forces, but the majority of afghans fear the rapid departure of international troops much more than they fear them staying on longer term.
there was a return to anarchy and factional fighting and civil war, which created an opportunity for the taliban to merge in afghanistan and gain power throughout most of the country and then provide safe haven for al qaeda and groups like that in afghanistan. afghans want to prevent that from happening again. the timeline to withdraw the majority of international troops by the end of 2014 is a good plan, because i don't thing we can sustain this level of troop presence in afghanistan for the long term. >host: charles is a republican in woodbridge. you are on the air. caller: the building is 160
million and some of that was paid with private donations. if you are paying $1 million a year, that would take 160 years to make up that amount, much less anything else that you pay for as far as new furnishings. regarding president karzai, he is always going to talk as if he is the kingpin and he's running the show, yet we are sending all the money. the only reason we are still in this, we are finding everything in their country as far as security and he knows that. as crooked as that government is, things would go south really fast. the afghan issue is a real joke. i have never heard anybody make a good argument as to when or
why we would leave when everybody says stabilization, yet there's no way to stabilize them. at least iraq had oil and a way to make income such as oil, where afghanistan does not. on top of that, we are wasting all these american lives and providing security so that china can take advantage of all the mineral rights in that country. it is amazing what china is doing. host: mr. wilder. guest: he made some very good points. one of the issues in the strategy is the main focus is on the military strategy, which is critically important, but often overlooked was a political strategy to guide what we are doing in afghanistan. that is rather needs to be more focus heading towards this 2014
security transition is not to forget that there is also political transition in 2014. according to the constitution, president karzai is required to step down. he cannot seek a third term in office. so there's a real opportunity for a democratic transition in afghanistan, which could lead to stronger leadership and also combined with the reconciliation process which could facilitate a broader and more inclusive political settlement so that the focus shifted a bit more to political solutions to the conflict rather than relying so heavily on military solutions. on a point of the mineral rights,. that. with china having gotten the rights to the major copper deposits and india recently got some awards for a large iron ore deposits. these resources will be critically important to sustain the afghan economy moving
forward in economic growth. however, in an environment with weak institutions like in afghanistan, if we exploit those resources and those are captured by a few warlords or corrupt elements, it does not benefit the broader economy and people and could end up being the stabilizing. this is an example where usip is currently funding a project to try to look at more community- based mechanisms to monitor the extractive industry sector in afghanistan, particularly because some of the government institutions are so weak. we need local communities to have oversight over the mineral oil extraction in afghanistan or else it could end up being more destabilizing. host: we're live from the u.s. institute of peace insider new permanent home located in washington. to the statenext department and the war memorials
and 20 blocks from the capitol building. now this question on twitter -- guest: i'm afraid i did not catch the first part of that question. gueiraq was one were there was a lot of skepticism that the elections could take place. there were held despite difficult circumstances and played an important role to the current situation, which is not ideal, but could have been worse. in afghanistan there is an urgent need to really look at the 2014 elections. that is something usip is trying to do now is get polity attention focused on the political transition in. in organizing a presidential
election in a conflict zone like afghanistan is incredibly difficult. the last round of elections were also very problematic with lots of rigging, which de legitimized the results. if we start now to plan for those elections, i think there are good prospects we could have in a relatively credible democratic election in afghanistan, which would be very important to facilitate future peace in afghanistan. if you have a disastrous election in 2014 and end up with an illegitimate government and illegitimate scoelection would results, it could be a recipe for disaster with u.s. troops leaving. host: now this caller from
morningside, indiana. caller: if you look at at iraq and vietnam, and now we have lt. michael -- of the 101st in leavenworth. ayles.cently sergeant by ou want to kiss afghanistan's hind end.or when are we going to start standing up for the u.s. troops after americans have died? guest: good questions and tough questions. the reason we went into
afghanistan, it is important to remember, the 9/11 attacks, which were planned from al qaeda based in afghanistan. that's why we were there. after that, the objectives group to try to stabilize afghanistan and prevent it once again returning to an environment which could provide safe havens for groups like al qaeda. so it is important to remember why we are in afghanistan. in the last 10 years lots of progress has been made in terms of defeating al qaeda in afghanistan. there's very limited presence in afghanistan now, which is why president obama has set a timeframe to withdraw the majority of troops from afghanistan, i think. the question is right. terrible things happen in afghanistan and our troops are put in very difficult situations and have done a fantastic job.
but i think the time is for the majority of international troops to withdraw. but i think that needs to be done responsibly, because i think if we completely pull the legs out from the situation in afghanistan, i think you could easily see the structures collapsed. so i would argue that we need to withdraw but it needs to be in a responsible manner according to the times and that has been agreed by the u.s. and our nato allies to bring the majority of troops out by the end of 2014. x on our twitter page writes -- a little history about usip as we come to you live from their new permits headquarters in washington. andrew wilder is an expert on afghanistan and pakistan. we have about 10 minutes left with him. let's go to catherine, democratic caller in ohio.
caller: good morning. i watched c-span every morning since i retired. my question has to do with contractors. how much money, taxpayer money, has been made by contractors in afghanistan and iraq? i live in hamilton county and that is where cincinnati is the largest city. our roads and bridges are atrocious. you cannot go 20 feet without running into holes and bridges that are almost falling down. and we are going to spend my taxpayer money, my children's taxpayer money, my grandchildren's taxpayer money on afghanistan? host: let's take that point. what is usip doing that is unique and is not something the
state department could do? guest: that's a good question. wars are incredibly to expensiexpensive. whenever possible we tried to avoid getting into these situations, which would be the most effective way of saving costs and resources. but they are expensive when you get into it. there's been lots of money wasted in afghanistan in the last 10 years with some of the contracting work that is done there. it is also important to remember there's been lots of good work done as well. it has not been always did. there have been real strides in terms of increasing access to education in afghanistan, in terms of the health care system in afghanistan, and the work that usip is doing if, in particular, we are trying to focus on teaching them to learn how to avoid conflicts like this in the future and how to avoid conflicts at the local level, to prevent them from getting into a larger and more expensive conflicts. usip has really been leading in
trying to understand local dispute resolution mechanisms. in this environment where you have a very weak government institution, it is often up to civil society organizations and local communities to resolve their disputes. so we have been trying to get a much better understanding of how these dispute resolutions work and trying to share that understanding with our military colleagues and civilian politics , isaf, as well as u.s. embassies in kabul. we are moving now to phase down the war engagement militarily and i think a lot of the civilian aid will shortly be reduced in the coming years. but it is important not to miss the point that we not go from may be trying to do too much in afghanistan to then doing too
little. afghanistan is important as far as u.s. strategic interest in that country. we should not abandon i altogethert. we should commit some of our resources to the longer-term to continue developments in afghanistan and making sure it does not become an environment again that becomes a safe haven for groups like al qaeda. host: bruce is on our republican line in denver, colorado. caller: hello. if left to their own devices over there, since it is a tribal culture, would the people not for themselves choose sharia law? what claims do we have that because i government is? in any? -- is in any way legitimate? guest: tribal laws apply differently in different parts of the country. there are strong ethnic divisions in afghanistan, also,
so you can get agreement on some tribal laws in one area, but it is hard to apply them throughout the country. if i agree in many parts of afghanistan, if given an option, many would choose sharia law. but then you have in addition to the tribal and ethnic divisions, you have divisions between some of the more educated middle classes emerging in the urban centers of afghanistan and some of the more deeply conservative rural areas. so it is very difficult to get consensus on any one system of government or laws moving forward, which is why i think in this day and age democratic elections are still the best way to get elected parliament that can represent the different parts of the country, the different ethnic groups around the country, and get consensus on was that they can agree to apply throughout the country. -- on laws.
host: this the war on twitter writes -- -- this viewer. and now i rinas calling on the democratic line -- irene. caller: thanks for what you do to promote peace. i'm wondering if there are any efforts going on to help protect the women in afghanistan and if women are being used as change agents in the middle east? for instance, when israeli women and palestinian women get together, they may be, theya peace better than men. i wonder in general what are your efforts involving women in the troubles we have in the world? guest: excellent question.
it is incredibly important to involve women in these peace processes. that is certainly something the u.s. institute of peace has strongly been advocating for. we are leading an effort currently to try to learn from lessons in iraq and afghanistan in how to increase the role of women in these kind of conflict situations and in terms of promoting peace. next week we are actually hosting a delegation from the high peace council from afghanistan including two of their female members and will specifically be talking about how this role of women can be increased in afghanistan. unfortunately, it is a deeply conservative society, so often it has been a struggle. one of the really encouraging things over the last 10 years in afghanistan is that you do have lots more civil society organizations and women's groups in particular who have become much more active in terms of standing up for their rights, and promoting women and girls rights in afghanistan and
demanding a greater say in the peace process, in the discussions with the taliban that are just beginning. our concerns that a reconciliation process with the taliban could lead to setbacks in terms of the gains made in the last 10 years. but this is why i think one of the real major demands of many afghans, but also something usip has really been focusing on, is that any peace process in afghanistan if that is going to be durable needs to be inclusive. that really means also prioritizing the inclusion of women in the peace process. thanks for the excellent question. host: a democrat in sanford, florida, val. good morning . caller: i want to ask a question. george w. bush said for all of us to hear on tv, after all, sadaam hussein tried to hurt my daddy. i want to ask why we invaded
iraq other than that? guest: i have to say, i'm not an expert so much on iraq. my focus the last 35 years of my life have been on pakistan and afghanistan. so i cannot speak so much to iraq. but in terms of why we invaded afghanistan, it was very directly related to the 9/11 attacks, which were the perpetrators and a lot of the planning of that took place in afghanistan. that is what took us into afghanistan. i think you can question some of the decisions of the last 10 years as to why we are there and the scale that we are there. now there is definitely a clear- cut plan to start the withdrawal process and transition out of afghanistan. but that is being done in large part, i think, because of the feeling there has been so much progress made in degrading and weakening the al qaeda presence
in afghanistan. host: andrew wilder, afghanistan and pakistan program director for the united states institute of peace. thanks for joining us this morning and talking to viewers about the situation in that country. guest: thanks for having me. host: we will continue with our coverage from the united states institute of peace. coming up, our topic will be syria, the peace plan in jeopardy in that country. learning from the associated press this morning but the syrian government says it has started to withdraw some of its forces. but with the u.n. brokered peace deal, the deadline for that cease-fire today, some are skeptical of what is next for that country. so we will talk about that coming up with another expert from the united states institute of peace. our camera is there outside the building. that's the new permanent headquarters in washington. that's across from the state department and across the river
from the pentagon, the war memorials. if you are just joining us, congress appropriated about $100 million in 2005 to build the new permanent headquarters. there's the lincoln memorial. you can see that from its balcony at the united states institute of peace. we learned from the president this morning of the organization that construction was a total cost of $160 million. a third of that coming from private donations. the president also telling us that the usip belongs to congress, in his words. so, oversight done by congress. its budget for next year, the request from the obama administration, $37 million. it got about $39 million last year. that is down from 2010 when it received about $49 million. a little history about usip. it was an idea formed from a commission established by jimmy carter in 1979.
president reagan signed the u.s. institute of peace act into law in 1984. in 1992, usip's legislation was amended to accept private donations to build its headquarters. that was in 1992. and then in 2004, usip expanded their activities with the congressional appropriation. in 2005 is when the money was appropriated to build these new permanent headquarters. in 2009 it celebrated its 25th anniversary. this building was completed in 2011. we will continue with one of their syrian experts, steve-and joining us next. first, terry is a republican in spring hill, florida. caller: yes, i live in spring hill, florida. i have just been having some fruit and i was listening to the
man that apparently was for change. i worked at villanova university in the 1980's. we had people from a afghanistan going to school then. that was almost 30 years ago. aren't understand if we there for peace, that we are only going there for war. it is like they are out of touch with reality. how can they say that we are aiming for peace when i don't know how much money, so much i cannot even fathom, is going there, and we are all struggling here with our nickels and dimes and coupons running from one store to another trying to save money while corporate america is selling us out? all of the food, most of it comes from other countries.
when the stores say that we buy locally and i see mexico, puerto rico, peru blatantly, i think these people are out of touch. what is wrong with them? especially batman and. i don't know how he can look himself in the mirror, the one that was still there and the next one coming up. what is wrong with hillary clinton? where? that money going - it seems like our government is out of control or obama is trying to show the white people what would happen with the blacks. host: mr. heinemann, let's begin with syria, the headline in the wall street journal this morning --
guest: feet kofi annan was able to get unanimous support from the u.n. security council. we have seen the syrian government accept peace proposals several times and has repeatedly shown that it has no commitment whatsoever and no intention whatsoever to honor the commitment it made to implement those peace plans. i think what this tells us is the syrian government is really using these efforts by the international community to buy time to permit it to continue
its attempt to crush the uprising that has been under way in syria since march, 2011, and that it really feels it that these peace treaties, these proposals for negotiations, would open the door to recognition of the opposition, that the regime feels would pose a significant threat to its survival. and so, what we see is a very politically savvy regime exploding the international community while continuing to pursue its core military and political objectives on the ground. host: as diplomacy failed in syria? guest: i think diplomacy has failed in syria. i am not sure that the failures we have seen to date suggest that we should give up on efforts to try and persuade the assad regime that its only option right now, the only long- term option it has is to begin a
process of negotiation that would result in a peaceful political transition. it does seem as if that is going to be a very heavy list. i would not want to invest the diplomatic track with too much significance or impose too high a set of expectations, because we have seen how the syrian government exports diplomacy to pursue its own agenda. but i do think the international community, given the cost and consequences for syria and for the community of military intervention, has an obligation to keep those initiatives going even while they pursue additional strategies for changing the strategic thinking of the regime. host: the new york times editorial page says he's using the cease-fire proproposal to buy time.
guest: it would be helpful if we could get russia and china to support some of the international initiatives that have already been proposed, but i don't think we can count on that. i think if we imagine the outcome we are trying to achieve is a political transition in syria that would remove the assad regime from power, if what we are going to have to commit to is a spain this multitrack of effort that has now been under way for at least the past six months in which we combine four or five distinct strands, the work of the internal opposition, sustain the peaceful protests which have happened throughout this military campaign, the effort of the external opposition, the pressure of economic sanctions,
and the pressure of diplomatic isolation. i think all those efforts combined will be needed to achieve our objectives of a political transition in syria. but i do want to make one point. it is the case that the saudis and qateris are willing to provide arms to the syrian opposition, but it seems clear that no arms have been delivered yet. until the opposition is able to secure some way to upgrade its equipment, to improve its capacity and its training, this will continue to be very much and asymmetrical conflict between a very powerful syrian armed forces and a much weaker armed opposition. host: as our viewers listen to new this morning about syria and we showed them the inside of the united states into the piece where you are and the surrounding area, your new home there in washington, d.c., tell
us what the role is of usip in syria. guest: the institute has been working very closely with different elements of the syrian opposition to try to build their capacity to develop a comprehensive vision for a post- assad future. we have also been working with them to try to address some of the organizational shortcomings within the syrian opposition. the syrian opposition has often been seen as fragmented. some of those stories have been exaggerated, but it is certainly the case that the opposition needs help, it needs support. the institute, because of our very long experience in building the capacity of opposition groups who are committed to peaceful change in countries in conflict or in countries that are suffering from oppressive regimes has something to offer in that regard in the case of
syria. host: we have a republican colleague from sterling, virginia. caller: hi, steve. and thanks for taking my call. i played chess with assad in september or october of 1972. we were supposed to play nine games, but we only got to play three games. he was really good. he beat me. he got me where i was stalemated. how is it that you were playing chess to gather? caller: we were playing over the wire. one of the things, i was amazed at his awareness of early childhood development at the time.h the other thing, he had an
interest in george washington. i said the two reasons he was famous is because he gave us our freedom and introduced the mule to this country, which works harder than a horse. guest: i think bashar al- assad was not even 10 years old in 1972. 36 in 2020 became the president. host: we will leave it there. let me go to a tweet -- guest: no, we don't. there are very small numbers of usip staff and told security clearance. they are very senior management responsible for maintaining the
security of usip facilities. we are right across from the state department, but i don't have a security clearance and very few of my colleagues have them. it is not a condition of employment. if i may take this opportunity to address the comments made by a caller in between segments in which he suggested that we were out of touch and that we were participating complicity in the kind of militaristic policy of the u.s. government, i think we have to understand that one of the most cost-effective strategies for dealing with conflict is by strengthening instruments and mechanisms of prevention is by strengthening at very low cost the local capacity for conflict resolution and by putting frameworks and institutions in place in conflict zones that sustain peace after conflicts have ended. this is so cost-effective and so reasonable and important that i don't see how anyone looking at the work of usip could conclude
that we are somehow complicity in some broader policy of militarization on the part of the u.s. government. we are one of the very few institutions that actually holds promise for helping the u.s. to prevent conflict, to end its less-expensive lee, to reduce the human cost of conflict, and to sustain peace once the conflict has ended. i would hope the viewer would take another look at usip, a bit more objectively, and recognize how much good the institute is doing for u.s. national security. the reality is there are places in the world where people are doing things that pose real threats to the united states. if we can deal with those threats without armed intervention, the whole country will be much better off. host: the institute's work with the united nations? guest: the institute does work with the united nations. we collaborate with the u.n. in the genocide prevention task force and we also work with
committees of the united nations in a variety of other capacities to try to develop principles and procedures for dealing with some of its toughest security challenges that the international community faces. this is one of the things that i think the usip can do in ways that it may not be completely possible for some of our colleagues in the official institutes to do, because we can explore ideas and test possibilities and strategy that go beyond existing government policy. that gives us the chance to be creative and develop new possibilities for the promising through our connections to organizations like the un host: was the institute's involved in this un brokered cease-fire led by kofi annan with syria? guest: we were not. we did consult with some of the members of his team, but we had no official role in that process. host: democratic line, fairfax,
virginia,. -- democratic caller in fairfax, virginia, john. caller: i recommend that you propose a plan to have a world court and rules for rulers and use the threat of a drawn attack f they don't appear at the -- or send a representative to negotiate peace. what's your opinion? guest: fortunately, within the last several years, exactly that institution has been established. its international criminal court which meets in the hague. it was an innovation that grew out of many decades of frustrating efforts to try to hold senior officials accountable for gross violations of human rights laws. the icc now exists.
it has the legal authority to override national sovereignty in cases where local governments are not doing everything they can to hold accountable senior individuals complicitous in gross crimes against human rights and violations of international human rights law. we have seen that happen. we have seen the icc step in, as it did in eastern europe, told leaders accountable. the u.s. has supported efforts to do so. there are sanctions in place that create incentives for governments to cooperate with the icc. we are very fortunate. even though the icc is a new institution and still has a lot of work to do before becomes fully mature, if we are fortunate that exists and that it is beginning to play the kind of role that its creators hoped it would as a place where people can be held accountable for
their actions. host: on twitter -- guest: you know, it is unfortunate that some of those who are advocating for an intervention in syria use as a justification the effect of intervention on iran's standing in the region. i think that gives the idea that intervention is a very instrumental cast. it suggests we don't care about syria and we care about weakening iran. i would suggest that syria is a tonkin gulf situation. that was a completely contrived incident and to give an earlier
administration the chance to expand mariposa presence in vietnam. the extraordinary violence that we see happening in syria, almost 1300 people killed between april 1 and april 9 in the time when the government was supposed to be preparing to implement a peace treaty. this is not a tonkin gulf. this is an enormously distressing context in which tens of thousands of people have suffered. and so, i would be reluctant to make those kinds of comparisons. host: neil is in fort lauderdale, florida, an independent. caller: good morning, folks. sir, i applaud your efforts and those of your agency. what perplexes me is our involvement, whether it be syria, afghanistan, iran, iraq. it seems we are in a position where we are being forced to
change a cultural mind-set, which is systemic. i don't think we have a good handle on the genesis. it's a very difficult to accomplish. we could pump dollars and bullets and give them all sorts of aid. but if anyone at your institute -- has anyone at your institute ever paid close attention to the origins of all this and take a cycle social? look social? because it is very difficult to change a cultural mind-set that has been ingrained in these folks thousands of years. guest: you know, you are right. if we imagine that one of the obstacles to a conflict resolution are deeply ingrained sort of cultural norms and practices, those are very difficult to change. i think what the institute has done has been to try to uncover and cultivated those aspects of every culture that value peace,
that value dialogue, there are traditions of justice and reconciliation that are present in every culture, in every society in which institute has worked. one of the things that distinguishes the institute's work from the work of some other organizations is that we don't walk into a country with some prepackaged understanding of what the culturally appropriate strategies are for conflict resolution or conflict prevention. we listen, we try to learn about what the local cultural norms are that might support efforts to secure peace and conflict resolution in a given case. and we do what we can to build and strengthen those norms and practices so that whatever emerges from a process is seen as culturally appropriate and resonates locally in ways that give it some stronger possibility of being sustainable. i think that is one of the most important bases of success in
the field of conflict resolution, is to avoid the kind of hubris that so many people seem to bring to this field, in which they think they have the right solution. we tried to listen to what our local counterparts think are the rights of russians and then build from there. host: steve vitamin e is senior policy adviser for middle east initiatives at the united states institute of peace. you mentioned the death toll in syria and the associated press reported out of geneva that syria's main opposition groups as 1000 people have been killed by government forces in the last eight days. so that is the updated on that. james r. twitter says -- guest: the institute has not and will never play a role in equipping any kind of armed forces with weapons.
that is so far beyond our mandate that it is inconceivable that the institute would play that kind of role. what we do -- what we are doing with the syrian opposition is to facilitate an effort that is the syrian-led to identify a vision for what they poseda sawed syria might look like. -- post-assad syria might look like. we are trying to reduce the uncertainty and to try to persuade syrians that the assad regime, far from being a defender against instability, is the source of instability. it is a driver of instability. and syrians should be looking toward a future that is more democratic, more stable, and provides better opportunity for economic development. but until the opposition can
articulate that kind of vision, some lingering doubts among syrians inside the country is understandable. so we feel helping to overcome and dismiss that uncertainty is an important contribution to this broader process of political change in syria. that's the kind of approach we take. you're not in the business of arms supplies. host: steve is joining us from inside usip at their new headquarters in washington, d.c. there is the outside of usip located across from the state department, across the river from the pentagon, near capitol hill and the war memorial. how often do you get out of washington and go to syria and other middle east areas? guest: i would love to have the opportunity to visit syria. it is not something that i'm going to be able to do in the near future. but i am in the region or
traveling to connect with those who are engaged in one way or another in the uprising, either governments in europe in the region or opposition groups and actress in europe and in the region at least twice a month. so i do make an effort to get out into the field to find out what people are sitting on the ground and to make sure that our understanding of the situation is not shaped entirely by what we read in the papers here in newport and washington. host: now to cleveland, ohio, a republican. caller: thanks for c-span. i love you guys. the difference between syria and our own civil war, what's the difference? we killed tens of thousands of people in our own civil war and world bombiwere bombing it. guest: we are approaching the point of the civil war in our
country, two opposing armies competing to ensure the success of two different political philosophies, i think we are closer to the point at which the syrian conflict if could be more reasonably compared to our own civil war. at the moment what we have in syria is not an organized confrontation between two and disorganized fighting forces. what we have is a syrian military numbering between 250,300 50,000 troops heavily armed, one of the largest numbers of tanks and armored vehicles of any military in the world deployed against a civilian opposition, an armed opposition that may number 10,000 to 15,000 fighters altogether, poorly equipped, only light weapons. that's asymmetry in the level of force between the government and the opposition has meant that
this looks much more like a low-level insurgency than a full-scale civil war. host: florida, harry on the democratic line. caller: thanks for taking my call. i would like to think about the 21st century. we have been sending our soldiers constantly throughout the world especially the third world as a police force of the world. therefore, undermining the essential needs of the united nations. would it not be more appropriate for the institute of peace to educate the american citizens plus put all this energy into the united nations so that when we have these conflicts which will continue happening in the 21st century and on, that it
would not have an american face but it will have a united nations face? this would definitely help us and our economy and people would like to look at america [unintelligible] the standard of living being higher. host: i will leave it there and have our guests respond. guest: in general, i think i agree very much with the guest's notion that a educating americans about the importance of conflict resolution and peace building is a critical step toward creating a broader understanding of the importance of those objectives in the united states and it is a good thing that the institute, which is really a multi-function organization, we are involved in all kinds of work in support of conflict resolution, as a very
active and very wide-ranging public education program. we are committed to the education of the public. we have a global peace center at usip that many students visit to learn about conflict resolution and peace building. we have a training academy that provides a full curriculum of courses for practitioners in the field to build their skills so that when they go out into the field to function, they can be more effective in the work but they are doing to mitigate or prevent or manage conflict on the ground. because i think all of us really do share the objective of the caller, which is to arrive at a point at which americans understand the value of peacekeeping, understand the importance of conflict resolution if and conflict management, and recognize that they have an interest in supporting institutions and programs that equip the united states to play more effective role in those areas internationally. we always prefer to send