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tv   Politics Public Policy Today  CSPAN  July 29, 2013 10:00am-12:01pm EDT

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are not eligible for medicaid. they tend to have a lot of chronic conditions. i think it will be interesting to see how the states go out who are doing the medicaid expansion reach the population. guest: i will be looking at the limitation process that sarah is talking aboutguest: that is int, given how it is interpreted. of course, that follows capitol hill, so i will be following it. busy. be over 650 comments and questions about health care law. you can see that conversation by .oing over to visiting with kaiser health news over the next couple of months regularly on mondays to figure out more about how the health care law is being implemented and what it means to you. that is all for "washington
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journal" this morning. see you tomorrow morning at 7:00 eastern time. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] coming up live, army chief of staff general ray odierno will discuss the impact of budget cuts on the military and how that is shaping their strategy, going forward, hosted by the american enterprise institute. eastern, today at noon alan krueger, the white house chief economic advisor will be interviewed at a political event. administration,
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treasury, and at the white house since 2009, stepping down to return to princeton this fall. >> the first lady reflects the schism in the united states about what women are supposed to be today. are we supposed to be mom in chief, 1st meet -- mate? -- that the president is supposed to be head of state and government -- is the first lady supposed to be in ideal fashinista, mom helpmate?st if she is going to be the first helpmate, she has to know what is going on in the administration, country, and she has to understand her husband's
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political agenda. so you cannot separate how the first lady presents herself, and the conflicting expectations that the country still has a wives and >> as we continue the conversation on first ladies, the role of the first lady and its move from a traditional home and family to activism on behalf of important issues and the transitioning of public back to private life. the role of the at the white house today, president obama is scheduled to have lunch with secretary of state hillary clinton. no details and with the two will discuss. mrs. clinton has been talked about as a leading democratic presidential candidate but she has not indicated any intention to run. israeli and palestinian officials are gathering to
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resume a new round of peace talks. resumption of talks was made possible by a decision from israel's cabinet yesterday to free 104 long held prisoners in four stages. that release was part of a led byd agreementat the white secretary of state john kerry. secretary john kerry will deliver a statement to the press at 11:00 today, including a aboutnel announcement the middle east envoy. congress is returning for their final week before the august recess. the house of gavels in tomorrow at noon eastern with legislative work expected at 2:00. house lawmakers will also take of a bipartisan compromise bill to address a doubling of student
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loan interest rates. the latest version of the bill was approved by the senate last week. you can watch the house live here on c-span. on c-span2, the senate will be back live with their work on bills regarding the transportation -- regarding transportation and housing and urban development. with federal spending running out at the end of a september, we spoke with a reporter to find out more about the upcoming congressional agenda and upcoming debt negotiations ceiling. host: at the table is gail russell chaddock. thank you for being here. this is the final week before the august break in congress. the question for our guest is, what does congress want to or need to accomplish this week and what is the general mood on the hill heading into the break?
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guest: my sense is they are already thinking about 2014 elections in a big way. they want to leave this week with a strong message to take back to their constituents. host: what are the messages from each side being crafted? guest: what republicans agree on emphatically is that health care reform, obamacare, is going to destroy the economy and its needs to be repealed. that is why next week they are it. it will be their 40th. they are not seeing very dramatic -- increasingly its libertarian wing and establishment republicans, john mccain would find himself surprise to among the establishment republicans.
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host: how bad on the democratic side? guest: i think there is more unity. they have a strong theme. if they can push the republicans to a full hearty the scoreboard for the elections. the conventional wisdom would be it is impossible for house republicans to lose their majority. gerrymandering has been so fine in art and there have been so many districts, it would be very hard to break them. a government shutdown could be added to the list. you could see something like
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dramatic turnout ships or germanic voter reddest -- or dramatic voter registration moves. host: our guest will be with us for 40 minutes to talk about congress as it heads into its august recess. it comes back in september. the numbers are on the bottom of the screen for our guest. the president is making a visit to the hill this week. what is he going to talk about and what is the significance yak -- significance? guest: last week he set out the campaign theme for the next cycle, jobs in the middle class. at a time when republicans are
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going to look like they are not willing to compromise on a lot of issues, the fact that he is making a visit up here sends a signal -- this is an important message for him to send, especially when he found approval ratings are so difficult. traditionally that is a big educator. august recess. it comes backhosf tease of tape from congressman jim mcdermott. he is the ranking member on the subcommittee. he dismissed reports that the chief of staff was working on implementing the affordable care act. he added that the white house is inefficient on this build. [video clip] collects -- >> i am on the ways and means committee, i am the
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ranking member of the hill subcommittee, i have never seen him. >> is that a problem? theycts what it says is are going to make a good talk. the white house has been terribly inefficient in dealing with the promotion of their bill. the 2010 election was a referendum. -- had a referendum on it. we lost to the house. you have to ask yourself, when is the white house going to get up and go? we have been prodding and talking and trying everything we can. problemoing to have a between here and the beginning because it is law. supreme court said it is the law of the land. it is going to be implemented. guest: you heard it right there, democrats are still -- that is when health care was
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just a promise. we have had several years to see what it is beginning to look like. initially things like being able to put young adults up to family of 26 on the insurance policy, that has been an immediate sweetener. now we are going to be seeing more. were you able to keep your insurance? have your rates gone up? i think when the white house pulls back implementation of the corporate side, that was a very important signal. a lot of people were beginning to say that this was a bill that imposes heavy requirements on businesses. a full-time worker is 30. even then copies are not hiring full-time workers -- companies are not hiring full-time workers.
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it makes it an even tougher pill. host: cbs pulls to the news -- cbs news did a poll recently. 39% feel they should repeal it. 36% say expand or keep it. as we go to the phones, congressman tom price from georgia has a bill on the floor. it would prohibit the treasury department from enforcing the health-care law. firstrom georgia is our caller on the democratic line. atler: basically you were asking -- republicans -- cut is not an economic policy.
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he is trying to get immigration reform for the hispanics and people who are over here illegal. why not do something like the feeder program for the urban area. the black on appointment rate is the highest. -- the black unemployment rate is the highest. it is time to look to the black community and help. guest: i was stunned with the latest wall street journal and nbc poll that showed for the first time any roche in and support for this president among his strongest supporters, especially african-american voters. after all of this time, i think at some point the idea was that
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there would be something clear, and improvement. and i think especially the furtive truce the trayvon martin killings was another indication of what did this actually produce? racial conditions in the country are also startling. race relations have gotten worse since 2008. i think the caller raises an important point. even though where -- even though the president is not up for reelection again, he certainly wants a host to support him for these legacy issues for the end of his term. he wants to do more things for the economy. he has to inspire people like you to vote. ith the approval rating as
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is that is not likely to happen. host: we will go to robert in florida. caller: i am wondering what your guests take on it is with several large unions. i am not sure that the other union that have recently sent a letter to the congress, saying that they do not want to implement obamacare within their ranks, i think that is very telling, why the administration is out there trying to boost obamacare favorability with celebrities and sports teams. thank you. guest: they were concerned about the affordable care act from the start because of some of the trade-offs that were made, especially toward so- called cadillac healthcare plans. millions have made and or ms. -- enormous sacrifices for decades. they have developed for themselves strong healthcare
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plans, and for them, the affordable care act is a significant step down. i don't think you are seeing anything here. you're just seeing, as you point out, a very important moment, a group that had doubts about this from the start making points publicly. host: my guest covered congress from 2000 until last year. gail russell chaddock has become the washington political editor for the "christian science monitor." we will take more of your calls and tweets. some of the pushback on healthcare made itself clear here we want to talk about 64 house republicans who sent a letter to john boehner. to bring any legislation funding, what they call obamacare to the floor. 12 senate republican sent a letter to majority leader reid say they would back it supported government bill unless excluded funds for healthcare. that is a lot of pressure. guest: yes, it is. it puts pressure on a speaker
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who came in -- he wanted to make, let the house work its will. under nancy pelosi's leadership, pretty strong guidance from the top. the speaker consistently refuses to say where he stands on issues. beyond imposing or carrying out the role of its predecessor. that you don't bring a bill to the floor and listened as the majority of support in your own caucus. i would not be surprised if he used floor votes and news on this front just as he did last week with a remarkable bill by arguably his biggest opponent in the house, on a bill that really dig into what the nsa can do with spying.
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this was a bill that the speaker did not personally support, and he even came out against it, but he did a lowered onto the floor. i think you're going to have to see something similar here. he cannot crush the libertarian wing of this party. he has to give them votes. but you will see behind the scenes, as you did with this national security bill, a lot of stumbling to make sure that before voting in the end goes with leadership. host: it is not often the speaker makes a floor speech. here is a speaker banner from wednesday on the obama agenda. [video clip] >> if the president wants to help, he ought to approve the keystone pipeline that has bipartisan support here in the house. he ought to work with us in the bipartisan majority to delay the healthcare bill about to give the american people, their family, and individuals the same rates he wants to give to big businesses. and he ought to stop threatening to shut down the government unless we raise taxes. host: a little bit of what the
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speaker wants there. and to twitter for our guest -- is it possible this time that republicans will not raise the debt ceiling? there is a lot going on here, government funding, healthcare, debt ceiling. explain how they might all come together in the coming months. guest: they all come together in nine glorious days in september. congress is here for another week, and then they go out for a month. and then they come back here that second week in september, be here for two weeks, then the house goes out, then they are back for a day, and then everything happens at once. the fiscal year ends, that means government is no longer funded and less they can agree on something. and then sometime after that, sometime between the first of october and the end of the year, technically the country runs out of money, and that is when a debt ceiling needs to be raised again. so all those things are happening at one time.
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what some would like to see is a grand bargain that includes raising taxes, cutting some entitlements, and spending cuts, but not to the level that was agreed to in the last fiscal cliff in 2011. tothat time, congress agreed two things. one, cap on spending for the next 10 years, and two, we will have a sequester, which is about $100 million of cuts split between defense and domestic spending. so what you're going to see in september is a real fight over that. democrats have already in the budget they presented said we don't respect those caps because we are going to have a grand bargain in september. republicans said we already have a grand bargain, and those are going to run on. that will be enough to make it difficult. then the libertarian wing of the republican party all have items. one, and the senate, we will not pass the spending bills
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unless obamacare is defunded, and either done or defunded. you will see a 20-week abortion limit. it is a congress that has not function well or some would say even at all. but my only sense is that republicans are reading loud and clear -- if they should on the government again, it is going to be something like what happened to newt gingrich in 1995. republicans have newly taken over the house, they provoked a crisis with president clinton, the government shutdown, twice actually. in the end, republicans were blamed, and it clobbered them in the next election. republicans could actually lose the house over this. i think they will do everything possible to avoid a shutdown, but you are not going to hear a
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word of conflict until the last possible moment. host: back to your calls. new jersey, nick, democrat, thank you for waiting. caller: am i on? host: you are on. caller: i would like to ask a question about increases in healthcare, especially in my case. i am a 69-year-old, retired man. my wife is only 62, she will be 63 in october. here is my problem -- i have to pay for her health insurance. we are paying $1000 per month for blue cross blue shield. i received an e-mail the new rates starting in september. $1502 a month. how is a healthcare plan helping me anyway? we make a little over $60,000 a year. to pay $18,000 for one year for healthcare seems insane. that is my question to you.
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very: you have said concisely what the problem is for democrats. with support of this bill. that is what you heard a congressman sound so urgent. we want the president out there using all of his eloquence to support the bill, and to convince people like you that yes it may be going up right now, however and the longer run, this is somehow good for the country. all of the people not currently covered will be covered, and that will be good for the country. but it is the case that is not obvious when you open the envelope and look at your own bill. it is going to be a tough one for democrats. i think they have delayed the business side, but individuals that aren't currently covered are going to have to start buying premiums, including young people who may not think they are affected at all. maybe they don't have good jobs, maybe they're not working
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to their full capacity, and it is going to be a hit. i think a lot of people are going into the voting booths in november wondering about this bill just as you are. from here is a little way the president from earlier this week. [video clip] >> i am laying out my ideas to give the middle class a better shot. and if the republicans don't agree with me, i want them to lay out their ideas. if they have got a better plan to create jobs, to rebuild our infrastructure, and make sure that we have got great ports all along the gulf, come on, let me know what your ideas are. i am listening. if they have got better ideas to make sure that every american knows the security of a affordable healthcare, well, share it with the country. repealing obamacare and slashing our budget is not an economic plan. there is no economist who would look at that and say that as a way we will help middle-class
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families. we will really grow doing that. shutting down the government just because i am for keeping it open -- that is not an economic plan. payatening that you won't the bills in this country when we have arty rack up those bills, that is not an economic plan. that is being a deadbeat. host: pushback there from the president. guest: what you just heard is kind of campaign boilerplate. republicans have a different boilerplate. but that is the back-and-forth that has been going on for six years now. what republicans say in response is we will get the economy back by business, grading jobs, and why aren't they created jobs. too much regulation. you will hear on this week on the house floor 10 bills presented that will -- less regulation and protect
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americans from excessive government. they will talk about concern about spying, the irs scandal some months ago, preventing groups from getting tax-free status if they are too conservative. there will be a lot of talk about all of the downside of big government, and the promise that is business is lifted from the burden of regulation, and especially the burden of the affordable care act, they will create more jobs. i think the argument you will hear a lot has to do with part- time work. there is a lot of -- a statistical title going on about what those unemployment numbers mean when new jobs come on the market. are they full-time jobs, are they part-time jobs? i think the americans who are underemployed want full-time
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work and cannot get it. a group that both sides will be targeting, republicans will say when you have a health-care law that penalizes companies for full-time work, are you surprised that only part-time work is available to you? that is what the debate is going to sound like. host: bruce on the line now, independent, you are on the line with gail chaddock, "christian science monitor." caller: good morning. your speaker said earlier about advancing the age to be able to keep young people on the insurance until they are 26 years old. the only thing about that is the parents are the ones that are paying for it. there is no government subsidy or anything. as your 69-year-old caller said earlier, his premiums are going up. everyone's premiums have gone up since obama care was enacted. the new american dream now will be to have two 30-hour a week jobs so you can be working 60
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hours because they're going to cut you back to which the restaurant business and everybody is doing already. and then you're going to have to pay for your health insurance. i don't see where obamacare, you know, everyone has healthcare due to the unfunded law that was passed years ago, why do you have to be treated when you go to the emergency room at no cost or some cost, so then if you have insurance, when you go to the emergency room, they charge you three times more. host: let's get a response. guest: i think if you go back to when health care was first on the floor, there was a big argument made for advantages to people who are not covered. that millions of people currently not covered would be brought into this system. there is a difference between getting regular care, pregnancy, maternal care, and going to the emergency room when
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something desperate is happening. the president made an eloquent case at that time that it would be good to try to do this. at the last couple of callers have said, now there are new numbers to look up. we're not hearing so much of the people that aren't covered. but the people who have had coverage do feel the pain of it. and they have it in black-and- white, what it is it's going to mean to them financially. so it is a much more intense issue, especially in a midterm election when not many people typically show up to vote anyway. the people who show up are the people who are angry. the people who expect something good from his bill they not be angry about it yet, and may not be the voters that decide who controls the congress in november. host: 15 minutes left with our guest. duane is calling. caller: good morning.
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i would like your guest's opinion. i call myself a disillusioned republican. the reason is sort of like -- people in congress who pass laws, and including the affordable care act, and then they exempt themselves from those laws. [laughter] and we are not talking about just some, we are talking about whether their democrat or republican, across the board, government and people who pay into the government or have some vested interest are always exempt. at state levels, all across the country. i am a self-employed person. all of us are feeling this. a don't care if it is democrat or republican. if you are living in this country, and you pass a law, you want to be subject to that
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law. we don't have aristocrats, but that is what it has become. i would like to hear your opinion about that. thank you. guest: without getting into specifics about that, it was one of the big themes when republicans took back the house in the 1994 elections. one of the first thing they did was try to ensure that members of congress abide by the same rules that everybody else does. a lot of perks were taken away at that time. there is a lots of internet rumor out there about special benefits that members of congress gets, but when you run them down, in fact they don't get. if they ever did, it does not happen anymore. we really need to go through this on a point by point basis. but i am interested in this, but it is more obligated. if you send me an e-mail, just put c-span on it, i would really be glad to give you the
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research i have done on some of those points, and tell you exactly the ones are that you are concerned about. it is an interesting question. host: one viewer via twitter asks us -- can you speak about tax reform and food stamps? what is the story their? guest: food stamps were thrown off the bus when house republicans tried to -- did pass a farm bill that has been lingering for a long time. over the years, what the farm bill has become its subsidies to farmers, but increasingly food subsidies as well. cannotlth department keep their own caucus together on the cost of a farm bill where i think about 80% of it is now the food-support piece instead of the farm-support piece. >> we will leave this
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discussion at this point. we go to the american enterprise institute for marks from army chief of staff ray odierno. fromcks on the military budget cuts, and how that is affecting their strategy. >> thank you for joining us for our second in the joint chiefs of staff series, the conversation with each chief. we are lucky to host ray odierno this morning, particularly because, as chief, depending on the way you look at t, he has very few watches -- -- an, deputy secretary, bosses -- chairman, deputy secretary, or has very few bosses. this week all of his bosses are out of town. .e are grateful for his time
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we will be very casual. we will engage with you. my name is mackenzie, i and a fellow here for national whic security. ray odierno is a west point graduate, a field artillery officer, 38th chief of staff appear before he assumed this job, he had both senior positions running u.s. forces, multinational in iraq, 2006 to 2010, including the surge of u.s. forces which i am sure he can speak to at length. just about hitting his two-year mark as chief, now more senior and ready to talk about these issues at this rare time to be chief of staff. certainly will be in history books. we welcome those live on-line. you can reach us through #aeijes.
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to could also use our handle reach as with any questions and we will try to get them to general odierno. we will also be having microphones throughout for you to join is in the conversation. i will kick it up with a few moderator prerogative questions and get the chief warmed up for all of you. i want to start by welcoming the chiefs back to the states. he just returned from a trip to india. this is a country that has had two recent visits from other officials, including one from china, where the premier made his first overseas visit to india. then there was an unofficial visit when chinese forces crossed into indian territory this spring. i think these two events encapsulate a lot of what we are watching and seeing from afar in the region. there is the hope of better
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relations, peaceful prosperity, but also a quiet risk of old fashioned power politics. i would love for the chief to talk about his trip, what he saw, thoughts about how he can work with india to advance our policy in asia. >> thank you for having me. i am pleased to be here and having the opportunity to discuss lots of issues. we could probably talk for eight hours. it was my second time in india. the last time i was there was about five years ago, at that time, military adviser to secretary rice. very different time back then. that was 2005, 2006. for me, it was a really important visit. my first visit with my counterpart, general singh. i had the opportunity to talk about a variety of issues but we realized we have so much in common, the two largest
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democracies in the world, based on two very professional armies. there is much we can do to learn from each other. so we talked a lot about the way ahead in the region, the importance of operations in the region, and then they took me up to their northern command, which is their most important command, which is responsible for the borders of pakistan and china. i had the chance to meet with , and staff and commanders what really caught me was the fact that, what they have been doing for the past 20 years, is what we have been doing for the past 12, counterinsurgency, protecting their space, a lot of lessons learned. there is a lot -- a lot of knowledge we can share. that will be the basis of the
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continued relationship, the sharing of information about what they face on a day-to-day area, withe kashmir pakistan, as well with china, a minor incursion not long ago. there is a lot we have in common, sharing professional development, understanding techniques on what we see will be potentially prominent as we deal with future problems, not only around the world, but there and in the middle east. thing i would say is, as is in many of the asia- pacific countries, the army is the dominant service in those countries. india is a prime example. byfar the largest service, far the most influential. it is important for us to build army-to-army relations as we continue to rebalance the asia-
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pacific region. >> i have a feeling some in the audience will want to discuss the army's role in the asia- pacific region, what will it look like going forward? it is a good segue to the next topic, one which you are all familiar with. the drawdown of the u.s. army. this was a decision made over a year ago, now well underway. you are personally and wrote -- overseeing that. you recently announced a a totalon of 10 teams, of 80,000 active-duty service members. one of the biggest organizational changes since world war two, and you are the one in charge. i worry, as a follower of defense policy, that in the circles -- with the people whom you speak, and whom i speak, there is often not enough awareness about the fact that
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this but the decision is the result of the budget drawdown that preceded sequestration. some of that includes the budget control act. all of these services are busy observing the first cuts under additional reductions that started in 2010. it has been on a downward trend since then. this is the fourth year of defense budget cuts and reductions, three of which predate sequestration. this is a significant change for the army. if sequestered continues into next year, 80,000 may look like an overwhelming number, and that could be that there is more. what is the impact on troops and their families, what are you thinking about as you implement this? >> you are right, these initial
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cuts are the $487 million budget reductions we agreed to prior to sequestration. the initial cuts were due because we have increased the size and the army because of our presence in iraq and afghanistan. difficultt was a decision, it was one that was somewhat in line with our new strategy. as we now look ahead, looking toward sequestration, there are a couple of problems. if you even agree that we needed to cut the military to the extent we wanted to, according to sequestration, the way we go about it is really not right. that it gets us out of balance. my responsibility as chief of staff is to maintain balance between proper modernization to
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give us the best systems possible, to make sure our soldiers are successful. second is to make sure we maintain a level of readiness so that we are ready if called upon. the third piece is the end strength that we believe is appropriate. you have to balance all of that. you want to have the capability id capacity to deter what would call miscalculating decisions, based on their belief that we do not have the capability or capacity to respond. that is one issue. the second issue, based on sequestration, we have to come down so fast, we cannot take enough people out fast enough. as you take people out, you have to pay benefits as you let them go, so there is only a certain number that you can take and every year, otherwise it cost you more to take people out. so we have this in balance or it will affect my interpretation
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and readiness. so as i look ahead, people often ask me -- people ask me what keeps me up at night. if i'm asked to employ 20,000 soldiers summer, i cannot guarantee that they will be trained to the level where they should be because of the way that sequestration is being enacted. that is a concern to me. that means we will still send soldiers, we will train them to a lower level and will be individually ready, but they will not have been able to train collectively the way we would like. that means operation would take longer, and important, would probably mean more casualties. so that is the concern. even if i said, let's do sequestration, it would have been written differently to give us time to execute it properly, so that we can do it in the back years. let us get there in the right way so that we are not taking so
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much risk this year, next year, the year after. the other comment i would make, i do worry about the size of the cut. in order for us to keep it balanced -- one thing that the secretary of the army and i have been clear on -- we are going to have an army that is ready and modernized. we have to keep reducing the size. potentially, i believe, we could get to such a point with size that we will have to completely we look our strategy and how we think we can use the army in the future. those will be continue discussions we have as we go forward. >> i know the budget impact is particularly severe on the army. once the reprogramming requests were approved, the airport's -- air force were able to get some ground forces back in the sky, and i know the army is not able
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to quickly turn around as quickly. i know the furlough impact has been significant on the army workforce, and i sympathize. three years ago, i staff the bipartisan commission known as panel, andependent in 2010, president obama's first year in office, a request was , cancelchange strategy a lot of modernization initiative that were under way at the time. , budget programs reductions continue from there. this commission looked at the pentagon defense strategy and budgeting and, it was remarkable, that was stood up when the president party held congress. they thought it was important to that. about a lot think
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of the issues. the panel was very concerned about the health and the viability of the all-a volunteer force. this was three years ago when party started changing. -- priorities started changing. we took on stress tests of the volunteer force, and i want to read a couple of finding that the commissioners issued as part of the final report. there was concern back then, and you recall this is the beginning of the recession. nonetheless, it was not where we are today economically. but there was reason to doubt recruiting and retention in the military could stay as strong as it had in previous years once the economy started to recover. some specialties and in portions of the country were same weaknesses in recruiting and retention. there was concern among the panel about the ability to recruit in the future, the 16 to
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24-year-old age group -- 26, actually, the key target for all services, particularly the army. attendre choosing to college, the propensity to serve declining and the number of influencers talking to them is declining. i know that is something that you think about. finally, the rise in traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, other things that affect cardmembers possibility to -- that affect ability tourrent deploy. talk about wanting down iraq, iraq and afghanistan twice, and still engaged with the u.s.
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forces right now, of starting four years of defense budget cuts. how is that going? demand has gone down quite a bit from 2010. the peak was in 2010 because we were in gauged in iraq and we were just beginning the surge in afghanistan. that was one of the higher points of numbers of people deployed. 2008 might be higher. was the highest stress that we have had on the army, specifically, since we were carrying the largest burden of both wars. a couple of things i would say, as i look back, and then forward. hasall-volunteer army performed superbly in the last 12 years. yes, there is stress, there is posttraumatic stress, tbi, some
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problems with families, but as we have gone back historically to when we did not have a volunteer army, the problems are not much different. the volunteer army has held up. we have to make sure -- my worry is we cannot forget that we have these issues. there is a lot of attention on ptsd, a lot of attention on tbi, a lot of attention on making sure our wounded warriors are taken care of, attention to make sure we have programs in place. i worry about five years from now, 10 years. we know that part of this generation will be affected for a very long time and we have to make sure, with the budget cuts, that we keep our attention on this. the one good thing that has happened, in all of this, the v.a. has not been subject to sequestration. they will be the ones
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responsible 10 years, 15 years from now, to take care of these young men and women who sacrificed so much. one of the indicators that i look at and a look of the help of the force. i look at it differently in terms of recruiting. the problem we have is the 19- 24-year-old that you talked about, the problem is not the propensity to surf. the problem is, are they qualified to meet our requirements to serve? that is, high school graduate, and most importantly, obesity and physical fitness. what we are finding is about 23% are qualified to come in to serve. to me that is a bigger problem. what we are trying to do is work different programs where we increase physical fitness, nutrition, and our recruiters now have programs in place
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where, if someone shows an interest, to help them get prepared to serve. to me that is the real problem we have. we do watch the economy closely and the bellwether for us is when unemployment gets below 6%, we start having more difficulty in recruiting. infar, the last two years, terms of how we measure quality, the best quality we have taken in in a very long time. so we are seeing a propensity to continue to serve. year,e first time, last not everyone who wanted to reenlist in the army was allowed to. we turn some away. part of that is because of the downsizing we are going through. for now we are ok, but the issue becomes three years from now, four years from now, five years from now, and we have to continue to make sure we remain in the consciousness of the
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country, understanding the importance of service, and making sure we have young people interested. the other piece is with officers. west point this year has had more applicants than ever. and then the quality is higher than it has been. there are a number of reasons for that. lately, west point has scored very high for its academic standing in the country, recognized as probably one of, if not the best leader development institution in the country, if not the world. i think there are people that want to serve, young people that want to serve. people ask me, one of the reasons -- women are becoming more important in the army. we want to make sure we have opportunities available to the pool of qualified men and women. we have to make the best use of that talent as we move forward. for us, it is really important
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that we increase those opportunities, so we maximize the talent that is available to us. overall, the help of the force is good. the next couple of years, though, we have to watch carefully as we come out. suicides are still higher than we would like, obviously. we are making progress but not as much of the web like. we have to continue to monitor and insure we have the right care for our young soldiers who have the unseen wounds, ptsd, tbi. we will continue to work on that hard. >> i share your concern about needing to keep awareness for years to come, not just now when the debt ceiling is in the news, these issues that will persist for you and your successor. we will be counting on our friends like congressman cotton -- thank you for coming, sir. helping to keep it in the
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consciousness of members of congress and their constituents in the future. you and the fed chairman are watching the unemployment rate closely. one thing that we talked about juste qdr panel was not recruitment and retention when the economy turns around, but also the impact in the budget. recruiting dollars have historically been cut at that time. it is remarkable your statistic about if 23% are eligible, that ineligible, which is a shocking statistic. , to goquestion to you briefly back to your trip to india, you recently promoted to head of the u.s. army pacific from a three to a four-star position. you said that this was due to the and predictability of the
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korean peninsula and the overall strategy to the white house and everybody. the white house announced an try to bring down headquarters staff and sizes, flagon general officers, particularly with an emphasis on command staff. about could talk briefly the position, why you elevated it, and some concluding thoughts about the army's role? >> first off, we will reduce our headquarters 20%. we're working on that hard. we are making some decisions in the army that will go down to two-star level headquarters. we are doing a review of that. we will look at how we go about doing that. , therms of a four-star
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navy and air force have had a four-star in the pacific for a long time. we reduced significantly the amount of our officers in europe. we used to have a four-star, now a three-star, we eliminated a headquarters in europe. so we are in the process of eliminating those positions. based on guidance, we have reinvested it into the asia- pacific. obviously, there is a un commander and others, but we needed a four-star that could work the rest of the asia- pacific region and be on par with their counterparts, whether it is in china, thailand, japan, in india. we thought it was important for us to have the representation that allows us to work on many tough issues we have in the asia-pacific region. largest armies
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are in the asia-pacific, they play a major role in the development of policy, in the development of cooperation agreements between us and other nations. it is critical that the army is able to talk army-to-army and that we have the capability to do that, moving forward. people do not realize the army has 82,000 soldiers in the pacific, more than any other service. what has happened in the last four years, a lot of them were serving in afghanistan and iraq. in 2013, that will be the last year that we have any units in the pacific serving in iraq and afghanistan. we have now prioritized back to the pacific and we will continue to do that as they conduct several important engagements. we have a huge exercise right now going on. being certified as
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a joint task force, component command. we conducted airborne operation with our partners this week. we have significant activity going on in the pacific to help bilateral relationships, help develop countries capabilities, and the other thing it assures us is is access. those are some of the key contributions we have as we support and shake the asia- pacific region for the future. >> 82 dozen u.s. army soldiers in the asia-pacific is not a whit -- 82,000 u.s. army soldiers in asia-pacific, not a widely known statistic. i will open up for questions now. favor and wait for the microphone. let us know your name, state your question -- and a
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if you want toes submit. >> >> last year, the question came the national guard and you said we got what we got right now and of future cuts come out, everything is on the table. been a initiatives of cutting back on the guard and all those decisions. last week, the language came out that was the cancellation of the army's initiative retiring big c-23. former chief of staff last week said we need to look at a militia construct, increasing the national guard and reducing active duty forces. what are your comments? >> my job is to make sure we are
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prepared for the next conflict and we have to have the right balance between active guard and reserve. they all play an active role. a large majority of the cuts will come out of the active component. the talk of any increase in any part of our force now, to me, is unrealistic with the budget cuts we face. we are trying to sustain that balance. i need a certain amount of the force -- i like football so i compare it to football. the difference between national guard reserve an active component is the active component can practice every day and a guard gets to practice 39- 40 days out of beer so you want a football team that can do one practice per month and then have two in spring training verses someone the trains every day. there is a difference. we need the guard. we have proven that over the last 12 years and the army reserve. we will continue to build an army that is built on the total army concept.
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we should be looking at what is best for our future. for me, it is maintaining the mike -- right balance of forces. we have taken 80,000 out of the active component and will take a significant amount more out of the active component based on sequestration and we'll have to take a little bit out of the guard and reserve. ouroverall percentage of reserve component will be much higher than the active component where before, the active component was higher than the reserve components. i think that is the right balance and we have to look at how we deploy them and not just rhetoric about certain parts of the force. working them very carefully and will continue to work with them. my job is to make sure we develop the best army possible for the future and that's what we will do. >> will take more questions --
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sidney freeberg. on your india trip, is impossible to talk specifics and even india without looking at china, we have a long and kind of convoluted history of the u.s. and india and china and not always a happy tranquil. -- try ankle. they have fought each other in the past and get annoyed when people put out a map the wrong border in the himalayas. how do we engage with a superpower like india or with any partner on the land in the pacific. vietnam comes to mind as well -- without getting the chinese worried that we are containing them, that we are triangulating against them? >> it is how you go about it. we havedia, one thing
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to remember is we have to make sure that they maintain their own strategic autonomy. we do things in line with them to help build capacity and learn from each other. you get a policy of containment when you have large land forces forward stationed in countries. that is not our plan. we will continue to build partner capacity, exercises ranging from missions from humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to other missions. by doing that, it is about building cooperation and confidence. this is so we can work together to resolve and continue to move forward together in the asia- pacific region and include china. this policy is not excluding china, is to work with them. everyone has the opportunity.
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it is about economics. is about making sure everybody has the right access to the economic capabilities that reside in the asia-pacific region. ours is not to contain china. ours is to build relationships, to thed better support commanders as he is sure is that we do not get into conflict. we don't want to build animosity between the major powers in the asia-pacific. our strategy will be built around that. we will develop it as we go along. this is about supporting the paycom commander. him to makewith sure he has the army capabilities necessary in order for him to shape his environment and preventconflict raising tensions in the pacific so everyone can continue to move forward economically and in
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other ways. >> [indiscernible] it could be. as we move forward, we learn from the lessons of the last 10- 12 years and will continue to apply those lessons. we will work with other countries in discussing what these lessons have been. thank you for your insights. on the asia-pacific, what are the capabilities you think are essential for the army contributing to satori joint operational accessed like missile defense and the army developing filled artillery that is relevant in the region and what are the innovative options that the army is pursuing? >> ballistic missile defense is cheap. as we go forward -- is key as we go forward.
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world isce around the growing for ballistic missile defense capabilities. we are working through and we do that in innovative and cheaper ways. for the army of the future, it is about how we are world is scaling our forces in order for us to be able to be global responsive, to move quickly with small elements to meet specific niche needs depending where it is and that's what we're working toward. as we go forward, you will see us deployed smaller packages to meet a variety of missions whether it is middle defense were built partner capacity or put small capacity on the ground to do work or operations to protect u.s. interests. that is what we are looking to do. i am not looking to see deployment of hundreds of thousands or thousands of soldiers in the pacific. that is not the intent.
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it is about having small scare tailored capabilities that allow us to gain access and build capacity and build relationships that allow us to move forward. >> will go to tom donnelly in the back. >> i cannot believe we have gone 2/3 of the way through the conversation and have not talked about the middle east. that is probably unprecedented. even though we are withdrawing from afghanistan and from iraq, the region is hardly peaceful. as a force provider and the the guy who is the start of the army as an institution, what are your thoughts about what you should training, equipping, and scaling the army to do in a region that is still a very violent and uncertain?
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>> as part of the strategic guidance, we continue to maintain stability in the middle east. it is an important mission. as you said, i talked quite often that there is credible uncertainty and much of it is in the middle faced -- middle east. probably the most i have seen it in the service so we have to watch it carefully and be prepared for that. as i prepare for scaled entailed operations in the pacific, we also have to prepare for as parc guidance, we continue to maintain scaled and tellable capabilities of the middle east which could end up being larger depend on what we are asked to do. we have to be able to maintain the breadth capability across the army. everyone in the middle east is related. i think when we look at syria or what is going on in egypt or iran, to me, they are also much interconnected. we have to watch it very carefully.
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as we look ahead, we have to watch it. the one thing i don't want to do is make the mistake we made, i would say back in 2003, not understanding what we got involved with. one thing i am absolutely focused on is making sure our leaders, as we prepare ourselves, understand this socio-economic and other factors involved with in the middle east. they are quite complex. they are quite difficult. they are difficult to understand. as we prepare, that is one of the most important things we need to do is make sure we understand what is going on in syria and what is going on and the impact on israel and lebanon and iraq and the impact that egypt could have all the rest of the middle east. we are still looking closely at tunisia and what impact of that could have and libya.
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all of these things, we have to look at very carefully. one of the things that i worry about is this precursor to the fight going on across the middle east and what does that portend for the future. have to be very understanding of that and be prepared so we think about that a lot and are trading to understand that better and we will maintain the capability of necessary to conduct high end operations if asked. >> all the way in the back by the window. i work and study share in the city. it is good to see you. yous a few rows behind
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saturday and one of my seat mates was the 85-years young ed damish of walpole, massachusetts. i said i would be here today and he wanted to thank you and the joint chiefs and the services in general for all the accommodations and especially for the young jr. of grunts running around with trays of water making sure people did not fall down. i want to thank capt. langston turner, yorker and the pentagon. to follow up on india, you had a 25-minute briefing over there and learn about the 50,000 troops that would be on the border. you also heard about the contest in china against india and the indian exploration. how does the u.s. interprets those remarks and those actions? as you look at this, is about competition for limited resources. it is about making sure everyone is able to sustain their own
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sovereignty and meet their own interests. the conversation is how we go about, from a military perspective, how do we look at this and be prepared to respond. the discussions we had were really about where can we help each other, where can we learn from each other as we look ahead on how we try to insure that some of these issues do not get blown out to something much bigger than it needs to be. those of the discussions that are important. military to military relationships are very important especially in times of crisis. over there and establishing personal relationships with the legions of india to help us -- when a crisis occurs, we know each other and are familiar with each other and can have conversations and can talk about issues and, for me, that is
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worth a lot. we see that going on a little bit in egypt because of our strong military relationships. we can have conversations and talk. they will make their own decision on what they do but at least we have the opportunity to have these discussions because of the relationships through the years. it is true was helping them to develop and building relationships. the large majority of the indian in the were educated united states whether it was at the army war college or national defense university. that helps us to understand each other as we go forward. for me, that is the kind of thing we have to do as we tackle some of the tough problems you just mentioned. >> great question -- what was this event saturday? --it was the caribbean korean. it was incredible recognizing 60
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years to the end of the korean war and the incredible sacrifices that were made in korea. of theiromen are proud duty in korea. they were overlooked for a long time. we recognize that but also there are lessons in korea. when we first got into the fight in korea we struggled because we had reduced to much after world war two. we did not have enough capabilities. we did not invest in our capabilities and it cost us thousands of lives when we first went into korea. it took us eight years to recover in order for us to get in there properly -- it took us one year to recover in order for us to get in there properly and help the south korea. that we a lesson there should not forget as we look ahead to these budget cuts we face. >> absolutely. of something we
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would not want to see repeated again. >> i want to ask you about the ground combat vehicle and knowing what is coming with the budget. are we considering a reality where the army will not have the ground combat vehicle? how strongly are you consider that -- considering that? >> because of sequestration, we have to consider everything. i have a three-year problem with modernization. we will have to look very hard at all of our modernization problem so i am concerned. we need the ground combat vehicle. we have to have it. we might have to deflate it because of budget cuts. we have not made the decision yet the we have to review it. the bradley fighting vehicle just did not perform the way we it to in iraq and
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afghanistan. our soldiers were volatile and it did not have mobility. we need something that is better than that, the ground comeback vehicle is what we need to do that based on the threats we see in the future. the issue will be how quickly we can get there because of budget cuts. ron here is go to an on-line question -- will any of the findings be made public? >> i leave that up to the secretary of defense and his review. us to have internal discussions for us to try to understand where our decisions will be in the future. that is what occurred. i live up to him to decide whether he wants to release those discussions. they were important discussions and good and difficult, very, very difficult discussions. significantng about
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cuts to our department of defense. there are no easy issues. we are trying to do the best we can to ensure that we have the most ready military possible. i know congress is interested in the national defense panel. it remains to be seen what will happen. >> ron epstein - following up on the comments around korea and the lessons learned there have been studies and discussion on bought hollowing out of the defense budget around health care defenses and things of that nature. how do think about balancing that against structure and modernization3. are their programs that you cannot touch that are that important? how'd you like about that going forward? >> the one thing i did not talk about -- the other thing we look
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it remains toat is a readiness modernization. to issue we have is we have have the right package of compensation that allows us to continue to move forward with an all-volunteer force. the issue we have had is the rate of compensation is growing too quickly. -- we don't have to end yourly compensation benefits but we have to reduce the growth and get it back in line with what is reasonable. if we continue along the way we are going now, we believe by 2023, 80% ever budget will be on compensation. we could not operate like that. by now, is about 46% of the army budget and that is high. we would like to be about 42%.
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that impacts modernization, readiness. programs,nization there's a couple of things. there are some things that we have to sustain, some of our procurement programs and new development that is essential. we will do that. where we don't think we have the tech -- we don't have the science and technology yet to make that next leap -- we want to invest in the science and technology to help us get to the next leap so when we get the new capabilities or technologies developed, we can invest in those and move quickly in developing new programs. that is the kind of thought process we have as we go forward. what is necessary for us to sustain the right levels we need an improved e-systems? what are the most important systems we need immediately? had we invest in science and technology to iran -- allow research and development to pick
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the right new technologies that will help us take the lead? we cannot do all anymore. we have enough money where we can invest in r &d and also procure some of the programs with the current necessary. we have to reduce the number of programs and probably have to do r &d a little bit but we will focus on that where we can develop some new technologies. how do we leverage all -- leverage off the shelf capabilities being developed outside the military? it is one we are trying to leverage because that is moving faster than we are. doingnew ways of development and procurement we will look at as well. this is so you can keep that balance in a town where have a lot of numbers flying around and data.
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budget years, we are already in fiscal 2014 and about to enter that debate, in 10 budget years, compensation could be doubled for the u.s. army? that is a remarkable trend. >> and they have over the last 10 years. and we areom aei here to help. to follow up on a question about egypt. it is in a crisis situation amino secretary hagel is talking to the military chief. in the army been involved any way? what role do you see going forward? egyptctually traveled to six or seven months ago. i had agreed visit.
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we don't need tony people talking to the egyptians. -- too many people talking to the egyptians. i have conversations with general dempsey and i think it is important he is the lead in talking to egypt. do as an armyo -- actually we have an exercise coming up there very shortly. we are still preparing to conduct that exercise. we are focused on that right now as to how we compare ourselves to execute that exercise. we will see of the gets exorcised and we hope that it does. obviously, we still have strong military to military relationships but in a crisis, we only need a couple of boys is talking so we try to allow them to do that. we will support them in any way we can. is a multinational? >> it is a significant exercise
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and is multinational and as many partners. >> is a ground force focus? >> it is a combination of all joint capabilities. is october but i will get back to you on that. there you go, september 15- october. make squad level sensor for operations. our company was born out of darpa in the 90's and it is a small business. with mass about that for our soldiers around the world. with regard to moving forward cuts to size and technology and research and development, you had mentioned that increased reliance on cost items. what the concerns i see is in build a house just passed, i think they cut almost
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1/3. how does that fit with military in a 5-10 years but equipping. i see that as a risk and i'm curious how the army looks at that. what the ndaa our position is more that we think s &t and r &d is important. for the that investment future is critical to us because we will not be able to buy everything we want. we want to develop the technologies that allow us to jump when we get back in line. be next two-three years will tough in modernization. 21 we will be0,
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aligned and be able to get back to increasing our investment in modernization. during that time, it is important to develop modernization because we need to find out what these new capabilities are and be able to leverage the work that is going on. >> one right here -- >> [indiscernible] >> that depends on congress. our recommendation is not to freeze pay. we may recommendation to raise it 1%. the house passed 1.8%. i don't know what the senate has
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passed but i don't think they have announced their decision. that sounds like a little difference but it is huge. it is billions of dollars. we think we can manage the pay raises at a lower level for a few years which enables us to save billions of dollars in compensation. that is the kind of thing we look at but not necessarily at pay freezes. we're trying to work with congress on this so we get the right amount. if we continue to have a higher level of pay raises, it will become a problem for us. the whitewo weeks, house, if they intend to exempt military personnel from sequestration next year, they will have to have a notification. right here in the middle. more questions? maybe one more? >> good morning, i'm a first
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class cadet in the military academy. i had a club -- i have a question regarding civil- military relations. said itetary of defense is biggest issue was the growing cell -- civil-military gap. afghanistan in 2014 and with regards to the downsizing, do you see the civil-military gap being an issue and how do you look to bridge that gap at your level and enter agency and down the chain of command? >> request and -- one of the great -- a great question. one of the great lessons learned has been the importance of what we call a comprehensive approach to solving problems. you've got to have it. military power -- every piece of
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this puzzle has its limits but working together, we can accomplish significant amounts of forward progress. for me, it is one of the most important lessons for it struggled in the beginning but over time, we built it up and i believe the interagency -- as we look to the future, we look toward the joint enter agency, intergovernmental, multinational approaches to problems, a comprehensive approach. that is what we need as we go forward. my concern is the one you just raised. we are in pretty good shape because be -- we have been working together in an iseragency context which built strong religious shows. the key is how to sustain it. from a multinational partners, the army is implementing regionally allied forces. we are doing this to continue to build these multinational
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partnerships. for example, although we have pulled about 12-13,000 people out of europe, we're still going to malign a brigade from the united states and other capabilities to continue to train with our nato partners and conduct operations. that will be at a joint training center with that will become a multi national training center where we train with nato and work allies in order to the multi-national angl;e./ we are trying to build exportable capabilities. i worry about the interagency peace. i'm afraid when we get done with afghanistan, everyone will go back to their corners. we have to try as hard as we can to ensure that we still do what we are doing. we will continue to do -- to do broadening assignments of our
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officers and some of our noncommissioned officers. we will get them positions in the state department and treasury and the fbi and other places so we continue to build a relationship of understanding each other and understanding how we work together as well of the governmental intel positions. that is important for us. to me it is critical. we have to ship have shared educational experiences, short and long ones, that help us continue to understand what we need in the future. one advantage we have is our lieutenants and captains and majors will be in the army and they have been involved in this interagency conflicts and understand the importance of it. i think that is a huge leg up for us in the future. we have to continue to say is a priority for us to sustain that.
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so i don'tdifficult want to make it look like it is easy. >> our last question is right here. thank you very much. you have discussed the possibility of pushing back procurement and modernization programs. for companies such as mine, that worries us for the impact on the industrial base as it creates gaps in production lines and we lose skilled workers and things like that. is the army taking steps to play advocate for international sales to keep those lines of live as the building partnership capacity but also trying to keep the lines alive and that that the army said you don't have to pay to restart them later. >> we look at this very carefully as we make decisions.
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what is the impact on the industrial base and how do we sustain our commercial- industrial base and all the organic industrial base? those are key to us as we move forward. - ry trip i go on many of discussions with our allies is far in military sales and the ability for them to continue to purchase things they might believe are necessary for example, in india, they are interested in the apache helicopter. we are working with them. in other countries we talk about we talk about this on make regular basis it makes it easier us for immensities year for us to be interoperable and build up for it -- relationships and helps
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with our industrial base. that is a key part of our strategy going forward to try to make sure we are doing the best we can to we talk about this on make regular increase fn military sales and increase the use of military equipment in the international community. >> i hope we were kinder and gentler than a congressional hearing. we thank you for the full one hour of your time and to your staff for coming today. my gratitude from aei. please join me in thanking our guest. [applause] >> i want to thank everyone for coming. these are important forums and i enjoy these because it gives me an opportunity to answer questions that some other people's minds. sometimes it gets a bit mixed up in the dialogue through many different mediums. i'm thankful for every incoming and i enjoyed it very much so
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thank you for the opportunity. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] that you canember see this again in its entirety on our website, we have more live coverage coming up here on cspan today at noon. alan krueger, the white house chief economic adviser will be interviewed at a political launching the event by the chief white house correspondent, mike allen. is stepping down to return to princeton this fall. we will have live coverage of that into beginning at noon
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eastern here on c-span. also, israeli and palestinian officials are gathering this evening in washington for a new round of peace talks. those negotiations became a possibility after israel's cabinet agreed to a graduated release of 100 for palestinian prisoners. release was part of an agreement brokered earlier this year by secretary of state john kerry to bring them back to the negotiating table. secretary john kerry made remarks about the talks a short time ago including the introduction of the former u.s. ambassador to israel as the new middle east envoy this is about 10 minutes. good morning, everybody. as you all know, it has taken many hours and many trips to make possible the resumption of israeli-palestinian
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negotiations. the negotiators now are enroute to washington even as we speak. i will have more to say about the journey to this moment and what our hopes are after our initial meetings conclude tomorrow. began with president obama's historic trip to israel and ramallah in march of this year. without his commitment or conversations there and without his engagement in this initiative, we would not be here today. the president charged me directly with the responsibility to explore fully the possibility of resuming talks and in our meetings he conveyed his expectations for this process. getting to this resumption has taken the courageous leadership of prime minister netanyahu and
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ministerabbas and i salute both of them for their willingness to make difficult decisions and advocate within their own countries and with their own leadership teams. i would also like to recognize the important contributions of senior negotiators on both sides. ,e titillate minister lipney both of whom stood up in the face of tough criticism at home and use unwavering commitment made the launch of these talks possible. i look forward to beginning work with them tonight. going forward, it is no secret to that this is a difficult process. if it were easy, it would have happened a long time ago it is no secret there for that many difficult choices lie ahead for
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the negotiators and for the seek reasonable compromises on tough, complicated, emotional, and symbolic issues. reasonable compromises has to be a keystone of all this effort. i know the negotiations will be tough but i also know about the consequences of not trying could be worse. to help the parties navigate the path to peace and avoid its many pitfalls, we will be very fortunate to have on our team, on a day-to-day basis, working with the parties wherever they are negotiating, a seasoned american diplomat, who has agreed to take on this critical task at this crucial time as the u.n., u.s. -- excuse me, the u.s. special envoy for israeli- palestinian negotiations. as his deputytin
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and a senior adviser to me will be frank lowenstein who has been working with me on this process from the beginning. in his memoir about the peace process, ambassador indic quotes a poem by samuel callers that says, "if men can learn from history what lessons it would teach us." brings to thisic challenge his appreciation for the history of the israeli- palestinian conflict and from his service under president clinton, secretary christopher and secretary albrecht, he brings a deep appreciation for the art of u.s. diplomacy in the middle east. the experience has earned ambassador the respected both sides and they know he has made the cause of peace his life mission. he knows what has worked and the knows what has not.
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he knows how important it is to get this right. realistic andic understands the israeli- palestinian peace will not come easily and it will not happen overnight. he also understands that there is now a path forward and we must follow that path with urgency. he understands that to insure that lives are not needlessly lost, we have to ensure that opportunities are not lead list -- needlessly lost. he shares my believe that if the leaders on both sides continue to show strong leadership and a willingness to make those tough choices and their willingness to compromise, then peace is possible. martin, i am glad to have agreed to take the lweave from your post that brings to serve in this most important role. i know you are eager to get to work as am i..
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>> thank you. mr. secretary, thank you very much for that generous introduction. suchfor investing in important responsibilities. i am deeply honored to serve you and to serve president obama in your noble endeavor to achieve israeli-palestinian peace. the fact that later today, israeli and palestinian negotiators will sit down in this building to resume final status negotiations after a three-year hiatus is testament to your extraordinary tireless efforts backed by president obama to try to resolve this intractable conflict. president obama made the case so eloquently in his historic speech in jerusalem in march of this year.
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he argued to an audience of young israelis that "peace is just and. peace is peace is possible." and you, mr. secretary, have proven him right. shown that it can be done. i could not agree more with president obama. it has been my conviction for 40 years that peace is possible since i experienced the agony of the 1973 yom kippur war as a student in jerusalem. days, i witnessed firsthand how one of your predecessors, henry kissinger, broke a cease-fire that ended the war and paved the way for peace between israel and egypt. because of your confidence that it could be done, you take up the challenge when most people thought you were on a mission impossible.
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backed by the president, you drove the effort with insistence, patience, and creativity. the tought, today, decisions have been made to come back to the negotiating table. i am therefore deeply grateful to you and president obama for entrusting me with the mission of helping you take this break through and turn it into a full- fledged israeli-palestinian peace agreement. it is a daunting and humbling challenge. but one that i cannot desist from. i look forward with great excitement to working with you, president abbas, and prime minister netanyahu to do our best to achieve president obama's vision of two states living side-by-side in peace and security. i also look forward to working with the team you are assembling
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started with frankl and steve who has made such important -- starting with frankl lowenstein who has made such important strides in this effort. whoears ago, my son jacob was 13 at the time, designed a screen saver for my computer. it consisted of a simple question that flashed across the screen constantly. piece in there a middle east yet?" i guess you could say that he was one of the original skeptics. [laughter] behind that skepticism was also a yearning and for 15 years, i have only been able to answer him "not yet." perhaps, mr. secretary, through your efforts and our support we may yet be able to tell jake and, more importantly, all the young israelis and palestinians
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who yearn for a different and better tomorrow that this time we actually made it. q. -- thank you. >> thank you all. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] >> secretary of state john kerry state department about 45 benigno. talks between israeli and palestinian negotiators is expected to begin tonight in washington. attin indyk leaves his post the brookings institution immediately to become the special envoy for israeli- palestinian negotiable take part in the meeting tonight. at the white house today, president obama is scheduled to have lunch with former secretary of state hillary clinton but no details on what they will discuss. mrs. clinton has not been mentioned as a potential leading candidate for the presidency for
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2016 but has not indicated any intention on whether she will run. >> my thesis is that the internet began with extraordinary promise for democratizing society and making the role -- making the world a far better place. some problems have come through with some of it has been turned on its head largely due to commercial pressures that change the course of the internet dramatically. unless we arrest those pressures and redirect the internet, the future is not necessarily going to be as good as we once thought it would be. >> the future of the internet tonight on"the communicators" 8:00 eastern on c-span 2. >> we will be live shortly with remarks from alan krueger, the white house chief economic adviser being interviewed at a politico launch event. be at noon eastern
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here on c-span. the u.s. chamber of commerce and aarp c-posted a retirement of debt to get more americans to save. the event kicked up the opening remarks by the aaarp executive vice president and included remarks by bob reynolds. morning. presidentenior vice for emigration and health-care pensions. i want to thank you for coming today to the solution form, moving ahead without leaving anyone behind. i think it says something about where we are in the state of washington these days when people look at the fact that the chamber and aarp are doing something jointly on a friendly
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basis. it is about how screwed up things are in washington. employers play an important role in providing retirements and workers are represented by aarp so we are all in this together. the chamber contributed what people may think that we can fight the good but but we often join non-traditional allies like the unions and immigration reform and joined with the civil-rights community on negotiating many changes on the americans with disability act in 2008. we had a big event yesterday at the chamber celebrating those achievements. i would like to use that as a model for how we can cooperate with aartp on important retirement issues. i used to think retirement to makeas not important
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and i woke up one day with gray hair and i realize that i should start thinking about this. about 10,000k people waking up every day and retiring, that shows it is scary and amazing but people are in that same boat. age 65 and over population is expected to double in size in the next 25 years so that by 2013, almost one out of five americans or 72 million people will be 65 years of age or older. there are only -- there were only 3 million people over 65 in 1900. we've got a situation and we need to try to solve this break if we don't solve it in terms of providing increased savings for people across the economic spectrum, we will have a real problem on our hands. that's why i am grateful to be working with aarp. i am a card-carrying member.
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there will be more members. hopefully we can get them to join the chamber and work on them. let me turn it over to the executive vp deb whitman at aarp. >> thank you and good morning to everyone. on behalf of aarp and their 37.5 million members, want to thank the chamber of commerce and all for your interest in learning more about ways to improve retirement savings and america. we are putting the spotlight today of the dangerously low level of savings that many of millions of middle-class americans as well as more moderate earners have a cumulative for their retirement. unless we do something about it, the lack of a sufficient nest egg will mean hardship and downward mobility in old age for much of the american public.
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while we are hosting this at the national press club, is not the present crisis that often dominates the news. it is very real and people are increasingly concerned about their own future and the future of their families. we hear this directly from our members. for the last two years, aarp has broken with more than 10 million americans aged -- has spoken with more than 10 million americans on health and retirement security through an today."alled "youearn >> a woman from connecticut put it this way --"i am concerned about being able to afford medicine and basic necessities when i'm older. i don't see the possibility of retiring." these words are backed up by statistics. of 10 familiesut
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headed by someone aged 45-64 had nothing set aside for their retirement. think about that, nothing set aside for their retirement, four out of 10 older americans. even when we look at all families with a retirement savings, half have less than $44,000 per year saved. that is simply not enough especially as people are living longer into their 80s, 90s, and even past 100. sadly, the growing fear you will run out of savings before you die looks very real for many americans. years willhe golden not even the bronze. as health and long-term care costs has risen at life inspected c has increased, the cost of retirement has become greater than what people are saving. let me give you one more statistic.
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according to fidelity, a 65- year-old couple that retires $220,000eds savings of just to cover their medical bills. the course we are on is extremely troublesome. but there are ways to ease the stages and improve the long-term outlook for working americans and their families. today, aarp and our friends at the chamber of commerce are highlighting three broad strategies that can make a real difference in the standard of living for retirees. first, we need to greatly expand access for individuals to tax- deferred payroll deductions retirement savings plans at the workplace. one in twoonly about workers has the option of enrolling in a retirement savings plan at work and many employees do not bother to enroll even when they have the chance. we want to seek more employers
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offer their workers the opportunity to save for retirement and we want more plans to enroll workers automatically. we can even go further than that. when plans to increase the worker's contributions automatically because we know that making savings automatic makes it easy and can have a huge impact on how prepared workers are for their retirement. we also need to keep and strengthen tax incentives for people of all income levels to save. we need to improve incentives for those who have the most trouble saving on their own. are critical for people of low and moderate incomes. important for people of all income levels. we need to do a better job of educating the public about the importance of saving and how much they are going to need in retirement. we want people to have a clear understanding of the potential
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cost they face in retirement that can easily last 20, 30, or 40 years. that includes the possible cost of long-term care as well as health-care costs that will have to pay at of their own pockets. the public should also understand that social security benefits are modest, averaging less than $15,000 per year for older beneficiaries. in some cases, is much lower than that. that is why we must all help workers understand the importance of personal savings to supplement their social security. we believe that these three strategies can make a difference in americans' lives and america's future. knows,yone in this room people in washington disagree on many things. the importance of a secure retirement should not be one of them. the value of being able to retire with peace of mind and dignity is recognized across ideological and partisan lines.
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it is something all of us want for our family members. and for ourselves. that is what aarp and the chamber here today with this joint statement. differentzations have missions but we each see the need to strengthen retirement security. we each see the need for constructive debate aimed at solving this problem. my hope is that by working together to focus attention on this issue, we can create a safe place for the president and congress to come together and develop real solutions. we're hoping to start a national conversation today about responsible, common sense ideas to solve this problem. unlike some of the other problems our nation faces, the lack of retirement savings is actually one we can fix. that is what aarp members are asking of us and we are listening to them. i would like to turn -- turn the
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podium over. thank you. [applause] let me go through a few more out thecs to round landscape. we've got challenges ahead. there are 650,000 private sector-defined contribution plans covering more than 73 million active participants and nearly 47,000 defined benefit plans covering more. private employers spend over $240 billion in retirement income benefits. i think this is interesting. according to the u.s. department of labor, the last 80% of full- time workers have access to retirement plan. includes all part- time and seasonal workers, 60% of access to retirement plan is
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79%. these numbers demonstrate that employers are in the game and tried to do the best they can with limited resources to provide retirement of some sort for their employees. there's a move away and certainly there is more we can do but there is a lot going on out there and employ -- employers are obvious big players and hopefully, they will continue to move on. you touched on the principles of our agreements. in packs all of us. i'm just very pleased we are having this event. events are great and i have people feel great afterwards. it is the following day that kills you saw what we do with this information later will be key. at this time, i am delighted to introduce our keynote speaker,
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bob reynolds from putnam investments. he is the perfect person to start our conversation and has been a leader in the financial services and retirement industries for decades. he has been extremely into the development of 401k plans. during his tenure at fidelity, grew to $400 billion. bob was been active and outspoken on public policy issues, calling for comprehensive retirement reform and new initiativesa strong bele of savings, thanks for joining us, and we look forward to your comments. [applause] >> good morning, everyone. i would like to thank randy for
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that very generous introduction, and thanks to the u.s. chamber and aarp for inviting me to share thoughts with you this morning. --ould say my first taught thought actually when i think about this meeting, just hearing aarp and the chamber coming together this morning and finding common ground on strengthening retirement savings inspiration. i am reminded of humphrey bogart's famous last line in the movie "casablanca" -- "louie, i think this is the beginning of a beautiful relationship." and i hope it is. because no two groups i think in this country could do more together to events the cause of cause ofance the retire s


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