tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN October 20, 2014 10:00am-12:01pm EDT
running >> it should be a misdemeanor. and we have to make sure that there are consequences. 180 five deaths, 5000 crashes that are alcohol-related. this is costing our society. we have to take a tougher stance on this. i have been endorsed by the wisconsin professional police association, and i will work with law enforcement to make sure that we have in place what we need to cut down on the number of fatalities, cut down on the number of crashes. and also work to make sure that this is not overburden our justice system by having alternative methods to address this. we also have to make sure the people who love addiction problems are able to get treatments. right now, we do not have tough enough consequences that are going to make a difference in really addressing this.
we have not moved the needle enough. it is time for wisconsin to join the rest of the country and realize that this is something that is important. >> this is one of those tragic issues. i remember, years ago, when i was first elected, one of the most heart-wrenching cases we had to talk about was a family from our area that had lost a son because of a multiple, repeat offender. the problems are not just the numbers, it is the number of people who have been out multiple times committing drunk driving. i agree with the attorney general candidates that the first time offenders, criminalizing that is not the answer. it is going after repeat offenders, toughening up the penalties. i think this is an issue that republicans and democrats can come together and work on.
for me, it is one of those where i will work with law enforcement and the police. i have endorsement of the men and women in the milwaukee police association, and the troopers association. they are the people on the road to understand that you have to crack down on the people who are repeating the activity over and over again. >> governor walker has had a four years to address this. you would avoid repeat offenders if there were tougher penalties with the first offense. people need to know, right off the start, before they get into habits that there are real consequences. >> again, it is one of those where i was just at the annual governor's conference on traffic safety. with the good work of law enforcement, the department of transportation, and others we , have actually seen traffic
accidents go down. we're going to continue to build off of that. the way to do that is to crack down on repeat offenders, show the consequences are serious, particularly for those of you back on the road. >> you can watch the entire --ate online at the span.org at c-span.org. was firstalker elected in 2010 with more than 52% of the vote. mary burke serves on the school board and is a former executive at her father's company. >> be part of the 2014 coverage. follow us on twitter and like us on facebook. schedules, video clips, debate previews from our politics team. c-span is bringing you over 100 senate house and governor debates.
share your reaction to what the candidates are saying. stay in touch and engage by following us on twitter, at c-span, and liking us on facebook. >> sean parnell debated his challengers recently. independent party candidate bill walker and libertarian party candidate carol and clift. carolyn clift. it runs about an hour. >> welcome to the 2014
gubernatorial debate. it's good to see so many of you here today. thank you for coming out. i will have some quick things to bring up right at the start. to reduce the possibility of some interference, the management here at the civic center recommends turning off the cell phones, please. along those lines for the candidates, if we could request during your responses in the openings and closings in the interest of time to please stay seated and we will use the mics there in front of your tables. thank you very much. finally, thank you to those of you who submitted your questions ahead of time for the debate. our intention is to post the remaining questions for the candidates during interviews at a later time. thank you for sending those questions in.
we have three gubernatorial candidates with us today. our first relates to our current governor, governor sean parnell. seated to his right is carolyn clift, and to her right is an independent candidate, bill walker. today's moderator of the event is nick bowman. nick is the ketchikan reporter who covers ketchikan and the state of alaska. mr. bowman, please. >> this bill be a 70 minute debate. each candidate will be given the same opportunity to speak. the moderator will determine who is to speak and when. the opening statement re will
begin with sean parnell. the first request will be directed to carolyn clift. then the order will be bill walker and governor parnell. after the first question, who starts will be rotated amongst the three candidates. the closing statements will begin with bill walker, followed by miss clift and governor parnell in that order. opening statements will be two and a half minutes each. answers to the questions will be given two minutes each. closing statements will be three minutes each. the timers in the front row will display the appropriate flag, the yellow, 30 seconds remaining, red means your time is fully elapsed. speaking after the red flag is displayed will result in reduction of time for closing arguments for the one who exceeds his or her time. please hold your applause until the debate's conclusion. we'll begin with opening statements. governor parnell.
>> thank you, and ketchikan, it's great to be back, and a week and a half ago i was here to make that announcement about the two ferries being built in alaska, but built in ketchikan and that was exciting news and the kind of economic opportunity that was strong leadership, visionary leadership, and a strong community, we can accomplish together, not just here in ketchikan but across the state. at your governor i have worked to grow opportunities for alaskans, not just here but throughout alaska. here in ketchikan i have fought for you, for your local jobs and local businesses. fought for the shipyard, alaska fairies, built by alaskans in alaska. i nailed down the marine highway headquarters system and i loved it when i saw five fairies -- ferries sitting out there. together we brought the cruise ships back. refueling alaska's and ketchikan's small businesses, the fire hall. funding for the bridges, and i
know that infrastructure is key to quality of life and economic development. i protected the jobs associated with our timber industry and resource development in the timber industry throughout southeast, including here. supported the fishing industry with state investment and management, marketing and infrastructure. you all know where i stand. and for all alaskans i am the candidate who is optimistic about our future. i see we have a bright future because alaskans know how to grasp opportunity in front of us. i'm running for re-election because of the job of clearing paths for opportunities is not done. that path of opportunity needs to be wider and deep are for us and future generations. we'll drive more economic development to southern and southeast. we're going to create even more tubs for the young people. -- create even more opportunity for young people. i started with the alaska performance scholarships that over 3,000 alaska young pool
-- people are earned. we're going to get a gas line and blow out career technical out caution opportunities. just make those even more possible for our young people. my policies are thoughtful, consistent, stable, and certain. always for alaskans. always with our future in mind, and i'm ask for your vote in november. thank you. >> miss clift. >> so, do i push this? >> the mic should be on. >> oh, ok. all right. well, first of all i want to say, thank you for inviting me. i really enjoyed my stay here in ketchikan. stayed to gillmor hotel last new england, and ate at anna p.m.'s and it was awesome, and everybody has been just wonderful, and i've never been here before and i really have enjoyed it. i am the libertarian candidate for governor. the party was founded in 1971 as a protest to the two-party system. we felt there was really no
difference in the two major parties, and one of the parties based on the principles on which this country was founded. recent events here in alaska bear out there really is no difference between the republican and the democratic party. today, you, the voters of alaska, need to make a choice between the big government candidates and the candidate who represents individual liberty. you need to make a choice between a woman who will fight for your individual freedom and minimize government, or you may choose career politicians who will do or say anything to get elected. alaska has a libertarian history. back in the mid 1970's, early 1980's we had libertarians in the state legislature. alaskans today enjoy a permanent fund dividend and no state income tax. that is why we need a libertarian governor today. i'll be able to trim and slash state budgets until we get down
to the bare bones government that we can afford, with oil revenues dwindling, only a libertarian governor can keep us from going back to the state income tax. we need to keep revenue flowing into the permanent fund. for investments. so that our permanent fund dividends will continue. alaska was founded on the pioneer spirit of rugged individualism and alaskans want to be able to take care of. -- be able to take care of themselves and their own families instead of relying on big government to supply their needs. so, i am the best choice for governor today. and i believe a good leader shows by example that she has high principle. i'll be able to work on both sides of the aisle because i am neither democrat nor republican and i'm not conservative or liberal. i always make decisions for smaller government, individual
privacy, and i'm out of time. so, thank you very much. >> mr. walker. >> good afternoon. it's great to be back in depth -- back in ketchikan. quite a story getting here. we had an opportunity to into also but more of southeast by the fog in juneau, my running mate and you were able to come through cake and meet some folks and then on to ketchikan. it's another chapter of an incredible story we have had. those that don't know me, i'm a pro-life christian, husband of 37 years, father of four children, grandfather of two, and soon to be two more grandchildren. was born in the territory of alaska in fair banks and grew up in a construction family. i grew up poundings nails at an early age in valdez, before the earthquake. when the earthquake became shaking we became house movers. i worked construction on the oil pipeline. the first time i swung a hammer
and actually got paid for it in the family business we didn't get regular pay checks of. i have commercial fished and owned many businesses. working as a builder i put myself through college, through law school. my wife and i have opened a law firm in average, and we -- a law firm in anchorage, and we specialize in municipal law, oil and gas law, representing municipalities. my mission or what brings me to run for governor has a lot to do with the future of this state. when i ran the first time, governor hickle came to me and said you run as independent. i did not follow his advice. and when i see emily hickle she says, wally told you to run as an independent, and i am, and it feel goods. i'm very honored to be running with byron mallot as my running mate. it's about our mission and why we are running together. it's really about the future of the state. we think we need leadership. we need to have a vision for the state, long-term plan. we're very concerned about the
fiscal situation in our state. i'm sure that will come up in the debate today. but that's not -- what excites me is not the fact we'll be able to fix the fiscal situation. we have a great future in the state. the most resource-rich state in the nation. we just have a distribution problem. so we'll build the infrastructure we need make that happen. thank you very much for this opportunity. i hope to have your vote on november 4th. >> we'll start with our questions. the first question is regarding health care and start with miss clift. would your administration reconsider expanding the availability of medicaid in alaska and how will it address the increasing difficulty many alaskans have in finding affordable health insurance? >> i was not a -- excuse me -- no, i would not be expanding medicaid at this point. it's only two years now until the end of the offer we had from the
federal government. and at the end of that two years of time, the state government would have to take over if the payments for medicare and it would be the matching funds it is currently with the rest of the medicaid payments. so, i don't think that's a good idea because we're going to get people on medicaid and then they'll feel they're entitled, and then two years we'll not be able to afford it anymore. as for expanding access to health care, i think we need to use a lot of healthcare professionals that are not mds so that we have a lot more opportunities for people to get access to health care, so we'll be hiring a lot of professionals that will be working with mds but they can work kind of like the community health aide system, i where they have contact with a doctor if they need one. and that would help people get access and would also help keep
the costs down. >> mr. walker. >> i will be accepting expanded medicaid immediately. the reason is that it helps somewhere between 26,000 and 40,000 alaskans and is not the numbers for me that helps alaskans. i'll make decisions about what is best for alaskans. there are a number of reasons i'll be doing that. number one can is we have already paid for it. somebody is getting the benefit of what we paid, just not alaska. let me put the proviso. the acceptance of it, assuming the federal government funds it 100% which they're contracted to do for three years. if that changes we'll revisit it. in the meantime we'll be helping thousands and thousands of alaskans that do not presently have health care. the other issue creates approximately 4,000 new healthcare jobs in alaska and brings down the cost of health care in general. those individuals get health care by going to the emergency room and we pay for that.
that's not a healthcare plan. by the time they do that, there's preventive health care they could have received prior to going to the emergency room. so i'm certainly in favor of that. we intend to do everything we income alaska to bring down the cost of health care. there's a number of things we can do that we have not done to bring down the cost and we have to be pro-active. it affects every area of our life. affects workers comp rates. we have to bring down -- some of the highest healthcare costs in the nation and have to do everything we took bring it down. so i will be accepting expanded medicaid. >> governor parnell? >> i chose not pursue expanded medicaid. obviously we need more accessible, affordable health care, but i want to speak to why i did not. alaska has 700,000 people and 151,000 of those are currently on medicaid. our current medicaid system is not sustainable. nationally and from the state perspective as well.
151,000 people, the total spending and total spending on those people, who qualify, is approximately 11,000 per person. to expand medicaid requires us to pay $44,000 per person for expanding medicaid. that is to my way of thinking not a smart way to go. think we can develop a smarter way to move here. bill walker indicated we have already paid for it. we have not. our nation has a $17 trillion debt. we will be borrowing money to pay for expanded medicaid. our kids and grandkids have to pay that debt if we take the billions from the federal government today. i think there's a smarter way where we can provide accessible, affordable health care. i tasked an advisory group to work this year to come up with a way. mr. walker also indicated that it would add 4,000 jobs. also false.
that was from a report that made some bad assumptions and the , assumption was that there are 43,000 people who don't qualify for medicaid. there are actually 10,000 to 12,000. it also made the assumption that those people do not have access to primary health care, which they do through the community health centers and the public health centers and the tribal network that we pay for with tax dollars. there's a smarter, more efficient way to get access for those at the poverty level or below. i'll continue working with the medicaid review group to do that. thank you. >> our next question will start with mr. walker. regards the alaska marine highway system. the state of alaska's building two ferries and designing a replacement for the aging ferry that serves southwest, a. how will your administration address the half century old mainline ferries and maintain the vital service between southeastern alaska, washington and british columbia?
>> i had the pleasure of riding on some of the inaugural journeys of the ferries. that was very exciting. i seem to be getting older and the ferries are getting older and it's time replace those. i applaud what has happened recently on the announcement. i applaud the bipartisan coalition that in the legislature that created the funding. we have to replace those, and my first choice is the replacement is done here at ketchikan at the local shipyard. i brag regularly about what goes on in ketchikan because you actually make a product. i love when i go to the shipyard and i meet a young lady and ask her where she is from and she says she was born here in ketchikan. the next young person was born here. i love that. that's a rarity in our state. so you're the shining examples. we need tree place the ferries and need a funding vehicle. we need to make sure there are ferries that can be used year
round and withstand the weather in alaska, go out as far as dutch harbor, so you -- our business in valdez would totally depend upon a ferry showing up on schedule, and i think that's critical. it's the main stay of our economy in this state, not u.s. -- not just southeast in south central and western alaska as well. i'm fully support tv of the highway system. >> governor parnell. >> the alaska marine highway system is southeast highways. it connects us as communities. it takes strong leadership in and aities, companies
theer who recognizes opportunity to build alaska here.s i have a responsibility as governor to make sure that the money that the legislature gives me appropriates for me to negotiate a ferry, again-spent widely. vigor alaska said they could get us two ferries built in ketchikan for that total of $120 million. that was appropriated that i actually proposed in my budget to fund those two ferries. through some touch negotiations the shipyard came through. they do what alaskans do, and they won the bid. it was something that was -- i think it's going to be -- it's just going to set a cornerstone for a foundation on alaska having the corner on the maritime industry. a new industry for alaska, but here in ketchikan is where it starts.
so i'm excited about those two new ferries being built here. that will give the ketchikan shipyard a leg up when the next mainline ferry is built. i helped to secure funding this the its $40 million or $50 million on the first mainline ferry. but let's get the ferries best interests here, built well, on budget and on time and ketchikan will see years of ship-building to come. thank you. >> miss clift. >> think the alaska marine highway is a wonderful concept and it has been the main transportation for this area for many, many years. i think that all of the state transportation money that is dedicated to this area should go into keeping the marine highway maintained and in production, and i'm ecstatic we're getting the two ferries built here in ketchikan. i'm hoping there will be lots of jobs for the people here in this area because of the shipyards going into production on the two ferries, and i think that's a
wonderful thing. i know there's a lot of talk about the road systems in this area. but they all depend on the ferries, so the ferries are the main idea that we need to keep going, and we need to keep money flowing into that system and into maintaining the system. >> our next question relates to logging and will begin with governor parnell. how important is timber harvesting to your plan to spur economic growth in southeast alaska? >> timber harvesting is incredibly important to the job citizen families represented by those jobs in southeast alaska as well as south program and the interior as well. i fought for your timber jobs, not just in alaska but in washington, dc and the secretary's office. on several occasion is spoke with him and advocated for the big horn sale which we took a step forward on. one of the issues is d.c. has taken control away from
regional decisionmaking, from local decisionmaking, and that is a huge problem because the forest is there for us as southeast residents to use and to access, and when the federal government throws locks in our way, whether through endangered species listings, whether through delays in permitting, whether through impeding access in terms of road-building, it just doesn't -- doesn't just -- for a place for a rain forest, for tonga's forest that is supposed to be multiple use to be held on to for a single purpose. when the u.s. forest service is starting to charge money to take pictures of the forest we have a federal government that it out of control. i will tell you that i can speak with secretary vilsak in a respectful manner. when he called me and said
sequestration will require me to take back the timber receipts, i didn't just give him a knee-jerk no. i said what's your legal basis for making that request? and you could have heard the crickets. there was no legal basis and i said no. and they went and found the money elsewhere. so i will always stand up for timber jobs and will continue making sure that our families here have that opportunity. thank you. >> miss clift. >> alaska's natural resources must be developed. that's the way we have economic liberty, and timber is a very important resource in this area. so as a libertarian, i would like to get the feds away from alaska. there's too many rules and regulations. there's too much control. there's too much epa interference. there's delays and environmental
studies and there's all kinds of things they have put in our way. road blocks in our way, and i will fight with every power that i have to make sure that those road blocks are removed and we can have a viable timber industry going on from now on. we believe in economic liberty. economic liberty provides an environment that means more dollars on the table and more jobs for alaskans and as governor that's what i will bring. >> mr. walker. >> driving forest for us to become a state what our timber resource opportunitys and to have better control over that ourselves. we have watched that dwindle over the years and virtually tom could a complete halt. i'm glad to see some small sales taking place bus not enough to sustain an economy.
there's much more we can do. when the president of the united states come to alaska i'll meet with him. i'll meet with him and when he is on his way to a trade mission to asia i'll meet with him with my suitcase say, where is my seat, we have some things to talk about on the flight. we need to engage the administration. when they come to alaska we need to show them the respect that they're entitled to, whichever party they are, and encourage them to understand our state. the roadless rule has taken a toll on timber harvest in this area. infrastructure is what i'm all about. my building background, the role of government in alaska is to create the infrastructure for our economy to work, and so i will be very aggressive in that regard, very respectful but i will deal first hand with the federal government to help them understand what we need to do, and i know there's lots of litigation associated with timber sales.
we certainly have seen that. i think there's -- i would like a different approach with that. i think the approach is certainly very aggressive on the state side and also sit down and say, we need an economy, we need to work. we have the resources here, so i will be very aggressive on timber sales in alaska. thank you. >> this next question will start will miss clift and it is regarding social ills. it was submitted via e-mail and asks: what are your plans to reduce sexual assault, domestic violence, substance abuse, and suicide in alaska? and how specifically do you intend to reduce or prevent the impact of these social ills on children and adolescents. >> let me get that repeated so i can touch each of those things. there's a lot of stuff there. >> what are your plans to reduce sexual assault, domestic violence, substance abuse, and suicide in alaska, and how specifically do you intend to reduce or prevent the impact
of these social ills on children and adolescents? >> first of all, i have studied this quite a bit. i would like to say that we -- it all starts with education. we need to make sure that people understand that pain and suffering is not part of affection for your family, and i think this is something that is engrained in certain cultures, there's some kind of pain involved with being in love with somebody else, and i think that this is -- we have got to be educated. people have to be educated about the fact that when you love somebody, you don't hurt them. and i think this is a terrible thing, and there's a lot of people that are dependent on
these relationships and they think they have to put up with a lot of abuse in their home to maintain the relationship. so that's the first thing that i would do about domestic assault, is i would make education available. i would also make support groups available in each village and in all of the towns where we can find out where there will be somebody to call if you are in a situation where you need to get out of that situation, you need to have somebody to call, a friend to go to. you need all of that. substance abuse, again, it's a problem with education, it's a problem with people taking personal responsibility for their own lives. a lot of our villages are dry villages but that doesn't keep people from using drugs or alcohol just because the village is dry or because it's illegal.
suicide is a factor of not having enough future ahead of you, of graduating from school or leaving school and not having a goal, not understanding how you can advance yourself. i think, again, it all starts with the children and adolescents and we need to protect them. thank you. >> mr. walker. >> alaska unfortunately has the highest rate in all those of any place in the nation. we have that that for many, many years. i want to see what happens in the states that the lowest rate. which state is that? what do they do differently? i would choose action and the action consists of the following. aaron's law, passed by 19 states, provides for education of our young people about domestic violence, sexual assault, as age-appropriate levels. and the best way to defend for our children's to defend themselves is with education. the greatest defense we can have, as far as what is inappropriate and who to call.
that's absolutely critical. i will also -- when someone comes to my office, as governor, to tell me about sexual assault going on in the national guard, i'll do an investigation immediately. i will not wait four years. i dealt with that professionally for clients and that's the way it's handled when someone makes an allegation. an investigation should have been done a long time ago to not do that sends the wrong message to victims and others in a similar situation. in the suicide rates in rural alaska, young alaska native men are the 13 higher than the national average. there are a number of ways to bring that down. we need an economy in rural alaska in order to have an economy we need to break down the cost of energy. allow them to have a path
forward out of the situations they may find themselves in and we can only do that with career training and lower cost energy. it is a number -- a very, very high problem in our state, is this sexual assault domestic violence, and suicide rates. >> governor parnell. >> i was taught by my parents to address a big lie head on so i'm doing it right now. what bill walker said, did nothing in the face of sexual assault victims coming to my office is an absolute falsehood. i went in, went to my leadership in the national guard and investigated. in fact, multiple times in 2011, 2012 as well. senator begich did the same thing in 2012 and found the same thing, everything appeared reasonably handled. senator perkowski found the same thing. it wasn't until i had specific facts how our command structure was failing victims that i called in the office of complex
investigations to do that deep dive. so i want to set the record straight. going back to this epidemic of domestic violence and sexual assault, i had a person who thanked me last march for what the choose respect initiative has done for their community. a community of 400 people. five years ago she said the woman said she came interest the community as a new teacher and was told that 100% of the girls in her high school would be sexually assaulted in high school, and she was floored. the said that changed today and started with the choose respect initiative. it started because people in the community were raised up and became mentors for the young people in the high school. and i said how can you know that nobody in that high school has been sexually assaulted. she said becaused to every one of them has a healthy relationship with an adult and they would speak of it.
so the choose respect initiative is about prevention, about intervention-getting more vpsos and troopers in the commune that didn't have any, and being about supporting shelters and the counseling services there. so thank you. >> the next question will start with mr. walker and deals with coastal zone management. the state of alaska does not have a coastal zone management program in your view do coastal communities have adequate opportunities to participate in development decisions that affect them and would your administration support any changes to the status quo? >> i come from local government. that's my background. valdez as well as my professional work representing municipalities. i believe in local input. one reason that causes myself and byron mallot to seek the office is we're concerned about the lack of -- over the years we're pulling more and more control, opportunity for input from local government. coastal zone management provided that.
i'm not aware of the process stopped but providing input early on and that's important at a local level. there should be input early on, not every a decision is made and then you have three minutes to testify and give your input. the problem when you take away local input is then the only tools available is for them to seek legal redress and that's what you don't want. you want them to have an opportunity to provide input at the table early on. i was from valdez. there's an organization created after the oil spill, funded by the industry and they work on joint projects. there's no issue and because of that we end up with a safer shipping lane, shipping traffic out of prince williams sound and the give of alaska. so i'm a big believer in having local input as early on in the process as possible, and that is
the more expeditious way rather than to take it away. i'm very supportive of local government having input early on in the process. not on a veto basis but provide input early on. >> governor parnell. >> the people have spoken, and the people spoke in the form of turning down the re-establishment of the coastal zone management in the initiative process. so we'll not be returning to the coastal zone process. but local government, local people have input and a seat at the table on every environmental permitting decision. and i have to ask the question, the opposite of what mr. walker just said. name one project that has moved forward today to permitting that shouldn't have and wouldn't have if the coastal zone management process had been in place?
nobody has been able to name one, and the reason is because there are multiple opportunities for alaskans to have the input and to bring their own science forward for people -- for the decisionmakers to consider, and you have decisionmakers who get held accountable for their actions. so, at this point, the people have spoken, and i'm sticking with that vote. thank you. >> miss clift. >> coastal zone management was rejected, and i think that the local input is most important input for all of this. so, i agree with actually both of you said the same thing, that local input was more important and i believe all of our natural resources need to be developed in the most environmentally safe way, and the people to do that are most closest to the
environment, people that are actually doing the job, and they will protect the environment and they will protect the coast in their areas. so, that's my position on that. i don't have a lot of background in this, but i do believe that the local input is the most important piece of this. >> in the next question starts with governor parnell and regards the education lawsuit filed by the ketchikan gateway bureau. the bureau sued the state of alaska, claiming that alaska's constitution requires the state to fully fund local public schools. do you adeor disagree with the lawsuit? >> do i agree or disagree with the lawsuit? i agree that the state of alaska has a constitutional obligation to fund a public school system in alaska, and we do that through the legislative process, and so as this state's governor i've been proud to support funding
ketchikan schools, the entire state of alaska. this year i sent forward the alaska education opportunity act and that act created more opportunities for choice within the public school system, and created more funding. i've had this kind of weight on my shoulder, saying parnell is not increasing funding for education. we have increased funding for k-12 from 1.3 billion to $1.10 billion over my years. it's up to us as your representatives, of the public purse to hold districts accountable for performance in the classroom for our kids. i think our kids deserve the best education they can get. so i will continue working to tie any funding to new opportunities for our kids to advance. for example, championed the
alaska scholarship. over 3,000 kids have earned the right to those scholarships by taking more courses than are required to graduate from high school, and its has set them up for tuition payments to the university of alaska system and to job training programs around the state. we're going to make it through that 90% graduation rate. we have been growing that graduation rate but it's going to take more than new funding. it's going to take new funding and new opportunities. thank you. >> miss clift. >> the alaska constitution says very clearly that k-12 education will be fully funded. so when i am governor, that will be the one area of the budget that will not be cut. it will be fully funded, and one of the problems i have seen in
reviewing what is going on, is that the revenue sharing that is also in the constitution, and by state statute, has not been going on as it should be. there should be revenue sharing between the state and the municipalities and the burrows, and we're not getting the full revenue sharing that is required. there are certain things in the constitution where they say that certain entities are exempt from property tax, for instance, and there's also state statutes that say that, for instance, seniors are exempt for the first 150,000 of their property. and the state should be reimbursing for those property tax exemptions, and that's not going on. >> mr. walker. >> i have had the opportunity to review that piece of litigation, actually saw it before it was filed as part of the alaska municipal attorneys association.
when that was presented, there was a tremendous amount of support in the organization for that. a tremendous amount of empathy and acknowledgment that something had to be done. it's a bold move for ketchikan to do what you did. i've been involved in a few bold moves myself and i know it can be kind of lonely out there when you take that first step, but there are communities and local governments around the state that are watching carefully and applauding what you're doing. this is the fiscal situation that local governments find ourselves in, and the concern is that there are other areas that funding could be shifted to local governments as well, and that just isn't the way the constitution is set up. i think it's a bold move. i do support what you're doing. i think it's time to step up and say enough is enough, and so i certainly am sorry we reached that point. i'll put it that way. and i know there's lots of things that must have been done prior that point but at some point you have to say enough is
enough and stand up for what you feeling right, and i applaud your efforts on that. >> this next question will begin with miss clift and regards mining in british columbia. proposed large-scale mines in british columbia have raises concerns about the potential impact on southeast alaska's fish stocks and other resources. how can the state of alaska ensure our southeast alaska resources are protected from any ill effects from bc mines? >> that's an excellent question, especially that we're looking at the pebble mine that is also going to be impacting fishing in the bristol bay area. we're looking at what happened in canada, and there has -- canada had a treaty. they've had a treaty with us 1909. they were supposed to be taking care of the damage they're doing, and when there's
pollution that comes from their mine operations into our waters, it interferes with our fishing industry because we are known for our pristine waters, and this is an important piece -- it makes a really bad image. so i think that we need to hold canadians responsible for what is going on. and we need to act in that way. we need to force coalition with the canadians to make sure we clean up that problem with the mine. i'm not sure that answers the whole question. >> okay. mr. walker. >> i think we have a treaty between alaska and canada, british columbia, on those issues. i think we need to be concerned, be aware of what they're doing, monitor what they're doing.
i'm sure they are concerned about what we may be doing, fish is a very valuable renewable resource in the state, and is so mining. so it's not one or the other necessarily in this situation. i have seen the correspondence from the governor's offers on -- the governor's office on this. i thought it was good. appropriate, asking to be involved in the reviewing the processes going on so we're cognizant of what is going on. we just need to be very aware of what they're doing to see if it's going to impact our fish. we need to be aggressive in that regard. it's more of a collaborative arrangement available to us and i think we ought to take advantage of that and i believe we are taking advantage of that. so potentially it's a very serious issue. it's going to impact our fish so i'm glad we're doing what we do. i believe we might be able to be a bit more aggressive but i'm glad the administration is doing what they're doing on that. >> governor parnell. >> thank you, bill. appreciate it.
i do. bc and fish and game have been incredibly active on this issue. they're making sure that they understood what was released and are monitoring it with the canadian government to understand whether there will be any impact on fish and the fraser river that influence our own stocks. we injected ourselves in the canada process on other mines and that is a key steep as well. so, knowing what is happening on the other side of the border and being a part of those discussions, making sure we have a seat at the table because the impacts we'll feel on our residents if something happens on the other side of the border just makes sense and is something we have undertaken as our responsibility, as the administration serving you. thank you.
>> this next question deals with alaska's elders. we'll begin with mr. walker. the question is the alaska commission on aging compares the increase in alaska's senior population to a silver tsunami. how will your administration address health care, housing, care-giver support for the growing segment of alaska population? >> i've never heard that term, silver tsunami. not sure i'm part of that or not. how we treat our elders tells what kind of population we are. my father spent his final years in the palmer pioneer home and i'll never forget the kind of care he received there. that is a very important thing that we do, and the concern i have is that on some of the state employee retirees, the insurance coverage has been weakened over the years, and i'm very concerned about that. i've heard from a number of
people in that regard, but what i would like to see is make sure that the aging population is able to stay as long as they can in their own residence. i just know there's programs available to allow for that. assistance for that. i think that that's -- my emphasis will be to enable them to -- for as long as possible, as long as they're comfortable and safer to be able to remain anywhere own residence -- in their own residence. we have been growing the pioneer home program in alaska, is absolutely phenomenal. all over the state and that's great. there's tip clay waiting list -- there is typically a waiting list to get in. that's one of the things i want to have a growing economy for so we can afford to do more for that population. that's concern i have that if we don't, some will need to leave alaska and not be in their region where they live. i was in kodiak recently and saw the number that could stay
within the kodiak area, not move to another region away from their family and loved ones. so keeping them in their own area is absolutely critical. >> governor parnell. >> with aging parents and with us aging, it's clearly an issue for us. and it comes down to probably three values, and one is just the family, dignity and safety, and when i think about staying at home for as long as a person can, i think bill is right there. i absolutely do. and we have a pretty good and wide-ranging network of community based services for that. that's something at some we could potentially augment if we're working smart in some areas areas and the areas are working well. when it comes to personal dignity, i just visited the veterans home, the pioneer home there in the valley win the last week and saw our wonderful veterans who are being cared for
there, and was thankful for the care they received and how it dignifies them as human beings and veterans of our state, and keeps them safe as well. our administration invested with the tribal healthcare system in elder living facilities in rural alaska, but i think we have to do more, and one of those areas that we're exploring currently, one thing i'm proposing, is to incentivize assisted living facilities and a construction and operation of them in alaska. i've already invited several of your ketchikan residents into the conversation, and i will be doing more of that, but bottom line is we have to do our best to keep our elders, our seniors, in the state, in a home or family setting, for as long as we can, and after that, in assisted living facilities that give them the dignity they deserve as human beings, and provide that safe, loving and caring environment.
thank you. >> miss clift. >> i hadn't heard that term before either, the silver tsunami. yes, we do have an aging population, and that is a big plus. i think that keeping our aging population here in alaska is really important because we do have a lot of people that go down to the lower 48 for part of the year just to get to the warmer climates and have more comfortable life. so we need to think about that, keeping our elders comfortable here. one of the things that works is a little less expensive than putting people in a home, is to have home health care come into the home and it's something that doesn't have to cost as much as residential care, and that's one way we can increase that home health care and that will help the situation with our state coffers having enough money to take care of these things. also, it was interesting that
bill walker brought up the trs, prs healthcare program, which is part of the state of alaska employees programs, and one thing that i myself am part of that, and one of the things i noticed is that when your medicare -- when you get old enough for medicare, then your premiums change because you have to start paying for the medicare on top of paying for your premiums for your state health care. so, there's my yellow card. i think home hospice is a way to go. i think that home health care is the way to go. it costs a little better and more comfort for our elders. >> okay. this will be our last question. it will start with governor parnell. ongoing drug trafficking arrests in ketchikan indicate that state ferries continue to be among
drug traffickers favorite mes to -- favorite methods for bringing drugs into the alaska. what can the state use to deter the use of ferries for this purpose? >> drug trafficking is a statewide issue, not just marine highway system issue, and throughout my tenure as governor i've worked to increase law enforcement across the state in building our capacity for drug interdiction as well as for the safety of our residents by other means. when it comes to specifically the ferry system, i first became aware of this issue, want to say within just fairly recently in the spring when somebody raised it to me here, and i went to the commissioner of public safety and asked what could be done. we can certainly work with communities to meet ferries and figure a way that the state troopers, for example, could use dogs to go find drugs before
they get onboard. that's one way. and of course it costs money, and i'm willing to work with the communities to do that if you want to put public safety dollars to that effort, if you think that would be a huge help in southern and southeast. so, thank you. >> miss clift. >> that's interesting because i just found out that ketchikan has a big problem with drugs. i found that out this morning, and now i have a key piece because of the ferries. it is important that we control the drugs coming into the village, and into the towns. and i think that, again, putting more money into law enforcement in this area would be advisible. we need to have a way to determine that the drugs don't even get on the ferries, and i
think that we do need to look for those things when people are getting off the ferries. and besides that, don't really have any good answers except that we need to make sure that there are more things for people to do recreationally than to get into drugs. >> mr. walker. >> three things. drug dogs, drug dogs, and drug dogs. that's the most effective way to -- they're highly effective. they are highly trained. a little expensive to get trained but not that expensive once they're trained. it's been proven time and time again. if you have a captive location on a state ferry, having a dog -- people know there will be a drug dog on the ferry, that will be a tremendous deterrent to those that choose to transport that illegal substances on our state ferry system, so drug
dogs. >> we're going to begin our closing statements, and we'll begin with mr. walker. >> i had a prepared statement i'm not going to give my prepared statement. i'm just going to talk to ketchikan the way i feel most comfortable talking to people. it is from the heart. when i filed to run for governor, and byron malott filed after that, i sat down with him and we decided to have a campaign where we didn't have research on each other, we didn't attack each other, and about a month or so ago became evident that it made sense for us to join our campaigns together. we got to know each other over the year and realized our passion for alaska far exceeded our differences and we did come together and we didn't pick the name.
referred to as the unity party. look at the wonderful things happening in the station, when the bipartisan coalition came together, between the alaska highway project, the ferries are being built. we think it's time alaska alaskans come together again and with the face school crisis, the $7 million a day deficit. we use of our savings to do what we do. we need a bipartisan administration, not made up of one party or the other but of alaskans across the board. not bipartisan. a no partisan administration. so, we will look at working with people. other we'll look at people endorse other candidates. doesn't make any difference. we just want to bring alaska toning to solve issues. near a crisis. we came together alaskans after the earthquake to rebuild our state. floods around the state, various disasters. we're in one again. we have an incredibly bright future. my four chris and shouldn't to
-- on my four children and four grandchildren, i want to have the incredible benefit i have had in this state. we know we can do that but we know we can do that if we work together. i usually go into many parades and i get criticized if not -- if it is not a us-made loader. someone asked me why i work so hard in this election. if your family was out in of boat fishing and you are taking on water, how hard would you bail? that's what i'm doing. i was on a radio show recently and someone asked about fearing losing the election. i fear losing the state and that's why i'm running for governor. i ask for your vote november 4, thank you. >> as i was talking before at
the beginning i of the libertarian candidates. -- i am the libertarian candidate and i am not conservative or liberal however i am running against where are four of us there are three other candidates and all other candidates are fiscally conservative just as i am and also socially conservative which i am not and as a libertarian i am responsible and fiscally tolerant we have not talked about any of the social issues today with this debate so i'd be very willing to talk to anyone after the debate i will stay about half an hour afterwards to talk about these things. i am running against the overspending that we are doing but there has been a lot of spending.
i just want you to know that i am a former schoolteacher i will get out while the red pens use the line-item veto to veto any expenses that reduplicate where we sold not serving individual rights. on the backbone of the libertarian philosophy is the main difference between republicans and libertarians the main difference between libertarians and democrats always going for the individual liberty we don't believe in banning things or presenting people from viewing things that harm no one else so i want you to understand i will veto any legislation that interferes with delivery. -- individual liberty.
governor parnell is a big government republican and a lot of people viewed him as a representative of oil companies. mr. walker represents a lot of the union's. they will tell you what you want to hear today. i won't. the only purpose of government is to protect individual liberty and life and property. i will protect your rights to a victimless crime business and free trade and gun rights. sometimes talk about the libertarian party that was not exactly true but we will protect your rights. they say we are about guns and weed which is not exactly true but we want to protect your rights. so i want to emphasize i am very different from my opponents. and i have run at a time. -- in -- and the way that i am
different is the way of social tolerance and i have run out of time. thank you. >> thanks to ketchikan for coming in and on the sunny day to sit with us for over an hour it shows your concern and your desire to build this together. it's looking for word icy blue skies for alaska. i think about what we have done in this area with the shipyard and the tourism with mining on the horizon, with low little bit of stuff over here but more sales, even just in the small picture we've made historic progress. that is the kind of progress and want to continue growing as a people.
i want to address the few statements that one of which was missing from this a debate that i did hear some statements from mr. walker about fiscal responsibility and two days ago we had a big discussion about his desire to cut 16 percent across the board in high-school. how many ferries is that? that is two or three, probably. he did say that we are aligned we want to build the two ketchikan. wein have seen the plan. with the bipartisan majority in the senate those for big spending years what happens when you bring together a a bipartisan majority they have to spend their way past their differences to check the tough issues at the door then when
they get together we have the highest spending under the senate's bipartisan majority with a record spending reductions through every 8 billion last year down to 7 billion now 5.9 billion. that's being responsible with people's money and we did that not big across-the-board cuts but i went after the single biggest cost. it was the on pension liability. -- that single act says hundreds of millions of dollars across the next 20 years that is every year savings. and i have a belief in our future not just because of resources but people like you to step forward to grasp the opportunities ahead of west i
-- in front of us and i think it is time in tears change horses in midstream appreciate your vote on november 4th. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] coming up later today, we will hear from the labor secretary, thomas perez, on jobs and the economy live for his remarks in washington, d.c. the labor department said out this tweet. live coverage of his remarks here at 1:00 eastern time. more from the c-span 2014 coverage from the kansas u.s. senate debate. they met for the second televised debate last week and they debated the u.s. response to eat all a, isis and the president's foreign policy.
>> how should we do with the ebola epidemic? >> i issued a statement a couple of days ago -- why can we do now what we know we are going to have to do down the road? that is to have a quarantine on west africa, stop the plane traffic, the air traffic from west africa to the united states. we also should get our best and brightest to that country as fast as we can. the world health organization just said if we do not take action within the next 60 days, we could lose 10,000 people per week. that is a humanitarian disaster. again, this all goes back to isis, ebola, and the other problem's we see on the border. we must secure the border and the national security of our fellow americans. >> mr. orman? >> ebola is a serious issue and
we need to have a serious and coordinated of the kelp response that include sending the best and the brightest over to west africa to do it that issue. i also believe we should suspend air travel with west africa for the time being until the crisis is contained. this goes back to a crisis in leadership. senator roberts has come back and made some very strong statements about ebola when he is back in kansas but it just came out the other day that when he was in washington last month, he skipped a hearing on the ebola virus capital. to small i think it's inappropriate to talk here but when you had an opportunity to do something, you chose to skip the hearing and that's a real problem for kansans. >> rebuttal, senator roberts. >> the hearing was held out of session during september on the health education committee. nothing of substance came of it.
we have a crisis of leadership all right with regards to this whole situation. andink the administration the president has been two steps behind and asleep at the wheel. we should do now, as he just said, he will have a much more aggressive program. we don't know what it is yet but we will have a much more aggressive program. that i thinksident we have to look to for this kind of leadership. we are looking for his plan our strategy and we don't know it yet. we have to do this and we have to do it now. >> rebuttal -- >> again, the crisis in leadership in washington is on both sides of the aisle. senator, what he did not attend the hearing on ebola, it it's also known that you did not attend two out of three hearings in the agriculture committee, committee want to lead sunday. i think that crisis of leadership is a crisis of leadership that you share in as well. >> the independent candidate
greg orman debating republican pat roberts who is seeking a fourth term in the senate. the democrat on the race has ended his campaign. this race is considered a tossup. you can see the entire debate online at www.c-span.org. >> our campaign 2014 coverage continues with a week full of debates. on c-span tonight 8:00, the georgia governor's debate. 8:00 live on c-span, the montana u.s. senate debate. tuesday night at 9:00 on c-span, the south carolina governor's debate. between five candidates. thursday night, live at 8:00 eastern, the iowa fourth digit debate.
c-span, campaign 2014 -- more than 100 debates for the control of congress. a look now at the third debate between candidates in the iowa u.s. senate race eme. seatare competing for the being vacated by tom harkin. the race is a tossup as well with a slightly given to joni ernst. there debate ran about one hour. >> and now, our campaign 2014 coverage continues with the second debate for the iowa senate seat. bruce braley is facing state senator joni ernst. current senator tom harkin is retiring after five terms. the race is listed as a tossup. good evening, again.
>> candidates, welcome to both of you. to our left is congressman bruce braley from brooklyn, i went to my right is state senator joni ernst from red oak, iowa, thanks for being with us. >> as you can see, the debate is not like the others you have watched. the candidates have previously taken part into more traditional style debates. tonight, we are throwing at tradition. no lecterns tonight and no stilted questions from across the room, just plain talk and some honest questions. >> >> now to some basic rules. there will be no opening statements, each candidate will have one minute to answer the question and thereupon will not -- will be been given minutes for rebuttal. out of respect for the candidates, the audience has been asked to hold their applause. >> we want you to join us on
twitter. we had a coin toss to determine who would be asked the first individual question. congressman braley, you will have the first question. your 56 years old and have been in congress or eight years. you have successfully authored and passed one bill or your time in congress. the first question would be -- tell us what is on your resume that will assure iowa voters you're the first choice to fill senator harkin shoes. >> i want to honor the memory of butts who served others
and died tragically this week and my thoughts and prayers throughout your is wife and family. i want to thank you for hosting us tonight i want to thank senator currents for joining me but i want to at -- thank my wife carolyn and surprised me by joining us tonight. i've introduced and passed more than one bill. i passed a bill in biofuels the int amenity college train the biofuels industry. i passed legislation by working with republicans from georgia to help benefit one of iowa's leading manufacturers and keep jobs in iowa. i passed legislation to help higher wartime veterans allow them to stay in their homes. my record has been one of helping and serving the people of iowa. >> thank you. youtate senator ernst --
are 44 years old and have been a county auditor and you are currently a lieutenant colonel in the national guard and they state senator since 2010. the stakes are higher in washington, our senators are faced with critical national and international crisis decisions every day. why should voters consider someone with your limited legislative resume for such an important leadership position? >> first i would like to thank our host this evening and for the opportunity to be here. ingres spun, thank you for joining me. i also want to extend my heartfelt prayers to dr. butts'family. we have a number of really overwhelming things going on around the world, not just domestically but also internationally. is iay i describe myself
am traveling across iowa and i am an average iowa and who has had some extraordinary opportunities. i have served i local community, i certainly state, and i've served my nation. we are facing a crisis in the middle east. i believe i am a credible candidate when it comes to dealing with those issues. i have had my boots on the ground leading iowa troops in iraq and kuwait. i will always stand up for our service men and women. >> thank you. >> something we could not have anticipated when the campaign began is now at the forefront of everyone's mind and we are talking about the ebola virus. it is spreading around the world and voters are very concerned. we would like to direct your attention to the monitors. iowa, i'm from sioux city, and my question is -- we have now seen to ebola patients treated just down the road in nebraska. what steps are the federal government be taken to protect y? and our family question ma
you just spent some time in an emergency meeting. what can you tell us tonight that was discussed today? >> what happens today is there was plain talk and honest questions to the heads of the thecies dealing with this, centers for disease control, the national institutes of health, the customs and border patrol agency and i asked tough questions there and amended answers on what we are doing to protect the safety and security of the american people. what i found is that we need to do whatever is necessary to make that happen. if that means beefing up travel restrictions, we need to do that. if it means changing the hospital protocol so that patients in omaha and dallas and atlanta are being taken care of
and we are solving the problem, we need to do that. it was important for me to be at that hearing because one of the leading companies in the united states developing vaccines for a ames, iowa and i talked with some of their employees before that hearing. their development a faxing that is in clinical trials. >> would you like a rebuttal? . >> this is a tragic disease sweeping through western africa. we have seen it now on our own shores. mother, to see families experiencing this, it is devastating. i believe we need to do more and unfortunately, our administration including congressman braley, has been very reactive rather than proactive. forave seen the threat ebola for the last several months and i would encourage temporary travel bans and additional screenings continuing
aid into those nations but also supporting those researching and coming up with cures and prevention. --i have to respond to the one of the things that senator ernst has made clear is that she supported a radical plan to shut down the federal government and said she would not vote for it and we learned today that that dramatically cut the funding for the centers for disease control and the national institutes of health and it also dramatically cut foreign aid. you cannot say you support those things when you -- when the policies you promote would have made it more difficult for us to address this problem. that's why i pressed health and human services to get these contracts awarded to genetic so they can get this vaccine tested and get it in clinical trials and make this vaccine widely available in commercially feasible.
people in the united states, people in west africa, that's what american innovation is all about. >> this is a huge tragedy but we are seeing failed leadership from the congressman and president obama. we have seen the threat from ebola for the past several months and only today did they call a hearing to address the lack of leadership within the departments out there. we should have moved this up and i should have been looking at travel bans much earlier than this before it ever came onto american shores. >> that hearing was called by the republican leadership and the house oversight and investigations committee. they were the ones that schedule that and that's why i made the trip out there today to be involved and get plain talk and honest questions. >> i would say yes that i released a statement about ebola before the congress mandated. he sits on this important committee and could have been
pushing for this on number of months ago and yet again, we have seen failed leadership coming from the administration. >> we will move onto her next topic which is sensitive. it's an important issue. when it comes to abortion and contraception, you both have different points of view. we are hoping to get clarity on your positions tonight. we will take this slowly and go through several points. of you talk with both and then have a chance for responses. you cosponsored what is the personhood amendment to the iowa constitution meaning that a fertilized egg would be considered a person. the key line of that amendment is the inalienable right to life is every person at any stage of development shall be recognized and protected. this never passed that it opened the door to your critics to suggest your support of this amendment means that you want to ban all abortions, certain types of contraception, and you would be against in vitro fertilization.
we know there is a lot here so we will give you a chance to be very clear in your position for the voters. let's go through each of these points one at a time. we're looking for short answers here. do you believe that life begins at conception? >> i do believe that but i would like to respond to all of that. i do believe in supporting life. i believe that the united states and the state of iowa, we do support life. i want to believe that. life at conception i will always support life. sensitive issue as you stated. we do have to have civil discussions when it comes to this issue. i will always support life but this is where we as republicans and democrats need to come together to find those areas we agree on when supporting life.
there is an area we have done this in the past toward democrats and republicans came together to ban partial-birth abortions. congressman braley does not agree to life-saving. preventing partial-birth abortions. >> we will get to some specifics -- should all abortions be banned or are there any exceptions? >> there would be certain exceptions. again, it's something that has to be discussed. i support life. when things come together there is consensus up on what is put into legislation. right now, there is not consensus but i believe in supporting life. >> you said there were some exceptions, what would they be. ? >> i support life so going back to perhaps the life of the mother, i think that would be important.
discussion it should happen. >> let's move onto contraception. would you consider banning any specific form of contraception? this is where i have stood up and said over and over that i do support a woman's reliableaccessible, and safe contraception. the congressman has made many statements about that and run many ads and those have been rated false by "the washington post." he was given many pinocchio's on this issue. disconcertinger that i am a woman and mother of three daughters and them being lectured on issues of contraception and it's laughable. >> one more question in regard to in vitro fertilization -- because the fertilized eggs may be destroyed, do you feel in vitro fertilization should be banned ?test test. >> i have a friend with two
beautiful daughters because of in vitro fertilization. i'm glad that she is blessed to be a mother. braley, we will move onto a series of questions for you and then a chance for rebuttal. we would like to ask you to please be specific with your answers as well. at what point during fetal development do you believe a woman should not have an abortion? >> i have always stated that i oppose all late-term abortions that are not necessary to save the life or health of the mother. >> by late-term, can you be specific? >> it's a term that has a specific legal meaning because of existing law. when the rights of the mother and the rights of the child has significance in terms of deciding. >> do you support employers selecting the types of contraband -- contraception they're willing to provide underinsurance? >> not at all and senator ernest made the statement that she
supports a woman's right to contraception and yet she supports the supreme court decision that allows employers to interfere with an individual woman's health care decisions about her contraception. she has voted in the iowa senate to limit women's access to contraception and she wants to repeal the affordable care act which would increase the cost for contraception for most iowa women by $600 a year. >> congressman, do you support life? >> i do support life. >> according to politifact, experts looked at the personhood after mendment and concluded it is too ambiguous to predict the legal ramifications since abortion is currently federally protected through row v. wade. does it matter that mrs. ernst supports life because this is an already decided issue? >> no. why else would the american college of obstetrics and gynecology which takes care of pregnant mothers and babies say the things that are in the personhood amendment would do
all the things that i have just said? it would outlaw all forms of abortion including in the case of rape or incestt and to save the life of a mother. it would interfere with invitro fertilization procedures. senator ernst, herself, has said that under her personhood amendment doctors should be prosecuted for -- should not be prosecuted in performing legal, medical procedures today. >> rebuttal? >> mischaracterizing my position especially when it comes to birth control. i will always protect a woman's right to access for affordable, safe, and reliable birth control. now, i agree with the supreme court ruling, but that doesn't mean a woman can't get reliable, safe birth control. she can still go to her doctor and receive birth control. it is not outlawing birth control. so, again, this is a ploy to scare women. we shouldn't be doing that. i will protect their right to
access to birth control so let's make that clear. when it comes to deciding whether there is life, you've just said that it's determined by law, so, again, there has to be consensus on these issues and where there is not consensus there will not be a law. >> thank you. >> well, senator ernst, your words have consequences. you can't say that you protect a woman's right to contraception and then vote against it on the senate floor. you can't say you want to repeal the affordable care act which provides free contraceptive services to women and increase their cost by $600. you can't say you support that right and then say it's okay for employers to interfere with it. your words have consequences. they'll raise the cost to contraception and for some women that cost would prohibit them getting the contraception services they need. >> i think we need to jump in.
we can go back and forth and back and forth. appreciate all sides here. we'll head to another health care issue. the affordable care act or as both sides commonly refer to to it obama care will soon be enrolling participants in the second year now. you've made it pretty clear your position is to get rid of obama care, to repeal it. according to health care.in iowa under obama care adults under the age of 26 were added to parents' insurance plans. 1.2 million iowans cannot be discriminated against now for having preexisting conditions and medicare patients have saved more than $121 million on prescription drugs. so sitting here tonight, mrs. ernst, let us know. iowans that have these benefits that have come to rely on them and knowing how hard it is to get any kind of legislation passed in washington, can you explain to people why they need to give these benefits up now? >> certainly. every iowan and every american deserves to have affordable, quality health care. obama care is not the answer.
i will tell you why. obama care is a job killer. we have seen that here in iowa. it is a massive tax increase. $1.2 trillion over the next ten years for the american people. and it takes our health care decisions out of our hands, out of our doctors' hands, and places them in the hands of nameless, faceless bureaucrats in washington, d.c. so i don't support obama care. however, the congressman has voted for obama care and continues to defend it today. now, he promised us that obama care would lower health care costs. it has not. we heard just last week that health care policies, their cost is going up an average of 19%. so he was wrong. he said we could keep our policies and that we could keep our doctors. he was wrong on that issue, also. >> why is it a job killer?
>> it is a job killer because what we are seeing and i've heard from iowans all across the state there are businesses now right around that 50-employee mandate of being a big business and so what they're trying to do, they've evaluated the cost to their businesses and they can't afford to pay for these types of plans under the affordable care act. what they're doing is lowering the number of full-time employees that they have. they're not expanding their businesses. we have seen a loss of jobs here in sioux city, blue cross/blue shield laid off over 100 employees, and they attribute it directly to obama care. >> what would you do to make sure that doesn't happen? >> first i would repeal and replace obama care with patient-centered health care that does address preexisting conditions. you mentioned having children on their parents' policies. we already have that here in the state of iowa before obama care was enacted. i believe we should allow
insurance providers to sell over state lines, tax credits for those that privately purchase insurance, allowing our small businesses to pull together their policies just as we already allow large businesses to do. but, again, we must make sure they address preexisting conditions and it must be affordable and work for iowa families. >> mr. braley, a quick rebuttal before we give you a chance -- >> sound bites have consequences. when you say that every iowan deserves affordable, quality health care, there were 47 million americans who didn't have access to quality, affordable health care before the affordable care act became law. and it's not perfect but we need to fix it and improve it instead of doing what you would do, which is vote 50 times to repeal it that doesn't do anything to make it better. i voted to allow people to stay on policies for two years. i made it simpler for small businesses facing the heavy burden of paperwork.
but we can't go back to where we were. tim, i had a 2-year-old nephew diagnosed with liver cancer. he's one of those children with a preexisting condition who was affected by being unable to get coverage because of his preexisting condition. that no longer is the case. that's why the statistics you cited are important to iowans, because it's making their lives better. >> you mentioned it was -- give me a couple quick, specific points that are flaws that you'll change. >> i gave you some examples of things we already have changed but one of the biggest flaws that i've been working very hard on with iowa doctors and iowa hospitals is a flaw in the reimbursement formula that penalizes great doctors and hospitals in iowa who do great work and get quality patient outcomes but don't get paid as much as doctors and hospitals in other parts of the country. that's why during the debate on the affordable care act i was their champion, to make sure that they were getting fair pay
and that we move to a system that rewards quality patient outcomes. that's where health care reimbursement is heading and you pointed out that 100,000 iowans now have coverage because i worked with governor bran steadt to expand access to medicaid and you talked about the enormous, positive impact that is having on iowans who had no health insurance. thank you. >> thank you. >> may i address -- >> yes. >> also under obama care there are still 31 million americans that will not have health care. now, the congressman has stated costs will not go up but we are seeing heavy, increased costs because of the policy cancellations. you've stated just a few years back that you would not change a thing about obama care. and yet today you're saying oh, yeah. we do need to make some changes to the bill. you said you read every page of this bill. you tabbed it. you highlighted it. so either you didn't understand what was in the bill or you were misleading iowans.
i don't know which one is worse. >> thank you. we're going to move ahead once again. >> please. i can't allow that to go unanswered because it is not true. the reality is when you pass a huge change in how health care is delivered to millions of americans, there are bound to be some things that you have to deal with along the way. that's what we've done. repealing the entire bill and taking health care away from millions of americans and adding costs, premiums will go up 225% in iowa if you eliminate what's in place right now. that's not a good thing. >> thank you. >> we'll move on. >> thank you both. >> we talked a lot tonight so far about heavy and important issues and we know both of you can talk about where you stand on the political land scape. >> only a fraction of the folks that will ever be out there that you'll be representing on a daily basis get the chance to actually come up to you and ask you a question face to face and get to know you personally. we want to ask you tonight one quality that you possess that
makes you unique. mr. braley, we'll start with you. what is it that sets you apart? >> i'm a bridge builder not a bridge burner. i spend a lot of my time getting to know the people that i serve with in congress. republicans and democrats. i have them over for dinner so i get to know where they came from. i get to learn about their families. the work they did before they came to congress. and that's why i've had so much success working with republicans to pass legislation that's been beneficial to iowans. when the iowa national guard came home from iraq and was denied benefits for g.i. bill benefits and hardship pay by the pentagon, i worked with republicans from minnesota to get their orders changed so they got paid the benefits they deserved. when i had a constituent named andrew connelly who was denied a v.a. adaptability grant, i helped him get that so he could stay in his home. then i had him come to washington and testify in front of the veterans affairs committee and introduced a bill that other veterans would have those same
benefits because the program is going to expire. that's what iowans expect from their senator, somebody like senator grassley and senator harkin who can bring people together not drive them apart. >> let's turn to you. what unique thing is there about you that sets you apart? >> i would say i am a public servant. again, i have served in my community. i've served my state. i've served my nation in many different capacities, worked with many volunteer organizations at the community level, and i still serve as a sunday school animation teacher in the church -- and confirmation teacher in the church that i grew up in. so i remain committed to my hometown and my home communities. but i've also served my state and my nation in the army reserves and the iowa army national guard. i don't do these things for personal gain. i do them because i believe in serving the public whether it's a time of flood in eastern or western iowa, whether it's during winter storms, making sure that
iowans are safe is important. but i've also served overseas during a time of war in combat in kuwait and iraq. i believe that is important. but sound bites do have consequences. i believe that i have a pure heart and am willing to serve iowans where congressman braley behind closed doors has poked fun at our senior senator chuck grassley. i don't call that building bridges. i would say that's burning bridges, congressman. >> thank you. we'll move on. we have a couple questions here. we want to get to know you -- >> the senator knows i didn't poke fun at senator grassley and she knows i talked to him that same day and apologized to him and i apologized to iowa farmers because that's what people expect iowans to do. so if you're questioning my pure heart, senator, i can tell you i've been an elder in my church. i've taught sunday school to adults and children, i've never seen a corporation sitting next to me in the church pew. and, yet, you believe that their interests outweigh those of
women and iowa when it comes to contraception. >> oh, again, very misleading. i have said i will support a woman's right to contraception. but what you say behind those closed doors really does matter to iowans and maybe you did apologize to chuck grassley, but my father is a farmer, also, without a law degree, and i think he's done very well. and, again, i contribute to my community, my state, and my nation. i am ready to serve the people of iowa. >> if you want to talk about what goes on behind closed doors tell us about the meeting you had with -- >> we're going to jump in now. >> all right. >> we have a couple lighter things to talk about before we get heavy again. amanda, go ahead. >> thanks, jeff. these are meant to be a little more light hearted because we want the voters to get a chance to know you guys a little bit better. nothing difficult here. quick answers. ms. ernst, who do you cheer for on saturdays? iowa or iowa state? >> i am an iowa state cyclone as long as they are not playing
each other. >> okay. >> congressman braley, same question. on saturdays who do you cheer for, iowa or iowa state? >> as you know, i graduated from both fine universities and when they play each other i cheer for iowa state. >> mr. braley, i have a question for you here. say something that you admire about your opponent. tell us something you admire about ms. ernst. >> well, i admire the fact that senator ernst has served our nation and our state and the iowa national guard. i think it's a terrific attribute. my father was a world war ii combat veteran and i have great respect for senator ernst for serving her country. >> thank you. >> the same to you. >> i think congressman braley is a great father. >> thank you. thank you both for that. let's move ahead. now to something, we've said something nice i guess here so maybe we turn the page and go the other direction a little bit. we have to bring up something else that voters feel very strongly about. iowans view this race as one of the nastiest, one of the ugliest they've seen in history.
senator, for public integrity $17.8 million has been spent on tv advertising and that is only through october 1st and will easily near $20 million or more before the election is done. obviously you have to be living under a rock or just don't own a tv to know these commercials haven't been airing. we asked our viewers to send us questions for you tonight through social media. many of them are angered as you might guess, even disgusted about all of the negative advertising. one of them is scott from cedar rapids. he said, what ad on your behalf has embarrassed you most? so, congressman braley, senator ernst, on your behalf, which one would it be? we'll start with mr. braley. >> well, it wasn't run on my behalf but it was an ad run earlier in the race that showed a bunch of people looking into this box and i thought it was a horrible ad. i thought that it was not an effective way to talk about the very real differences between us in this race. tim, i'm the only candidate in
this race who has voted to try to limit the influence of these outside groups most of whom are funded by secret donors that the public doesn't know who is paying for the ad. when senator ernst and i put an ad up on television we have to tell who our donors are. we have to tell how we spend the money. but because of a supreme court decision that i think is one of the biggest threats to democracy there is, there is an unlimited ability of outside groups to say whatever they want, to distort our record, and i think that's wrong. that's why i called during the last debate for senator ernst to join me in encouraging all these outside groups to take down their ads and make sure that we know who the donors are who are behind these ads. >> ms. ernst, rebuttal? >> yes. thank you, scott, for that question. this has been a very, very negative campaign, and it started the very day after the primary in june, the day after i won the republican nomination there was
an ad that was paid for by congressn braley's committee that compared me to a baby chick. i didn't appreciate that ad. i would have to say ads run on my behalf i really don't know because i don't watch television any longer. i don't pay attention to those ads because i have been so heavily outspent from the outside with all of these negative ads. my husband and daughter don't watch television anymore. it is very disheartening when you have a failed record in washington d.c. you have to tear down your opponent. and that's what the democrats are trying to do in this race. >> you don't watch tv these days? >> i don't watch tv. >> okay. i do want to ask one more thing to both of you as well. you've mentioned some of that outside influence. at the end of those commercials it says not endorsed by the candidate or the candidate's committee. is it time that it says endorsed by? should that be there? >> tim, it's time to get secret
money donors out of politics. period. that's what needs to happen. so that it's a focus on the differences in issues between the candidates, which as you can tell tonight are very clear. just like you, senator ernst, my family and i don't watch tv anymore. >> what are you going to do about it? how do you step up and make that happen? >> it's not what i will do. it's what i've already done. i'm the only one here tonight running for senate who has voted to limit the influence of these outside groups. i voted for the disclose act which would require transparency in the disclosure of donors paying for these ads. >> while we're there let me turn to you. what would you do then, ms. ernst? >> i do believe in political free speech, and this is the way that individuals are exercising their political free speech. that's a first amendment right. so whether we like it or whether we don't, and i don't, again, i'm being heavily outspent by outside interests in this race.
i don't like it. but i do believe in standing up for our citizens' rights. and that is a right that they have. >> senator ernst, you know that you're not being heavily outspent by outside interests. and the big difference between us on this issue is that i'm willing to say to those outside interests, you have to come clean and take your ads down. that's the big difference between us in this case. these outside groups are lying about my record. they're doing it to distract from the real issues. i'm here standing up for everyone in this room who is sick and tired of these ads saying, i will work because the political free speech of secret donors is not more important than the political free speech of iowans. that's why if you elect me, i will work for reasonable campaign finance reform that gives everyone's political voice the same clout. it shouldn't be secret donors like the koch brothers who are
spending more money to buy your vote than people who want to know where you stand on the ish use. -- on the issue. >> again -- >> very quickly. >> i am being mischaracterized in so many of the ads coming from the other side and, yes, i have been outside or coming from outside money outspent by about $2 million. that's a lot of money in iowa air time t is really hard to combat that. you have earned pinocchios and -- plue politifact check there have been several different issues. one is the birth control issue. the other is social security where i have been mischaracteristicd on those issues. >> let's talk about social security right there. >> the social security trust fund under current conditions will run out in 19 years in the year 2033. neither of you has officially supported raising the retirement age. we know social security isn't going to be solvent if it continues the way that it's going right now. ms. ernst you said you want to
look at options for fixing the system with no specifics. mr. braley, you've said you have a four-point plan that lacks some details. we think it's time for someone to step up and lead on this issue. we're going to start with you. again, we know you have your four-point plan. you use phrases like let's grow the economy. that seems pretty vague. please name one fundamental change that you would support to keep the social security program solvent. >> i mentioned this during the debate in davenport on saturday night. i think that millionaires and billionaires should be paying the same portion of their earned income into social security as hard working iowans in the middle class. and they're not right now. so my plan would require them to do that and it would dramatically increase the amount of money in the social security trust fund and it would actually increase benefits for seniors. i also believe we need to increase the minimum wage, give 300,000 iowans a pay raise, and
it would put billions each year in addition into the social security and medicare trust fund. what we also need to do as i said is we need to grow our economy. and the ways we can do that is by investing in our crumbling infrastructure for every billion dollars we invest it creates 25,000 new jobs. those workers will pay into social security's trust fund. those are concrete, tangible things we can do to make social security solvent going forward. >> thank you. ms. ernst, you said you're open to any options. at some point you have to stand up and say i'm at least for one thing. what is your one, fundamental change that you would support to keep the social security program solvent? >> thank you. i will always stand up and fight for social security and medicare for our iowa seniors. just like my mom and dad. we have over 600,000 iowans that rely on social security. we have made those sacred promss to those individuals so we
must stand by those promss. however, we have to recognize that there is a problem. and this system will run out of money within 20 years before i can even retire. but any solutions that we come to, they must not affect the benefits of those that are retired and those that are nearing retirement. we must keep those promss. -- promises. so one solution that i would state we could do or one option would be bringing in new state and local workers that are not currently engaged in the social security system bringing them in. however, the congressman has stated raising the minimum wage, that would eliminate up to 20,000 jobs here in the state of iowa, 500,000 jobs nationwide. i don't see that that is a solution. >> thank you. >> about a month ago president obama hoped a high powered air attack would help degrade and destroy isis, another important
issue tonight we want to get to. despite that though the islamic terror group continues to capture more territory. they continue to move forward, and voters we've talked with have renewed concerns. i'd like you to look at the monitor again. >> my name is adam melby. i live in iowa. i served in the united states army from 1996 to 2000. my question is, you both say you support the u.s. troops and you agree we need to defeat isis. my question is, how do you suppose we do that? do you both support putting troops in the middle east again? >> mr. braley, we'll start with you. what do you say to mr. velde tonight? >> the first thing i say to adam is thank you for serving in the army. i notice you are from senator harkin's hometown of caming, iowa. when i was in washington, d.c. today i got an updated, classified briefing on what is going on with isis. some of the questions i asked were, what's the current troop strength of the iraqi defense forces?
because they have been significantly degraded as a result of what's happening. what is the status of the new government in iraq? because it is absolutely critical to any success against isis. and i voted with my republican colleagues overwhelmingly to give the president limited authority to arm moderate syrian rebels to coordinate with our air strikes that are going on. i also got an update today on what our allies in the region and around the globe are willing to commit to try to address this terrorist threat. isis is a threat that must be destroyed. that's why we need to make sure that we're working to make sure that they are eliminated because they need to be brought to justice or to the grave. period. >> ms. ernst, would you like rebuttal? >> yes. isis does need to be destroyed. they are extreme terrorists. we have seen this threat for actually a number of years now as it has grown in strength. before we commit to any military action, and we are engaging in
that now, i have several criteria i would need to evaluate. the first is do we have actionable intelligence which outlines the threat? can we be successful in combating that threat? second is it do we have a clearly defined mission? will we put the resources forward necessary to support that mission? and last is once we've achieved that mission, do we have a withdrawal plan? will we be caring for our men and women and their families upon their return?
now, the congressman, i'm not sure where he stands on this issue because in june after mosul fell to isis, he voted for no combat funding in iraq, yet today he is stating that he would support action. i'm not sure where he stands. >> before we give him a chance i want to follow up. what exactly would be actionable intelligence for you? what would that be in terms we could grasp? >> you bet. it would be intelligence that shows that there is a threat to our national interests or to our safety as americans. national interests could include infrastructure, our allies in the region. any of those threats that have been laid out and show that we would be impacted as americans. >> mr. braley? >> senator ernst knows the vote she is referring to had nothing to do with action against isis. in fact, that's why 23 republican members of the house joined me in making sure that before the president committed boots on the ground in iraq he had to come to congress and get authority to do that. because the truth is we can't continue to be the world's police force. secretary gates in his last address at west point said for any future defense secretary to advise an american president to a large scale land war in the middle east they ought to have their head combnd.
-- examined. that's why i agree with senator ernst on the three criteria she says must be met to commit u.s. forces but the things she left out, you also have to make the case to the american people on why that investment of treasure and blood is necessary and that hasn't been done yet. >> thank you. >> i believe that has been done. i think there is overwhelming support coming from the american people on dealing with the threat of isis. now, going back, this is again another issue that our president, the administration, and congressman braley have been reactive rather than proactive. we know the president didn't leave troops on ground following the closing of the iraqi campaign even against his senior military advisers. his own secretary of defense, leon panetta, advised we keep troops on ground. i know that the congressman twice voted to defund our men and women as they were serving in combat in iraq and afghanistan.
>> senator ernst knows that last statement is not true. because she knows that i voted to end a decade-long commitment of u.s. ground troops in iraq. she knows it was the prime minister al malaki who refused to enter into a status of forces agreement to keep troops on the ground. are you saying tonight that you are prepared to commit u.s. forces on the ground in iraq to deal with this threat and in syria? is that what you're suggesting president obama should have done? >> i am stating that i would have to use the criteria i have laid out before committing america's sons and daughters. and i will remind you that i have served in iraq. my boots were on that ground that is now held by isis. so when we make these decisions i take them very seriously. so before i would commit our sons and daughters, i would sort through those criteria. but we have to recognize that this is a threat that has been
out there for years and we have an administration that has refused to acknowledge that this is a group that is killing innocent civilians, christians, and even americans. they need to deal with this threat. >> thank you. we'll turn now to immigration issues. right now the federal government and all government contractors must use the e-verify system when they hire someone. this is an internet based system that identifies if a person is legally eligible to be hired. it's more than 90% accurate. but private businesses are not mandated to use it. by requiring all businesses to use e!-verify you potentially could stop any undocumented workers from being hired. would you support a bill requiring all businesses to use e-verify? congressman braley, we'll start with you. >> the first thing you have to know is what is it going to cost those businesses to comply? what type of assistance are you going to provide to businesses that may have difficulty affording that cost? we know e-verify can be very
helpful and we know that we shouldn't be encouraging employers to hire people who are ineligible to be hired under the laws of this country because we need to promote respect for the rule of law. but the most important immigration challenge we face right now is comprehensive immigration reform. and that's why i support the bill that the senate passed with overwhelming bipartisan support, 68 senators voted for it. that would strengthen our borders, add 20,000 new border patrol agents to the border to protect us and make us safer, and provide a legal pathway to citizenship for those who are in this country illegally by forcing them to admit they broke the law, pay a steep fine, go to the back of the line, and make sure that they're held accountable for breaking the law. >> congressman braley wouldn't e-verify fix a lot of those problems that you just mentioned? >> it won't fix the problems of what we do about all of the people who are here in this country, and it won't solve the
problems of all of the employers who are struggling every day to deal with a work force that iowa.anging. so we do need to promote respect for the rule of law. that's why expanding e-verify because of its effectiveness is a good idea. >> senator ernst, would you support a bill requiring all businesses to use e-verify? >> i do believe that is a step in the right direction, but we do need to look at the cost to employers in making sure that they are able to afford this system and perhaps providing the supports necessary to get that in place for private employers. but there is a greater issue with immigration, and i spent time overseas when i was at iowa state university on an ag exchange. when i was staying on that collective farm in the soviet union, the leaders of the collective, all they wanted to