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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  January 7, 2015 7:00am-10:01am EST

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spotlight on magazines feces james fallous looking at the state of the american armed forces. >> this is the people's house. this is the people's gavel. in the people's name, it's my privilege to hand it to the speaker of the house to the honorable john boehner. mr. speaker [applause.] >> that was the demonstration of the light spirit on capitol hill yesterday in the south and the senate as the transfer of leadership takes place as far as the senate is concerned and john boehner becomes speaker of the house once again on the house side even as smiles and handshakes and well wishes were happening, political differences started showing up as the white house threatened to veto bills on keystone xl and changes for
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the 30 hour work week requirement. we would like to find out from you if there are areas you think the g.o.p.-led congress and white house, where are the areas where they can find common ground. here is how you can make your thoughts known for democrats: if you have areas where you think the two bodies can find common ground you want to make those thoughts known on twitter@c-spanwj twitter@c-spanwj. and and joining us on the phone to talk about yesterday's activities in the house and senate and how it might lead as far as the white house and the g.o.p.-led congress working together is billy house juning us. mr. house -- with bloomberg
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news, our congressional correspondent. mr. house, talk a little bit about what happened on the house side starting with speaker getting another term or another term as speaker and what it means as far as his relationship with republicans going forward. guest: get morning. thank you for having me. the bottom line is that this speaker, this term this session, we'll have to find a way to lead, though he yesterday, did not get even a majority of votes from all 434 members. he got 216 votes, but 241 of his fellow republicans supported someone else and a 25th didn't vote for anybody. and because the number of democrats were as many attending former new york governor cuomo's funeral, none of the democrats showed up voted for boehner, he ended up with just 216 votes. we have a speaker with 216 votes out of the 434 member chamber
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with prim's seat vacant. he begins to lead with not exactly a mandate from a majority of the entire house. and yesterday's vote also showed some obviously continued discord, if not even more so from within his own conference the republican conference which is more musk lar with more members, still seems to have some of the same old turmoil broiling within. host: as we talk, there are stories in the paper one of the people challenging was daniel webster of florida. he and rich nugent though have new positions but they are outside of the rules committee as it is this morning. guest: that's exactly correct. representative louie gommert called the move from republican leadership, i.e. boehner to remove them from the house rules committee after they voted for
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webster. boehner being a sore winner. so that's the sort of thing we are launching the new session with that sort of back and forth within the accurate conference. host: as far as moving forward, mr. house, and this g.o.p.-led congress working with the white house, we already see scheduled votes on keystone and discussions about the affordable care act. are there other areas where common ground could be found between the two bodies, the white house and the congress? guest: well, when you talk about common ground and between the two parties there is some low-hanging fruit, and i suspect the keystone bill will pass both chambers and other things like repeal of the medical device tax under the obamacare act will pass both houses. the rubber hits the road when it gets to the white house and you face potential presidential veto. and that's where we are going to see how the new republican-controlled congress
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really maneuvers, how they -- or if they do at all work with the president to the somehow smooth over whatever differences those have, and we are going to get an early shot at seeing how this happens in the next few weeks. host: is it specifically with those bills? or are there other things coming up that will kind of show what happens? guest: as we know there are spending bills coming up. the homeland security spending bill, the funding comes to an end at the end of february. there will be some battles not only within the house republican conference, but, also the senate over where to go with that and whether to attach any border security funding. and where that goes from there, to the white house, there is also we have a debt ceiling issue, whether to raise the nation's ability to borrow will come up at least by mid-year. and there is a transportation funding issue that's going to come up right away too.
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host: the washington exam ner reporting the president will host congressional leaders to talk about issues moving forward. billly house, what do we watch for in the next few days, particularly with these votes on keystone and the affordable care act moving forward? guest: a lot of ret strict about this -- in fact i talked to the number 2 house republican yesterday, kevin mccarth, the leader majority leader. and from his view and at least rhetoric, what president obama does with keystone veto or not will kind of set the tone show whether or not he, according to mccarthy is going to play politics these next two years or work together with the leaders. and there is another tissue this week that's also going to re-emerge right after last month's situation where the senate blocked a terrorism
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insurance bill. the house is going to put that back on the floor this week as early as today, and it's suspected that the senate will take that up soon too. we will see how that plays out host: billy house, a congressional correspondent talking to go us about not only what tom expect this week but relations between the white house and congress. billly house thank you. guest: thank you for having me. host: you heard mr. house saying there could be some areas where the white house and congress could work together find common ground. you may add to the lits or have other suggestions. if you want to let us know on the phone lines, do so. for democrats seven 202. make your thoughts known at c-span post on
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on our intend line, go ahead. caller: good morning, sir. thank you for taking my call this morning. first of all, i think one of the items that both parties can work on, the republicans are still refusing the healthcare which they even labeled that the obamacare. so, if they have legislation f they have to come up with something or just leave it as it is because we cannot just let billions of americans without healthcare. second item that's very crucial and we have a problem is with immigration. i am an immigrant here in this country and very glad to be here in the united states of america. but we have to help at a time number even people don't know what is if at this illegal immigrants or immigrants. they have to come up with something. >> that's why president obama is
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expected to take action on that. so, i think those are the two things. of course the budget for americans, they are fed up with the congress now. nothing is moving. and it seems that we are at a stalemate. thank you very much, sir. host: scott from new york independent line hi. caller: good morning. are you talking to me? host: yes, sir. guest: yes. i think that the republicans and democrats could come together -- am i there? host: yes. go ahead. caller: thank you. being the head runner for president right now in the republican party is jeb bush. since she had 5 major drug crimes tried to forge a prescription tore examcompaniax. when she was in drug rehab she was caught with the crack cocaine. host: how office that.
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guest: the drug powder. host: can i ask you a question? the relations between the white house and congress where with they work together specifically? caller: i think they need to work together to realize that we've got a whole bunch of humans in this country, and we are going to get it sooner later start taking care of the humans. host: parkville, maryland john, democrats line. caller: hi. how are you? host: well. go ahead. caller: i as a democrat hope the president will sign the keystone pipeline bill. i think that democrats are the generally missing what's going on in the economy. since july consumer confidence and the president's approval ratings have improved. i think that's directly related to the cheap gas line prices. gasoline prices in my neighborhood this week are down to $2 and $0.15 a gallon.
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i think that that's -- the wat "washington post" reported that's putting $83 million a day in consumers' pockets. democrats need to get on the side of the middle class and it is directly affected by the price of glean. if they are true to their word and they are fighting for the middle class, they will use the symbol of the xl pipeline top say that we want our people to have cheaper energy prices f host: to show you the front page of "u.s.a. today" it talks about the falling oil prices the viewer talks about but how it's affecting oil companies and how they are dealing with the drop of the price of a barrel of oil. as of january 6th, $48 a barrel, this down from $104 a barrel back july 3rd of 2014. tanya from west virginia we are asking folks about where the g.o.p.-led congress and white
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house can find common ground. what do you think? caller: well they will find common ground on the transpacific trade deal where countries like vietnam who only make $0.28 on the dollar and to keep the vietnam people from wanting a better class of living like the chinese people wanted to be a middle class people after they got our jobs. they have it written in the bill that the government of vietnam can never raise those rates other than $0.28. >> that's going to undercut all of these american jobs that's tall talk about minimum wage. it's going to give away our sovereign sovereigncy as a country. our government rules won't matter to countries like vietnam and south korea and what-have-you. they are going to fast-track it. no discussion. put it on the floor.
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vote yes or no. it's a travesty. it's going to be trade deals to steroids. host: ned is on our republican line. ned, go ahead. caller: yes. good morning. thanks for taking my call. i don't think that they are going to be able to work together mainly because of at a time president has already knuckled down. you know the three things when he is supposed to protect our country is our language, our culture, and our borders. we have open borders, our language is being destroyed as well as our culture. he is the one that's doubling down. he is the one that's cramming things down people's throats, executive action. i think he is setting up a fight for his last two years. >> that's what i believe, and... host: derrick in maryland democrats line. hello. caller: good morning.
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i wanted to talk about the pipeline situation. it just doesn't make sense to build one simply because of the fact they keep telling these people these jobs are temporary. they are temporary jobs. i am sure they will pay well but they are temporary jobs and at the end they are only going to be what? 30 to 40 people that's going to have permanent jobs doing this because if they have problems with the pipeline they are subcontracted out. i don't understand it. i hope all 40-something thousand jobs they get the pipeline gol to republicans. see if thick find a job after that for them. thank you. host: the bill on the house side taking a look at keystone to be considered on friday the senate picking up a few weeks later. the white house weighing in on those bills reaching the president's bills. here is josh earnest.
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[video clip) >> you will recall we recall we put out a statement that the president would the veto it. if this bill passes this congress, the president wouldn't sign it either. host: it could be issues of trade, other issues where you think the white house and congress can work together. if you want to express those thoughts: host: we will hear next from jim in leesburg virg independent line. caller: yes, sir. thanks for taking my call. yeah, i think they need to work on the tax system and reform that and go to a flat or a fair tax. >> isn't going to happen because that eliminate's washington's power. immigration. i'm sorry, abdul, you can go back to whatever country you came from but you've got to understand that the bill of rights. the federal government is not
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supposed to be this power. if you come into my country illegal, i am a vet, my son, two combat missions in afghanistan, the government is not supposed to provide us with healthcare. i'm sorry. get rid of obamacare and put it back to the people in the states. thank you for your time. host: the topic of obamacare, the subject of an oped in "u.s.a. today." it's written by the new ways and means chairman paul ryan tax writing committee. the headline says obama care is beyond repair. he writes the worst of the y'all is let to come. this year the individual man date kicks in for real. anyone who doesn't have will have to pay a tax of $325 or 2% of taxable income. this year's tax season will be morestressful morestressful. h & r block estimates up to half of the 6.8 million people who got subsidies might have to pay some of those subsidies back. just because we can't fix obama kay doesn't mean we can't start to get rid of its worst features. the house will take up a bill to define full-time as 40 hours per week so more people can work full-time.
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ultimately, the law will collapse under its own weight. until then, we have to start building a better healthcare system in its place. we need to start with a new principle: put the patient in the driver's seat. that's how we can build al healthy economy. rae green texas. hi. caller: hi. i want to talk about the tpp, the transpacific agreement. host: yes. caller: back in 2007, there was an agreement drawn up that protected the environment and a lot of different things the fishing industry a lot. well the bill has been rewritten. a lot of it in secret and now it's taken out all of the environmental issues and it's going to take all of the rest of the jobs that nafta didn't take out of the united states. host: hot when it comes to working together on these traditiontrade issues, what should the congress and white house do? caller: they need to completely
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re-do that tpp, to begin with. host: andrew is up next from pennsylvania. hi. caller: yes. host: you are on. go ahead. caller: okay. i am calling about unextended unemployment benefits. okay? it's been going on for a year. the president stated in his state of the union address that the previous one, that he wanted to extend it. okay? the bill passed in the senate, and it finally passed in the congress. so, it's been on his desk since december the 4th. how come he hasn't signed it? host: vicky from minnesota, you are next. asking the question about common ground and are there areas of common ground between the white house and the congress? hello. caller: hi. host: go ahead.
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caller: my name is vicky am i there? host: vicky go ahead. you are on. caller: i think the common ground can come when everybody realizes that we have voted them in and they need to listen to the american people. i think we should work hard on the obamacare. i have seen it work with a lot of people. it is it has really saved me a lot of medical help and i also think with the pipeline i have watched and read and read how bad it's going to be for our country in the long run and that it's only going to bring a few jobs. those are the two areas that if everybody listens to what the american people want that in -- and go from their hearts and not from their wallet did, that they can come together and work it out for us. thank you. host: before you leave then what i am hearing you say is the congress should take the white house's position on those two areas? caller: yes i do. and if the white house is going
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to vote against the pipeline and keep working on the obamacare here host: kenny from south carolina, you are next. good morning. caller: yes. i just want to make a comment that, you know the keystone was the first thing the republicans brought up. first thing. but roads, bridges, then education will create 50 times more jobs than the keystone. but the first thing they did was help the oil companies. now, they cannot say that it's vitally important when gas is $2 a gallon. host: so when it comes to moving forward, what would you like to see done between both the white house and the congress? caller: well i think the priority for both should be the roads, the bridges, and...
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host: let's hear from kay from california democrats line. caller: good morning and happy new year. host: thank you. caller: i would like to ask the president to tell the president of mexico we are not going to give them any more money. we are giving them millions of dollars a year to keep drugs out of the country. yesterday morning in san diego they are telling us about the massive amounts of drugs, the drug cartel. it is ruining our country. and it is taking jobs away the people who are illegally in the country are taking jobs away. we have over in oakland, the numbers of people 28% of the population of oakland are unemployed. young people are not finishing high school. we need to take care of the people in our country. we are the people who are paying the taxes.
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host: sot is that changing the immigration policy? border control room caller: we need a boarder control room in mexico and in canada. the young man who shot up the government place in canada, he had been in this country four times. why isn't there an answer for that? what was he doing here? host: the white house website if you go to it, also on their blog feature puts a video and a short article taking a look at the visit that took place yesterday at the whitehouse between president obama and the president of mexico. there is a little bit there on the white house website in talking about various issues when it comes to the relations between the two countries from the white house website. from patricia we go to patricia is in washington republican line. hi, patricia. how are you? caller: good morning. it's a beautiful day. i would just like to see the president and congress work together. it seems like they are always at
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odds and does not seem to be working together. we need that very desperately t i would like also obama to be like following the constitution and the bill of rights and the way of the people not him, you know, just sticking his feet down saying we are going to do it my way. host: patricia when you say work together specifically on what? what would you like to see done first thing? caller: well i don't like all of these people coming across the the border illegally. i was raised in southern california. if we went across the border and they wanted to tear our car apart looking for drugs, they did. here, people are walking across the boarders and nobody is stopping them. i don't feel that that's right. >> bill on new mexico on the democrats line.
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caller: good morning. since when has the republicans compromised with this president in the i think that the democrats need to stay fast behind the president's veto. i think the democrats need to hold these blue dog right, center right blue dogs from overriding that veto. hold all of those people online and protect the president's vet 0 power. host: in cases like keystone xl where you have some democrats lining up behind having it built, would you like to see the white house change its position on it? caller: no, sir. i would like to see them democrats be eliminated from our party. thank you. host: one of the issues that took place yesterday especially with the convening of the senate was the presence of minority leader harry leader who was in an exercise related accident he took to youtube in part to talk
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about his accident but where he is medically and how he would like to see the congress move forward. here is what he had to say. [video clip.] >> doctors told me i hadbetter take it easy. i have been dealing with congress for now in the 33rd year. i really have some homesickness for lack of a better description, but i had a terrific meeting with the new leadership. senator durbin senator schumer, senator murray. we have been together for a number of years, a long time working together and we are speaking with one voice. we are going to continue to fight for good things for this country. we understand the rich are getting richer. the poor are getting poorer. the middle class is being squeezed out of existence. we are going to do everything we can to fulfill the expectations the middle class has. we will continue to fight for
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them. host: let's hear from patricia in brooklyn new york. democrats line. caller: i say we can come to common ground on education and the federal communications commission. host: why those two things? let's start with education. caller: education, we need from the adults to the children also, the federal communications commission on articulating coming together on the signals, the satellite signals period between the phone and t.v. should be the unity. host: why satellite signals? why is that a concern to you? caller: it's a concern for me because we are moving full-speed ahead 2015. so we have to be on one accord universally, globally internationally. host: alice is up next from michigan democrats line. caller: i really think that we will not be able to work together with the republicans because of the failings in the
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south and the feelings -- the feelings in the south and the feelings for inner-mixing have went completely to putt. i was raised in arkansas missouri. when i go home i think (bleep) low cas host: we are asking all of the question from all of you ways that the white house and congress can work together areas of common ground that can be found between the two. you can continue to make those calls. we will take them in a moment. from reuters out of paris. 11 at a shooting that took place, the story breaking just a little bit ago saying it was black-hooded gunmen shooting dead at least 11 people at the office of a satirical newspaper.
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a public indication fire bombed after lampooning it muslim leaders. the president headed to the scene of the attack. the government said it was raising france's security level to the highest notch. quote, this is a terrorist attack. there is no doubt about it, he told reporters. another 10 people were injured in the incidents. police union officials describe the scene in the offices as carnage. bobby from jupiter, florida, independent line. hi. caller: how are you doing today? host: fine. go ahead. caller: one major point i always have a problem with. obama had everything the first two years. everything. he could have got anything he wanted passed. 50 votes in the senate. they could have done anything. what did they do? healthcare when we all needed jobs. so all of this stuff, you know, they could do immigration, everything done. now, because the republicans didn't do this and do that the last two years, so he does
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executive orders. he don't want to compromise on anything. all he wants to do is executive orders. it's his way or the highway. host: as far as the congress? caller: i would like to see bring the draft back. everybody out of high school, if you are not going to college, get these kids off of the streets and away from the computers. get them a trade. send them to the armed forces for two years like when i was growing up. host: anna chicago, illinois we will go to hope. hope is from columbia missouri independent line good morning. caller: good morning to you. i said this on the show before: together we stand, divided we fall. i don't believe in the democrats. i don't believe in republicans. i believe that we are all american people and that if we do not take the government back i believe washington is about a lot of politics and that's what our country has been ran on is politics, and i think that washington needs to be cleared out.
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i believe that it should be the government should be given back to the people. we are fighting ourselves by putting parties and saying we are republicans and we are democrats. we are american people. if the people do not take the government back and the concerns of the people and the benefit of the united states, the other countries action like i said are looking at together we stand, divided we fall. when we go to these categories, we are standing against ourselves shtsz, and we are a big mock of our country. it's just bad. >> that's all i have to say. host: roger from ofallon, missouri. independent line. caller: yes. how are you doing? host: fine thanks. caller: my suggestion is that we 1 fix wall street. and then also fix our trade. our trade is not democratic
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these are two huge issues that affect our economy. host: when it comes to wall street, what changes would you like to see? caller: we have got to get rid of corruption. everybody knows it's corrupt. elizabeth warren. host: ray from missouri even as the 114th congress took place and started yesterday in richmond, virg which is about two hours south of washington, d.c. sentencing for the former virginia governor robert mcdonnell, here to talk about it, patrick wilson of "the virgian pilot," a reporter who covered it. can you start with what the charges were and why the governor received the sentence that he did? guest: sure. good morning. the governor was facing 11 felon counts in related to corruption and biery case. he was convicted in september by
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a jury. and it related to gifts and loans that he and his wife received and his family from an executive named johnny williams. the allegation was that the governor and his wife took official action to proceed mote the dietary supplement that johnny williams was marketing. and he faced up to 20 years in prison on each of those 11 counts under the law. the federal sentencing guidelines that a probation officer calculated came back with a range, a suggested range of about 10 to 12 and a half years for governor mcdonald and after some argument in court and how they were calculated the judge in his case reduced the guidelines to about 6 and a half years to a little over 8. after testament at the sentencing hearing, sentenced him to two years in prison.
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>> as far as the actually 241 months, was that a surprise to people when they heard that number? guest: i guess it would depend on certainly the supporters and the family and friends of governor mcdonnell, you know, were hoping for probation. i think it is fair to say, you know based upon opinions i have heard and some of the analysis that i am seeing that it is possibly surprising because the, you know the u.s. attorney's office had recommended in one of their filings that the judge sentence him within the guidelines. even at argument yesterday, the assistant u.s. attorney was still pushing for at least six and a half years and there is another case in virginia from 2011 in which a state delegate from newport news who was caught up in a bribery scheme was sentenced to 9 and a half years in prison. i think there was some thought governor mcdonnell would be facing, you know, time that was
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much more serious than two years. so certainly, somebody could make the argument that this is -- two years is very serious, you know. it's a prison sentence, but it could have been a lot worse as far as the time that he got. host: what about the appeal processes? what's going to happen? guest: the governor indicated yesterday he would appeal likely today. and as far as you know what happens with that we will have to follow it, but there will be an appeal filed very soon. host: when does he report to prison? guest: the judge ordered him to report on february 9th, and his attorneys do have a motion pending for bond. they want him to be able to remain free while he appeals. the judge in the case will have to determine that. one of the defense attorneys said yesterday that they are thinking that that might be by february 1st. but if the judge does not allow him to remain free on bond he would need to report to federal
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prison on february 9th. my understanding is that the u.s. bureau of prisons would make the determination on where bob mcdonnell would need to go, but his attorneys did request he go to petersburg virginia because that's close torismond and the judge recommended petersburg. but ultimately i'm told, it's up to the bureau of prisons. host: that's a white collars facility. facility? guest: i can't answer that. i'm sorry. host: there was a lot made of this case because of the president's president's wife. did we hear from her yesterday? and ultimately what happens now with here? guest: i don't believe she made any statement yesterday. she was convicted, you know, at the same trial. she stood trial with her husband. she was convicted by the jury of nine counts and the judge later threw out one of those. so she is -- she has a pending
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sentencing hearing coming up on february 20th on eight felony counts. and as far as i can see right now, there has been nothing released as far as what her sentencing guideline range is. there is some commentary and thought today that the sentence for bob mcdonnell perhaps bodes well for maureen mcdonnell because it may be that she is given -- going to receive a sentence of similar. prison sentence and she is not looking at serious time like decades in prison or 10 years or anything like that. host: patrick wilson a reporter for the "virgian pilot" talking about the sentencing the former virg governor robert mcdonnell. caller: thank you so much host: back to your calls mesquite texas, reggeen democrats line hello. let me push the button. go ahead. caller: i would like to speak about campaign reform.
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i think that's something that both the congress and the presidency needs to work on. this alec -- i don't know what the anonym stands for but it's a group of lobbyists, businessmen and big business work with, you know, the members of congress and so forth on the issues that the businesses want passed legislative bills and whatnot that obviously when they give money to the campaigns of these senators and congressmen, they expect to get those laws past and they do. case in point: the cityi group. senator warren spoke about this just last week. the big business, they are running our politics. the people this government is not governing for -- governing for the people anymore. it's no longer a government by the people for the people. host: next from howie in fill philadelphia
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philadelphia, republican line. caller: good morning. happy new year's. you know, they need to find common ground into restoring our economic system. there is too much economic treason going on. i can lie joho. i lionel representative yoto the the 2013 congress. it's so weird, you know. our congress our governors, state senators, our economic system, ever since the election of 1902 when democrats came into the house, to 5 democrats in 1903. i am so sick of economic treason. thank you. host: the "washington post" talks about the vote break down they took yesterday, republicans voting against the house speaker and gives historical context. in 2013, 11 republican votes for a candidate other than mr. boehner. there was only one who voted only present going to 2015. it was 241 republican votes for a candidate orn the speaker.
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one eroded only "present." mr. boehner was elected with 216 votes and there are 2416 republican house members. pete from ashburn, virginia democrats line. caller: yes. i am calling in on the democrats line. and i think they need to look at illegal immigration. again, working in the carpentry field, i go into a job site. while we are there, a lot of the workers there, it's hard to find work to begin with. a lot of the workers there are immigrants and i assume a lot of them are illegal immigrants. i think they need to work on illegal immigration and the 14th amendment, here from san diego, i saw a lot of immigrants there, also, and just because you come here illegally and you have what we call an anchor baby that should be changed. it should not be allowed. i am heard on this show c-span carpenter did drywallers and painters saying they have businesses that have collapsed in maryland because of the illegal immigration workforce
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here and i think that's a big problem for this country and wish they would work on that and the chamber of commerce they got to get out from underneath that. they are fighting for this. i don't believe that's an american thing to do. host: one of several stories in the papers takes a look at jeb bush. the "new york times" front page saying on tuesday, he delivered a powerful message about two of the most vital ingredients, money and ideas. transforming himself from a figure who once seemed paralyzed by am bif lance over a white house rub-in into the most forceful president in the republican field with the flip of a facebook switch a former governor of florida can raise money with an eye toward 2016 and laid out a campaign strategy like immigration over all and income inequality. 61, a figure, indelibly linked to the republican offers a midwife of the future a break
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from the party struggle to win over minority voters and the kind of ideological infighting on display tuesday when conservatives try to oust speaker john boehner that mr. bush could face in primaries. mary from reynolds station, kentucky on the republican line. hi, mary. how are you? caller: i am good pedro. how are you, hon? host: fine, thanks. caller: it's good to talk to you. i am an oldtimer. i don't have a dotcom or internet. i told the guy i wanted to make two comments but also want to make a suggestion. these are two suggestions. i will make another one. when every -- would everybody be color blind for a little while and get along with each other and just turn to each other and say i love you for once? i mean for pete's sake did, y'all, we are all one. try to get along for a change and it's for the republicans and the democrats and if you want to put people back to work how about going out in the country,
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digging a ditch, pick up a limb rake leaves or try to put in some natural gas lines for the folks by out in the boondocs that has to buy propane gas or cut wood. the old fashion way works. if you work, you earn it, you respect it, and you trust it. and pedro i watched the other day when somebody called until and said there were no people of color on that show. hon, i have been watching this thing for i don't know how long and i have seen a variation of color on this thing but i don't recognize color. i recognize the person that's within that body. so people' look at that person and smile at them and say i love you. come on, y'all. we can do better. we are a better people. host: one of the first speech from the senate majority leader mitch mcconnell took place on the senate floor talking about the future of the 114th.
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here it is. [video clip.] >> today is an important day for our country. many senators took the oath this afternoon, 13 for the first time and a new republican majority accepted its new responsibility. we recognize the enormity of the task before us. we know a lot of hard work awaits awaits. we know many important opportunities await as well. i am really optimistic about what we can accomplish but i will have much more to say about that tomorrow. for now i just want to welcome back all of our returning members. i want to congratulate the many new ones, and i want to say a word about our colleague from nevada. senator reid is a former boxer. he is tough. i know he will be back in fighting form soon enough. we all wish him a speedy recovery. we wish the very best to all of you. enjoy the ceremonies tomorrow today, and tomorrow it's back to
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work. host: here is nigel from massachusetts, democrats line. hi, there. call nigel left us. let's go to george t republican line. caller: okay. i think the whole things boils down to this institutionalization of america. we don't have the nuclear family any more which is the first unit of government. and two can live cheaper than 1. we have 53% divorced. everybody is carrying two households and two bills and we don't need five tvs in a 20 or 24100 square foot home. you know so if everyone went back to a nuclear family and we had one person maintaining the household, one person working, there would be no unemployment. i think socialism has to go. it's dying on the vinyl. with global business enterprise now, people are moving offshore and taking their businesses
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wherever they want. and i don't know where the tax revenue is going to come to eventually give everyone a check. i mean people have been watching this for 20 years. what i see is the givers and the gimme did. they are calling in and saying give me more. give me more. personal responsibility is due in place of political correctness. thank you very much. host: one of the activities taking place yesterday was vice president joe biden swearing in senators into the 114th congress. one of those would be freshman senate cory garner. after he did that took a chance to speak to senator gardner's grandmother after the swearing in. here is a little bit of what he said. [video clip."] >> betty, how are you? my name is vice president joe biden. how are you doing? well, i know. i just swore in your grandson.
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yeah. i will put him on the phone. here he is. nice to talk to you t [laughter.] host: one more call lloyd from, republican line. hi. lloyd from north carolina, are you there? i think he has gone. we will move on to segment did of the day. we are going to start off by talking with the republican governor of utah, gary herbert, vice chairman of the governor's association just met with the president to talk about the king he knows facing the nation's government. we8 talk to him about when he talked about. and donald norcross of new jersey will join us for a look at the democratic priorities and agenda for the 114th congress. in case you mentionedg missed it, it was tuesday where the border pat tro chief, michael fisher and to discuss the department's ongoing
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efforts to protect the border against trans-inational criminal networks. he was asked about the relationship between border patrol and communities. here is a bit from the event at that that took place yesterday. [video clip.] >> our live washington journal. >> it's one thing about looking at the border and from a strategic context and going out to a rotary club and saying we are with the boardrger patrol. we don't deal with it. at least we shouldn't. what we want to be able to understand because the constituency out there aren't, you know, inconvenienced by the checkpoint. they are not, you know just because the border patrol agents real tracking and the dog is barking. we don't want to be the nuisance. we want them to help us understand that border environment. situational awareness. we rely on those communities and the leadership in the field meets with them frequently because they are a good source of information. i am not talking about as a
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confidential informant about i noticed, you know, the dogs started barking the last couple of weeks. >> hasn't happened in the last three months. we want to be able to involve them first and foremost, have them understand what we are doing in terms of our deployment. i am not saying they all have to agree with the way we are doing it, but at least give them the opportunity to understand. this is what we are doing and this is why we are doing it. then get their reaction to that. understand what their concerns are so that we can adjust as needed and recognizing that, you know, we don't want to be on their property any longer than we need to. right? but it is a critical component, you know, when robert is talking about integration, you know, looking at our federal state tribal partners, that's going to be critical. >> that's not to the exclusion of the communities in which we serve. they ultimately are going to dictate the extent to which we either encroach upon their rights or they -- we encroach upon their property and we really want to be good stewards in that regard as well. host: that full event available on our website,
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that event on border security. >> along with other incidents and topics of a similar nature. c joining united states now is governor gary herbert, the governor of utah, also the vice chair of national governors' association. good morning. guest: good morning. host: you met with the president yesterday. what was on the agenda guest: get to say it's a new year, new beginning, new opportunities for us to work together and certainly governs in the states want to be a partner in shaping policy for the -- on the national stationge. the governs in the states are good resources for not only the president but congress as we deal with some of these challenges issues. host: you and governor hicken hickenlooper met with the president. what was the top of the agenda list? guest: transportation and re reauthorization. there has been a slowing down not getting accomplished the
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transportation reauthorization. federal government involvement with our interstate highways has been there since the 1950s with the president eisenice eisenhower. more responsibilities going to the states. and that probably there is an appropriate balance. we think we need to stand up and fund their appropriate share for state highway and federal highway system. host: how much do states depend upon the federal government for highways and the like. give us an example from utah's position. guest: somewhere about $250 million a year that comes into our highway system. we spend about a billion dollars a year. so, it's about 25% of our overall expenditures on highways. >> that's the smaller portion than we have had in times past. it's larger than some years. but we are not really on our highway system in the nation doing the maintenance work that needed to be done. we are not expanding capacity and as a country that's still
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growing quite rapidly up to 320 million people infrastructure needs and transportation are a key issue. not just quality life but economic development host: have you talked with g.o.p. leaders guest: we have leadership races over and congress is back in place, we will be coming back in february and many governors will probably have the majority of the 50 governors and our territorial governs, too, you are talking about issues that are of common need for the states and talk to leadership in both the senate and the house and republican and democrats alike. host: you talked about the concerns of reauthorizing the bill. we have a new congress. we have been talking to folks this morning about common ground. is transportation one of those common ground issues that you think the white house and the congress can find? guest: yes. it's not a matter of we need it. it's really at what level do we fund it?
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of course the big debate is and where does the funding come from? right now, we have a gap. that's being spent and authorized. it's not comen sur rate with how much money has been appropriated. the question is: should there be a gasoline tax increase, for example? or is there another place to raise the revenue? in states we really askew structural balance. sometimes in washington, in fact, too often in washington they deal with one-time money. >> that's this year. what about next year? there has to be an ability to develop a revenue stream. the green tax has been mostly used in the past. most states have a bal ants between general fund monies and gasoline user tax omming off kind of the bal anted approach to build their own highways. host: the governor talking about the issues concerning the states. it's the vites chair of the governor did' association.
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met with president obama. give us samples from your state if you want. here is how you can do so: aside from transportation, governor, what are some of the major issues that states face? guest: there are a lot of issues out there. every state has its own sneakingness. >> that's the beauty of the system. we call it the united states of merge. as we all know the famous statement by juned brandise they are laboratories of democracy. we have unique policy and cultures. we learn from each other. >> that's one. bused of the national governs' association is that we look at best practices in other states. we learn from successes, from the failures and we modify and improve and learn together. the problem in washington for most of us is states and governs is the one-size-fits-all
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approach which doesn't necessarily fit. so we think we are a resource for washington to look at the states. let us help you as we decide and debate policy out here whether it's healthcare reform transportation, national defense, our national guard or armory reserves, those things in our back yards, a lot of areas where i think congress and the president can learn from the states. host: what about educationing? common core. guest: i think the idea of having standards, i don't know of any governor that does not want to have high standards. and frankly, governs have been disappointed, you know about the fact that we have dropped in the world rankings when it comes to educational achievement, 25, 26, we are certainly not at the top of the pack. so, the motivation from governs that develop really the standards that became the common core was motivating because that desire to elevate and have high standards. the same time you've got to contrast that with states.
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it's their responsibility. it's not washington's responsibility. it's the state responsibility for education within the borders of their state. they don't want to give up sovereign control of that. so standards should be developed by the states independent of washington d.c. the curriculum should be developed by the states independent of washington, d.c. to address their own unique demographics. that's some of the pushback you see with i think, the commonly core rebeb yol or concern that we see in many of the states today. host: how does utah deal with common core? guest: we have gone through to make sure legally we are in control of our education system. we have had our attorney general to a complete legal analysis to ensure us and utah that we are in charge of the education system, that the standards are our standards we can for the my them -- modify and improve them. we will have a report here in the next few weeks to give to our state elected school board as a recommendation for what the standards should be and modified
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somewhat differently from what the common core is and also we are reviewing and making sure our elected local school board understand their responsibility is how do you teach to the standards? what is the curriculum? and making sure that it's local control from top to bottom in the state of utah. we are also looking to make sure we are controlling our resources, what we acquire for text books our testing is developed here in utah by ourselves. >> we are not part of the national nationalized testing program and we are also concerned about data collection to make sure that what data is being collected from our students what is appropriate to collect, also, and what can you do with that data? again, i think we are trying to alleviate any concerns people have that somehow, we have ceeded that responsibility to washington, d.c. host: would you describe yourself as a supporter of common core? guest: i am a supporter of standards, high standards and the common core standards had to do with reading, language arts
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and math, and those standards nationally have to be raised. i agree with that. but i also agree that the states should be in charge and we should control that. and it's really a local control issue. host: challenges facing the nation's governs. the number on your screen. alice is from missouri on our independent line. you are on with governor gary herbert of utah vice chair of the national governs' association. go ahead. caller: good morning. i would like to make a comment about the roads and stuff. if we would get a lot of the big trucks off of the roads and bring back more of the railroads, we would be a lot better. i was raised in the '50s and we had better roads than they do now. schools, i think the parents should be in charge of their childrents education. i had a grandson come out of 6th grade. he couldn't read write or nothing. he's been home schooled the last five years and he has accomplished a lot more with his
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dad, and i am his grandmother and with us teaching him at home. i just feel that this country has gotten to the point where the government wants to take over our lives. i don't think it's right. we should be able to control our own lives at home. guest: i think the parents should be in charge of education. i agree. the best precussor to success in education is when parents are involved. it sdubt matter whether it's homeschooling, private schools, public schools. there are a variety of it choices out there. parents ought to make the choice of what's in their best interest with their dyers of how they bring up their children. we have 1u6ks homeschoolers and people go to charter schools who have been a big part of our public education and the ability for people to choose schools within the public education system. the parental involvement is
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important to the success of the students. i agree with that. clearly as we have developed particularly from the '50s, you mentioned the roads were better in the 50s. maybe as we kind of sprouted under dwight d. eisenhower which has been a blessing to our nation to be able to get from point a to point b and have roads that connect with each other and make it travel a little more conducive for business as well as just individual and personal travel. you know, that infrastructure needs to be maintained. with the growth of the population, it needs, in fact, to be expanded. railroads are a little more rigid. you don't have flexibility. it is a combination of both. our railroad did in utah are working well. they continue to service us particularly commercial and industrial needs. they certainly are a part of our transportation system but not the entire part. host: clover, south carolina danny, republican line. hi.
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caller: good morning, governor. guest: good morning. caller: i wanted to say something about education. it seems to me that you have got states and local school boards who are in charge of education. it's those people who should be adults can't figure out what to feed little johnny for lunch or they can't figure out how to teach little johnny to read and write they need to be invited to go home and let someone else have that position. the idea that some byeurocrat needs to tell states how to educate children, it's just ridiculous. i have a comment about the roads and the gas tax. it's not unusual here to drive up on a construction site and you've got one guy working and six guys watching. if you want to raise the gas tax so we can have one guy working and 10 guys watching?
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host: thanks, caller. guest: there are those stories where we have six guys leaning on one shovel. in utah which is where i can speak to we have a very efficient department of transportation. we are building more roads for less money and our coast has gone down. we privatize virtually everything we do. we gather the money from the gasoline tax and general funneled to build roads but contract out and have it bid out by private sector contractors which again gives competition to the issue it has worked well on utah. we ought not to be dictated to by washington, d.c. because they are too far removed from our own back yards. the control ought to be with the parents and how the parents control by electing their local
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school board periods, people who represent them. if they don't like how they are performing elect somebody else and get it done right. the school board should controller is superintendent and prajss of the schools. if they don't do it right, replace and get somebody in who will run the schools appropriately. >> puts the public the parents in control as they elect who is to be on the school board host: host: good morning. caller: i have a quick question for you. i completely agree really that 15 independent states, 50 different set of problems that cover a wide and diverse spectrum. my question to you is though after listening to you is i wonder. i kind of wonder what you think the expression states rights because to me in this era states rights means that each
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individual state expresses it's itself in the way you have described. they have different groups. when i have conversations about people that work, i use that expression. they refer back to the '50s and '60 did when that expression was used predominantly to hold down voting rights. i wonder what your thought was on that. i hang up and listen. thank you governor. guest: thank you. federalism, which is really the concept in our constitution was the idea that we have these states out there, again laboratories of democracy. we got together, you know with constitution and created the federal government. we felt like at the time we needed a stronger centralized government george washington was one who very much wanted to have a centralized government and ability to have national defense and regulate commerce and have the states work together in a cohesive fashion.
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it was designed to be a partnership. you know the federal states were designed to be sovereign in nature but work collectively with centralized government. an interesting statistic to show you how we have gotten out of kilter. if you took the collective budgets of all 50 states, added them all up, it's about $1.7 trillion. it's about $4 trillion. we all know in the constitution. the responsibility did and powers of the state were many and varied. we have this upsidedown. do you see i agree? people probably misused in the past sovereign and rights. >> doesn't mean the principal is not not correct. >> means the states are the laboratories. we have the ability to try
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things out it is not conducive to good government and does not represent the taxpayers well. they make so many mistakes here so large, they are not nimble to make any kind of an adjustment
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__ i think one of the things we have to do in this country is hold teachers to the fire and make sure they are doing their job. guest: well, let me just respond to that. they are not the enemy, they are our partners. we should be working together to solve the problems and address the needs of the american public.
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we have state responsibilities within our borders, and we have a general responsibility to the federal government. it is really a matter of us working together. it is like any kind of a team effort. we have different roles as the governors of the states. but we all are on the same team, including the federal government. so we need to find ways to work together and really play our roles well. that would respond to the needs of the taxpayer are. i have been equally as critical during a republican administration __ as the region and take on more responsibility. on education, again, having standards is really an important thing. some of that has to do with salaries, and some of that has to do with appreciation for the hard work that teachers do in the classroom.
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we have too many parents that get upset at the teachers who are trying to do the best they can in the classroom, but have a problem because the children are not disciplined. as a substitute teacher, you have probably seen at. that is apparent problem, not a teacher problem. that is a lack of discipline and proper rearing by parents. it really is, again, a combination of us working together. we have to show up at parent_teacher conferences and and say, how is johnny doing? if they are not getting their homework done, we have to make sure that that happens. together, we can actually approve the education in this country. host: when it comes to funding, a recent story so that you are open to raising gas taxes. is that true? guest: it is. we look to the long_term aspects of transportation in utah, and found that by 2040 __
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we are about the second massacring state in america right now. good economics and good quality of life. as well as a higher birth rate. we have to anticipate for the future. i'm saying that we cannot just talk about the next two years or the next election, it really has to be generational things as we looked on the road. we came up $11 billion short for our transportation in utah. and we have not adjusted the gas tax and 17 years. just to recapture inflation means we should raise it by $.10 per gallon. but we're having a discussion on whether it to be an excise tax or a permanent tax __ to raise it up to $.34. surely have a sales tax, should we have a combination? maybe we can have more tax, or a fee and registration. or higher sales tax on automobile goods. how do we address electrical cars and nontraditional fields?
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we don't tax them, yet they beat up the roads as much as anything else. so that is the thing i will expect to have some sort of adjustment __ the fuel tax and how we maintain the roads and build capacity. host: how is your legislature responding to your idea? gguest: you know, they understand. raising taxes is the worst thing you can do as a politician. that's why it hasn't been done in 17 years. but we have to do something. our capacity is not what it needs to be, and then we end up hurting our economy overall, which means we could hurt our maintenance. no one wants to drive down a lot of roads that have a lot of potholes in them. it is the cities, counties, the states working together. obviously, as we talked about, the federal government has a role to play. but we are going to address that.
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and we're going to think long_term, not short_term. host: should the government raise their taxes? guest: i think they should consider that. somebody has to come up with a revenue stream somewhere. there are certain things that are the responsibility of the government. i think that is limited __ national defense and interstate commerce and interstate travel is a part of the responsibility that the federal government has to play. get out of areas we ought to not be in. too much in health and human services, in some areas. host: governor gary herbert, the republican of utah. also the vice chair of the national governors association. steve in brownsburg, michigan. your next. the republican line. good morning.
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caller: yes, that is brownsburg, indiana. but good morning. i have a comment on the highway use in the taxes to help fund our infrastructure. i support some kind of a revenue enhancement, but i hope that instead of just pushing for a flat increase in the gas tax, we start to address __ address the funding __ uuser fees and so forth because the gas tax is now become somewhat of a direction. the richer people can buy the newer cars which are more fuel_efficient, where as the lower income people are still struggling with the vehicles that get lower gas mileage and pay more to use the rose then more affluent people. and the electric fields __ now,
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basically __ guest: that is correct. and there really is not any sort of a several bullet here. and that is why, in our state, we're going to look at different issues before we decide what is the most appropriate way to fund our highway needs. again, it is a long_term strategy, but we need to get on the right path and make sure we have the ability to fund and maintain the roads in the state of utah. we are a large state, we have a lot of roads out there. some of the rural parts of the states, it hurts themdisproportionately because they have more distance to travel. let me mention one other thing because i think it is important here, too, when they talk about the role of the federal government. part of what we need is a change in rules and regulations. i have met with many of the contractors that build roads in
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the midwest, and they're saying, if we can get rid of many of the strings and regulations that come in the processing to build a federal road, we could cut the cost by 20%. so, get rid of the strings and some of the nonsensical regulations aand we can actually build more roads for less money. that is a win_win. we help the federal government balance the budget by reducing costs and getting rid of some of the red tape. and their costs and having the services they need. host: chuck from indiana. caller: yes, sir, i do have a few questions. in terms of state rights _ when they come in and override the rules they have made and the state says, no, you can't do this.
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i believe that there is too much of this going on. these people built a pond to their yard. they got the state's permission. the epa comes down and says it will cost about $150,000 to drain it __ you have to take it out and put it in a pile somewhere. as far as i'm concerned, it is a waste of our money and time and that. host: caller, thanks.
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guest: it sometimes seems a little draconian. they congress than guest and the ability to set rules and regulations. sometimes the rules and regulations they put in place make it all difficult. certainly, there are anecdotal stories out there that it has been a little egregious and some of the epa rules and regulations __ some of the properties have been poisoned and taken away with out to just compensation. so i know, we are trying to work with the epa on many issues. we have air quality issues in the state of utah. the epa has that authority because environmental impacts know no border. if you contaminate the water and the water aquifers, it can crossover borders. so there is a need to have a more broader spectrum when it comes to environmental impacts. but i would say this, and i
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mentioned it to the president yesterday, it is a concern for the environmental impact studies that we have to do ad nauseum. to take three, four, five years to do an environmental impact study is a waste of time. we can do them shorter than that, be more efficient. protect the environment as we all want to be __ good stewards. the amount of time where taking for the studies are just ridiculous. host: governor, how is your state dealing with the affordable care act?7 guest: well, that is an example where we would've had a better product where, if somebody in the government in washington would've said, why aren't we talking to the governor's? we were never consulted. never talk to. i think as a big mistake.
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host: to have a federal exchange or a state exchange? guest: well, i negotiated our own unique exchange. ours has no mandate to it. so we have one that has defined contributions, as opposed to the benefits. we have contributions from employers, than the consumer can go to the internet and choose from about 125 different programs. it has worked very well for our small businesses. the individual mandate and subsidy, we left to the federal government. but we handle small business. by the way, we are also working to try and come up with something to an alternative to medicaid expansion. host: and there is resistance from the legislature, right?
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guest: some, but not all. the concern the legislature has is to find something we can all afford. there's some concern __ will the federal government always uphold their part of the bargain? can we afford it on the road in 10 years? so that is just being fiscally prudent. we have also added a little twist __ if you want to have healthcare, we are prepared to provide you with healthcare. but we ask you, if you are able_bodied, to let us help you also get a job. if you are able_bodied and can work, we're going to give you skills, education, training to get a job. if you have a job, we will help you get a better job. host: here is cindy from north carolina. the republican line.
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caller: hi. my question __ mi on? host: you are on. caller: okay, my question is __ one, very important to me and everyone else, that we stand with israel. we stand with our allies. host: okay. guest: well, i had a chance here a year ago to spend some time in israel. i met with the president at the time and the prime minister __ and they both said to me __ governor, we live in a very dangerous neighborhood. which was the understatement of the day. they very much appreciate the united states support __ and i think we will continue to give them support. they are stabilizing influence in the middle east, so i think tthey deserve our report. i know we have a lot of connections in utah with israel, and we support them.
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host: karen, up next on the independent line. caller: good morning. how did you? pplease, i would like to give you a quote. john f. kennedy's favorite __ robert frost. and that was he was against a homogenized society because he wanted the cream tries. we do not have cream rising in this nation today. our schools of education are cookie_cutter factories. programming. programming. there's no individualism. there is no cream rising. our nation was built on every second to this country wwho use their __ their __ develop their own skills, pursue their own passions, and made our country what it is today. they put our country on the map
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__ on the world map __ as one of the most technologically advanced in the world. where are the today? everybody is being programmed. one other issue i wanted to raise with you, please, is i represented westinghouse nuclear mmunicipal and industrial waste hazardous divisions beginning in 1982. i would like you to name one superfund project in the entire nation that has ever been resolved. guest: well, let me just talk about american exceptionalism, because i believe that the cream has risen in the past, and it certainly can in the future. in utah, we started charter schools, which have unique
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characteristics and unique disciplines. so there is individualized efforts iin these unique schools, whether they be in the arts, or engineering, or other kinds of disciplines like math and science. they are not just cookie_cutter schools. and parents have the ability to choose to put their children in schools that have a little different emphasis. so i think it is not a cookie_cutter system, at least in utah. we're trying to give friday and opportunities. we have 41 school districts in utah, and each local school board can develop their own unique curriculum. meeting certain standards to have a high school diploma. so, there is some standardization, but the ability to have excellence. we have seen technology around this country __ iphones now that can do everything a smart computer could do 10 or 20 years ago. things you can't even comprehend as we access
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information in this great age. we have better health, we are living longer. people come to america for those kinds of healthcare issues. if you have cancer, heart problem, you don't go to other countries. you come to america to have those kinds of treatments. so i think we still have exceptionalism that is taking place in utah and america. things are getting away, we have to stop them. and the last thing was, what? host: i should have taken notes. let's move on to our next call. maryland. democrats line. caller: yes, good morning. i'm glad you are taking michael. i called because i was listening __ i listen to c_span every morning. i'm 85 years old and this is my cup of coffee in the morning. i listen to a lot of things, and i don't understand the changes they have made.
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me, growing up in the south, we went to school. we had to be respected in school, respected teacher. if you didn't respect that teacher, she can send you home or situate in the corner until you learned to respect her. you cannot teach a child if that child cannot respect to. we have a problem in school __ now the parents will go to school if the teacher tries to correct the child. they have taken that out of schools. they have taken prayer out of schools. what do they have to learn? teachers are afraid to correct children today. guest: there is no question, i agree with you that we seem to have a little more lackadaisical approach to the discipline of our children. again, i wouldn't want to say to anybody how to raise your
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children, but clearly having discipline, values, principles, respect for elders __ there is a reason to go to school. we need to elevate education, and excellence in education, and say it is not just a matter of getting through high school __ which was maybe okay for my generation __ but for the rising generation, it has to be post high school. we set a goal and utah to have 66% of our adult population are 2020 to have some sort of post high school. either a certificate, associate's degree, or a full degree. we're doing that because education is a good thing to have. number one, the practical aspects of it. if we're going to compete in the marketplace __ you have to have skills line up with the demands of the marketplace. that means something beyond high school and more. so emphasis to all of our young people is that education is an opportunity to you to have choices in your life __ to be
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able to support yourself and your family. well, that starts at home. our parents need to step up and say, let's teach our children good principles, importance of education, and give them the opportunity to be better. host: the republican governor of utah joining us. he is the vice chair of the national governors association. governor, i wanted to get your thoughts on the sentencing they came down yesterday for the former virginia governor. guest: well, that is a tragedy whichever way you look at it. i thought that he was a very fine man. in politics, sometimes you can get sucked into thinking that something is inconsequential. bob was a very talented person. at least all of the things i saw __ she was stellar in his performance. so, my heart breaks because of the situation with him and his wife, maureen.
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i wish them well. i'm sure that they are very humbled about the situation. but i think that, knowing them, they are good people at heart and made some bad judgmental errors. host: do think you'll discuss the disclosure of gifts and some the things he received? guest: yes, these kind of events make you pause __ what kind of gifts you can take. i know in utah, we have an ethical aspect of what we can do. we can't take sports tickets, you can't take more than a $50 gift. you can't accept more than $10 for a meal. so there are some parameters out there to give us on the straight and narrow path. but again, it is a difficult issue. and every state needs to find a way. but we need to raise the bar, expect more. and we do expect more from our elected officials.
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and that is appropriate. so we should have a higher standard for elected officials. we need to make sure to raise that part, which is what the taxpayers want. they want to trust our officials to do the right things, and that somehow beholden to special interests out there __ and do something that would be otherwise inappropriate. host: and before he let you go, a little bit about the new office. had to have a chance to talk to her before today? guest: i have. in fact, i went to a little reception she had here on monday evening. i have known her for a long time. when i was a county commissioner, before i became governor, i was the city commissioner. she used to call me up and say, hey, your debut created needs a little help. i got to know her in that capacity. she is a wonderful personality.
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just has great potential, and she's going to be a great addition to the congress. she is going to represent as well. so we're just excited about this new opportunity for her. host: you will become the chair when? guest: next summer. that is when the change is going to take place. look to the states, look to the governor's. i think we are in the best place. host: thank you very much for your time. we will speak with donald norcross, the democratic representative from new jersey, next. and then later in the program, james fallows from "the atlantic". that, as "washington journal" continues after this.
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>> this sunday, on "q&a", talking about the groundbreaking 1950 film "the birth of a nation". and the efforts by african_american civil rights activists and newspaper publisher william monroe trotter. >> part two of the movie, which is after the war, is really the heart of the protest. in a sense that this is wherethe blacks were just appalled by the betrayal of freed slaves. this is the scenes showing what happens when you give former slaves, you know, the right to vote, the right to be elected, the right to govern. a scene in the south carolina legislature where there first and primary order of business is to pass a law allowing for interracial marriage. because, again, black men are solely interested in pursuing
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and having white women. >> sunday night at eight eastern and pacific on c_span's "q&a". >> "washington journal" continues. host: we welcome representative donald norcross of new jersey. good morning to you. guest: good morning. host: for those who don't know you, give them a little bit of history. guest: well, i started working as an electrician __ and became
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involved with the labor unions and was a representative out of the ibw for close to 20 years. then i had an opportunity to run for the assembly, which i did so. quickly moved into the senate, where i served for the last 5 1/2 years. until the announcement in congress that he was retiring and i jumped in. host: so as far __ how would you view yourself or describe yourself politically to people? guest: i would like to say that i middle earth, especially when it comes to spending money and spending taxpayers money. i feel that i am more conservative __ on the conservative side, but certainly i'm concerned about jobs. as my original capacity, i was invested in workers. they are concerned, they want their kids to have the
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opportunities they did and they want to be able to go to work. host: so issues facing this congress, even on friday, one of the first votes is the keystone xl pipeline. where do you stand on that? guest: i have been in favor of the pipeline for a number of reasons. one reason is safety. another reason is jobs, and making sure that american energy is on the forefront. that t too many of us remember __ too many of us remember __ we are now the world's largest energy producer. host: as far as the white house signaling a possible veto of it. your thoughts on that? guest: certainly, the president will make his decision based on what ends up on his desk, but i'm in favor of moving us forward. the domain issues, amongst others, are a great concern to me.
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but as a whole, i am in favor of it. host: we asked our viewers earlier about common ground. talk about common ground between the house democrats and republicans. what are other areas that you might find in favor, and at least agree on? gguest: well, i think that is important. my history in trenton oover the past five years has been working across party lines. last night, we were at the speakers event over at the library of congress making sure that we were reaching out across the aisle. there is a new congressman just north of me, tom mcarthur. she and i have a very good working relationship. as to eye with the congressman to the south. i have had relationships with them over the last 20 years because they understand the issues that south jersey faces. host: our guest, the newly
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minted representative of the 114th congress. donald norcross of new jersey. if you want to ask them questions, here's your chance to do so. 202_748_8000 for democrats. 202_748_8001 for republicans. 202_748_8002 for independents. and you can send your thoughts on twitter, as well. brenda from beech island, south carolina. republican line, hello. caller: hu. i have worked my whole life. starting out at 15, and went to school for half a day, worked half a day, and then worked up until i was 48 years old and ended up on social security disability. they have a 24 month waiting period before you qualify for medicare or insurance. and then when you go to the obama care, you don't qualify for that at all because you don't pay taxes. so, you're already in a position where you need healthcare, and there is
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nowhere __ nothing available to get it. guest: well, certainly your plate is one that we can all feel for you. one of the major issues, and i found this out, whether it was my first year in trenton or as a worker in washington dc __ is that regulation by itself can happen accidentally. it seems that time after time, people who are trying to get into the system, which clearly __ they had to set up these rules to try block of those were trying to take advantage of the system. the system is designed to help people like yourself get through it; however, in order to make sure that the taxpayers money is well spent, they have to set up these steps to make sure that no one is gaming the system. certainly, i would encourage you to reach out to your local representatives tto see if they can help ease some of the burden aand try to get the paperwork and.
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host: houston, texas. robert, hello. caller: hello. and good morning to both of you. the reason i called and was that the representative talked about bbeing in favor of the keystone xl pipeline. and what i would like to say is that being a former plant manager of a chemical plant, i'm well aware of the importance of pipelines. but, in this particular case, we are __ we are going to construct the wrong pipeline in the wrong place to carry the wrong crude oil. what we should be doing is building a pipeline to carry crude oil from the dakotas to the same point in the midwest
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that the xl pipeline is set up to carry canadian oil. and both of these __ both of these oils are actually in abundance and would be available for sale worldwide. guest: well, it is certainly free enterprise. and the route, which has been under debate for so many years, will never change people's minds who are against this. but when we look at the tanker cars __ and i live in a major metropolitan area, where we have the old tracks that run right through the middle of the city carrying the soil __ ccertainly, if we can put this oil and pipelines by, most measurements, most people believe that it is a safer way
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of doing it. when it comes to which oil, obviously there are pipelines running throughout the entire country. most people don't even know what lines are running their. this is just an additional line that will help bring that commerce to the united states, and bring more energy to the world. host: cherry hill, new jersey. the republican line. caller: good morning. i used to be in district 3, and was moved over with redistricting. now i am in district 1, your district. i used to enjoy john's town hall meetings. i wondered what your position is on that. guest: it is great that you are asking that. we are actively putting together the greater town hall meetings, what we are going to do a little bit differently. we are going to have the federal government __ bring in our state representatives, the county, and the local so we can
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make sure that there is a seamless message that is coming across. so when you ask a question, we can't say, gee, that is a state issue and we can't address it. host: the governor has just been elected the freshman representative for the democrats. tell us about this job. guest: which job, i'm sorry? myself, i'm sorry. yes, helping to direct, obviously, the issues that are a first concern for us up on the hill. i think i can bring a lot of reality to this. again, up until six weeks ago, my job was to find jobs for electricians in south jersey. i know, firsthand, the pain that men and womenare going through in our district when they don't have the jobs. to give somebody a job who can provide for their family, it
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literally changes their life. and when that opportunity isn't there, it is a very sad day. host: so what are the details of the job? wwhat you do? guest: it was much more during the last six weeks of the last congress, we're going through a number of issues. there was a ranking committee campaign that was going for energy and commerce. we were meeting literally on a daily basis. but at the end of the day, we all came together __ as we are moving into the new congress, it is about committee assignments and making sure that we are listening to our colleagues. host: have you been assigned a committee? guest: we are waiting to hear that. it is a three_dimensional chess board. host: so, where would you like to serve if you had a choice? guest: i made it clear that i think i could be very fortunate in helping the military bases in new jersey.
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i know your family is from the fort dix area. armed services __ i would certainly like to spend some time. host: our guest, the representative of new jersey. let me push the button. catherine, go ahead. caller: i have very short three comment. the first is __ aas should be on the democratic agenda __ no keystone pipeline, no fracking. secondly, the democrats should be asking more questions. could it be that the oil companies are, in fact, in favor and gleeful of global warming? and forcing efforts to stop it __ wwith the arctic ice melting and opening up drilling means money in the pockets. thirdly, we have to get more creative.
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the democrats. if poppies grow in afghanistan soil better than wheat, and bring in more cash, and they can bring into crops of poppies during the growing season, how come other uses for poppies aren't in the works? we should be figuring out how __ perhaps you can grind up the stocks to make paper products, cement, or something. anyway, we have to ask questions, become more creative, and not do things to harm our environment. guest: well, thank you for the call. certainly, we all care very much for the environment. and it is always a balance between those who certainly want to enjoy the ability to drive a car, he their homes with the energy that we presently have, or the options on the other side is where do we meet in the middle. i was part of a groupin new
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jersey __ wwhich is trying to bring together people who have opportunities for employment. and making sure that we try to blend those two together. because we are not always in the same directions. thank you. host: brad from minnesota, the democrats line. good morning. caller: hello? host: you are on, go ahead. caller: why do not have atheists on your show? and you don't hear about los angeles anymore. the other question i have for you is i am a veteran. why, and sauk ctr., minnesota, is a god damn veteran home being run by a __
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guest: most certainly, i want to thank you for your service to our country. i am not sure of the issue you're talking about in minnesota, but again, make sure you reach out to your local representatives. host: off of twitter __ he says he spoke with congressman about trade authority. should we be doing more about trade? gguest: yes, but it has to be done fairly. if we go back to the nafta __ which i think has really set the stage for many trade agreements since then __ i know too many people who have been displaced because of those agreements. and i think there needs to be fair trade. obviously, most countries __ and particularly over in the middle east __ i'm sorry, in the far east __ are paying their employees much less.
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so does not just about dollars, but the conditions there working in. we have seen the sweatshops time and time and again. they are not enforcing the type of rules that we have in this country. so if we have a fair playing god, that is really what people care about. is it fair? i don't have to win every time, i just have to know i have a fair shot. host: so the fair trade policy being considered for the asian area of the world __ is that fair in your estimation? guest: no. i do not think it is fair in the setup. host: because specifically like? guest: i mentioned nafta earlier __ it sets the stage for all of our agreements. when we are not playing by the same set of rules __ we were visiting taiwan and the earlier
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caller was talking about what other parts of the world are doing. the wind blows over, so china, along the coast, blows right into the neighboring countries. well, that is a problem. whether it is dealing with employment issues, which is extremely important __ making sure that no child is working were being forced to work. so, if we level the playing field __ mmake sure that the enforcement of environmental rules, the work rules to make sure that we are not enslaving any of these folks __ then it becomes a much fairer issue. host: here is tim from kansas city, the republican line. caller: good morning, sir. and my question is on __ what is your viewpoint on the fact of illegal immigrants in this country? we're spending literally probably hundreds of billions
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of dollars feeding these people, giving them housing, given them everything. and they're not even citizens. they don't even belong here. guest: well, with all due respect, these people are us. if we had these rules that we have in place today a century ago, i would say that most of us wwould not be sitting here. the matter of fact is that we need to have an immigration policy that works for all americans. i just want to share one example of why think this is so important. my son met a young lady when he was serving in south korea when he was serving in the army. they were married, then had my first grandchild. then i got a call 18. she was being deported. i come to find out, when she was a very young girl, her parents brought her up from mexico. she was able to fight for our army, defend our nation, yet
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we were turning around. well, we were able to undergo the web's several years ago and she was able to become an american. i think we continue __ we need to have that dream. it is that diversity that makes our country great. i very much believe in a policy that works for america as a whole, but certainly giving opportunities to those who want to call america home. host: where do you stand on the president's executive action to deportation? guest: i was in favor of what he did, the only thing i wish was that he did it earlier. any time that you have no decision, it creates more havoc. so i am gglad he made the decision, and hopefully works towards an immigration bill that both republicans and democrats can work with because
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i think both sides understand that our country is a nation of immigrants. that is how we became this great nation, and we want to do that in the future. host: what you think does, god is our in dealing with immigration __ what do you think those common ground aareas are in dealing with immigration? guest: making sure that those who are here are paying their fair share of taxes. as i mentioned with my daughter_in_law, those children who are brought to have no idea of any other life but here in america. they shouldn't be punished because of a bureaucratic issue that happened with her parents. so, those are the issues that i would be supportive of. host: here is tom, the republican line. caller: he just kind of answer my question about immigration.
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i was very disappointed to hear that he agreed with the president. mike question is about the separation of power. an executive action simply decrees what representative action should be passing it along __ doing whatever he wants is not what the american people chose. guest: well, i understand and hear your point. but the fact of the matter is that executive actions have been taken by presidents of both parties over the last century. host: cynthia is from new jersey. the democrats lied. what part of new jersey are you from? caller: winona. guest: i represented them as a senator. it is a charming small town america.
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caller: thank you, i agree. i am just going to speak briefly on the pipeline. i'm really not in favor of it, bbut i do have __ i would just like to say that i would like some election reform. the presidential campaign goes on forever. we are already talking about it. and i don't know how you can work towards it, but i would just like to say that that is what i would like. guest: thank you for your comment. as you know, yyour county is home to three major refineries that have been there for close to a century. provided those great jobs that men and women have been able to work at. and, quite frankly, they are fed, many times, from underground pipelines. so it is something that has been part of our american energy fabric for close to have a century.
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when it comes to election reform, it is a great democracy. this is what makes our country great is that i'm going to wait. but i will agree with you, it seems the presidential season tends to get further and further out. but, you know, people are willing to listen. they call into shows like this to express their views. this is part of our great democracy, and i'm very supportive of it. host: does to get your thoughts __ the price of oil consistently dropping. but particularly what it is doing to companies that deal with oil. what do think about this going forward? and the larger issue of energy in the united states? guest: well, certainly, we're down below $50 a barrel. and it is dropping quite quickly. if there is over drilling and too much on one end, they are going to slow down. that is the great part of our economy is that it will react to this.
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on the other side of the coin, for those who fly everyday or drive a car, this is a great thing to getting those prices down. particularly after we were approaching five dollars a gallon. on the one hand, these companies are going to have to react. they understood that this is part of the action that they have to take depending on the amount and supply of that. i think it is a good thing for america, overall. these countries will adjust, as they always do. host: from chicago, here's bruce, the republican line. caller: yes, sir. i take exception to the fact that when the gentleman talks about past immigration and that we are all immigrants, those people were not illegal immigrants. i also think about him saying, well, you know they were surprised wwhen his daughter, whoever it was, got deported.
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the proceedings were in place. how can you be surprised if you are breaking the law that somebody comes to tthe law? guest: here is the point i'm trying to make. obviously, the army was well aware of her status. i was mentioning the rules that were in place today were not in place 50, 100 years ago. that is the difference. it is much tougher to come into the united states they tthan it was when my great grandparents steamed into new york and saw the statue of liberty. so, what we want to make sure to do is make sure it is a fair pathway to citizenship. host: have republicans come to talk to you about these issues on areas that you can work on together? guest: i would like to say in the last six weeks we have had some great conversations. and we are all headed that direction. both sides understand that we
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have to have a policy in place and backed up by a law. the president took this action because of an action by congress. we will take responsibility for that and, hopefully, with the new leadership on both sides, as i said, the adults were come into the room and make the decision that the american people elected as for. host: glasscock, this is todd. caller: we need to shut off all immigration __ legal or illegal. and except we have here __ accept we have here. we are not going to have enough fresh water in another 50 years. guest: wwell, i understand your frustration. and i am sure that the same conversations were held 50, 100 years ago as the italians were
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coming over, as the irish were coming over. i, again, want to say __ this is the greatness of our country. the diversity. because i think we have the best country in the world. and it is because of our policy and the ability for people to come to the american dream. host: our guest serves the first district of new jersey. donald norcross, thank you for your time. guest: thank you. host: we will take a break, and then have a short session of open phones. here are the lines. 202_748_8000 for democrats. 202_748_8001 for republicans. 202_748_8002 for independents. go ahead and make those calls now. we'll take them after the break. later on in the program, james fallows on the american military.
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>> here are some of our featured programs for this weekend on the c_span networks. on c_span2, and book tv, cass sunstein. part of book tv's college years, we talk with recently published professors at john hopkins university on the influence of hip_hop on politics. and on "american history tv" on c_span3, saturday at 8:00 pm eastern, lectures in history. using abraham lincoln's life to understand the views of white american's views on race both during and before the civil war. and her legacy on the birth_control movement.
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find our complete television schedule at and let us know about the programs you're watching. collis, email us, or send us a tweet. join the c_span conversation. washington journal continues. host: here are the numbers. reuters update its story on the shooting that took place in paris. there are 12 dead according to the article. the story goes on to say -- at least 12 people. includes two police officers in the worst militant attack on french soil in recent years. one of the men was captured on
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video shouting "allah." the newspaper's round for courting controversy with satirical attacks on political and religious leaders and is profit -- published cartoons lampooning the prophet mohammed. "starts with ralph washington d c. caller: what we have is energy domination of the carbon industry. in the 60's and 70's, a system called the molten salt reactor. the only problem walls -- was it did not generate enough plutonium and other material for bombs. it is inherently safe. it is melted down. the half-life of the waste product is 300 years not
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10,000. it can be used to burn the existing nuclear waste and wrote -- nuclear waste we have. it is such a great idea that the chinese have now dedicated 750 phd's and engineers on this project. by the end of this decade, they will have a decade. host: john, texas, the republican line. caller: good morning. host: good morning. caller: my comment is based on immigration. i have a good idea. if they want to allow 12 million plus ill eagles a pathway to citizenship, we know that 70% of them are all in literate, that means taxpayers are going to have to pay to teach them english and pay this money into the school system. if democrats want to allow a pathway to citizenship, we ought
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to do away with food stamps, earned income credit and the child tax credit and medicaid. that way, we will not add to the national debt which is standing at $18 trillion. no one is talking about that debt. if we do not tackle that debt this year, this nation is going to crumble and fall next year. host: howard lives in alabama. he is on our independent line. caller: howdy. i want to talk about the constitution. other than the military -- i am an old man. we took an oath of office to uphold and support the constitution. now, they just had some oath taken in washington to uphold and support the constitution. all that is a joke because if they do not uphold and support the constitution, nobody does anything about it. host: what areas do you think
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they do not uphold the constitution? caller: all this about immigration. what the president is doing with the stroke of a pen, making him a dictator instead of the president of the united states. we sent those congressmen up there to vote for us, not vote for just what's going on in washington. they do not -- there is nothing done with summit if they do not uphold the constitution. host: john, fairfax virginia. democrats line. caller: everybody should be aware that these trade policies are what have devastated our nation. coming up is the worst of them all which is the g p p transpacific partnership. i urge everyone to call their
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congressperson to oppose this bill which will give sovereignty to corporations over american loss. also, people should watch the tom hartmann show which would give you a better understanding of what is going on in the world. host: when you say it give sovereignty, what do you mean specifically? caller: the corporations will be able to sue the american government over our environmental laws and seek fines because their profits are being negatively affected by our environmental laws. fair trade -- free trade has devastated our country. we have to stop it. we have to put in terrorists to protect our industry and protect the american people. -- we have to put in tariffs to
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protect our industry and protect the market people. host: the headline from "the washington times" saying it is a waste of money. saying the drone program total department plans to cancel plans . the department played more than -- paid more than $12,000 to fight its drone and chiefly used them over just seven -- 170 miles of the border. we see no evidence that the drones contribute to a more secure border. the program is eight years old and is run by the customs and border protection. it had nine drones operating. as well as an operating center
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in jacksonville, florida. sarah lives in tucson, arizona. caller: i was watching the swearing in ceremony and i thought that was neat. it is good when you watch positive things happen. hopefully, they will all work together and make good things happen. the main thing on my mind this morning is what happened in paris and the people that were killed in the bombing in front of naacp. all the negative things that happen in the world. we need to pray more and find ways to be unified more. that is why we -- that is why i became an independent. if you're a democrat or republican, you're just focused on that party instead of realizing a bigger picture. we need to find ways to work together. host: both sides expressed the desire to work together with each other. do you see that as a potential possibility? caller: i think it is a potential.
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when people have open minds and hearts and if god is at the forefront, anything is possible. i think people are realizing there is a bigger picture and is not just about your community. it is about the entire world. a lot of bad things happen when people are not paying attention. the only way to combat hate is love. the only way to combat love is -- war is peace. i love your show and i'm grateful for c-span. host: john boehner was reelected as speaker of the house yesterday. he took the time in his speech to talk about his desire for the upcoming congress overall. [video clip] >> let me tell you, it israel work. -- it israel work. -- it is real work.
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every day, you and i come out here, try to plant good seeds cultivate the ground in take care of the pests. with patience and sacrifice, and god's grace, there will be a harvest. along the way, we may falter, but americans do not fall away from the task. we do not quit. let's stand tall and prove the skeptics wrong. let's make this a time of harvest. may the fruits of our labor be letters our children can climb to the stairs -- to the stars. host: there are 246 republicans in the house of representatives. 188 democrats. this change because michael grimm, the new york republican
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after pleading guilty to charges resigned. that leaves one seat vacant. john, good morning from texas. republican line. caller: i want to make a comment when you say the oil companies will make a recovery. they were stripping the drilling so they will drill less oil. -- they were for stripping -- host: what are your concerns about the things you brought up? caller: gas prices are going down because we have been discovering more oil wells and it is more oil production. you guys said that the companies will make a recovery because the fortunes are dropping down.
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so, my question is, is the drilling going to be restricted so that crude oil will increase? host: again, the congressman has left us, but if you want to see what he had to say about that, i would advise you to go to our website where we have these conversations that we have every morning on this program available to you online. you can see them for yourself at this from today our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of this terrorist attack. the people of france at this time. france is america's oldest ally and it stood shoulder to shoulder with the united states in the fight against terrorists who threaten our shared security and the world. french people have stood up for the universal values that
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generations of our people have defended. we are in touch with lunch -- french officials to provide assistance needed to bring these terrorists to justice. host:caller: i want to answer that previous caller who insulted immigrants. most immigrants are educated people gorgeous looking for better opportunities -- educated people who are just looking for better opportunities. we have to get between the democrat and republicans and we have to vote the right person. we keep voting the people who cannot agree anything in this country. yet, we are complaining about it. it is a sad day in this country cousin if you look at what is going on around the world today every country i've been to, they
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are improving the roads and we are behind. we do not even want to invest to build a better place but we worry about pipeline oil coming from canada that creates 5000 jobs. people have to understand that if you want to change, you vote the right person who is good for the country, not because democrat or republican. host: billy south pittsburg. republican line. caller: thank you for taking my call. i have had experience. i'm an old veteran out of korea. i didn't from north carolina to the great wall of china and i think this nation -- i have been from north carolina to the great wall of china. this oil situation would take
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care of itself. it is silly to buy oil from foreigners when we have accrued here -- a crude here. oil wells dropped off in this nation to run it as long as there would probably be a nation. what we need in washington is common sense. we need to put some of these airplanes we are flying all over the world down on the ground burning in using excess money for no reason. $18 trillion is nothing to laugh at. host: the centers for disease control take a look at binge
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drinking saying an average of six people die each day in the united states from alcohol poisoning or excessively high levels of alcohol in the blood which is typically caused by binge drinking. three out of four of those who die between the ages of 35 and 64. countering the perception that young people are more likely than their elders to die from binge drinking. a little over 5% of trekkers -- drinkers between the ages of 15 and 24. death rates range from a low of 5.3 x per million residents in alabama to a high of 46.5 deaths per million in alaska. the regions with the highest death rates were the great plains and new england. lloyd, public in line -- republican line. caller: the keystone pipeline did it pick up the oil out of the to coil -- out of the
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decoders? -- out of the dakotas? host: overall, do you support keystone or not? caller: yes, i do. host: why so? caller: i heard him say the oil would be coming out of canada. host: a vote in the house will take place on friday on keystone. we take -- we change topics taking a look at a cover story in "the atlantic." taking a look at the military. james fallows will be joining us next.
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♪ >> pierce some of our featured programs for this weekend. on c-span2, saturday night at 10:00, cast some stain on the fit -- pitfalls of group decision-making. we talk with recently published professors at johns hopkins university on the influence of hip-hop on politics. the u.s. government's efforts to cure malaria in world war ii. on lectures in history professor brian dirk uses abraham lincoln's life to understand the views of white
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americans on race and slavery before and during the civil war. sunday afternoon at 4:30, a discussion on margaret sanger. find our complete schedule at and let us know what you think about the programs you are watching. e-mail us at comments at or send us a tweet at c-span #comments. like us on facebook, follow us on twitter. >>host: james fallows of the atlantic. he has the cover story of the january-february issue. the tragedy of the american military. thank you for joining us. what is the tragedy? caller: we have a country that has been more or less perpetually at war as a nation
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but the public has not been involved. you take all the people have served in iraq and afghanistan in last dozen years, it is two thirds of 1% of the american public. the distance between the realities of the public and the realities of the military has meant we use our military force more recklessly than we would otherwise. it is that cap i mainly talking about. host: what causes the gap? caller: in a democracy, people are exposed to certain institutions day by day. we know the goods and bats. right now not much of the public is exposed to the military. what happens when any institution is on autopilot is happening to the military in a way that was not true in previous generations. in most of our other previous wars, presidents and commanders
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have removed generals for military failure, not questions of personal misbehavior. in the last dozen years, that is not happen to senior officers. host: when people ask about the military, it is usually positive responses. caller: i opened the piece in a scene where -- in airport were president obama is saying this is the finest fighting force in history of the world. we respect her sacrifices. -- your sacrifices. i think the american public is sincere in the 30 seconds of half-time honor for the troops at football games. as a matter of constant reality and how we talk about things politically, the familiarity with what is working and what is not is not present. host: in years past, where did this closeness with the military come from and how to change? guest: there was an unusual
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situation after world war ii were unlike any other time in history, except the civil war most americans were involved with the military. at the end of world war ii, 10% of the public was in uniform. for a generation after that, most people have some experience with the goods and bats of the military life -- the goods and bads of military life. whether it was hogan's heroes or whatever, you could treat the military the way you did other institutions. you can make fun of it, you knew it strengths and weaknesses. now, it is seen as an almost holy thing. yet to see many in uniform as heroes. -- you have to see many in uniform as heroes. host: is that distance -- guest: there was -- you no
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longer had the enforced connection between military policy and the public. the military has become small as a portion of public life. there are twice as many people living on farms as there are in the active-duty and reserve forces put together. it has become more concentrated regionally and family concentrated. you have some americans were all about the military and a great majority or not at all. host: if you want to ask him questions about some of the things he has said, here are the lines. (202) 748-8000 are line for democrats. (202) 748-8001 hour line for republicans.
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guest: what has been the most amazing thing to me about this article -- i worked for the atlantic for a long time. this has generated the most reader involvement of anything i have ever written. it has been overwhelmingly from people in the military or past military and overwhelmingly positive. saying we have to find some way to -- some way for people to do more than say, thank you for your surface -- thank you for your service. it has been impressive to me for a magazine that is not a military specialist magazine, it is been such a positive military response. host: you said, if i were writing such a history now, i would call it she can hawk nation -- chicken hawk nation.
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the story of a country willing to do anything for its military except take it seriously. host: i use the word chicken hawk for provocative effect. people who were all for the war but said, you go, not me. if you are a were a historian, you might use that term now. we are always in combat. most of us are not. the military is about 1% of the american public. the entire combat veteran core of iraq and afghanistan is less than 1% of the public. some people are at war, but the country is not. that is what i am referring to as the chicken hawk phenomenon. host: lines on the screen if you want to choose one that represents you.
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sandra from massachusetts independent line. caller: my son is currently in the military. he has been in 29 years. he flew with i believe a colonel and a general two weeks ago to washington d.c. to receive the highest honor for the medical department. there were seven awards given out for different hospitals and he is a master sergeant. he has done nothing but devote his time to trying to make the military better. he has improved. he saved over $100,000 or something like that before for the military. he takes out the boys when they come home because he does not go
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over himself before they go and they played basketball and everything else. he eaten up. he loves what -- he eats it up. he loves what he is doing. his family is all for it to back. -- all for it too. i have been a military person all my life, with everybody. i've been sad, happy, mixed up with it all. host: thank you, sandra. guest: on the one hand, anybody who has experience with america's people in uniform -- i did a book about 35 years ago has to be impressed with the devotion and commitment of many
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people who represent -- who recognize that apart from sports, the part of american life where you most have the team bonding is in the military. people in combat would always say they would lay down their lives for either -- the people on either side of them. the devotion of people is extraordinary, as it is in other institutions. the problem from my point of view is all the complexity of that institution is sheltered from our political discussion. in the 2012 presidential debates, there was virtually no discussion between president obama and governor romney about future course in the military except that governor romney wanted to spend more. whereas all the things that really matter did not come up. host: sandra from louisiana democrats line. caller: i grew up in california
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and in the late 50's, my brother went into the marine corps out of high school. he had not many skills. back then, they trained him taught him, gave him higher education and made him feel a real part of america. i do not see that happening so much anymore. i think now, the military is privatized -- has privatized so many things that the young boys go into the military and do not learn basic skills. i think we need to go back to some of the older ways and quit privatizing this. guest: the privatization is a major trend of the past generation. it is one way the
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administrations have tried to keep the military budget down and having the headcount being lowered by privatizing services. you have the situation of contractors making a lot more money serving people who are actually in uniform. that has distorted the facts. -- distorted affects. people who have not been to college, maybe have not done well in high school, are able to get on another path in life to the discipline and education the military gives them. that part of it is still seen as an important aspect. i agree on the distortions of privatization. caller: james fallows, i recall that in the 70's, you wrote and
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published something in which you crush -- in which you questioned what you would tell your children because you had not participated in the vietnam war. i wonder if you recall that and what you told your children. guest: everything i've written about the military in the past 45 years, starting when i was each 20, i pointed out i was in college during the vietnam war . i thought it was a huge mistake. i found legal ways to stay out of the draft. the difference between me and a chicken hawk is that i was a chicken dove. i thought no one should go to that war. i've been public about that in the past 45 years. my children, i would say, here is an article i wrote about it. the article you're mentioning
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came out in 1975. host: do you have criticism? guest: my view on one's background is that if there is anything -- if people know where you're coming from, they know where you're coming from. the reason i did my book "national defense" people who opposed the vietnam war were not as informed as a needed to be. i was trying to say, here are ways the evolution of american defense should go. host: francisco, from texas. independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. i take so much pride for all of the people that go to the military. not everybody is meant to perform such an important role in our country.
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sadly, what pains me the most is that our country is not doing enough for those they retire. we put enough money to train our people. we sent our troops to whatever they need to be deployed. then again, the government is not providing the necessary training or support to aid those who went into combat. we have to continue giving by giving institutions donate for our military. no. why would we have to donate money out of our pockets for our troops? the government spent so much money on so many other things but when it comes down to our troops, the president is like, we are so proud of them -- host: thank you.
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guest: the stated pentagon budget is in the order of $600 billion. if you take in all the costs, is more to trillion dollars a year for national security costs. there are these long-term lifetime costs of caring for people who have served the country and have various needs in the long run. it is easy to forget those would making commitments. in much of american life, we have a dividing prospect of those who have are getting more and those were having trouble having more trouble. that is true when it comes to these pensions. the pensions for senior officers have risen to a generous level compared with past times. whereas a number of ordinary working soldiers are having difficulties. that problem affects much of america and it shows appear as well. host: bob, are independent line.
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go ahead. caller: thank you for taking my call. i think that what i see -- the military is being used, not so much for national defense, but for corporate intervention and interests. what do you think about that? host: would you give an example? caller: yes oil. guest: my interpretation comes to a similar conclusion from different premises. i think the foreign-policy decisions of the past 12 years have been bad for the united states. i wrote before the invasion of iraq is would be a mistake. i believe it was the largest unforced error in u.s. history. in my interpretation, i placed
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the origins more on things than simply big business or oil. i think in the day by day contracting realities in the pentagon -- the way weapon systems have become essentially stimulus programs. they have subcontracts in a most every district in almost every state and people who might otherwise oppose a certain airplane or ship are happy to support its it is going to their district. when it comes to the war versus peace decisions, i think that there have been mistakes and i attribute it more to mistakes than the oil lobby. host: the atlantic talks about the weapon systems that are guest references. for those who may not follow, what is the issue? guest: the f 35 is something that was getting just they should 15 years ago. it was posted be the plane that solved all the problems of
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pentagon contracting. it could land on carriers for the navy, it go straight up-and-down for the marine corps. not surprisingly, trying to do all those things has made it a problem for all of them. yet, it is being built in summary places around the country and world that people are resigned to it. even bernie sanders, a senator from vermont, he says he thinks the planes are a bad idea, but if they're going to exist, let's have them in burlington, vermont. host: you compare that to another aircraft. ba-10. -- the a-10. guest: the a-10 is the plane that is the biggest help in modern times. it is essentially a flying cannon or tank.
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it is relatively slow so it can loiter over a battlefield. it has one powerful cannon. i've heard from hundreds of people with britain in saying they were in combat and there would have been combat except the a-10 was able to provide air support. the a-10 is being phased out, a relatively cheap and reliable weapon, to make room for this troubled that more sophisticated weapon. host: where does the white house stand on the f 35? guest: the pentagon is in favor of this shift. i've looked through any speech to find the word f 35, and i have not seen it. this is seen as arcane in politics when it is seen as important. solyndra has gotten a hundred
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times more publicity. that is the disproportion i'm talking about. host: these aircraft are still being made? guest: the budgeting cycle for them is decades long. for better or worse they have almost nothing to do with the wars we are actually fighting. host: from georgia, here is more. thank you for calling. caller: good morning. i'm retired army. i did two tors in the unum -- in vietnam. this war, we of been in for 12 years. if we had -- if we had war we should bring back the draft. guest: i believe these things are both true.
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one is, the shift to the modern predicament begin with the end of the draft in the beginning of the volunteer army. that is when no one had to care about the military if they did not want to. it became a more concentrated part of american life. on the other hand, bringing back the draft now, i think, is a practical impossibility. politically, i'm aware of only one member of the house or senate who is in favor of this charlie wrangle of new york. as a matter of numbers, the military is only -- only about 200,000 people joined the military each year. either you're going to have a much larger military or have some arbitrary way of choosing. conceptually, i agree it is bad for the country that most of us have no involvement with the military. i do not see a realistic possibility of having a draft unless there is a change in
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world situations we cannot imagine. host: you make the argument that americans should become more of a part of military actions in the future. guest: the idea of service in general is important. simply talking about that in setting examples of it is important. seth moulton was just wanted to congress. when he graduated from harvard he decided to join the marines because he thought was important to serve and he ended up have to do four tors in iraq you know he opposed the war. he and a number of others are saying how can we find examples of things other than actual compulsion to make people want to serve? i have some dim hope in this next presidential campaign that within the republican party there may be debate about military. within the democratic party
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maybe there will be debate there too. host: joni ernst of iowa -- guest: there are 20 plus veterans of the iraq conflict in congress right now. "the wall street journali think it is people having more awareness of the realities of military engagements as we do about the medical system, will be better in shaping our decisions of whether you can be involved. from the list you read seth mulder and tom cotton probably do not agree on anything, but they have first-hand experience and that will inform the votes they cast. host: randall, from louisiana. caller: the guest makes an excellent point. there are a couple of things. i
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will stick to my original reference. part of our disconnect would be the media coverage. by that, i'm talking about cable news and investigative news. there are a lot of things they could be doing to change and engage the public but they are not. guest: that is true. i did a book about 15 years ago called "breaking the news" about how the spectacle nature of cable news was distracting our attention from the things that actually mattered. this is a long-standing problem in the media. c-span is a force against it. i think -- it is also why i argue in this article that it is important to engage people interest directly in how things work. you can tell them how they should be involved, but they are forced to pay attention by
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paying taxes or some other inconvenience that makes them say there is condition at that leads to result y that is the way politics works. i understand the problem you are raising and i do not have a quick answer other than to bear it in mind and try to bear down day by day. caller: good morning. i wanted to ask -- first question historically, where the president lyndon johnson had mentioned the military industrial complex. i am wondering what the author's thoughts were on how that would be played against the way government contracting is currently. also, when he is talking about things we have done to bring the
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public more into the war standing, i remember hearing there was rationing and things of that nature to make it where people were feeling the effects of the war. i was wondering if you comment on those items. guest: those are great points. i hope c-span will put up a link to the speech are referring to which was by dwight eisenhower. that was an incredible speech. eisenhower, a five-star general commander of the entire allied effort in world war ii. we would assume this was a communist speech if we read it now. he's talking about the effect of the military-industrial compact -- complex reaching into every part of the nation and how that could be a danger. in an earlier draft, he refers to the how these different parts
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were working together. i argue in my article that the things he was worried about have come to fruition. on the rationing front, that is not going to happen in the same way now because it is a different sort of war effort. i think if there were symbolic efforts that caused people more notice than just a moment of silence for the heroes at the halftime of football games, that would be worth pursuing. even a symbolic gasoline tax. something that made people pay attention would matter more than having ribbons and moments of silence. host: ted, from oregon. good morning. caller: as a former noncommissioned officer in the air force, i was active duty from 1978 to 1985. at the height of the cold war. it seemed to me at that time that when you are 20 years old
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you do not have the ability or financial heart to make it to a four your college. the air force was a good place to be. they not only made me what i am today, which is a journeyman plumber. i have also got a four your degree in mechanical sciences to the community college of the air force, which they would pay extra money per month as long as guys like me kept passing courses. that said, in today's world, the 20-year-old -- only 30% are able to join the military if they wanted to. guest: your comments are apt. the military has historically and even now been an important
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avenue of opportunity for people who might not have the opportunity to go to higher education. they have had that role in terms of class mobility and racial mobility. the other point you make is the number of people are not able to meet the military's standards. the military is giving us a barometer of a larger social issue. most people agree the military is doing an impressive job of providing opportunities. if people are not equipped to be acceptable for them, that is a larger social issue. host: would you say that officers will have different perceptions of it than in the treatment? -- then infantryman? dwight eisenhower's speech -- our colleagues have made that
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available on our website. you can find it when you go to cincinnati, ohio. mark, good morning. caller: i can think of no better example of america's disconnect with the military than asking why we are buying planes, even though we are winding down the wars? i've been a huge fan going back to your years stationed in japan. i'm too young to have served in the military in vietnam. i have two kids in the military now. a lot of good points were made but i would like to suggest that, to some extent, the top brass is responsible for the situation we find ourselves in. when they talk about a guy getting shot at the afghan military school and say that
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sacrifice is what defines our military, i think we've come a long way from george patton who clearly understood that our job is not to die for our country that to make the other guy. for his country. i have been at west point. all the classes have these sugary logos for their class rings where they talk about surrounding and hugging the entire world. a decline in power has to accept it cannot do everything. at some point, we have to return to smiting our enemies. no one is going to like that. our military is tasked with living out the fantasy that the entire world is full of friends we have not met yet. that has got to end. guest: many points to engage there. one is, accepting limits on what we can do. i am bullish on american power over all.
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i think we are well-positioned. the main threat to that is taking on too many unwinnable obligations. i think the last 12 years to me is an era of unwinnable wars should not have an barked on. in previous eras, america was freer in saying these generals are good these generals are not so good at what they actually do. in the last dozen years, we have not had senior commanders removed from military competence reasons. host: you highlight stanley mcchrystal and david trias. guest: these are two very accomplished generals and they lost their jobs for personal discipline type issues. sexual issue, a press leak.
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i contrasted that with a world war ii or korean war where civilian leaders say, this general is a fine man on personal reasons, but we cannot think he is doing the right job. we've not seen that kind of judgment recently. host: we see the same levels apply to -- guest: it has been encouraging to get somebody letters from people who consider themselves young reformers within the military saying we have to go to the same exercise that occurred after vietnam. host: you are also worried about gary hart being asked to look at long-term military efforts. guest: the background is that in the late 70's, early 80's -- late 1970's, early 1980's, gary hart was an expert in defense reform. in 2011, president obama asked senator hart if he would put together a commission to say if
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obama wanted to change the pentagon, what would he do? hark prepared this memo and sent it to the president and never heard back. i think the reason is that presidents are swamped with emergencies or did they do the most important ones first in this did not seem that important. host: frank, in new york. go ahead. let's go to dan in texas. the morning, go ahead. caller: my name is mac. sorry. i served in the air force in 1970. i get tickled about the f 35. i flew an all-purpose aircraft called the f1 11. you're probably old enough to remember. guest: the granddaddy of the f 35. caller: the f1 11 was supposed
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to have been -- they found out when they mated it was too heavy. i had an uncle that was an engineer. family problem, i got called back to active duty in 1990 and served until 2011. i've seen and heard it all. the part i know is i was it young radical in 1970. i found out one afternoon, those guys were trying to kill me. you said in unwinnable war. if we fought world war ii the same way we fought all these worse today, everybody is our buddy, buildings do not kill people, people kill people. guest: the difference between world war ii and the limited
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wars we have waged since then is great. one of the things gary hart's commission proposed is that we have a commission to say, let's look at the wars. can we win these kinds of wars? what should be the decision-making process? the caller mentions the f1 11 that is the f 35 of its era. host: from tennessee, richard is next. caller: i was in the marine corps. i am retired now. over the years, men that i've talked to that served have all agreed that the problem is almost always political leadership. they are so afraid of offending people they will not send in enough power to get a job done.
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they do not mind risking the lives of men in the military but the mind very much offending someone in the far east or europe or whatever. that is my aggravation. guest: i think that is an astute point that i would respond to this way. we do have civilian control of the military. our elected leaders are tasked with making a different kind of decision that our military leaders. military leaders are applying force for result and they are supposed to use as much force as the situation calls for. political leaders have a wider range of things they are balancing. if they do this in this country, what will it mean in that country? in the best circumstances, political leaders will recognize there are times in which they do not want to make military commitments because the effects would be bad. there are other times when it
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can have effects you are talking about where military people feel hamstrung. that is an eternal reality of our clinical system in the situation -- our political system, in the situation of world power. the goal is to harmonize it as much as possible. caller: i'm a combat wounded infantryman. i am in therapy for physical and mental. if i have to go to a hospital, i have to go three and a half hours to a military hospital in iron mountain, michigan.
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we could do everything for it illegal immigrants and all, but you do not do anything for us. guest: i am very sorry for the ongoing as you have for your service in the country owes you and everybody else who is in your situation lifetime care and respect for the sacrifices you have made. the point i would make is part of the decision to go to war is recognizing there are going to be long-term obligations that have to be filled with honor for people of served. i think politicians such report funding ways to make sure the v.a. and others have to be fully supported. host: doris is on the line from georgia. caller: i have three points to make. i feel very sorry for the previous speaker.
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i have long stated that the ba should be closed and these people should be given insurance and take care of locally. i was married to a military man. during the vietnam war, i'd used to be -- some of the men had dirt on their faces from the battlefield. if anyone ever met those planes and saw the men as they were coming in, they would be against war. unless our country was attacked. after the vietnam war, mcnamara said we make -- we made a mistake. host: what point would you like our guest to address? caller: i went to two funerals. one man shot himself. he had ptsd and he had to wait one gear for an appointment.
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another one lost his house waiting for disability from the v.a. fannie mac refused to take it and he lost his house. guest: i think the stories doris tells involved accountability. when we embarked on military commitments, there are consequences. the people who have lifelong consequences for the military commitments we make. i'm trying to say, those are the consequences, let's find ways of building them into our process for we go to war so that if we do take the steps, we are aware of the obligations we have in the long run. host: how would you follow up this piece? guest: i have gotten thousands of replies from people.
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mainly ways to bring these questions more into the mainstream of political discussion is of interest to me now. host: james fallows has his cover story on the january-february issue of "the atlantic." a web version not only gives you the story we have talked about but other content as well. thank you for your time. guest: thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's room, washington, d.c., january 7 2015. i hereby appoint the honorable glenn thompson to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, john a. boehner, speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore:


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