tv Washington Journal CSPAN July 17, 2015 7:00am-10:01am EDT
examines recent efforts to reform the criminal justice system. later at 9:30, european union ambassador to the u.s. talking about the greek economic crisis and why greek lawmakers approved austerity measures rejected by the country's voters. ♪ host: a busy newsweek across the country and a while the world. some of the things that have happened include the iran deal. scott walker announced for president. there was the chattanooga shooting yesterday. financial numbers from the presidential candidates have come out. a planned parenthood video came out. hillary rodham clinton gave an economic speech earlier this week. and, of course the grecece bailout. some of the issues we will be discussing this morning on "washington journal." we want to hear from you and what you think is the top public
policy issue you want to discuss this morning. if you cannot get through on phone lines, try social media. twitter @cs[apanwj. facebook.com?? c-span and you can send an e-mail. here's the front page of the chattanooga times free press. " nightmare for our city" is what they say about the shooting by mohammed abulazeez. "the washington times" leads with that story. down lower on the front page is a story about congress and what they did. congress guts no child left behind system.
both chambers of congress have voted to scrap much of the bush era education plan, meaning the government will continue to shift billions of dollars to states but we'll cut her loose and many of the strings attached to funding that is a little bit about what happened in congress this week. and the president was in oklahoma, and here's the article in "the wall street journal." rivals team up for justice
next to that is a picture of the president. in oklahoma. and from political this morning congress balks on obama's u.n. move on iran. president obama has a new hurdle -- selling his iran deal. bipartisan opposition for his submission to congress before congress boats. it is a little bit of what is going on in the news this morning. we want to hear from you and what is on your mind.
bob in duluth, minnesota democrat. go ahead. caller: thanks for taking my call. i think the democrats need to focus on immigration issue right now. i agree with the president. and his wanting to grant citizenship to the people that are already here, but it is not going to work unless you make it at least a felony to hire an undocumented worker and if you did that, you would take away the incentive for people that want to come across the border. it would be a whole lot easier to protect the borders, and we would not have as much problem with the hospital's in the border towns being flooded with
undocumented people. host: you are calling a democrats line but when you hear donald trump go on about immigration, what do you think about what he has to say? caller: well, i know he is striking a chord with a lot of republican voters. and immigration is really a bad problem. i think that if the democrats could push the issue of punishing the people that enable the, or hire undocumented workers, if they did that, you would not have to worry about people coming across the border because it would not be an incentive. and also they would be paying
into social security. they would be paying into the medical system. and they would be paying taxes. and the people that are hiring the undocumented workers, they are stealing tax dollars out of our pockets. that is the way i feel. i do not think that it is really going to do any good u nless you punish the people that hire the undocumented workers. if you did that, you would take care of the problem, but you also need to grant citizenship to the people that are already here, except for the criminals. and it would be easier to keep track of the criminals after that, because -- host: in duluth you could not be further from the border, though. caller: i have been down in texas. i've seen what it is like to try to get into the emergency room's
in the hospitals in texas. host: that is bob in duluth minnesota. we showed you this at the beginning. the front page of the chattanooga times free press paper this morning. representative chuck fleischmann is a republican from tennessee and represents the city of chattanooga. what is your take on what happened yesterday? constant fleischman: it was tragic -- congressman fleischman: i was on the floor voting in washington and one of my colleagues said there had been a shooting in chattanooga. then within a few minutes, i realize that this was a horrible horrible act of terrorism where four marines were killed. it was a very sad day. i flew back immediately and yesterday, there was sadness.
all over our great city. and just a horrible day for chattanooga. and a very sad day for america sir. host: you call the terrorism. conversely fleischman: congressman fleischman: when someone takes a rifle and actually goes and assaults on military recruiting center where men and women who serve our great nation in uniform and where other men and women who want to do that, they opened fire there, and then he drives to a naval reserve station and shoots people in cold blood i think that is terrorism. it cannot be tolerated. it is an outrage. and some of the posts that are out there on the shooting, including his high school your book post, show that this is
just a horrible, horrible person who would do something that in our wonderful city of chattanooga, tennessee. host: so, what have we learned about mohammed abdulazeez? congressman fleischmann: so far we have learned that he went to school locally, attended a local university. one of my middle son's graduated from that school. it is a wonderful school in the university of tennessee system. he grew up in hixson, tennessee which is a suburb of chattanooga where my wife grew up. and the saddest part about all this is this person was on nobody's watchlist. apparently he was arrested a while back for d.u.i., which some of the pictures that were up there, but the reality, the reality is so far we hear that he is on no one's watchlist
and that is the scariest thing about this. we cannot allow, and we do not want this to happen anywhere else. the sick feeling i feel today and felt yesterday because of this tragic spree of killings, i do not want to see that anywhere else in our great united states. and the fact that there are people out there like this horrible person who did this yesterday really concerns me. host: so, what is your schedule today, congressman? you say you want to prevent this from happening again. how is that done? congressman fleischmann: well, the first thing. there has been tremendous cooperation on the part of federal, state, and local law enforcement. they are in an information gathering stage. i was briefed about what they are doing and how they are doing it.
resources properly so are pouring into chattanooga so we can find out what happened. the fbi has been very hands-on. i've spoken with them. they are doing a very good job. hopefully, they will be able to piece this tragedy together to find out how it happened, why it happened so that we can all take actions to prevent this again. we're in a difficult time in america right now. this is not the america i grew up in. i'm 52 years old. i grew up in america where i felt safe domestically. the events of yesterday and some of the things we have seen lead me to believe that we have major, major security problems in this nation. think of it, the fact that a gun
man could do that and in addition to the four marines killed, there were other people injured. this is a national tragedy. this is not just chattanooga's tranny. -- tragedy. this is america's tragedy. host: thank you for being on the "washington journal" this morning. "usa today," in their article. chattanooga shooter straddled two worlds. how he went to school in the area and grew up in the area. it includes the article this way -- "he maintained an islam focused blog that explored the sacrifices muslim should make in the name of their religion. three days before the shooting, abuladzeez published post that life is short and bitter --
next call, david in nebraska. republican line. what is on your might? -- your mind? caller: i would like to say that i'm really just discussed it with what obama has done with iran. how he tries to arm terrorist nations, and then he tries to disarm true americans. bill clinton, he is the one that disarmed our military people on bases. i just do not think we can take another four years of obama or clinton. thank uyyou. host: brenda on the line. a democrat in houston. caller: hi peter. my god. the man that just got off the
phone. einstein, what else did the president do? did he not listen to the options? do you remember what horrible president bush was? what does he think about bush's administration? to my point. the duluth, guy that called in, i agree with him but i want all in legal sent back. not just the mexicans. to my point i want to make about the president oh, my goodness. what a man, what a man, what a man. i mean he never stops. look how he -- fielding the questions from reporters the other day. in regards to the iran deal. how they, after he exhausted their questions, he even had his own to shut down the ones like the nebraska caller we just had. i could go on but i know you
have to talk to others. thanks for taking my call. have a great day. host: front page of "the new york times." here is a picture of the president. they had cleared out this area of the el reno correctional facility for the president to take his tour and hand-picked a group of nonviolent inmates for him to talk to. you can see him walking through the. this is a photo by doug mills. the president spoke about the issue of criminal justice system reform earlier this week in philadelphia at the naacp. president obama: around one million fathers are behind bars. 1 in 9 african-american kids have a parent in prison. what is that doing to our communities? what's that doing to those children?
our nation is being robbed of men and women who could be workers and taxpayers. could be more actively involved in their children's lives. could be role models, community leaders. and right now they are locked up for a nonviolent offense. so our criminal justice system is not as smart as it should be. it's not keeping us as safe as it should be. it is not as fair as it should be. mass incarceration makes our country worse off. and we need to do something about it. host: and we are going to discuss that issue later in this "washington journal" with paul b utler of georgetown university. we will talk about criminal justice reform with him. ken, thanks for holding.
lancaster, south carolina, independent line. caller: you give mea a little time now president obama wants to talk about the issues that concern blacks. the black caucus, the first time they did not give him a pass about talking about black issues. but i am going to talk about donald trump talking about immigration. immigration is killing the black community and the white community. manufacturing jobs. the company's keep hiring. [indiscernible] in 1986, they have amnesty -- now we back in 2015. what are we going to do in 2025, iwith those that snuck across the border and demand citizenship? if we do not control the border, -- one race of people to have
the majority. blacks it's whites, hispanics whites hispanics blacks and others. black people you keep going for immigration. your kids will not have no jobs. all you can blame is yourself. thank you. host: clarksburg, west virginia democrat. caller: an excellent program as always. i'm a little concerned about the dumbing down of our news. 24 hour news they want to run clips that have special shows. i'm concerned we are not getting the issues on time. it seems that no quirks decide on friday that everybody does the weekend off. thank god for c-span and have a great weekend. host: from "the washington post," blackwater garst centers for 2007 shooting.
a judge sentenced a former blackwater security guard who helped secured long-term prison sentences for four colleagues -- sentenced him to four months and a day in prison this week wisconsin governor scott walker announced his intentions to run for president. governor walker: let me tell you what i am for. [cheering] i'm for reform, growth, safety. i'm for transferring power from washington into the hands of hard-working taxpayers . that is really for. -- real reform.
i'm for building a better economy that allows everyone to live there piece of the american dream. that is programmed. -- that is pro-growth. i'm for protecting our children and our grandchildren from radical islamic terrorism and all other threats in the world. that is true safety. [cheering] my record shows that i know how to fight and win. now more than ever, america needs a president who will fight and win for america. [cheering] host: 202 is the area code --
talk about the public policy issues of the week and the day. jmeasames is a democrat. you are on "washington journal." james. we're going to move on -- caller: yes. host: please go ahead. caller: i think that everything that has been talked about up until this point is excellent and timely. but we're forgetting about the elephant in the living room. if iran gets an atomic bomb and purchases an icbm, then they can reach the united states. they can reach paris, they can reach rome. and they can certainly reach israel. and we're talking about literally the end of our
species. and it's going to happen if we do not use military force immediately. you can't bargain with these people. they are, i mean, look at the things they have done. i mean that's all i have to say. host: james on the democrats line in indiana. up next is phil in venice florida, on the independent line. what is on your mind? caller: hi. i would like to make a comment regarding the criminal justice system in the country. the fact that we put behind bars as many people as we do it's made complex but it is it. what it is about is there's no victim, there is no crime. approximately 40% of the people in prison today there is no. victim. and that is totally unjust.
we went through this before with prohibition of alcohol. and it was done the right way then. we had a constitutional amendment against the sale and consumption of alcohol, but we have not done that with drugs. so unless we correct that one, and go by what we should via the constitution, things will not change. host: "usa today" lead editorial, the crack trade fradesades but prisons still bulge. they agreed it is time to rethink america's penchant for doling out harsh mandatory sentences even for nonviolent crimes --
the conclusion of the editorial is -- " something has to give. members of congress and both parties have joined to sponsor measures that would give judges more discretion in sentencing for low-level nonviolent offenders -- as always, "usa today" puts in an opposing view by steve cook, the president of the national association of assistant u.s. attorneys. he says that these do not represent those of the department of justice.
mr. cook writes. cornell, democrat, new jersey, good morning. caller: good morning. wonderful show as always. i called to speak about the iran deal. haven't we learned a lesson through iraq vietnam? how many lives have to be lost behind fear mongering, because even with israel, israel is our strongest ally. we give more aid to israel than probably all of the other aid combined, but we are a friend ot
to the israel people but the israeli government -- didn't we learned the lesson when netanyahu preach the same thing about iraq? they keep blaming it on president obama. the only reason why president obama is present is because he was against the iraq war. if he was not against the iraq war, he would not be president today. and for us and for israel to say that we're not bound by the deal we made, when was the last time israel was bound by any deal? the amount of u.n. resolutions against israel for decades. every time they charge israel with -- in the un.n., israel tells them where to go --
they are not bound by anything host: this is brad in michigan on our republican line. caller: talking about issues in society's. -- sociteties. obama, he wants to move low-cost housing out of where it is now way out in the middle of the suburbs. that is not going to be tolerated. i live in warren. i've watched it change. we now have a lot of crime, a lot of drugs. people cannot -- who can afford to move out of the city want to get away from it. now obama wants to move in the middle of them? it is not going to work. as far sas obama, he's weak, he's inept. our enemies do not fear us. he has all of the honesty of jimmy carter. good-bye. host: randy in michigan on her
democrats line. go ahead. caller: good morning. i would like to start by thanking you in all the fine folks behind the scenes we do i just got back from vacation and i have not watched tv. my first thought when to the families of the four marine. my prayers go out to them. i could not believe that. the only thing i had -- as i turned that on right when your representative was on. it is a tragedy for those for families. a national tragedy, i do not agree with them on that statement. it is a real tragedy to the four families. to go for a national tragedy that is what the republicans have done with medicare and medicaid expansion in the state
denying millions of americans. that is a national tragedy in my opinion. what a week. i am glad i was on vacation. host: eric is in lakeland florida on our independent line. caller: how are you doing? i'm a veteran and i want to talk about the president. the way i feel, it is not his fault. we live in america. there is so much hate in america. the guy that killed the four marines gets to come over here, go to school for free. i cannot go to school for free. i think this country is screwed up and there is too much hate in america. there are too many people talking about they do not like the president and they are supposed to be showing love. there is so much hate in america
it is going to happen again. you have too many people in our country do not like israeli americans, kuwaiti americans they will never be american but they come over here and you give them the rights that you give us. they are going to college. i cannot go to school. host: eric, how long were you in the military questioner -- in the military? caller: i was in the army for three years and i got out. host: why did you get out? caller: i wanted to do something different. i got an honorable discharge. it is a shame, there are not like two kinds of people, you are rich were you are poor. there is not much in between. host: what are you doing in lakeland? caller: i worked all my life, i am disabled right now.
my dad had agent orange from vietnam. host: that is eric in lakeland florida. the front page of been new york times, "a saudi obsession with politics and religion." quietly practicing check diplomacy to advance its agenda. but a trove of thousands of saudi documents recently released reveals and surprising detail how the government's goal in recent years is not to spread its strict version of sunni islam -- though that was a priority -- but also to undermine its own adversary. they in -- the a near obsession with iran monitoring iranian activities in minute detail and top government agencies plotting
to moves -- plotting moves to limit the spread of shiite islam. the deal reached on tuesday between world powers any ron over its nuclear program. saudi leaders worry that relief from sanctions will give you want more money to strengthen its militant proxies. but the documents reveal a depth of competition that is far more comprehensive, with deep roots in the religious ideologies. the article goes into some of the money that saudi's have given around the world. alex is in clewiston florida republican line. caller: thank you. i appreciate the show. i watch it every morning. i just wanted to make some points. on immigration why are we
spending so much money overseas in iran trying to fix those problems when we have problems here? we have mexicans trying to come over the border because there is nothing in mexico, only drug cartels. it is a crime that people are getting arrested for no reason. we are putting so much money putting them in jail for a victimless crime. do you want to pay for that? or that. they could put more money over to mexico to help the country. help them figure out their problems because it is ran by cartels. they are all crooked, everybody in that country is crooked. how do you think he escaped? host: that is alex in florida and next is terry in lafayette indiana, a democrat. caller: good morning.
i just want to talk about the sentencing laws. there is a bunch of violence because of the drug gangs but before they passed those drug laws there were no drug gangs. they repealed the alcohol law 13 years after they passed it, and the murder rate that went up 70% went down 70%. it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what must be done about the drug gangs. 30% higher murder in crime rate. they need to repeal those laws and our murder and crime rate will be cut in half or more. my stepfather was a state patrol officer -- but -- parole officer. some of the guards make more money selling dope than they do on their paycheck.
geraldo rivera just recently said there's cartels in south america, 75% of their money comes from marijuana sales, the least harmful drug of all of them. cigarettes kill 480,000 people a year from smoking cigarettes. napoleon bonaparte going into egypt discovered marijuana and thought it was wonderful, no chance of overdosing, -- it would break up 99% of your gangs by legalizing marijuana. it is ridiculous. host: let's leave it there. uber is much more than just a ride service in this presidential race. you can see jeb bush taking and over taxi in san francisco. has driver was j from yemen who
had no idea who jeb bush was. here's a little bit of the article, after upending the taxi industry, uber is now becoming unexpected proxy in the campaign for the white house. it has centerstage in the emerging debate between the left and the right over the future of work, responsibilities of employers, the virtues of technology, and the necessity of workplace regulation. in a race already dominated by the stalled origins of american workers and growing inequality, uber is standing in as a symbol of anxiety, in the way that the giant retailer walmart embodied them years ago. republican candidates are embracing uber as an electoral strategy for building bridges to
traditionally democratic cities where the company has thrived. during his busy -- during his visit to san francisco, bush was ferried around by an over driver who deposited him at a campaign event in a black toyota camry. that is in the new york times morning. this is in "the washington times," "an unprecedented gathering of democratic hopefuls arrived in cedar rapids for the democratic hall of fame celebration, a sold-out dinner for 1200 fans and large enough to be staged at a major convention center. on hand, hillary rodham clinton martin o'malley, senator bernie sanders, jim webb, and lincoln chafee. it will be covered tonight at
8:00 p.m. one more from "the washington times." "clinton plan proposes tax credits for shared prospects." she has been making some economic speeches this week, and here is part of one. >> i am proposing a rising income sharing tax profit credit that would encourage more companies to provide profit-sharing by giving those companies a 50% tax credit of the -- 15% tax credit of the amount of the profit-sharing to get that started and to see that it works xo many of the companies that already do it. -- like so many of the companies that already do it. by providing examples and incentives and comparing what works to what does not work, just like economic policies that work and do not work, corporate
policies that work and do not work, we have got to do a better job using information as a tool for changing corporate behavior and corporate purpose. i think it is a big part of what we can begin to implement when i am president. and i believe that if we do more of that, we will send a very strong signal. i will have more to say about corporate purpose next week about, we need to get businesses back looking after their employees and their customers and their communities and our country, not just their executives and their shareholders. host: darrell in mobile alabama, independent line. good morning. caller: good morning, how are you? host: good. caller: just wanted to clarify
-- express my sympathy for this -- for the fellow marines that were murdered the other day. secondly, i was hoping, i thought i would also say regarding the iran deal, for those folks, iran has had its nuclear power for 60 years. they could have started a bomb in that time but did not. north korea has the bomb. thank you very much for taking my call. host: next is ron in andrews, north carolina, and ron is an independent. caller: good morning. host: high. . caller: i am calling about the shooting in chattanooga with the four marines were murdered.
those guys can defend us in foreign lands, they can carry a weapon, and they come home and they are not even allowed to defend themselves. there are so many things that are wrong, we do not know who is in this country. now we want to give you on a bomb -- give iran a bomb. people had better wake up. when they send that vomit in front of the missiles that the joint -- that bomb in front of the missiles that the joint chiefs told obama they should never give them, the people had better wake up. they had better find out what is going on instead of listening to the politicians like hillary
what the corporation to give -- why doesn't she give some of those hundreds of millions of dollars she collected while she was secretary is eight, why doesn't she give some of her money? host: that is ron in north carolina. david brooks, in his new york times column, hasn't open -- has an open letter to a commentator who has written a new book called "between the world and me." he writes, "the last year has been an education for white people. there has been depth power and richness to the african-american conversation about ferguson, baltimore, charleston, and the other killings that have been humbling and instructive. your new book is a great and searing contribution to the public education.
it is a mind altering account of the black male experience. every conscientious americans should read it. my ancestors chose to come here. for them, america was the antidote of the cresting -- crushing restrictiveness of european life, to the pogroms. for them, the american dream was an uplifting spiritual creed that offer dignity, the chance to rise. your ancestors came in chain. america is egypt without the possibility of the exodus. african-american men are caught in a crushing logic, determined by the past from which there is no escape. he goes on to say, he quotes from the book. he says that "i think you
distort american history. this person -- this country like every person in it, is a mixture of glory and shame. violence is embedded in america but it is not close to the totality of america." in your anger you reject the american dream as flimflam but a dream sullied is not a lie. the american dream of equal opportunity, social democracy -- social mobility, and evermore perfect democracy cherishes the future more than the past. this is part of david brooks' column in "the new york times," an open letter. tim in connecticut, thank you for holding, republican line. caller: good morning, sir. i would like to bring up some
things -- and i am a republican. i served in the marine corps under ronald reagan. i believe we are in this islamic terrorist position today because if you look back, carter had the hostages. reagan came in, mr. keller. april of 1983, hezbollah funded by iran, trained by iran, low up our embassy in beirut, killing 17 americans. in october of that year, they blew up the marine barracks with 241 marines were killed. there has been more americans killed by iran under president ronald reagan than anybody. to sit there and say, mr. obama is weak, and all the democrats are weak, what was the response
from president reagan at that time? absolutely nothing. nothing. and then he went in and invaded granada. i believe in my heart, and it is heard today as a former marine that we had for go down yesterday, there was a time to go into iran. that was the time. half the republicans -- to have the republicans stand up and say they are tough on defense is a farce. that was the biggest casualties the marine corps took its world war ii. we did nothing. host: tim in coventry connecticut. this is steve in gaithersburg, maryland. caller: i hope to see you at the book fair down at the mall. host: that book fair is now held
at the convention center, the national book festival. they have moved it off the mall last year and moved indoors. i do have a personal opinion on that. it is kind of fun to be out on the mall and see all the site, but it was buggy last year -- muggy last year. caller: your previous caller mentioned beirut, and that was the last time that i changed my bike ride to swing by the memorial to my sister service the u.s. marine corps. what i was calling about was another matter of war. this is the iran agreement. i do hope that congress will take seriously the process they put in place, take your 60 days, go pro and con, and and of
endorsing this. it is a multinational agreement. deliberate about it, play a role, and then serve the nation well. host: that is steve in gaithersburg. i think we got cut off. angela in jefferson, texas, an independent. caller: i just want to say that i think we need to become one as a nation. i think that president obama needs to be more proactive in doing his job. basically, i think that as a people, we need to say that god leads this country and not man. that is all i have to say. thank you. host: commentary section of "the washington times," there is an op ed striking a balance in
presidential debates. there the cochairs on presidential debates. they have been taking a lot of criticism about who gets in, how they select, what the format is, etc.. they have written this op ed and here's just a little bit from it. "the commission's ability to serve as a neutral sponsor is based on a few things. it is not controlled by and does not support, have any relationship with any political party. the cpd is governed by a strong and independent 17 person board of directors. the board is comprised of leaders who have many years of distinguished service in business academia, and
philanthropy. each is committed to the nonpartisan mission of the cpd. the commission on presidential debate has a rigorous, nonpartisan progress -- process for deciding who will be invited to debate. there are scores of individuals who run for president every four years, including dozens who did not seek the nomination of either major party. cp be -- cpd has always been committed to inviting the individuals who have emerged from that process as the leading candidates regardless of their party affiliation. lesser-known candidate historically have not been included in the debates. the cpd strives to strike a balance that results in including those candidates, regardless of party affiliation whose level of public support generally qualifies him or her as a leading candidate." now on
august 3 c-span is cosponsoring along with local newspapers from new hampshire, south carolina, and iowa, the voters first forum held in new hampshire. it will be held live on monday august third at 7:00 p.m. eastern time, and all the republican candidates have been invited. all the announced republican candidates have been invited to participate in this forum. $377 million raised for the races so far, it is a record. more than six out of every 10 of those dollars raised on candidates'behalf goes to independent groups that face no contribution limit. 47.5 million has been raised by hillary clinton.
jeb bush, 103 million. ted cruz, 14 million since entering the rage in march. bernie sanders has raised 15.2 million and outperformed clinton among the grassroots donors needed over the long fundraising slog. that is just a little bit from the fundraising numbers that have been reported at the end of june. that is when the books close and the numbers have to be reported on june 15. next up, sam in mississippi, one hour republicans line. caller: good morning. a question with this iran deal. does valerie jarrett's mother come from iran #i have heard that but i do not know if that is true or not.
supposedly she is supposed to be obama's top advisor and did not know if that had a piece in this puzzle. one thing i kind of got irritated about like a lot of americans is when the reporter challenged obama about the americans that are still in jail in iran. he got all huffy and puffy about it. he does not like to be challenged. if anybody does challenge him it is dirt in his mind. but yet he can release five or six terrorists, or some guy who walks off the base during wartime. i cannot figure this guy out. i cannot believe hillary clinton is even in the lead in any race, whether it be the general election or the democratic binary because she is just --
primary because she is just as bad worse than obama. obama, his last big thing he will do over the next year and half, he will apologize for the slavery issue -- he will apologize for the slavery issue and we will have lawsuits galore for reparations. host: from the washington post, some details from hillary clinton's fund-raising and the report that she had to file. "clinton's fund-raising total reflected a much larger hall than that of any of her rivals in either party but she will face a challenge in maintaining that pace. two thirds of her money from individuals came from contributors who have given the legal maximum and could not be tapped for additional donations until clinton began finance thing for the general election.
finance records show that the campaign spent nearly $6 million in salaries and benefits for its ballooning staff, accounting for the largest expenditure category. along with big investments in fundraising and on lane advertising, the campaign spent thousands on private jets and high-end production. the campaign's fast expansion speaks to the unusual pressure clinton is under as she tries to reckon i'll hurt early dominance in the race with her team's efforts to convey an image of hard-working frugality." "the campaign had hired nearly 60 field organizers by the end of june. the campaign paid nearly $1.4 million for online ads.
the new york firm blue wolf group received more than $300,000 for technology consulting. the team also shelled out more than -- nearly $1.5 million to three polling firms, including that of strategist joel bennison, a sizable investment in focus groups and message testing. the rate of spending by the campaign, which could become more than $1 billion operation if clinton wins the nomination, underscores the premium her aides are putting on a building a massive in-house infrastructure. " john in herndon, virginia, a democrat. caller: i just want to verify something. as a muslim, today is our best day of ramadan that we just finished and we were talking
about these young men who killed for innocent people in tennessee. -- four innocent people in tennessee. what makes me angry, we provide something in this country that he grew up, some of it in kuwait did not offer him anything. we gave him the best school, we educated him we made him something that his country did not provide him. and now he went out there and killed innocent people. it absolute makes me so angry when i hear young people who have been brainwashed like this and they do not understand the opportunity that they have in this country that no other country provides. rather than doing the right thing, going to social media and do this kind of thing. i am so upset about it because it is the best day of our lives and we are dealing with this issue. host: today is eid correct?
caller: yes. host: what is it, what does it mean? caller: the significance is we have 30 days of fasting and at the end of the days of fasting. at the end of that day, we enjoy that they could we give gifts to each other. we go out to the family, enjoy the family, visit relatives, all these things. today is our day, as here in america, we are talking about this lunatic who killed innocent people. and it is a sad day. i am not calling about the -- i'm calling about these young people. rather than there are doing something correct with unless, they have been brainwashed. i just can't figure out because us muslims meet this big up on these issues. host: where are you from originally?
guest: i am from -- caller: i am from ethiopia originally. host: this incident is being called domestic terrorism. what do think about that deco caller: -- that? caller: anytime you kill innocent people, whether in church or a mosque, you are terrorizing people. but as a religion, to me, -- [indiscernible] what i don't like being -- like about being here in the past 30 years, people have to understand there is always lunatics out there who in the name of religion will do things different. the young man, when he killed the innocent people, it is about hate. you can't control people, what they think. people have all these freedoms. and there are a lot of copycats you try to do things different.
just to get their name, that 15 minutes of fame. so, i'm angry. this country provides me with something that my own country did not provide me. it is a shame and despicable what this man did. host: that is john in virginia. last call for this segment comes from richard in the lake placid, florida. caller: good morning, peter. if our marines would have been armed, i don't think we would have four dead and seven war did. and one of the hospital clinging to life. but really, when i wanted to talk about was obama's agreement, or trade agreement with iran. which sounds to me like the clinton deal, where madeleine albright went to north korea and talked with kim jong-il and quebec and said we could trust him, that he was a wonderful man.
so the clinton administration gave north korea yellowcake. i ran checker he give him -- iran, he gave them a centrifuge. and they made a nuclear weapon. then they started firing missiles, you know over to the sea of japan and towards hawaii. this sounds like the same setup that the clinton administration did. i hope the senate, you know, will vote down this agreement so-called agreement, which is actually a trade. the senate to have the power to completely kill this deal. host: that is richard in lake placid, florida. two more hours this morning on the "washington journal," and we will be talking with the eu ambassador later on in the program. we will be talking about criminal justice reform with paul butler.
of georgetown university law school. but coming up next, a discussion on the highway trust fund. it is expiring, once again. we will get an update on the infrastructure stories that are coursing through this town right now. but i want to let you know that every weekend on "american history tv," which is c-span3 on the weekends, and "booktv," which is c-span2 on the weekends, we like to feature cities across the nation. and this weekend, we are featuring lexington, kentucky. we are going to be looking at its history, its literary life on "american history tv" and on "booktv." that'll be all weekend long this coming weekend. here is a little bit from lexington mayor, jim gray talking about his city. >> lexington is often described as the capital of central kentucky.
and many would take eastern and central kentucky. anybody who appreciates history at all will appreciate that lexington was founded in june of 1775, which was just a few months before the declaration of independence itself was side. we were named after the battle the famous battle, the first battle of the revolution, the battle of lexington and concorde from the 1820's through the 1840's. the name of henry clay was prominent in kentucky. and in the countries. so we have this rich legacy that carries us back to this period when lexington was known as the athens of the west. are known as the horse capital of the world, so there is a signature industry for it. the university is, by far, the biggest element of our economy. a signature element of our economy. and when the university is doing well, the city is doing well.
lexington is the fastest-growing city in kentucky. lexington has a gravitational pull on folks, in many respects because it is a center for culture, a center for education, a center for art and business. and because of this, this is a city moment. and so going toward, we can to get advantage of our rich history and his legacy and we can pull ourselves forward in a really inspired way into the future. >> "washington journal" continues. host: fawn johnson of the "national journal," where do we stand on funding for highway infrastructure? guest: well, we are up against another deadline, as you mention in your preview. july 31 is the date when the authority to get money out of the highway trust fund expires. this is money that is used to pay for our roads and fix our transit system. it is particularly critical time of the year because of this, and
that is usually when a lot of construction is happening. it will become much more of a problem if congress doesn't extend the authority in the next couple of weeks. the good news is that there are some options on the table. the bad news is that nobody knows what they are. and one of the biggest issues about the highway trust fund is that it is funded through our gas tax, but the gas tax doesn't quite put enough money into the trust fund to actually pay for the construction and the maintenance that is needed. in order to even extend the authority a little bit, it costs about $8 billion. so really the issue has not been so much about extending the highway authority, but how to pay for it. host: how much do we spend on highways in a given year? caller: about 50 -- guest: about $50 billion a year. most of that comes from our gas tax, but roughly $10 billion -- $8 billion to $10 billion is
generated to the treasury. this has been a problem for the past several years, ever since the budget crunch happened. they have not been able to actually put together a long-term highway bill, which used to have been in the 1990's and early 2000's. 5, 6 years, hundreds of billions of dollars that you'd put into a highway bill and then states could actually plan their budget. already, state transportation authorities have been complaining to congress for years now because the last several years to have had this shorter-term extensions. there is an effort now to try and fix that for a longer term but it requires coming up with offsets that, you know, it is literally like scrounging in your couch for spare change. things like extending passenger fees for longer than we had anticipated just to raise a little bit more cash, or paying some compliance rules that the
irs has in terms of tax paying, taxpayers filing so you can get a billion dollars a year. host: now, the house just this week passed an extension of the highway funding. correct? it was pretty overwhelming. guest: it was an overwhelming vote. one of the things that is fascinating to me is pretty much nobody disagrees that you shouldn't have highway authority. a lot of people think we are spending a lot more money than we actually are. the ways and means chairman, paul ryan, has a plan for a longer-term bill. he wants to tweak the international tax rate, which is already high and it is not allowing our u.s. companies to bring their money back into the united states. he wants to lower it, allowing them to bring money back into the united states, and the tax it at a slightly higher level which would bring in $90 billion. that would be great. host: and dedicated to -- guest: and dedicated to the highway trust fund.
the only thing is it is a little pickup located to do. what he has proposed is coming up with a short-term patch which is what has to this week. and the idea is that will give the tax writers time to give up with a way to put this text together. his idea has been floating around for over an idea now -- for over a year now. the only problem with it is that the people who are really committed to tax reform -- and paul ryan is definitely one of them -- are worried that if all you do is deal with the international tax rate, you are really going to cause problems in trying to do broader tax reform because you need the international tax rate to help offset the cost of lowering corporate, general corporate tax rate. so if you just take the international tax peace now, it kind of causes problems later down the road. so it is dicey. but this is paul ryan's plan. host: and is it getting bipartisan support? guest: it has gotten bipartisan
support in the house. in the senate, they have another idea. which is a brewing as we speak. and will be very interesting to watch over the next week. mitch mcconnell has presented minority leader harry reid with something along the lines of $82 billion in potential offsets for what would be essentially a five and a half year highway bill. it basically asks the democrats and the members of his own caucus, let's look down this list of things we have come up with to see what we can accept and how far we can go. so he has dedicated this coming week and the week after to spend time on the floor talking about this. and we will see where it goes. you know, he is among the people that does not want to mess with the international tax break just yet. he would prefer to find other ways. now, the funny thing about this is i have asked, nobody has seen this laundry list that they have
come up with, and we have some ideas, but we know it has cost several -- crossed several committees. so, we will just have to see what happens next week. host: so the funding authority runs out july 31. the house has passed an extension through december 18. the senate has not acted. let's say all these offsets and international taxes and all these other issues over here don't get worked out in the next two weeks. will be senate pass an extension? guest: my guess is they will. i asked that question to the number three senate republican last week, actually this week and i said, will you need some sort of an extension? and do you have the time? what he said to me, and i think this is everyone's -- in the senate at least -- everyone would prefer not to have to do
that because the more you put something off, the more difficult it becomes. but i do think they are willing to pass something that would extend the highway authority. there is one other wrinkle in this, which has nothing to do with highways, but it is something that both democrats and some republicans really care about, which is the export-import bank. it's authority expired last month. this is the bank that helps finance and ensure file -- small businesses overseas. and there are members particularly in the senate there is a huge coalition of people who want to see that authority reinstated. mitch mcconnell has promised there will be an amendment that will be attached to the highway bill that will extend the export-import bank possibility. how they deal with that issue -- if the senate passed it, we would be ok until december, it doesn't have anything about the import-export bank on it.
so the question is, is the senate going to amend whatever the house has passed and then hold the highway authority in some sort of a limbo while the house decides whether or not it wants to accept that idea? host: so it is not so much about funding levels, as it is -- guest: well, it is about how long we want to extend the highway authority. this is a problem that has plagued lawmakers for the last several years. paul ryan is one of the people but certainly mitch mcconnell and all the democrats would love to see a long-term highway bill. the state would love it, it would be better for everybody. the problem is how to pay for it. this has been the big question do you go and tap into the tax code, which is right -- ripe for renewal, and try to take care of the problem, or do you take off -- hold off? and try and come up with $90 billion from other means?
really tough. host: fawn johnson is our guest, she is with the "national journal," and him is in -- and tim is in maine. caller: hi. this is a great program. there is one solution that nobody is talking about and it is about the oil companies. more than 80% of a barrel of oil is turned into petrochemicals. so why not start taxing oil at the well head instead of a gas pump? because that is where the money is. guest: the caller is absolutely correct, peter. it is funny because i forgot as i'm talking about all of this, some of the easier answers on the table to actually pay for the highway. a barrel tax is one of the things some members have talked about. and a number of members and a number of business groups have also talked about raising the
gas tax. not even going to a barrel tax with the reason why that is not happening is because that would be a difficult thing to get through because the oil companies would protest. but raising the gas tax, it hasn't been done in 20 years. it is 18.4 cents a gallon. it would -- it would take care of the problem, but the problem is that the president has said that raising the gas tax is not on the table. and so have a number of republicans. and so we are left with coming up with strangers aleutians -- in order -- solutions in order to raise the money. but it would be fair to say that there are a number of rational solutions that, for political reasons, are hard for me to expand and understand are not on the table right now. host: joe, annapolis, a republican. good morning. caller: good morning. i have a couple of quick questions. isn't it the case that the
highway trust fund has been used to pay for federal expenses that are wholly unrelated to travel to highways, to infrastructure? and more efficiently -- recently is used to fund mass transit in cities. if the logic is that users, the people that buy gas to drive on highways, are the right people to pay into the highway trust fund, it seems wrong, it seems unfair to take that money and subsidize city's man's -- mass transit, which is unprofitable. and my second point is -- is it the case that the highway trust fund funds all types of roads and bridges and tunnels, even county road, state wrote? if that is the case, when it be letter -- better to let the states allocate the money?
for example, colorado would allocate colorado's roads. host: we got the point, joe. thank you, sir. guest: really good points. i'll start with the mass transit question. the caller asked the question of whether a not the highway trust fund has been used for non-transportation purposes. it can't be. by statute, it must be used for highways. but it also includes statutorylegislation that some of that money be spent for transit. so this is some ways, this is a two passenger trains. it also funds things like runways for airports, as an example. this is an issue that has sometimes been controversial in congress. there are a number of people who want the highway authority be -- be dealt just for highways, and let transit to deal with itself. but since the highway trust fund
was established, it has always been set aside for transit and it is unlikely that that will change. the has been an effort by a number of democrats to raise the percentage of money that is in the highway trust fund that goes to transit. the thinking being that transit is going to help everybody. it is going to relieve congestion, it allows better flow of people as the nation is becoming more of an urban nation. it would be a much more efficient way to move people and goods around. that said, it is true that the highway trust fund also funds transit. and it will continue to do so for the time -- at least for as long as i have been covering it. the second question the caller asked is about the state's responsibility. he is correct that the highway trust fund is used for all kinds of roads, even county roads. it is input and to remember that the state put up most of the
money for the transit system. the highway trust fund is cap and it is doled out -- capped at it is doled out for a bunch of different formulas for the states to use as they please. but the state are responsible for three quarters or more of the infrastructure in their own jurisdictions. and they usually need a little bit of a bump from the highway trust fund authority in federal dollars to help with those projects. host: gene in ohio tweets in, his gop highway bill tried to privatize our federal roads and make them toll roads? citizens pay twice. guest: there is some in the gop that would like to see more privatization of highways. certainly, polling -- tolling is not a bad way to pay for highways. the only problem is that it only works on fairly heavily trafficked places, like the new jersey turnpike, for example.
on the point of saying that citizens pay twice, there is -- i understand with that sentiment is coming from, but part of the problem is the highway system that we have now is more than 50 years old. there was a huge -- under president eisenhower, there was a huge infrastructure investment to try and build the system. and that was paid for by taxpayer dollars. as we continue to drive on it, we are essentially driving on some the debt has already been paid for, but it is a massive need of an upgrade. in essence, we have been taking a free ride already for a long time. and the only question is, you know, under our current budget situation now what president obama would like to do is, you know, come up with $400 billion in money that is not offset any warehouse to actually upgrade the system -- anywhere else to
actually upgrade the system. but we are now driving on something that was paid for 50 years ago. host: bill tweets in, so what did the last infrastructure stimulus get us and what is left to do? if it is so great, why isn't it an example setter? guest: that is a really good question. so, the big $900 billion stimulus bill that was passed during the beginning of the obama administration had about $80 billion in it -- my numbers might be off -- for transportation infrastructure. there's a huge effort on a part of the number of the transportation gurus and congress to take most of that money and put it in transportation. they argued at the time and actually think they were not telling me -- and i tend to agree with them -- that this would've been a much better situation than try to put the money into other types of stimulus projects. otherwise, that money went to what president obama at the time called shovel ready projects.
the kinds of things they want to cap -- complete right now. what you really want is a lot of money going into a big project that is actually going to stimulate the economy in your area. stimulus packages were not able to do that because the idea was you needed to get people out you needed to get construction crews out immediately so you could have people having jobs. and some of those projects take a very long time to plan. they need financing. this is one of the reasons why transportation departments of across the country are asking members of congress, can you please pass something long-term so we can at least find for some of these projects? if you think about it, let's say your added another lane onto one of the bridges going into manhattan. can you imagine what that would do for the commerce of the people who are tried to get goods in and out of the city? it would really be a huge boom. the fact in have itself, it'd
cost over $1 billion and they might not have that. so that is the reason why the stimulus -- the kind of infrastructure investment that would make a huge difference would cost much more than that. host: charles, the democrats lied. good morning. caller: hi. ms. johnson raised the point of stimulus and she said that the stimulus didn't do what it should have done. and i would like to raise the point that -- when the stimulus was during -- first considered we back at the time of the big crash, both of the nobel prize winners said it wasn't enough. and it needed to be doubled. people who -- hello? host: we are listening. go ahead. caller: the people who say that the stimulus failed, it reminds me of someone who would tell the
fire department that, gee, the house burned down so it doesn't do any good to poor water on the fire. it should have made more clear that the stimulus didn't feel because basically it was the wrong thing to do, it failed because it wasn't big enough. host: charles, sorry, didn't mean to cut you off. guest: good point, though. he makes a very good point that the stimulus -- it was huge, for sure, but there are number of economists with that you needed, you know, at least double or triple the amount that was passed by congress to really reinject money into the economy. we are only just now recovering. i mean, i have to say, though, the fact that we have got to members of congress to focus on the highway trust fund issue you know, -- and that they also
wanted long-term bill and a really tried to find a way to come up with that. that is huge progress from host stimulus -- post stimulus economic recession time. it is nice to see them focusing, nice to see them working in a bipartisan fashion. i have talked with barbara boxer, who is the democrats are also helped write the policy parts of the highway bill and she said she had seen the list and was very encouraged. it is not often you see something that mitch mcconnell puts forth and having a democrat to be, like, yeah, that was great. host: bob is a chesapeake virginia. an independent. caller: good morning. excuse me for the problem -- excuse me. the problem with the highway funding is that it was set up on a cent basis and not a percentage basis. the second problem with the highway funding is that it was really not going to the highway
funding. one third of the highway funding is now being used for social engineer transportation. the future of transportation, which google and delphi and all of the big computer companies are working on, is the autonomous vehicle. the a ton of a spherical -- the economist vehicle -- the autonomous vehicle is going to operate on the highways; therefore, all the -- [indiscernible] -- the beautification, light-rail, amtrak, you name it, all of that money is going to be a waste because the future is going to be personal autonomous vehicles of every type. host: we got the point. thank you, sir. guest: one thing i would say -- the caller is correct and that
there are number of efforts afoot to try and come up with a call self driving cars. i think it is a great concept. i'm all for it. but he is into it in the sense that the money from the highway trust fund's exit going to pay for that. that is private research that is being certainly supported by the transportation department and perhaps even funded by some government grant and research, it isn't coming from the -- highway trust fund money goes highways, for light-rail and that is for the rail itself, not necessarily for the train cars. it is true that it also goes towards things like bike paths and walkable paths. but in the end, whenever the self driving cars come out, they will be using the same roads we drive on and taxpayers will still have to pay for those roads regardless of what -- if it is being driven by a computer or by me. host: is that caller correct
that one third of the highway trust fund money goes towards non-highway objects -- projects? guest: if you include things like bike paths, you might be right. 20% is dedicated towards transit, so 20% -- and that is, you know, people debate about that number, whether it to be lower or higher. it often depends on where you come from. obviously, the more urban representatives, which tend to be democrats want more money for transit. one of the things to me that is fascinating about transit is that if you look around the world and at other countries they have much more sophisticated and better mass transit systems and it makes the economy run much more smoothly, but they are also funded at a higher level to the government. transit by itself to be a real boost to the economy, but it doesn't make money on its own. amtrak is a perfect example of this. even if you look at the trade systems around local into the
connectors -- the local inner connectors, usually they lose a little bit of money, so it is an awkward problem. one of the reasons why the highway trust fund has this provision that says you have to be able to put some of this money towards transit, otherwise we wouldn't have any of it at all. host: the next caller is from breeze would pennsylvania, and a lot of us know breezewood because it is a junction to washington. hi, john. caller: hello. chairman schuster is our congressional representative here. guest: he is a fine gentleman. caller: i have known bill four years. the gentleman joe was correct.
25% of the budget is spent on mass transit and house appropriations or the appropriations for the last fiscal year -- the federal transit administration got $2.13 billion for grants for the national rail passage surface -- service, which is amtrak. there is a program called mard that got 1.7 million. host: how do you know so much about this? caller: like i said, congressman schuster chairman, is a friend of mine, and this is something that i pushed. i feel a lot of the money is being wasted. percentage-wise, people in rural areas like my own pay a higher
amount of dollars because the capital mileage traveled is harder in the city then rural areas, but you have to drive 30 miles to go to the store outthe commission got $3.3 million out of the highway trust fund. community development block grants got $3 billion. if you could explain how hud fits into the overall highway transportation -- host: that is a lot. you work in the highway department? caller: no, i don't. host: i -- what kind of work do you do?
caller: i used to run restaurants. host: can you tell us why we have to stop at breezewood and not get on the pennsylvania turnpike? caller: i can answer that. there was a powerful man. they did not want to do it. when you are the chairman of the highway construction for 30 or 40 years, they do not know they rep. -- rant. thud comes out of highway funds. it is a huge amount of money and i would like to have a young lady explained. host: let's see how much we can get through, john. guest: thank you for bringing up the breezewood issue.
that is one of my favorite stories in the history of the highway program. schuster is chairman of the committee and he wanted to make sure people got their gas there. host: and how many times have you driven through there and stopped. guest: exactly. it is a fine example. host: and now his son is chairman. caller: yes. --guest: yes. it was a different time. it is a fine institution. we all appreciate the amount of money we're putting in two breezewood when we drive through. the caller knows a lot about what is funded. he was talking about the transportation housing appropriations bill. that is actually -- it is an
annual appropriation for the department of transportation and the department of housing, and they will sometimes go through and allocate which departments get which amount of money. this is for staff, grant approvals, everything the transmission department does. most of what the transportation department does has very little to do with the highway trust fund. the formulas by which the states get money from the highway trust fund has been dictated. they can dole out grants and things like that. one of the things he is right about, part of the money that comes through the appropriations process is for things like amtrak and that was funded at $1.1 billion, which is $300 million left in what they normally get, and probably a lot less than what they need. people are not worried about what they pay for amtrak. just to be clear, that bill is
different than the highway gas -- trust fund. the highway trust fund is funded by gases and the treasury that we pay for in other places. host: fawn johnson this question, "national journal" suspends its print magazine. guest: this is a sad story. i have written for the magazine. i think david bradley made a decision. you have to decide how to allocate your resources and it costs a lot of money to put together the kind of magazine everyone in washington has dealt with and look forward to every friday for years. it is an institution. that part of it is very sad. that being said, a lot more of
the money is going to be devoted to more up to date reporting. the "national journal" daily is something i have been doing for the past year. that will continue, and the online presence, which is absolutely amazing, will also continue. we are sad to see the print product go away, but "national journal" is as strong as ever. it makes me sad because all i wanted to ever do was write for the magazine and when i get a chance to, i was delighted. now i can say i did, but sayonara to the magazine. host: fawn johnson, with appreciate you coming over. guest: happy to be here. host: coming up next, we will talk to paul butler, a georgetown law professor, the author of "let's get free." we will talk about revamping the criminal justice system.
that is coming up. after that, the eu ambassador to the u.s. to talk about what is going on in greece and the eu. this is "washington journal." >> when francis fulsome married president grover cleveland she became a first lady with many first -- she is the first and only first lady to be married in the white house, at age 21, the youngest to serve as first lady, it and she lived an additional 51 years after leaving the white house. longer than any other first lady. francis. , -- frances cleveland, the sunday on "first ladies" at 8:00 p.m. eastern on american history tv on c-span3.
>> this sunday on "q&a" artist and journalist molly crabapple on her use of drawings to tell stories from around the world. molly: he might be reading a story from the black panthers, or drawing a design for a tattoo. i go around with a sketchbook and i draw, and a lot of times that is not to show the finished drawings, but to build report with people. often when you have a camera, it puts a distance between you and the person. you are taking these images. they cannot see what you are taking. it is almost than parikh in a way -- vampiric in a way. when you draw, it is a vulnerable thing. they can see what you are doing. if you suck, they can tell you
so. a lot of times i draw people because i like to and i like talking to them when i do it. >> on c-span "q&a close like -- "q&a" sunday night. >> "washington journal" continues. host: paul butler georgetown university law school. how significant is this? guest: this is epic, peter. the president went to a federal prison on thursday. on tuesday, he talked to the naacp and made the most passionate speech about justice from a president, i think, since jfk, and on monday he commuted
46 instances of people that had been sentenced under these akoni and drug laws -- akoni in drug laws that everyone thinks we need to get rid of. a huge week for equal justice under the law. the president, i think, is focusing on this issue because well, it is the right thing to do. everyone in america really does deserve a second chance, including americans who made mistakes and are now in the criminal justice system. we do not have to treat them like they are garbage because they are fellow citizens. it is not politically controversial. i'm sure we will get into this, but there is bipartisan support across the board for fixing the broken justice system and i think the president also understands this is going to save a lot of money. he kept talking about $80 billion. that is so much we spend locking up nonviolent offenders. what if we could spend that money on community investments
like preschool for everyone, or job training? again, it just makes sense for so many reasons, but most presidents have talked about getting tough on crime and treating people who are in prison even more harshly. this is a president that understands that for community safety we really have to treat these people in ways where they get services because when they come home, come to the community, they will be valuable members of that community. host: you mentioned the president's speech at the naacp in philadelphia. here is a little bit of the president. [video clip] pres. obama: around one million fathers are behind bars. one in nine african-american children have a parent in prison. what is that doing to our communities? what is that doing to those children?
our nation is being robbed of men and women who could be workers and taxpayers, could be more actively involved in their children's lives, could be all models, could be community leaders, and right now they are locked up for a nonviolent offense. so, our criminal justice system isn't as smart as it should be. it is not keeping us as safe as it should be. it is not as fair as it should be. mass incarceration makes our country worse off and we need to do something about it. [applause] host: paul butler, how did we get here -- how did we get to this increase in incarceration and some of the statistics that we will go through? guest: so, peter, the next day at the naacp conference, former president bill clinton spoke and he admitted it was partly his
fault-based on some law that he signed in congress in the 1990's that dramatically increased sentencing for low-level drug offenders. now, there had been a crack epidemic, so there was concern about violence associated with the market for that drug, so that was the context for which he signed the bill that dramatically increased the amount of people in prison. when a look at the prison population quadrupling since the 1970's, it is not that we americans started committing crimes that we did not commit before, but it is a result of admission. we are admitting people to prison for low-level drug offenses, which is driving the population explosion, and also
sentencing -- we are sentencing people way longer than we used to. but to his credit, the clinton at the naacp, -- bill clinton at the naacp, said i did it, and it was a mistake to -- mistake. there have been leaders in this effort. it is so expensive. texas, the redest of the red states, has been a leader in letting people out of prison where it is not serving a public safety function for them to be there and reducing crime at the same time. 32 states have both reduced their prison population and lowered their crime rate. host: we have set aside our fourth line. the first three numbers are usual -- democrat, republican, and independent. we set aside the fourth line for this segment for those of you
that have had experience with the criminal justice system. that could be in law enforcement, that could be someone that has been incarcerated. want to hear your experience and get paul butler to comment on those expenses as well. 202-748-8003. that is a number for you to call. professor butler, there is a statistic put out by the sentencing project that we want to show you. it says here the lifelong likelihood of imprisonment for black men is one in three. is that accurate? guest: well, one in three black men will certainly be arrested and have some kind of involvement with the criminal justice system. the numbers are much larger for white men. again, many fewer white men have
contact with the criminal justice system than african-americans, and part of that is looking at the war on drugs -- the failed war on drugs. peter, i taught at college campuses for the last 15 years and i know that african-americans do not use or sell drugs more than any other group. the national institute of health, where you are in d.c., says blacks are about 13% of the people that use drugs, but if you go not file from where you are, to the justice department, the bureau of justice statistics they will tell you over half of the people locked up for drug crimes are african-americans. 30% of people that do the crime 50% of people that do the time. it is less about law enforcement, but police focusing like a laser on young black and latino men.
a lot of black men and latino men do not get a second chance. they do not get the benefit of the doubt that white people get, and frankly, people of the president's age and my age, got in the day. it used to be if a cop found you and some weed in your car, he might throw it away, make you call your parents to tell them what you did, and now they lock you up, and that is one reason why there are vast disparities. with violent crime, it is different. there are street crimes that african-american men commit disproportionately and the president talked about that as well. that is all about community investment and reducing structural barriers that prevent him women and men of color from having the same opportunities that other americans have.
host: professor butler, in "usa today" this morning, steve cook has an op-ed to the editorial and he says drug laws keep our nations safe. he is president of the national association of assistant u.s. attorneys. "those promoting the weakening guest: yeah, so there is bipartisan legislation in congress, the safe justice act that targets, i think, the bad guys, that that editorial is focused on, so we are looking at the big time drug traffickers -- the people that are importing serious drugs like heroin and cocaine into the country. everyone agrees that, you know,
the criminal justice system has a place for them, that law enforcement officers ought to be interested in them for public safety reasons. that is not who is driving the exploding prison population. the problem with our drug law enforcement now, again, it has been selected, focused on african-americans, and it really has zero in on the street-level dealers, low-level dealers. you make about as much money selling drugs on the corner as you do working at mcdonald's. it is desperate work for people that do not have other opportunities. i do not think any responsible person thinks the way to treat the problem is stick those men and women in a cage for 10 years and see what happens when they get out. 95% of people that are locked up, home. they get out. the issue is when they get out
what kind of citizens have we prepare them to be? -- have we prepared them to be? if you do not get the job training, a ged, high school diploma, even college -- medical services, appropriate mental health care, you are not going to be a contributing member of society. you are going to make your community worse, not better. we have to be focused on these 95% of folks getting out -- ways to make them responsible members of society. host: paul butler serves as federal prosecutor with the u.s. department of justice. he served as a white-collar criminal defense attorney with williams and connolly and is a professor of law at georgetown university law center. david in flemington, new jersey, on our independent line, you are the first up. caller: thank you for taking my
call. i believe 9/11 gave our country the worst of oil -- both worlds. i see these scandals with the tsa, servicemen being killed in chattanooga, i do not see a reduction in real terror, but i think people in law enforcement use 9/11 in terms of ordinary citizens to give them a license to be authoritarian to the max for simple things. host: paul butler, do you believe we are living in more of a police state than we used to? guest: you know, there are interesting concerns about civil liberties that have been highlighted since 9/11. i can say one thing that happened after 9/11, which was an encouraging development, is that the fbi got out of the drug business and started focusing on terrorism. i do think that 9/11 realigned our sense of what the real
threats to our country our -- our, and we can have a conversation about whether we should be focused on foreign terrorism, or domestic homegrown terrorism whether we should think about what happen in charleston as a terrorist act, which i certainly think that we should, but a lot of the surveillance and concerns about civil liberties that people have after 9/11, guess where those came from. they came from the war on drugs. i think it is absolutely right that if we are concerned about how much power the police have this state of surveillance that lots of folks feel our country is evolving to or devolving to -- when we start these drug tony and -- to come in problems,
locking people up, putting them in a cage, i do not think there is any way to keep the genie in a bottle. it is corrosive. i think it is very important to be concerned about the folks that are in the criminal justice system because they are fellow human beings. they are fellow citizens. they are fellow travelers on this planet. but it is also important to be concerned about them because again, if it is them today, it might be you tomorrow. host: 500-5000 white people currently -- 500-5000 -- 505, thousand white people currently in jail. host: alexander is an washington d.c., on our
democrats line. caller: good morning. i know my concern can take a long time to really get to the depths and the bottom of this problem. there is a serious problem in the present system. the only way this is going to stop is by helping our kids, to educate them, and bring them in a position where they can be able to fend for themselves. putting people in prison systems -- i am going to tell you, i was the victim of a crime i did not commit. the day i came out -- i have been reformed. i have than anything i could possibly do and i'm still trying to help to get this cycle to stop repeating itself again and again. not everybody in this society in america has done something desperately wrong to be going into a prison system like it is
a revolving door. i mean, if you want to be fair, this system is the one that is failing. there are a lot of people innocently going to prison for these -- i am not saying people should not be punished -- violent offenders should be punished and should pay the price for what they have committed, but for a nonviolent offender to be going into the prison system and to be doing all of this time, it is unfair. host: alexander, thank you. paul butler. guest: alexander, i feel your pain. i hear the emotion in your voice and i understand that because prison is a violent inhumane place. we saw president obama look into that tiny jail cell with a commode that is not even have a
seat and say for one person to be in here is kind of crazy, but for three people -- three people to live in this little cage which is how that system operated for a long time, and now you are down to two people, again, you would not want that for your worst enemy if you knew your worst enemy is going to get out of that cage at some point and return home. i understand the pain there. when you, again, look at these young men who are the main people who are behind bars now again, lots of nonviolent drug offenders -- when you stick them in that cage 43, 5, 10 years that is like sending -- for 3 5, 10 years, that is like sending down to finishing school for crime.
when they come out they are not going to be better people. one of the things i am so excited about is this safe justice act that we are hoping might come up next week to be considered by congress -- bipartisan support from republicans, representative bobby scott a progressive democrat, speaker boehner came on board yesterday that he supports this -- so, this is going to make a difference, a big difference, because it is going to reduce the number of people who are admitted to prison by getting rid of some of these harsh, mandatory, minimum sentences, and it is going to provide some services for people once they are locked up. incentives to have them go to high school or at least complete their ged and get the kinds of
help here that they need so that they will return us contribute a members of society rather than you know, as better criminals because now, if you look at what happens when folks come out after being locked up, in a lot of jurisdictions they get the proverbial subway token p on the backa,t good luck, -- p on theat back -- pat on the back, good luck, and then we that vicious cycle. republicans, democrats -- this is an issue that is bringing folks together. host: back to the sentencing project statistics, you can see from 1925 through about 1972 the prison population was pretty steady, then it started to rise
and went up increasingly. 1984 on, a pretty steep climb up to right now. it is about 1.5 million. william in iowa has had express with the criminal justice system. what is that experience you have had, william? caller: i am not going to expect everyone to understand all of the language in the legal system. i was an curious, one that looks at the court at an in-between point with and not on the court's side, not on the defendant's side, but look at how the system is, how the case needs to be reviewed, and how a brief needs to be put together to give an opinion. as a friend of the person watching that system play out.
i have actually seen judges actually break the law, sticking up for the prosecutor, and it was just appalling. i witnessed it because i watched the defendant -- where the prosecutor did not show a forecourt, and when the prosecutor did not show up for court, -- for court, and when the prosecutor did not show up for court, there was another hearing. host: i apologize. we have to keep this moving. what is the bottom line you want to convey? caller: bottom line is there was evidence that one of the jailers came through and said we had video of the prosecutor that was here. we were ecstatic because he was thinking that he was trying to protect the prosecutor and the judge but he was protecting us
because we wanted the evidence, but they would not let us have the video of the prosecutor being there because he never was there. host: all right, let's leave it there. paul butler, any comment for the caller? caller: you know, when you talk about that role --guest: you know, when you talk about that wool you had in the court system, there are creative ways of having judges think about social problems and helping to resolve social problems in ways that do not involve locking everybody up. now there are new drug courts focus on rehabilitation. i think we also have to start thinking about alternatives to arrests. there has been so much focus on incarceration, appropriately, because it is so harsh expensive, and counterproductive to public safety, but now we are starting to understand that arrest is also a point at which people enter the system and start having outcomes that are
hard to reverse. once you get the arrest record, it makes it hard to get a job. my mom always says why don't these guys just go work admit donald -- go work at mcdonald's. it is often difficult to get a minimum wage job, if you have not just a criminal record, but an arrest record. it is easy to find just looking at the internet. one of the ways that congress is focusing, state lawmakers are focusing on having opportunities for people making mistakes is this ban the box campaign, where employers are not allowed to initially ask you about your arrest. if you committed a crime that is relevant to your work -- obviously if you have committed a violent crime or sex crime, we do not want you working around
children if you have not been successfully rehabilitated, so there are common sense campaigns, but the idea is to give folks that have made mistakes a second chance. host: park storm tweets in the percentage of blacks is way out of proportion with the total percentage of blacks in the u.s. population. jim says i am not buying that white folks buying dope get a pass but black folks selling dope get life in prison. larry is calling in from indiana. mary, go ahead. caller: mr. butler, let's start for a beginning. suckers work for a levy. in the u.s. justice system, i worked in illinois and i retired from a u.s. penitentiary in 2003. they are not inmates. they call themselves convicts.
you insult them when you call them an inmate. they want to be called convicts. they start at an early age whether it is dope were any other crime. the arrest record starts when they are 12 years old. by the time they get to the criminal justice system they have a rap sheet of nine or 10 arrests before they get sent to the penitentiary. it is not the first-time dope dealer that gets sent to the penitentiary. you are misleading the public when you say that on the program. they already have a cumulative arrest record before the judge comes down with a gavel and sends them to a penitentiary. host: larry, do you think the drug laws should be used back a little bit -- eased back a little bit? caller: eased back -- it depends. they do not send people that have been arrested for the first
time to a u.s. penitentiary. someone is misleading the public. host: thank you. we got your point. paul butler? guest: i do not think i said or anybody said that if you get a first possession offense you go to a federal prison, but it sounds like larry retired before we experienced in the 1980's and the 1990's this massive increase in the prison population, again based on these laws that went into effect in the early-19 90's. maybe he is not up to date with who actually is incarcerated now. again, the reason why people like the koch brothers are on board with having to reduce our prison population is because the folks that are serving time now, again, some of them, about half are there for violent crimes in federal prison, and there is not a lot of debate about whether they should be there. that is an area that we need to
investigate, but with nonviolent drug offenders, about 50% of folks in the federal system, i think, again, no one wants to coddle criminals. everyone is in favor of public safety, but it turns out that too much incarceration is what we call criminal genic, which means when you reach this tipping point where to many people are locked up, that makes crime go up, not down. again, the reason why 32 states have reduced their prison population at the same time that they have reduced their crime rates is not because they want to coddle criminals. it is because they understand that reducing incarceration is a way of being smart on crime. it is a way of making the
streets safer for everybody. host: international rates of incarceration -- imprisonment rate -- you can see the u.s. leads with 716 followed by rwanda russia, and on down with some other countries including china at 121. ted in flushing, new york. independent line. caller: yes, good morning. i am really surprised that we are leading rwanda and other countries. let's be honest with this -- the guy before it was saying that a 12-year-old boy will be jailed and then jailed again. i am really shocked -- how come we allow a 12-year-old kid to be locked up? i do not understand that. now i see hope. the hope is there is bipartisan
support. the educational -- the justice system has to be reformed. it should be an educational system, where young people have a chance to be in a society. the united states is setting a bad example for the world. we're talking about human rights violations in china, and china says you are the worst offenders, putting disproportionately black people in jail. host: thank you, sir. paul butler? guest: i totally agree with the caller's comments about the juvenile justice system. that is an area we have to turn our attention to. we have people who are children that are treated like adults. we know, just in based on what we know about -- just based on what we know about psychology, science, brain development, that these are children that need
rehabilitation, that need the kind of mental health services that they do not get in prison, but oftentimes now, again, children get locked up in some jurisdictions because we have been so punitive. we really do have to be especially concerned about how we treat children because that says something about where we are as a civilized society. peter, i appreciate that you are putting up these charts with how the prison population has been going up and up and up, but it is important for folks to know that if you put up a chart about the crime rate, the crime rate has actually been going down and down. the rate of violent crime especially has dramatically increased since the 1970's, and that is good news for everybody. the fact that violent crime is going down all over the country
number one suggest that police strategy might have something to do with it, but there are so many different police strategies in the 50 states that it is hard to say that things like stop and frisk, zero-tolerance policies are responsible. worldwide, interestingly enough, crime has been going down, not just in the states, but all over the world. host: this tweet -- can you guessed address the high crime rate in chicago? guest: yeah. i know that is a special concern for president obama because he spent a lot of time in chicago and he calls that home now. me, too. chicago is my home. when i look at what is going on there and the rates of violent crime -- first of all, we should say there is some lightly encouraging news. violent crime in chicago has not
increased at the same rate it has increased in most of the other parts of the country, but violent crime is going down there. the police are being smarter about the kinds of tactics that they use. i think they are still using stop and frisk, for example, way too much. in new york we have seen that that does not really help communities feel invested in the justice system. the way we catch the bad guys like murderous -- murderers and rapists, is not the way you see on tv, chasing them, but the way police solve serious homicides and rates is by talking to people -- rapes is by talking to people, getting them to tell
them what happened, and the only way people are willing to talk to cops is if they feel the system is legitimate, that they are there to serve and protect them. one of the things police officers in chicago are doing is becoming more invested in their immunity. a lot of those issues are structural. i grew up in 6 -- community. i -- a lot of those issues are structural. i grew up in chicago. my mother sent me to saint ignatius prep. if i had gone to the public school in the neighborhood that i grew up in in the south side of chicago, i do not know if i would be here talking to you today, peter, as a law professor. a lot of those folks who have the bad outcomes including some of those people who are committing violent crimes in chicago, they did not have the opportunities that i had and that president obama had.
again, when we think about things like getting young women and men to graduate from high school -- when we think about having them learn trades -- you do not have to be a lawyer. i have a lot more time in d.c. finding a good electrician or a good plumber than i do a lawyer. if some of these folks who feel that they do not want to go to college -- if they could just learn a trade, if they have that opportunity, that is a way to invest in communities to reduce the kinds of violence we've seen in certain areas. host: paul butler is also the author of "let's get free -- a hip-hop history of justice." donna, what is your experience? caller: i work in north carolina. i was one of the first women to work in an all-male institution set up initially as a research
institution. hey professor from northwest -- a professor from northwestern university set this program appeared the inmates were up by -- there by choice. they had 30 days to stay with the program. they were required to go to school, take a job. they worked, had family day twice a year. the idea was they would have to keep their relationship. they wore their personal clothing, they had to watch -- wash their own. my spans is they lived up -- my experience is they lived up to what i expected of them, and they called me mama wagner, to give you an idea of my investigation -- to give you an idea. most of them figured out they can wear their personal clothing, it was the best they were going to have it and they did very well.
our recidivism -- most of them came back only because they were drug addicts and alcoholics. most of the inmates were there for gross stupidity. very few were psychopaths or other things. most of them just did not seem to think through what they were doing and i would suggest a career change because i was time them what to do and it fitted not like that they could think about more positive things. i think i should be reinstated, and administrated institution and there should be one in every region and every inmate should come through there for five years in order to prepare to return home. they have associate degrees in optics there. shaw university offers a degree in business there. everything is there. they are not doing it now. they have ruined it, but they can reinstated. people like jesse helms and rush
limbaugh did a lot of damage by trying to tell the bureau how to run institutions. it does not even have a gym in it. that is unacceptable. i had 365 days to dream up something to do and only had 40 hours a week to get it undone. i loved working for the bureau. it was a wonderful institution. we trained three regional directors, to directors of the bureau of prison. call kathy hawk. mike started off as an officer and retired as a warden. i think it is a fantastic opportunity for people to work with the bureau. i am very proud. host: that is donna in woodlief north carolina. professor bollard. guest: donna, first of all congratulations on breaking the gas -- glass ceiling and i'm an advocate for having more women
in law enforcement. when you look at the problems we see now in places like ferguson and staten island, women are more -- less likely to shoot and arman -- unarmed person than male tops. sometimes i feel if we had a lot more women law enforcement officers we would not see the level of problems that we see now. your story about giving these people who are locked up opportunities to, rather than sit around all day and watch tv, opportunities to get a ged get an associates degree, learn a trade, not just a story evidence-based. we know that works. you are absolutely right that a lot of the rhetoric that we hear from people from -- like rush limbaugh and other conservatives, that is not
evidence-based. a lot of the get tough -- put them under the jail -- that does not work. that does not make communities safer because once again, these folks come home. 95% -- i keep saying that because it is so important to realize. all of these, 2.5 million people that are locked up now, more than 2 million one day will be back with us on the streets, in our neighborhood, and we want them to have the opportunity when they are incarcerated to learn, just like donna said, to learn a new trade. host: in 1985, 6 $.7 billion worth spent on corrections. 2013 26.5. caller: this is not what i
talked about but since you brought up i will address it quickly -- it is not necessarily that we need more women, because the kind of woman that would shoot unnecessarily is the same kind of man, it is not gender, it is a mental tap. it is not that we need more women, but more certain types of people. what i called about is the bulk of the problem is the six-month to three-year sentences people are getting and that is primarily because of the flexibility fake hero judges and prosecutors are being given that they should not have are two examples i would like you to address. i do not believe it is rational anyone should be locked up for any on of time if they were not paying money to a court for supposedly the well-being of a child i have a false promise of child support. it will not give productive value to that child's life for that person to be sitting in a
lockup. some people are victim of paternity fraud. -- victims of paternity fraud. separate from that, i think legislators should be setting up a system so that if someone is locked up for something they should not be locked up for the police have no evidence, and the judges were consciously complacent, the system should be set up where they should have to go to jail and go to jeff for a certain amount of time where they are in correctional programs and not just sitting there in the joint doing time. i want you to address the first thing i brought up that you should not be sending people to jail for long periods of time because it is not want to pay money to a court, but they were paying for the well-being of their child. host: todd. paul butler? guest: i am with you, todd.
i think a lot of misdemeanors should probably not be dealt with through the criminal justice system. there was a frightening article in the "new york times" this week about public urination, and it turns out thousands of people in new york city get arrested for peeing in the street, if you excuse the expression, and that is a problem. a lot of folks agreed it is a public nuisance, people should not do that, and there needs to be some disincentive, but the problem is one folks get arrested for that, they, a lot of times, spent time in a holding cell and they have an arrest record, and people plead guilty because they get caught red-handed, and and up with his criminal record. when we think about the collateral consequences that come from having a criminal record, and especially having a
conviction, are those equivalent to the problem of public urination? so, again, being creative about ways to deal with social problems other than by locking people up, and the example that you used about if a man is not making his child support payments, that is a problem. again, we need people, obviously, to be responsible parents, but it does seem kind of counterproductive to put them in a ce for all -- cell for a period of time because obviously than they are not going to be a responsible parent the same way they would be if they were on the street, and clearly they are not going to make child support payments if they are locked up. again, a great example of
something that everyone would agree is a problem. again, folks need to take care of their kids, but is locking them up the best way of addressing that problem? a lot of the criminal justice policies, i think a lot of your callers are keying in on. a lot of the policies are not evidence-based, fact-based. a lot of the policy is driven by emotion. when i think about some of these deadbeat dads -- it makes me kind of mad, too. i know some children whose fathers need to be more involved in their lives financially, so i get the emotion, but again, when i think about how to fix the problem, i wanted to be evidence-based, i wanted to focus on something that works, and for lots of these misdemeanors, there are better ways of addressing the problems than locking folks up or even giving them criminal records. host: edward perkins tweets in
not just about the disproportionate number of arrests, drugs to be legalized and regulate. jamie in maryland. caller: hello, i want to address a couple of points and i will move through them quickly. first, hats off to the president, especially when it comes to compassion. to speak on subjects that, you know, to be so passionate about things that are not necessarily an issue of yours, i think that takes great strength. i like what he said when he said -- what he said about redemption. i think that was a key point. i wanted to also say that a lot of folks that find themselves in prison, when you look at the man, you have to understand the story to understand him.
a lot of these folks are the kids of addicts and that kind of thing. if you are the child of an addict, you are exposed to things everybody else is not. sometimes you found ways to take care of yourself because maybe that person, that parent was not there, and that kind of thing. so, you have a whole different expands altogether that other folks do not understand. another thing i wanted to say -- host: jamie, before you do, can you share your experience with the criminal justice system? caller: yeah. i am 36 years old now, but when i was about 19 or 20 years old myself and another german got into an argument -- gentleman got into an argument. the argument escalated and we both acted in a way we should not have. host: what does that mean? what does that mean? caller: well, it came to a violent situation. host: guns fists?
caller: we are talking guns. host: was somebody killed? caller: no, nobody was killed. caller:i was hit, but it was the fault of my own. host: how has that affected you? did you end up going to prison or jail for a while? caller: i was one in a million that caught a fair break and the reason i say that is because what i did deserved punishment and it just so happened that i had a very good family and i was also in a decent position myself to hire a good lawyer. that lawyer cost me $20,000. i am 20 years old and i had to come up with $20,000 for a lawyer and i was able to make that happen, but a lot of people cannot do that. if i had a public defender or something like that, i would still be in jail right now.
that was 15 years ago. the end result was the judge -- he was not really -- his reputation was not one of a lenient one. so i was definitely scared, but that judge gave me a huge break and the only reason he did was he saw i had no previous arrest record, had never been locked up for anything. he said i will take this as you made a mistake, but if you ever come in front of me again, i promise you i will make you pay for it. host: how has that arrest affected your life in your professional career? caller: i will get to it. when i was in high school i was able to obtain my cdo license. i was a truck driver. i really had a good job before that arrest happened. so, it has affected me because
it has been difficult for me -- i wanted to be a pilot and because of the arrest record, even if i went to school to be a pilot, there would be nobody i would be able to fly four. host: are you driving a truck today, jamie? jamie got cut off. i'm sorry about that. paul butler, and response to what jamie had to say? guest: yeah, so, it sounds like he got a second chance and he really benefited from that second chance and it is important to know that it sounds like he is a very responsible contributing member of society and he was implicated in a crime of violence. i understand why now there is a lot of focus on nonviolent offenders, because that is, kind of, low-hanging fruit in the sense that it is very obvious
period that locking up those people for long -- locking up those people for periods of time. it is important to think about people that have been locked up for round offenses, ways to help them get second chances and become responsible, returning citizens. in a i want to give a shout out to my public defenders. they have some of the most difficult jobs in our society. so many of them are just the hardest working and must responsible citizens, lawyers good human beings that you could meet. i get calls sometimes from people whose kid might be -- have a case standing. they say, is there anyway you can find someone to help me represent them because now it's
just a public defender? lots of times, the public defender is the best person to represent you because they have so much experience representing people with crimes like the ca ller was accused of. the problem is not public defenders. it's that we do not send enough money in defense in our system. i know a lot of times you talk about unfunded mandates on states are required to do something, but they are not given the resources to do that. defense of poor people is a classic example -- remember that story case of gideon versus wainwright? in the united states of america, if you are being prosecuted by the awesome power of the government, then you need somebody on your side. the bill of rights requires that
you have a lawyer to represent you. if you are poor, then the government has to provide that lawyer. sweeping grant announcement from the supreme court about the bill of rights and its relationship to an accused person. but who pays for that lawyer? states do. states have not been very forthcoming with the money that they have been allocating to that very pressing need. a lot of times when people are represented by appointed attorneys, those attorneys have way too many cases to focus on anyone in a way that does anything to do with justice. it depends on the jurisdiction. if you are in a place like the district of columbia you're lucky to be represented by the public defender. in the bronx, new york
neighborhood defenders san francisco has a great defender, you really have to think about where you are. public defense lawyers, people who are public interest lawyers who represent an accused person, those are some of my heroes. host: paul butler we appreciate you coming on and talking about this issue. if congress brings it up next week, the "washington journal" a look at it again. i want to thank the callers who share their own experiences it up next iss. is the eu ambassador to the united states. david o'sullivan is his name. he will be here to talk about the situation with greece iran, and other issues facing europe. ♪
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at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span's american history tv. announcer: "washington journal" continues. host: now on your screen is eu ambassador to the u.s., david also limited ambassador o'sullivan, we have you on here to talk about the greece situation and what is going on in the eu. how did it get in the current situation it is in? guest: for many of our member states it goes back to the fiscal meltdown in 2008. this caused a chain reaction which in europe, matt number of our past meant a number of our member states found their budgets in very bad shape. greece had some structural difficulties and a tax system
that was not as modern and well developed as it needed to be and other structural issues that compounded the problems. that is why for the last few years the european union has been helping greece with additional funds because of not able to borrow on the market. that is the situation we are in now and are hopefully third and final bailout to get the greek economy back on track it host: . host: how much has been spent by the european member states? guest: we are now looking at a package in the region of $86 billion for hopefully getting greece back up and running and eventually every tune -- a return to normal market funding for its future needs. host: why has germany been the focus of the eu's efforts?
guest: i see it in the headlines that people talk a lot about germany, but this is a collective problem for the whole eurozone. germany is the largest economy in europe. it is by far the biggest contributor to any bailout. of course, this is a big issue domestically. german taxpayers are being asked once again to get into the pockets to help a fellow european member states. that is why germany is an important part of this debate. i think it is important to say that many other countries have strong views about these issues finland, slovakia, netherlands ireland, italy. portugal and spain have been beneficiaries of bailout programs successfully and use them to transition and return to the market. they also have these about how this should be done. host: politically, is this
unpopular in all the countries of the eu? take your home country of ireland. guest: let's be honest. nobody likes a difficult economic situation. nobody likes having to trim public spending, including cutbacks for certain sectors of the population. i think there is a general recognition that the crisis that we faced in 2008-2010 required exceptional measures. i think in those countries, people have accepted that this is a phase that you have to go get if i take the case of ireland, ireland is now testing -- posting growth rates higher in each year and a stronger term to economic performance and people are now reaping the benefits of the sacrifices they made it i think this is replicated in portugal and in spain. europe as a whole is returning to quite strong growth. host: what would be the big deal with greece left the eurozone? guest: i think, first and
foremost, it would probably mean an even more difficult economic situation for the greek people. that is why the vast majority of the greek people do not want to leave the eurozone. if greece left the eurozone, it would almost certainly have to default on its debts. it would face a new currency which would probably be very rapidly devalued, which would mean a rapid increase in the price of imports. greece is a big defender on energy and agricultural products. -- dependent on energy and agricultural products. it would be a period of economic hardship for the greek people. for the eurozone as a home, we are committed to this as a project for the future. membership is intended to be irreversible and a revocable. therefore, if it is not according to plan, then people would leave the single curacy. -- currency. host: david of o'sullivan is
here to talk to us. the numbers are on the screen. now if you are watching this program for outside of the u.s. and i know we have a relatively large u.k. audience, 202-748-800 3 is the number for you to call. does the u.s. have a role in this whole situation at all? guest: the u.s. does not have a direct role, but i must say the united states of authority has been extremely supportive throughout this whole crisis which has lasted for several years now in one form or another. we, of course, the european union is the largest economy in the world. the united states is the second largest economy in the world. we have huge stakes and each other success.
we talk with our american colleagues and they discuss with us how we can find a way through that will strengthen our economy and to be the benefit of the united states, including if we can conclude this copper heads of trade deal which we are in the middle of negotiating. -- accomplish this trade deal which we are in the middle of negotiating. host: what is the authority line? guest: basically, the european union has decisions taken in two fora. member states represent countries a little bit like the senate and the directly elected european parliament is like the house of representatives, where people are directed -- elected directly on a proportional population basis. this is the joint decision-making process of the european union and that is how our most important decisions get taken. it is a little more complicated than that in the sense that not
all member states are part of the eurozone. the eurozone -- the 19 countries who are part of the euro sometime meet separately to discuss issues that affect them directly. host: does the eu or the eurozone decisions supersede and visual -- any individual countries? guest: yes. the basic principle is that european law has precedence over national law. we have a european court of justice which is like the united states supreme court. it is the ultimate arbiter of the law of the land. once a law has been adopted at a european level, it cannot be contradicted by a law at the national level. host: first call for ambassador of sold in comes from mark. -- o'sullivan comes from mark. caller: good morning. i have a couple of questions. one was -- goldman sachs hid a
lot of money before greece was even admitted to the eu. i think that was a crime in itself. i do not think they would have been admitted as goldman sachs would not have done that. the other thing is a lot of people are taking ships from africa and the middle east to greece. i think that is putting a lot of hardship on greece. i do not see the eu helping greece out on that. so those are my two comments. host: any response for that viewer? guest: on your first point, i think you're talking about the fact that we now know the statistics on greek fiscal situation at the moment of joining the euro were perhaps not an accurate picture of the situation. we know some external advice helped greece present the
figures and a way that perhaps made them look slightly better. frankly, i think that is history. it's behind us and we now need to move on and address the situation we find ourselves. that is what we are trying to do. with regard to your point about migration, i thank you for raising it. it's an extremely complex problem and you are absolutely right give italy, in particular, but greece also and malta have been faced with very large numbers of migrants being sent out to see and then rescued. i must say that the greek people and italian people have shown an enormous generosity and spirit particularly the greek people in this time of hardship. they have welcome these people and provided them with shelter and food. it is not true to say that we are not helping. the european union is very active in supporting member states who are receiving these migrants. we are also debating how best once the migrants have been processed because the key issue is do they face violence or
ill-treatment when they would be returned home? once they are processed and recognized as refugees, we are trying to other parts of europe and the full burden does not fall exclusively on the frontline states, such as easily -- italy and greece. host: carol from rochester, new york. caller: i read that part of the settlement was that greece is going to have to sell the national assets. i am not sure what that means. does that mean that china is going to buy the parthenon or something like that? guest: no. the fact is is that one of the structural problems facing the greek economy is a very heavy presence of the public sector in the economy. i think something like only 15% or 20% of the labor force actually work in what we would call the private sector. i think it has been agreed for several years that greece does need to privatize a number of important economic activities. the one that is most often spoke
about is the very big and thriving port just outside of athens. there are airports and electricity companies and so forth. we are talking about the privatization of a number of economic assets currently managed by the state. host: the prime minister ashes his name pronounced tsipras? guest: yes. host: he did an about-face where he got elected and said no more austerity and supported and push through the european union deal. correct? is he in danger politically, and if so, what does that mean for all this? guest: i would not want to speculate about what might happen in greek politics. mr. tsipras was elected by a large majority in january and he held his referendum, which was slightly controversial in european terms.
he's one with a big majority. he managed to get through this agreement two days ago on the back of a massive majority in the parliament. it is also true that some of his own party did not vote with him because they did not support this change of position which he had to make or felt he had to make after the summit. but i actually think it is much to his credit that he has shown the ability to recognize that sometimes in politics that you cannot get everything you want and you have to make a compromise. and he has thrown his full political weight behind it. i think he is still a strong political force in greece. host: 50% to 20% of the greek people work in what we would call private industry. how does that compare to ireland or france? guest: typically the figures are many multiples of that. 50% or 60% in some cases. it also depends on how you define the public sector. in many european countries
things like the medical system is heavily state own. you have a lot of nurses and doctors and teachers. i would say that the figure would typically be twice that as a minimum. that is why there is a very heavy presence of the state in the greek economy, which i think everyone agrees needs to be reduced if the greek economy is to be more competitive and performing. host: lewis in texas. please go ahead. caller: the multitude of problems that can be seen in the way that the eu is handling the greek situation makes a powerful argument for what used to be considered conspiracy theory but it is rapidly being seen to be true that majority
shareholders of the transnational investment banks and the transnational corporations now feel that they -- not only feel that they can run the world, but they are running the world. the eu's response to the greek situation is totally anti-democratic. it ignores the fraud and the ambassador himself admitted that it was questionable about the circumstances by which greece incurred its huge debt to begin with. which is just another way of saying that it was fraudulent. host: jerry, have you been
following this issue closely? caller: yes. i'm reading every article that i can find on it. host: why is it of interest to you? caller: because i think it is reflective of a global problem. this is affecting the entire world. local jurisdictions are completely unable to defend themselves against this onslaught of money and power from the very top. host: thank you, sir. ambassador? guest: we could spend a long time debating the role of banks and the world of finance and the recent crisis. i think everyone accepts that serious mistakes were made on
both sides of the atlantic through. frank. in europe, we have placed additional regulatory controls. i think everyone accepts that there was an excess of lending by many financial institutions. some of that was quite irresponsible and we have to make sure it doesn't happen again. i would like to adjust your point about what happening is grace -- in greece is undemocratic. i respectfully disagree. europe functions on democracy. when your child to do something at a pan-european level, one democracy cannot be more important than the another. it was very important that the greeks had a right to elect this government. this government has to deal with 18 other governments who are mandated by the electorate's and take aside a different view of how we solve the euro zone crisis. that is what we have been trying to resolve. the deal announced over the weekend is a deal now democratic and validated, starting in the
greek parliament who had to take a moat against the best intentions of the government. they put forward the proposal and it was adopted by a majority of the greek representatives. finland and austria and germany have similarly had votes in their parliaments. i think this process is democratic and people do get to express their views. we are talking about finding a compromise between different outcomes of democracy in 19 different countries. that is the challenge of building the european union. host: joseph, republican. please go ahead. caller: thank you for taking my call. i want to start off by saying that milton friedman predicted this 20 years ago. it is a figure of keynesian economics. all this deficit spending and having a welfare state is what can happen to united states if
we follow these fiscal policies. what greece needs is that they need privatization. that does not mean laissez-faire economics. they do not have any right-wing parties like we do in united states, like we have the republican party. all they have is far right fascism. what they need is to cut taxes and cut government spending. these austerity measures put in place are not going to help with economic audits. if i can help with the innovation and economic growth. -- it's not going to help with innovation and economic growth. they need to cut taxes, cut government spending, and that will give them hell. host: thank you. we got the idea. ambassador of o'sullivan? guest: we're trying to restore fiscal responsibility in the
greek economy. that is what is underway. there is a cut and public expenditure. there is a small increase in taxes because there is an issue of how you balance the books. one of the weaknesses of the greek economy has been tax collection, to be very frank. that is why there is a need for tax reform. i think that is the direction in which the policies are going good i do not quite agree with you -- the policies are going. i do not quite agree with you with kenyan policies -- keynesian economics. i think the overarching point is that the public finances have to be sustainable. at the end of the day, you have to be able to find out where the money you're going to use to stimulate the economy is going to come from. in good times, you build up surpluses which can be redistributed when you hit harder times. i do not entirely sure your view , but i think we are moving in that direction. by the way, i do not think it is right wing or center party in
greece. there is a new democracy which is a center-right party, not identical to the republican party by any means. it strongly represents the central right-thinking and there is a strong stream of that route europe as there is centerleft and more extreme left-wing policies. you find a wide friday of political parties as you do in united states, even if you tend to find them within the two mainstream parties for. you do not have the same proliferation of political parties as we do in europe it host:. host: al, we are almost out of time. caller: i'm glad america is not tied up in the mess that you are going through. but i do believe that greece is not going to be able to pay back all that money. i do believe that they should break away from the economy of europe temporarily until they
get their house in order. once it is in order and once you are able to get your our economy correct, then come back to the eu. i think that is a better route than actually staying in. you're not going to pay it back under austerity. there's just no way. host: ambassador o'sullivan? guest: there is a debate about the stability of greek debt going forward, but greece is not required to make interest payments on its debt for another 10 years. the debt is not the most immediate problem. the idea of disconnecting greece from your -- europe -- all of our economies in europe are closely integrated good business as thing as one of our economies disconnecting itself from the economy. it would be very bad economics to do so. greece thrives on its trading relationship with the european union and its trust relationships. in these remain a part of the european union if it needs to find a way forward with prosperity and a decent prospect
for its people. i think that is the overwhelming view of the greek people. they want to remain part of the eurozone and part of the eu, which has been, by the way, an extremely successful project i . i repeat the european union is the largest economy in the world , so i believe we are doing something right. host: eu is at the table with the iran talks. are you pleased with what came out? guest: yes. i think this is a hugely important breakthrough. i think it is a very significant victory for diplomacy and patient diplomacy. i think it also shows the great strength of the transatlantic relationship with the european union and the united states standing shoulder to shoulder. these talks were chaired by the high representative a foreign policy for the european union.
we have worked hand in glove with the united states negotiating and preparing. and the other european partners try to get a truly remarkable outcome which diffuses a potentially major challenge to international stability. host: david o'sullivan, thanks for being here. i hope you come back. guest: thank you very much. host: that is the end of "washington journal" for this friday. the house and senate are not in this week. every weekend, but tv -- 48 hours of the television for serious readers. this week, but tv is live at the harlem book fair. you can get the full schedule and see all of our coverage from the past there and i make in history tv is on c-span3 every weekend.
-- american history tv is on c-span3 every weekend. that all is happening saturday morning. thanks for being with us. ♪ [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] >> democrats on the house energy and commerce committee our meeting in annapolis, maryland to discuss the effects of climate change. that will include climate change experts.