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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  November 25, 2015 2:22am-3:13am EST

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unfortunately, we have both going on right now at the same time. we have scores of people detaching themselves from the political process because they feel like their voice will not be heard, no matter how loud they yell. nd then we have a group of people who believe, hell with that, i will yell louder and louder and louder. if we don't respond to this dynamic, our way of life will be buried by it. we need to listen. and lead. and not be polling every uestion that confronts us. but to ask in our hearts, who do we really stand for? the answer i believe, has to be that we start putting our policies here and abroad that put the american people and their interests as they see it first.
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and if we do, we have a real possibility of uniting our country again. regardless of the ideological differences. regardless of the religious and thnic differences. we can reunite our country. it will not be reunited by someone who simply talks. it has to be reunited by someone who listens first and then gives a voice to the people he is honored to represent. that is the type of leadership i propose for our country. not only because it is good politics, but for importantly, because it is the only way to bring a spirited country back to a sense that tomorrow will be much better than yesterday. if we do that, then we have an opportunity to bring our country together again. i am happy to answer your questions. [applause]
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>> thank you, governor christie. thank you councilmembers here and those participating by teleconference. in the country and around the world, we will hear from some of hem later. here is how we are going to do this. i will take advantage of my prerogative as moderator to ask you a few questions. then, we will open it to questions from you all and some from people who are listening and. let me start with you talked for a while about the battle against isis obviously. down the street this morning, president hollande was here, asking him about ways to increase u.s.-french efforts and to create a better international effort. in a christie administration, what form with the american
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participation in that effort take? governor christie: first off, we're inheriting a situation that has been allowed to get so out of control that our options are limited. that's the first concern. the question is what you do now? not how to look back in retrospect and how to do it differently. i would say this, i would hope that france invokes article five. this is an attack on one and -- that's an attack on all. we need to be really clear about this. it seems like mrs. clinton won't use the term "radical islamic terrorism" because she thinks this will be insulting to the rest of the muslim world. i think it is clarifying. f you say you are going to war
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with radical islamic terrorism, then by definition, you're not going to war with the rest of islam. in my state, we have the second largest muslim american immunity -- community in the country. there are muslim americans and high-ranking positions in my staqte. -- in a my state. these are good, hard-working americans. confusion is created by euphemisms. let's remember something. they are trying to limit our freedoms. and so a christie administration would work with the nato alliance to bring the ull effect we could have, hold diplomatically, but also from a intelligence perspective to do what we need to do to bring isis to a conclusion. but we also need to be honest with the american people. because of the situation we inherited, this will take a long time.
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this is not going to be something that happened overnight. it just isn't. they cannot happen overnight. i have heard some people say this is our world war and this is the way it will work. it may be true. in terms of length and effort, we need to prepare the american people that this is not something, whether it is handled diplomatically, militarily, or through intelligence, that will end any time soon. it's going to go on for a long time. >> does that troops on the ground under the nato umbrella nd is there some concern that is what isis wants? to drop in a western response is to validate their dinner table that this is the crusaders against the true believers. that is a trap, a centrally. -- trap, essentially. governor christie: the trap only works if you walk into it. this has to be done carefully and that is why working with nato is not all be have to do. our arabe need to work
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allies in the middle east as well. most of our allies are suspicious of what american interests really are in the middle east and what our motives are. and clwl they can count on us with friendship. they look at what has happened with the iranian deal. they look at what has happened with our public interaction with israel. in some of those capitals, i think they are wondering if they can count on the americans to resolve anything. this is not only a nato operation. i think you have to work hard to bring our arab allies tory void the trap that's sys is looking to set. >> and president putin, what is his role? what does chris christie say? governor christie: you know, i think we could get there eventually, but he'd have to understand the limits of our atience. he is reaching the limits of our patience.
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i don't think we would be fast friends. >> would you be partners in syria? governor christie: not as long as he wants to partner with asad. our goals are different. his role in syria is to prop up asad and to keep him there. i don't think he has any real interests. -- in combating isis. his real interest is to prop up assad. i don't think he has any real interest, even after isis attacks his own people. i don't think that is his riority. he has limited capability and he is focusing that on his top priority. that is, propping up asad. >> the last question from me, to follow-up from that. i take it that you don't buy the theory that what the u.s. and france should do is grit our teeth and accept the fact that president say sad will have to
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stay in office for a little while longer so everybody can focus on the fight on isis? governor christie: no, because the premise is faulty. others like the russians and iranians will focus on solidifying asad's position for the long-term. you can't have an agreement with someone whose goals and objectives are completely different than yours. i don't believe we're at a point -- at the moment, maybe russia will come around, but i don't see it happening anytime soon. not with the iranians either. the premise of the question is faulty. i don't agree with that. >> let me ask. barbara, i'll start with you. here's the deal. you have to stand up, wait for the microphone, tell us who you are, where you are from, and ask a question. ot make a statement. overnor christie: sounds good.
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i'm a wall flower so we'll see what we can do. >> governor christie. my name is barbara and i have lived in livingston, new jersey at one point. governor christie: as did it. >> in syria, who would you support in opposition to asad? how would you make a coherent opposition to him that could fight isis? what do you make of the fact that our arab allies saudi have been concentrating most of their time on bombing yemen? governor christie: i will start from the end and work back up. i think they are spending their time on that for two reasons. they see it as a greater threat to them. secondly, they don't think they can count on us. i think they have good reason to think they can't count on us. our policies at best have been
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erratic. our policies differ than our words. i think if you spoke to the jordanians, the saudi's, and the emirates and the egyptians that they would say the same thing. they don't know what american policy is. the are afraid we are playing footsie with iran. they don't know what that will mean for their long-term interests in the region. i think the belief that american solve is only as good as the the next poll that comes out rom quinnipiac or maris. if that is the case, why would they want to get involved with us? on the syrian part, that is the part that makes what happens over the past two years or more, makes this even more complicated. i don't think there is a coherent opposition at the moment. you know, the problem though, is
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that assad himself is i think one of the great causes of isis and one of the great irritants through the way he's conducted his policy toward his own people. and so, the president has now left us in a really difficult situation. the president's solution is what it always is. don't do anything. let others do stuff and see how it shakes out. but meep time, isis is getting stronger and they are not contained. their scope is not contained. there range is not contained. it will only get greater. -- to the extent that they're not being pressured there. i don't have an answer to, who is the group you would put in charge of syria? the problem is, given how badly it has deteriorated and how long the president has ignored this festering problem, he has left
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us with a situation that is at best, on your best day, too complex and too problematic for a two minute answer. and one that's going to take a lot more time to figure out. but, long-term, assad staying doesn't help the isis problem and creates other problems in the middle east as well. >> right here, and then we will go back there. >> thank you. you spoke quite a bit about president reagan. you did not speak about his vice president, george h.w. bush. you did not speak about the most recent republican president, george w. bush. i think many of us could easily imagine the remarks that you made today having been stated by president george w. bush, it seems to come out of the same ideology. would you be a strong president in the mold of president george w. bush? and would that give us the same foreign policy that he gave us? governor christian: no, i don't
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think that's the case. concerning the fight on terrorism, i think there are a lot of similarities, yes. i think all of the tools we need to have it should be made available to us and we need to make sure we police those who use the tools. see, the argument we had this past spring was, somehow the tools were inherently faulty. they're not. the tools are effective and proven to be effective. there are always going to be folks operating in every sphere of life who will color outside the lines. there are bad doctors, lawyers, accountants, athletes. right? in every walk of life. yet, what we decide to do this summer is to throw tested and proven effective tools out because of allegations, not even proof, but
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allegations that somehow those tools could be used in a way that was unconstitutional. i still have not seen the case may that anything that was done was unconstitutional. when that case is made it is by people who don't have any idea what they are talking about. not the first idea of how to use these tools. you know, you hear about the mettadata collection operation at the n.s.a. and you hear people talk about that and they extrapolate someone reading your e-mails with your grandmother and listen in on your phone calls with your wife when of course none of that was going on and none of that had to do with the mettadata operation. but, you know, this administration has an agenda. the agenda was to ratchet it down. they put people into it. on the terrorism issue, i would
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say president george w. bush was combating terrorism and stopping attacks on american soil -- his record is pretty good. on the law enforcement side, one thing happened on my watch that not only i would be ashamed of -- that i am not proud of -- we intercepted at least two serious and significant plots of terrorism in the immediate using the f 9/11 tools provided for us. one regarding a shoulder fired missile purchase and one about a private attack. either of which had occurred would have cost american lives. we need a president that understands this. our for policy could be changed in a number of ways. n the fight on terror, the language that might be most like george w. bush, i am proud to be part of that administration. i'm proud of the work that we did. >> let me follow-up on one point
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quickly. there was a federal judge that admitted a program was probably unconstitutional. and he shut it down at that point. so how do you avoid that problem if you resurrect it? governor christie: first off, that's one federal trial court judge. he or she is welcome to their opinion. that will be appealed and will go most likely to the supreme court to make that determination. and there could be potentially, depending on the ultimate decision, small changes that could be made that can address those concerns. this was a wholesale abandonment of it. this is saying we will put it in the private sector hands. we're going to count on the phone companies to make this data available, to make it accessable to us immediately. listen, i'm a former federal prosecutor. when i subpoenaed, grand jury
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material was not immediate, nor will this be. and it's fantasy to think that the metadata program will be nearly as effective, effective at all turned way it's been ameppeded. paris will prove out to be an intelligence failure. you have people from multiple country, a sin co niced attack. they didn't get together at the taco bell 15 minutes before and put this think before. so that means it's an intelligence failure on the part of french intelligence, our european intelligence and american intelligence. and it's not a coincidence to me that that this happened in the aftermath of restricting those programs and remember also demoralizing the intelligence community, that awful report that came out from the senate democrats at the end of last year was a complete political instrument that did nothing more than demoralize american
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intelligence officers all around the world. you cannot don't do that and expect those people will put themselves in harm's way and do the dangerous dirty work that needs be done to get this information. if you continue to demoralize them and put them at risk and take tools away from them at the same time. >> right there? >> mark kennedy, george washington university. in addition to talking about terrorism, you also alluded to some concerns about trade. just worneding if you had any specific concerns about the trans pacific partnership and whether you see it as a specific geo political step to keep china pushing us out of influence in the pacific. governor christie: my specific concern was that it was negotiabled by the barack that is my istration. specific concern.
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that has been in the american interest. so, i have great skepticism about that agreement. do i have skepticism about trade overall? no. i like trade agreements that are fair and something that the american people can support. throughout the pacific, with china, it is important thing. but i wouldn't let this president negotiate to buy me a car because if he went into the car dealer sthoip buy me a car, his first words to the salesman would be, this is my friend chris, he's not leaving this show room today without a car. [laughter] so let's negotiate price. that's my concern. >> let me turn to a question that came in. >> cars? e's from new york. governor christie: mayor deblasio. >> it's about americanism different from jihadism? what would you make sure they have access to it?
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governor christie: not really. not really. i mean, again, that sounds to me like the world which it is instead of how it is. i don't think they're interested in that at the moment. are there elements of that? sure. it is not acceptable. what i use american power to make it accessible, no. no, i wouldn't. >> right here and then right there. go. es, sir. >> i was formerly with the department of state. governor, as president, what changes would you seek to make in our current immigration policies? governor christie: a number. first, it goes back to what i was saying in my remarks. any change to policy of that kind of the united states have to have the support of the american people.
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the reason that, in my view, immigration reform has failed up to this point are because the american people do not trust the government. -- to actually do what they say they're going to do. and they have pretty good reason not to. so i think the first thing we need to do is to regain the trust of the american people and to do that is enforced the laws we have now effectively and clearly. we need to secure our border. that's always part of the issue. i'm not -- just to get this part of the way. 'm not a wall guy. i don't think that makes sense. i don't think how they ask it, he's paying for it. even if it's really beautiful, i don't think he's paying for it.
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but i do believe the wall in the most heavily populated need to use more of our technology -- drones and stationary cameras. it is ungodly expensive to do it. i would be embedded -- a lot more fbi, atf and cia agents to try to disrupt guns across the border as a public safety issue. our visa program is one of the biggest problems that people are upset about. it invites people in. for a period of time and we don't keep track of them and they stay. it should be like if i woke up on saturday morning and i went upstairs to the guest room and he is still there. i invited him for thanksgiving, not the weekend. we have to find a way no one stays. i got in a lot of trouble with this with folks. i thought everybody in the media -- english as a first language -- federal express, figure out
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how to track a passage -- package from the minute it leaves my doorstep into where i wanted to go and every step in between, we should be able to do that with the visa program. wonderful folks in the program -- they want to track folks like packages. i went on cnn -- they said are you putting bars on people? they said the media complains about the level of intelligence. that is something for me as a candidate. we need a biometric system for visas. barcodes are already right there. everyone is an individual.
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every person who comes in will have fingerprints and have a database. they should have to give that. if you are over your visa, go home. whether it is 10 or 11 or 12 of these people -- however you count them -- 40% or more of those folks are visa overstayed. if you just deal with the southern border, with a biometric system, you cannot control that flow. you have to verify them as well. unlike what some people think, they are coming here to work. do those things first. show people you enforce the law. what people are most upset about with this president is the sentence of lawlessness.
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don't enforce it. i like it so don't enforce it. don't like marijuana laws? let's passage for recreational use. don't enforce it. the law we don't enforce today will be the law we don't enforce today tomorrow, right? all of a sudden, we have a real problem. if you want to move towards fixing this problem, convincing the american people you can actually do this before you get greater latitude to do other things -- some of us may be wrong, but none of us will support that because they don't believe the government is competent. >> we have one last question. i want to remind everybody that the conversation is on the record. gov. christie: now you tell me. [laughter] >> what are the cameras doing
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back there? >> hi, my name is -- i wanted to follow up on the syrian refugee question. a former secretary talked about biometrics are run on syrian refugees and one of the most rigorous settings we have. are you hoping to reconsider the possibility of letting in more syrian refugees and you think it can be done? the former secretary of state said we are sending a bad signal by black -- blocking all the syrian refugees. gov. christie: you have to review the different people that have to do it. none of them, by the way, have responsibility today to the american people. it is easy to theorize. not to be critical.
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that don't have any responsibility. so, you know, when the fbi director tells me he can do it, i will reconsider. mike used to be the u.s. attorney -- my old job. dhs secretary and a really smart guy. real respect for him. it is easy to say those things. people on television want you to think because it is the politically correct thing to say to them. that is the politically correct thing to say. believe me. i've seen the e-mails. the facebook posts. i am not deaf, dumb and blind. i am not saying that because i have a responsibility. by the way, the federal
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government has a responsibility to me. this administration is not inform governments of refugees in the state. most people -- some programs last week -- that is impossible. i said, no, actually, it is happening. the president overall in the phone last week told the governor's when that issue was raised -- he said, we will be better. wonderfully assuring, if you are governor of the state. the fact is the person who has the responsibility today, the primary responsibility of telling as law-enforcement capability is the director of the fbi. the attorney general, i think, implied this.
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the director of the fbi spoke out about this. it cannot happen. they don't have the wherewithal in their databases at the moment that would effectively deal with this. that is a determinant for me. it is only not if the priorities were different. if your priority is the winner nobel peace prize then ok. what you want is to get a pat on the back of the world opinion shakers, then say otherwise. if your responsibility is to protect the lives of the people that you represent and you have the top law enforcement official in the country saying i cannot stop them, it does not seem like a hard decision. it only becomes hard when we give -- we are sending signals. what happens if one of these folks comes in and participate in an attack that kills america? what signal are we sending? i can guarantee you there are a lot of people who have an opinion who will run for the hills. who all of a sudden have qualified -- wait a second, i
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said this and that and this and that. when you are in charge, you have to be responsible, you'll get to run. you don't get the hide. you should not run and hide now. i have the responsibility. i have had the responsibility. when the fbi director says he can do it more effectively, a change is the equation. up until this moment, we don't have that. right? go on television. say things and when someone looks the other way, they say the other way because they don't have the responsibility to do it. i have a great deal of respect
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for them before you interrupted me. [laughter] i have great respect for them, too. they are not the ones who are responsible. i am telling you that is one of my biggest problems of the president. he is responsible. he should know better. and he should listen to the people he was put in charge. i cannot imagine he knows more about this issue. i cannot imagine a scenario under which he understands and knows. so, sometimes, leadership is about listening, even if it is contrary to exactly what you want. you need to listen. and i will tell you that if something does happen where american lives are lost, the american public both will and should be relentlessly
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unforgiving of those who are responsible for having done that and not listening to the people. >> thank you very much. it has been a pleasure. [applause] >> here is what we're bringing you tomorrow night. the future of the smithsonian institution with the new head. he is interviewed about new exhibits, technology, and controversial works of art. on c-span two, government and the american diet. a discussion at the national constitution center. from labeling to school lunches, and 8:00 p.m. eastern.
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then, gun rights and politics. a discussion about second amendment issues and how members will vote. part of the lineup on the c-span network. >> c-span presents landmark cases, the book. a guide to the cases which includes 12 historic cases. including it brown versus the board of education. miranda versus arizona. roe vs. wade. written by veteran that journalist tony mauro.
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an imprint of sage publications. available for eight dollars 90 five cents. get your copy today. >> a professor at george mason law school and contributor to the law blog on washington journal. uniteding his view that states military operations against isis are illegal. this is 45 minutes. >> let's bring it your attention now back to the fight against isis. george mason university law school. i want to start with turkey shooting down this russian jet. emergencynvening an meeting. guest: it's hard to say for sure. if aato treaty says that nato ally is attacked, the other
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allies are required to attack. it seems quite possible this was not an attack by russia, but an accidental shoot down. perhaps it violated turkish airspace by accident. not an assume it's actual attack. we have far from complete information about this. host: we have more permission coming up. what does it all mean? accident, turkey is saying we warned them 10 times. they continued to violate heirs is. -- airspace. guest: if it's not an attack, i'm not sure it means much. diplomatically, it increases tensions in the region. it could lead to further incidents.
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host: let's back up to the coalition. you believe it's not legal. not legal under the u.s. constitution. this is a conflict large enough to be considered a war by any regional measure. the president can't initiate war on his own. he needs congressional authorization. he did not get it, even though he could have. violationn, he is in of the war powers act of 1973 that requires congressional authorization each time troops enter armed hostilities abroad and are therefore 60 days or more. his supporters say he has legal authorization.
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why do you disagree? guest: he has different rationales. the problem with using the 2001 authorization is that one is aimed at 9/11. isis is a different group. they have been at odds with al qaeda and fought them on the battlefield isis is a terrible group. it's not the same group as al qaeda. 2001 agreement does not apply to it. host: what does this mean now that the french president is coming to washington today. what does that mean, france once a new coalition. guest: it may not change the legal situation. we could potentially change it
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in the attack on france that happened a few days ago. this may trigger article five of the north atlantic treaty. when one natoays outline is attacked in europe or north america, the others are required to consider that an attack against themselves. that could be an alternative legal justification for a war against isis going forward. it would not legitimize everything in the past year. invokef france were to article five, the present would not need authorization from congress western mark --? legalized --ee treaty legalized. the president does not need additional crew national
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authorization for war if it was started by the enemy. the attack against france is one we are legally required to treat an attack against ourselves. it would create the same presidential powers. host: france is not invoke this yet. guest: that's a good question. i'm not sure i know the answer. there is a dilemma for the obama it might be in that admitting they did not have authorization before. this mean that france once note -- russia and they are not a nato member. guest: there is nothing to prevent nato from working with other powers. because of what happened
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in paris, members of congress are again pushing for renewal of the new authorization for military force. they are saying now more than ever, this is needed because of what happened in paris. the administration sent up language in february. does that say? it met a very cold reception from both immigrants and republicans for various reasons. there were many objections. sayis it does not actually that's the exclusive authorization for the is of force against isis. the second problem is the language stated that there is a ban on enduring offensive ground
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operations and no one can tell how we distinguish an enduring offensive from some other operations. host: that's what this is called right now western mark --? thet: it's something administration's language with and for britain. -- forbidden. nobody really knows what it means. our viewers to have look at the debate that took place last tuesday between senators. fortwo of them are pushing a new authorization of ella terry force. take a look at the arguments they made. the am not debating arguments. not what is it issue right here. what is at issue is the ease
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with which congress defers to old statutes and advocates its authority. ons conflict is been going for more than a year with very mixed results. the consequences will change the geopolitical landscape in that region for decades. 10 service members have died. one was recently killed in action. five others have been wounded. attacks are happening all over the world. the notion that a 14-year-old statute aimed at another enemy is any kind of substitute for congressional authorization is insufficient. >> it's not enough for this body who has the constitutional authority.
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we have set on the sidelines and criticize. we have not been willing to authorize what's been going on, vote to stop what's going on, or to revise what's going on. it's easy to be a critic. it's easy to sit in the stands and say why didn't the coach call a different play? we are the article one ranch. we are not supposed to be a war without a vote from congress. it's rare that politicians say things that i agree with. what they said is absolutely right. the president was wrong to start towards without congressional authorization and congress was wrong not to assert its powers more fully. host: let's get calls. we are talking about the legality of u.s. military action against isis.
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caller: there is something that is very relevant to this. it's about a little girl. lebanon, they in wanted to let muslims come into work. they did. wives, they had outnumbered. then they out voted them. hello, america. they came to their christian neighborhood and blew up their home. she said i am 10 years old. i am in the hospital. i said, why did they do this? she said, because you are christian. in, it is not the number you are hearing. i have talked to people high up in washington.
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they say it is a half a million. a lot of people know this but more don't. in, you cannot reverses. rape is rampant. can't go to school. they don't think their arm is going to cause you to be raped. about refugees -- syrian refugees specifically coming to the united states? caller: yes, because they are not always who they say they are and if you notice the pictures, many are strong young man -- young men, and many are bringing women and children to hide who they were. host: we are talking about strong military action, do you have any thoughts about syrians
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being displaced, the president wanted to bring in more refugees? guest: there are many factual errors in what the caller said. since 1981, when current legislation was adopted, we have brought in hundreds of -- hundreds of thousands of refugees, and not one of them has carried out a terrorist attack. isis has repeated they are against refugees flooding to the west. they oppose that for two reasons -- one is it reduces the amount of people under isis control and they fear that if they will come to the west, they will be imbued with western values. if we keep him out, we not only harm innocent people, but also aid the enemy in this conflict. from oscar lopez reporting macedonia --
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security concerns spread throughout europe -- then there is also this in the paper this morning about afghans wanting to leave the country, trying to make that same passage to europe. this is from the international section of "the new york times."
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host: back to calls. landon. richmond, virginia, a republican. the morning. we're talking about the legality of the fight against isis. what do you think? caller: well, it is legal. there is no question about that. if the professor will remember the manhattan project, that was way back in the 1940's. the president was given at that time all of the power that he -- to do whatever he wanted to do. if you remember, world war ii ended. the next thing, we are in korea,
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then vietnam. in other words, the united states has been in a perpetual war. as long war on drugs -- as it is called a war, and isis is a bunch of criminals running from one country to another country. what they did, they based in iraq. once they based in iraq and made themselves what you would call a then theyr whatever, are eligible for the world to go against them. may have terrorist groups all over the world but once you base yourself and say i am a real group of people fighting for people and we have our , you have to take what you are going to get. you're going to get a war. the islamic world would rather fight the russians and then when
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we do something crazy, whether it is right or wrong going into iraq -- history will tell us whether it is right or wrong. history will tell us. once we did that, it set a precedent. we started a war. a was legal because it was go althoughi said, enact the manhattan project. you have a war. -- go all the way back to the manhattan project. you have a war. the russians would rather fight isis. host: i have to get some other calls in. professor somin, what did you hear from the caller? guest: i will not try to unpack the rights and wrongs of the iraq war, but i will say bush did get

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