tv Bernie Sanders Town Hall Meeting in Wolfeboro New Hampshire CSPAN January 22, 2016 4:45am-5:46am EST
that's what 18 months ago so we've been able to change the leadership. we've been able to do the things we needed to do. i think the question this raises is should we treat this like a business and should we make sure that somebody who has ever secretary has business experience. because this is a very, very large business. and what is at stake here is eterans lives. >> we've been a leader and helped us. it's also important to point out that 72% of the physicians practicing in america today go through the veterans administration in their training. if there was one place we could make a cultural change that's the place. you could thank you for being with us today. i want to thank the members. >> i appreciate you all being here. i have a few more homework
assignments that i need to elaborate. one i think it's very important senator rounds asked a question i think a couple of the other senators too. i think it would be very helpful to map actions that we need to take legislative actions to these 12 break through priorities. and make a very clear either as draft legislation or legislation that needs to be drafted that puts these -- that are on the critical path but for them you won't accomplish the goals. >> great idea. we can have that this afternoon. >> thank you. i thinks it's also very important in terms of stake holder management. we talked a little bit about this. that we get to the v.s.o.s. i think their somewhat interested. we've got to find what that stakeholder plan looks like so that i can look to my vso's. >> we've been doing that. i have a breakfast with the
v.s.o. leaders every month. we have been sending out our my v.a. team. >> i would like to get -- >> to meet. >> i hear it. i'm hearing some feedback. i don't know what level it rises to in terms of a general criminal. but i would like to know -- concern. i want to include that in my power point the role and the care we're providing out in the field. >> if you hear of someone who thinks they are being excluded let us know. wanted to underscore your point about training. it looks like a big number but when it's $100 we're talking about better treatment for pain and other things we need to emphasize it may look like a big number bun talking about the sixth largest organization in the business operation. the last thing two other things.
i would like to see a matrix going forward of any of the infrastructure technical decision that is you're making. i would like to see a running list of the buy versus build decision. you all know if you've got a build decision you'd better have a good reason. >> you know our prejudice. >> you hear things. look scheduling systems. private second's got it down. i would like to see a running list. the last thing would be to xtend into the other areas such as -- other capacity. when you're look at your capital expenditure going forward, optimizing that and making sure you're getting creative about maybe even collaborations with the d.o.d. where they have capacity. i'm thinking about fayettville and wo mack. but making sure that is all articulated.
final thing. organizational comparison. this speaks to something that senator manchen discussed. i would like to see what that organizational model looks like as you get to a full transformation. does it have the kind of elements of a pyramid you would see in business? is the bureaucracy that we find in the middle that is problematic being sent out pushing more of those resources dine to providing care so the organizational transformation model is something we haven't really talked about to the extent that it ipvolves reorganizing the business all those things would be helpful. and i would like to be able to measure it on some basis and make sense. the final thing this is truly the final thing. toxins at th the camp lee june. there's a potential issue with timing. we like the work you've done. i've heard things i'm not going
to react to. we'll be in touch with your office. >> let's get together and talk. i get too many letters. >> we need to get our office together fairly quickly. i think it was senator burr's inclination to write a letter. i'm happy to have a phone call. >> let's get it done quickly. >> thank you. >> we will reduce the middle management. organizations say don't need the middle management that they have had historicically because of information technology. so we will do that. >> i find it hard to believe that one needs to be fundamentally different. i don't think that's the case. >> they shouldn't be. my principle is you standardize and get scale but you customize when you need to to meet a certain customer need. > thank you.
the seven items the secretary outlined in eyes remarks going to be critical to have the input and have them be partners to making this change. some of the changes are going to take heard decision that is affect our customers and we need to be sure you're customers have input before the fact be a team player in the culture change rather than after the fact and be reactionary. i am going to see to it that it's all hands on deck. thank you very much for your testimony. to all of you thank you for being here. we will get back to georgia before the snow storm. >> we stand adjourned. [inaudible conversations]
hall thursday night. >> what a pleasure to get to be here. you only have to wait a couple more minutes and then the main act will arrive. we are just kind of warming you up. hered get one vermonter after another to get you into the mood. there is nothing that new hampshire likes more than people from her monde coming to tell you what to think about the world. it really is good to be here.
burlington on the day in june when bernie announced his candidacy. i got to introduce him than a little. two,s bernie and the other ben and jerry. it was good. it was really great. it was all kinds of good feeling. told, didow, truth be any of us really and truly in our heart of hearts believe that , six months later, he was going to be kind of winning this thing? [cheers and applause] we didn't completely believe that. it didn't feel like a lock. it felt more like the 2004 red sox. meansle, but not -- by no
guaranteed. but the last six or seven months has been incredibly exciting. and it is partly because bernie himself. but mostly because of the response that has been all over the place. i have tried a few times to figure out what accounts for that response. why people everywhere -- i will give you just three possibilities. people somehowat just understand his authenticity. we and vermont have known it for a a while. way, if he were a fake or a phony, he would have
been found out long ago. andybody and vermont, even if they don't agree with him, understands that he is the absolute real deal can be has been down every age or road and to every town meeting. every dirt road and to every town meeting. every politician knows he is for the little guy. everybody gets that bernie is [indiscernible] think part ofs i the thing is he has been offering big solutions to big problems. and there is something very realistic about that that we are starting to respond to because we have big problems. he has been highlighting the crazy inequality in the world we have been living. there was a study last week that showed the richest 62 people on planet earth have more assets
than the poorest 3.5 billion people on planet earth. 62 people is about the first eight rows here. --se people have more money it is as if everyone of them had won the powerball two weeks ago. that is all the money. that is not a sustainable world. you can't keep it together like that much longer. and you'd definitely can keep the world together in the face of the other problem he has been talking about -- climate change. we found out yesterday, as we suspected, that 2015 had been the hottest year ever measured on this planet. not by a little weird by a lot. -- not by a little. by a lot. 68 degrees on christmas eve. and notweird and spooky right at all. the world now, the consequences are getting so real. a story that has in haunting me
all week in the newspapers is this emergent disease in south america and latin america called zika.-- called it is a mosquito-borne disease. this thing is gruesome. get -- 4000 babies were shrunkenrazil with heads because their mothers had been bitten by one of these mosquitoes during their pregnancy. brazillth minister's of and colombia and jamaica today advised women not to become the time being. it is like a science fiction story. something like that plays out around the world every day with this cycle of drought and flood and things. it is a huge problem and it is
not going to yield to just tiny little one step at a time baby step kind of solution. it is going to take the kind of focus and energy that bernie -- they asked him in the debate. what is the biggest problem facing the world. he said flat out, is probably climate change. that is indicative of the kind of focus that it will take to deal on these kind of issues. the third reason i think maybe the most important that people heays point out is because has said over and over and over again that it is not about him. it's about building a movement that can make real change happen. and fact, the coolest thing you can do would be elect him -- the cruelest thing you can do would be to elect him and then walk
away to let him do it himself. it is going to take a movement to make things happen. change has to happen, our history shows it only happens when people build movements. and it can happen, even when the odds don't look good. i will just close by telling you the story about the beginnings of this fight against the keystone pipeline four years ago. chanceght we had no real and no one ousted either. everybody said big oil never loses this kind of fight. took poles of the energy insiders in washington. 93% of these experts said that the transcanada company would have its permit by the end of 2011. starting tople write millions of e-mails to the senate and public comments and posts -- and mark in public
protests. in the beginning, when no one in washington wanted anything to do it this day because you would have to stand up to the richest companies on earth, the only senator who would help us, the only one was bernie sanders. [cheers and applause] and he couldn't have been more forthright and tough and helpful and committed all the way through. not because it was going to do him any favors. it caused him more trouble. you knew it was the right thing. and because he believed in the power of moments to change things. of the you guys are part movement that is going to change things in a big way. applause
and it is exciting as hell. for those of us who live on the other side of the connecticut -- we lookook at with some jealousy at some of you. new hampshire was speculated to be the more important in our political system and get to decide the presidency. and i am always impressed when i come here with how seriously people take it. but more seriously this year than ever. you guys, for the next two or three years, have superpowers. things as youzing knock on doors and as you spread the word. and if you do, then you will send bernie sanders out of new hampshire with the same kind of mediahat the mainstream has given donald trump for the last, you know, six or eight months. you will make him absolutely -- everyone will have to deal with him.
it will be inescapable. you do that work. it.it is so important to do and so much fun because it represents actual hope for the future. more pleased than to just come voucher the sky. i am going to introduce one more person to introduce him, ok? [laughter] someone who can vouch for him even better than i can. levy, the son of the next president of the united states. [cheers and applause] larry sanders: thanks very much for coming. that was a really great speech,
bill. levy sanders and i live in claremont with my wife and three children for the last 12 years in claremont, new hampshire. the person i am going to introduce i know just a little teeny bit. he is my father. i have a hard time articulating what bernie sanders means to the people of america. he is someone who gives people hope, that things can change, that there can be a better america. in america where you can make a living wage and not have to work to and sometimes three jobs just to make ends meet. an america where you can go to public colleges and universities tuition free. an america where racial profiling and police brutality is a thing of the past. [cheers and applause]
we, as a country, should be able to live in a democracy where the size of your wallet does not dictate if you can run for political office. applause]d levy: we demand to live in a society where we don't have to debate whether we should have clean air and water. [cheers and applause. i can go on and on. but i only have two minutes. but this is not about bernie sanders. this is about each and every one of us. please give a warm welcome to bernie sanders, the next president of the united states.
bernie sanders: thank you. thank you. thank you so much. love you, too. outk you so much for coming this evening. this is a wonderful, wonderful turnout. friendalso thank my dear bill mckibben. i trust all of you know that bill is not only an outstanding writer -- he really is a great writer -- and not only the subject -- subject matter that he deals with that he also writes very, very well.
not just one of the leaders of the movement to combat climate change in this country. bill is one of the international leaders. he founded, as you know, 350.org, which has played a role all over the world in bringing people to stand up in the fight to save our planet. [applause] and when bill talks about organizing at the grassroots level, there is nobody i know who does it better than he does. about a year and a half ago, we worrying new york city. 400,000 people, yellow -- a lot of young people, a lot of people of color, people from all over the world were marching for the man that congress and governments all over this planet
recognize the seriousness of what we are going through now and move aggressively to transform our energy system away from fossil fuel to energy efficiency and sustainable energy. [cheers and applause] so when you hear from bill, you are hearing from a guy who is an international leader on one of the most important issues facing our country. and i am going to get into that in a moment to let me say a few words about our campaign before i get into the thrust of my remarks. we began this campaign about nine months ago. and when we began, we had no money, no organization, and frankly, my name recognition around much of the country was not very high. a lot of the media pundits were saying bernie sanders combs his hair outstandingly.
[laughter] i want some recognition. i just got a haircut here. [applause] my wife said enough is enough. so we did that. [laughter] and this campaign was considered to be a fringe candidacy. interesting, but not significant. i think a lot has happened in nine months. [cheers and applause] with your help, we have a real shot to win here in new hampshire. we are doing better and better in iowa. a recent poll had us ahead in iowa. and i think it is fair to say that we have a lot of momentum.
we will win in iowa and in new hampshire if there is a large voter turnout. if working people and young people and older people decide that it is important enough to make a statement. that's what your state does. that is where bill was saying. you are making a statement that will be heard not only all across our country but all over the world. in the statement is that we have had enough of establishment politics. we need to move in a new and bold direction. [cheers and applause] now when you come within a week
or two weeks or 2.5 weeks of an election, he suddenly start hearing a lot of strange things being said. and one of the things that my opponent is saying is that bernie sanders is unelectable. he cannot defeat a republican candidate in the general election. so it gives me pleasure to give you some fact that that might not be the case. [cheers and applause] here in your state of new hampshire, she ran here in 2008 and is working hard now. when we were compared in a recent poll just the other day in terms of how well we would do against republican candidates, this is results from new hampshire.
secretary clinton loses to marco rubio by one point. we beat him by 18 points. [cheers and applause] secretary clinton and governor kasich are tied. we beat kasich by 21 points. [cheers and applause] and here is my favorite. [laughter] my good, good friend donald trump. secretary clinton defeats mr. trump by nine points. we beat him by 23 points. [cheers and applause] all of which reaffirms my love
for the smart people of the state of new hampshire. [applause] but it's not just new hampshire. the results are not quite strong, but they are also strong in iowa. and also nationally there was an nbc washington journal poll that came out yesterday. secretary clinton to future by 10 points, we defeated him by 15 points. and even more importantly than polls is the thrust of our campaign. there is a political fact. the fact is, republicans win national elections when people are demoralized and they don't come out and vote. and last year, republicans won a landslide victory all over this
country because 63% of the american people did not vote. 80% of young people did not vote. what is going on in this campaign, the campaign that has the excitement, that has the energy, bringing working people and young people in. campaigns that have spoken to 450,000 people already all over america and has spoken to over 27,000 people in meetings like this, our campaign is the campaign of excitement, energy, momentum and will result in a large voter turnout which means a victory for democrats. [cheers and applause]
let me also say this. when we began this campaign, they said we did not have money, organization, name recognition. one of the problems we had to face right away is the fact that as all of you know, the run for president is that you need to raise an unbelievable amount of money. and what the experts were saying was, the only way i candidate in this day and age with this disastrous citizens united decision, the only way a candidate can raise the kinds of money you need is to set up a super pac. and the truth is, my democratic opponents and almost all republican components -- opponents set up a super pac.
to my mind, someone that does not represent the billionaire class, does not represent corporate america, i decided that i was not going to establish a super pac. i was not going to ask them for millions of dollars in money. [applause] but then, that is a very lovely statement but it doesn't bring in any money. how do you do it? the old-fashioned way. we reached out to the working class and middle class families of this country. i would not have dreamed we could do this. in the last nine months, we have received 2.5 million individual contributions. [cheers and applause]
that is more than any candidate in the history of the united states of america up to this point in a campaign. and at a time when candidates are so proudly having nightmares come out with $5 million or $10 million. our average contribution is $27. so what all of that means is that we have already accomplished something. we have shown the american people that despite this disastrous citizens united supreme court decision and despite all of the super pac's, one can still run a strong and i
believe winning campaign based on the support from working families and the middle class. and i'm very proud of that. today, we have many thousands of volunteers. and we have a wonderful organization. and with your help, if we can get a good voter turnout, i believe we can win this state and the ask for your help to make that happen. [applause] now one of the reasons that i think our campaign is doing well is because we are treating the american people as if they were intelligent human beings.
that's a radical idea for a politician. we are often seen on tv or when the media will tell you what the most important issues are, we have chosen to go a different direction. the most important issues facing us is not what appears on television tomorrow. the most important issues are the issues you are struggling with today. those are the issues that we have got to address whether the media finds them interesting or exciting or not. [applause] but what do i mean by that? i will give you a few examples. a couple weeks ago, i was in nevada. a woman in her early 30's came
up to me and has a five-year-old child. she said, i am trying to support a child and pay off my student debt. tears started running down her cheeks. i don't know what happens to my child. it is no different in new hampshire. we have many seniors who are trying to get by on social security. and if you just do the arithmetic, you can't get by. some of those seniors are cutting their pills in half, which is not a good thing to do. that they don't have the money they need to buy the medicine that they require. i try to expand the meals on wheels program but republicans resisted.
people are having a hard time eating one nutritious meal a day. [applause] and what a disgrace that is. and i go all over the country and i talk to people. young people stand up. senator, i will be graduating college very shortly. i'm going to be $60,000 in debt. having a hard time finding a job. i'm supposed to pay back $1200 a month and i have no clue how i can do that. another young man, two kids, married. he is working in sustainable energy. he is paying 53% of his limited income on student debt.
they desperately want quality affordable childcare for the little ones and can't find that. they're scared to death about going to work. we can hire somebody at half your age or half the wages. talk to the kids graduating college. talk to people and i do all the time trying to cobble together income and health care. talk to husbands and wives whose marriages are being stressed out
because people are working so hard. and they don't have enough time to spend with their kids. the truth is that our economy today is obviously in a lot better shape than it was when george w. bush left office. when bush left office, we were have raging 800,000 jobs a month. our deficit was a record-breaking $1.4 trillion. in the world's financial system was on the verge of collapse. other than that, we were in really good shape and people have the nerve to attack barack obama. so we have made progress.
we've cut the deficit by more than two thirds. the world's financial system is not on the verge of collapse, and we are growing jobs rather than hemorrhaging jobs. we must also be honest about that under republican administrations and democratic administrations, for the last 40 years, the great middle class of this country that was once the envy of the entire world has been disappearing. if you are a male worker in the middle of the american economy. you are earning an inflation-adjusted four dollars.
$700 a year less than you made 41 years ago. productivity expanding, technology exploding, and you are making 40 and $700 less than you made 41 years ago. if you are a woman, you're making $1000 less than adjusted income then you made in 2007. that is the reality. why people are so angry as they are working harder and harder. many are slipping into poverty. everyone is worried about the future of their kids. our kids will be the first generation to have a lower standard of living than we do. people are asking us, what's going on.
worker productivity going on. the middle class is been in decline and more and more people are living in poverty. i would suggest that a lot of why that is happening has to do with the fact that we have seen in the last 30 years a massive transfer of wealth from the middle class and working families of our countries to the top 1/10 of 1%. trillions of dollars owned by the middle class are now gone while the top .1% is seeing a doubling of the percentage of wealth. to my mind, and together as we try to turn this country around, one of the areas that we absolutely must focus on is the grotesque level of income and
wealth inequality we are experiencing today. [applause] let me just bore you for a moment with a few facts that i think is important for you to know. that is in america today, the top .1 of 1%. not 1%. .1% owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90%. got that? today, the wealthiest 20 people, that is the front row here. not these guys, though. [laughter] they own more wealth than the bottom half of america.
today in america, one family walmart, owns more wealth than the bottom 40%. and by the way, when i talk about the walton family, let me mention to you that i know that you hear a lot of welfare reform. people ripping off the welfare system. let me tell you who the major welfare recipient family in america is. not some poor family down the road. the walton family is the major recipient because you, as taxpayers, are paying taxes for medicaid and food stamps and
affordable housing that walmart employees need because the walton family is not paying them a living wage. [applause] so when we talk about a rigged economy, an economy where the rich get much richer while almost everybody else gets poor, it seems a little bit absurd that the middle class has got to subsidize the wealthiest family in this country. [applause] so i say to the walton family, the owners of walmart, get off of welfare. start paying your workers a decent wage.
[applause] that is wealth. when we talk about income, despite the fact that so many people are working such long hours, it turns out that 58% of all new income generated goes to the top 1%. are you ready for a radical idea? why not. why not create an economy that works for working families. [applause] but when we talk about the economy, it is not only the grotesque level of income and wealth inequality.
it is also about jobs. every month, the federal government issues a set of reports on unemployment. the report most of you see is the official unemployment report. which is now about 5%. but it does not include are those people that have given up looking for work in those people working part-time who want to work full-time. you add that together and we're close to 10%. and here's something that's almost never discussed at all but it is a huge and tragic issue. the problem of youth unemployment. i asked economists to do a study for me. tell me what real youth unemployment is in this country for kids who graduate high
school. kids who were white, 33% unemployed. 36%, african-american, 51%. if anybody in this room thinks there is not a connection between that outrageously high level of youth unemployment and the fact that we have more people in jail than in any other country on earth, i believe you would be mistaken. [applause] today in america, we have 2.2 million people in jail. we spent $80 billion a year locking them up. here is my second radical idea of the evening.
it is funny, but not so funny. read, history books we there were pictures of workers 100 years ago marching down the street holding up big placards. they said we want a 40 hour work week. 100 years have come and gone and we still want the 40 hour work week. turns out that we in the united states work the longest hours of any people in the industrialized world. the japanese are very hard workers. we work longer hours than they do. one of the obvious reasons is that wages in this country are too damn low. [applause]
so let me be very clear. the federal minimum wage today of $7.25 is a starvation wage. we need to raise the minimum wage to a living wage, $15 an hour over the next few years. [applause] when we talk about equitable wages, i hope that every man in this room will stand with the women in the fight for pay equity for women workers. [applause]
there is no rational economic reason why women should be making $.79 on the dollar compared to men. it's just old-fashioned sexism and together, we are going to change that. [applause] now in new hampshire, for better or for worse, you see a lot of politicians talking previously. if they are republican, you may hear them talking about family values. they love families. they stay up nights worrying about families. [laughter] especially if they are very
wealthy families that can contribute to their campaigns. but you all know what they mean by family values. matter.t a laughing what they mean is that no woman in this room, in this country should have the right to control her own body. i disagree. [applause] what they mean by family values is that we should defund planned parenthood. i think we should expand funding for planned parenthood. [applause]
what they mean by family values is that our gay brothers and sisters should not have the right to get married. i disagree. [applause] my wife and i have been married for 27 years. we have four grandkids. -- great kids. we have seven beautiful grandchildren and we are very proud of our family. we believe very strongly in family values. but when i talk about family values, my values are a little different from republicans. i mean ending the international embarrassment of the united states of america being the only major country on earth that does
not provide paid family and medical leave. [applause] now the good and beautiful news is that here in new hampshire today and vermont, women are giving birth and those of you who are parents know what an extraordinary day that is. it's a pretty big day for the baby as well. if that woman who gives birth today is a working-class woman, the likelihood is that she will have to basically give up her baby, lose contact with her baby, and go back to work in a week or two in order to earn
enough money to take care of her family. that is the opposite of what a family value is. [applause] virtually every government on earth, not only wealthy nations understand that mom and dad should have the right to stay home in what amounts to the most important weeks and months of that human being's life. all of you know that kids get sick. and mom or dad should have the right to stay home with their child. parents get sick. sons and daughters should have the right to tend to their mothers and fathers. that is why i am strongly
supporting and will make happen as president, three months of paid family and medical leave for every family in america. [applause] that is not a radical idea. every other country on earth can do it, i think we can as well. when we talk about the economy, we're talking about job creation. when youth unemployment is higher than 10%, in my view, we need a massive federal jobs program to put our people back to work. [applause]
we should be hiring teachers, not firing teachers. [applause] when we have a dysfunctional child care and pre-k system, which for many families is not affordable and where childcare workers are earning minimum wage or a little bit more, we need to create hundreds of thousands of jobs for well-trained, well-paid childcare workers. [applause] and when we have an infrastructure. roads, bridges, water systems, wastewater plants.
i'm not just talking about flint, michigan. i'm talking about municipalities all over this country where water systems are leaking and in bad trouble. we need to rebuild the rail system to catch up with europe and japan and china. [applause] we can create 13 million decent paying jobs rebuilding our infrastructure with a $1 trillion investment and i intend to make that investment. [applause] people say that's a great idea but it's an expensive proposition. where will we get the money? we will end this outrageous tax loophole that allows major
billion dollar profitable corporations to stash their money in the cayman islands and other tax havens. [applause] we are losing $100 billion a year. we have corporations that make billions of dollars not paying a nickel. that is wrong. we're going to change that and invest in the infrastructure. [applause] and by the way, not only do we need to create millions of good paying jobs, we need to stop the loss of millions of jobs through a disastrous trade policy that