tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN April 1, 2016 4:00am-6:01am EDT
court's intervention in 2000 presidential election contest of the bush versus gore case, there has been a lot of speculation about resignations of the court. those speculations have increased this year. over the last several weeks, hasy article and decisions the tea leaves -- you have excellent reporters here. the tea leaves are not just with the decision men but who may lead. -- from theen president's disparging some potential candidates as being too moderate or tooen certain or perhaps too independent to be trusted. continue se critiques
o defame justice suitor. with with aadd with kind of independence the nation sorely needs in a federal judiciary that's been and is still the envy of the world. i remember very much when the soviet union broke up. a group of new members came to visit with with members of congress. they sat and said because of your position let us ask you one question. certainly. they said we have heard that there are actually cases where people sue the government in your country and the government loses. i said it happens all the time. they said well and you don't replace the judge immediately when that happens? it struck me how much different with with we are and how much we can show the rest of the world
if we stay independent in our judiciary. we see about the planning and fund raising about public interest groups on both sides of the debate they prepare for what has been characterized as an upcoming pitched confirmation battle. just this week in the wake of the supreme court's decision on affirmtive action. angry group seek justice who oppose affirltive action. while all of america is not fix yated on the future of the supreme court many americans are. and those who are paying attention the most who understand how great the stakes are for our nation. so my message today is that this battle does not have to be amgeden. there are tried and tested ways to avoid that. an for the sake of the evenly
divided american people, this is a time for it want to try a unifying approach. the last several weeks the storm clouds have been gathering, i've been urging it want to choose the better path, along with with senator dashle and others have asked it want to consult with with leaders in the senate on both slilse in advance of any supreme court nomination to help it want put forward a consensus nominee who would unite all americans. and who can be confirmed with with with anywhere from 95 to 100 votes in the senate. we seek to head off a scl ten shs battle in which activists would revel in eeking out the nominee by the narrowist of margins. that would come at the expense
of the country, the court, the independence of our federal judiciary. so ours is a modest proposele but it's steeped in common sense. our government is a worthwhile value in its own right but there are many compelling reasons beyond that. we are in a difficult period in our history. we face these challenges at a time when the electorate is divided. the division is as deep as any time you can find in this country since the civil war. it's not an historicle accident that we've been experiencing political events we've not seen for more than 100 years. government shutdowns, an unsuccessful and unnecessary presidential impeachment. we've had narrowly divided houses of congress. we've had a majority control
snet back and forth sevpl times. we've had the most hotly contested presidential election contest in a century. the supreme court has had a spate of 5-4 opinions including this week narrowly upholding affirmtive action. most dramatic was the court's ruling that determined the winner of a presidential election. so why does it matter sotch? what are the implications for us as americans? some of the court's recent decisions vividly show what's at stake. take the example of a nurse in alabama, a mother of three. she was the director of neonatalle services for the university of obama when she was diagnosed with with brarns. e took a leave of absence to undergo surgery and radiation treatment. graret survived breast
cancer but when she returned to work her employer refused not only to promote her. her promote -- employer demoted her. she sued under the americans with disability act. that was passed to deevend the rights of every american who suffers from a disabling illness. president bush considered when in that case the the
they almost suggested that migery birds read road map and stop at state lines. sounds like the pell can brief. we've always learned about the past century and the importance of federal protection of these areas. and the efforts of people in both parties to get those protections. it's hard to believe a bare majority of the supreme court could adopt the argument of very conservative activists in this area. but after decades of practice and protection of such habitats of federal law, a narrow majority decides the clean water act does not allow the army corps of engineers to protect the waters. these are just a couple examples out of nearly 160 decisions of the supreme court decided by a one vote margin since 1994. in fact, the number of important
legal issues decided by a single vote is mounting. the last four years nearly 80 decisions were by one vote. d that's 80 out of 07300 decisions. the supreme court is so closely divided the replacement of just one judge could tip the balance one way or the other, whether congress and federal agencies can regulate arsenic in our water, whether we can preserve diversety in media, whether we can reform campaign finance laws. whether protections to our privacy will be narrowed. all these matters, a lot of others will be subject to review by the supreme court. if you want to know what's at stake look no further than the court's decision to uphold the family medical leave act. there a federal role played by justice oh conner all of these are compelling reasons why a
vacancy means sotch to all of us. it's also a compelling reason why it want and snet should work together in deciding whose going to fill such a role. do we fill it with somebody who do we fill it or with somebody who will unite us? true consultation is in the best tradition of our republic. so it's regrettable with varying degrees of partisanship some of the administration have regarded consultation on just about everything is a four letter word. the constitution divides the appointment of power between it want and snet. it expects presidents to ide vise. it says advise and consent not nominate and rubber stamp. for most the founders of this constitutional power to appoint judges exclusively tot senate.
toward the end of the convention as part of the system it was then shared between snet and it want. shortly after william eek clavedote this in his famous journal. whoever tends strictly tot constitution of the yilingts will radly observe that the power is the important one. the regulator and corrector, the balance of this government. he senate's role in is not secondry. not confined to a vote. they speak clearly the senate's authority to advise. so i was because of this i mean this history for the whole nation history and precedent of our whole nation disappointed to see reports last week that the president is inclined to reject collaboration to head off a
bitter fight. the president's spokesman was way off base when he turned the idea of a bipartisan consultation as a novel new approach. and when he suggested the consultation would somehow vile yate the constitution, that constitutional interpretation would draw a failing grade from any high school civics teacher in this country. other presidents have consulted with the smat? choosing supreme court nominees with good results. history demonstrates. actually some of the best evidence of this comes from a good friend of mine on the republican side of the aisle. 1994 rose in nd the supreme court senator hatch had the same role i now have as ranking member on the senate
judiciary ke. president clinton worked with senate hatch and senate republicans to chart a course for the selection of moderate consensus nominees who had substantial federal judicial experience in his book a square peg. that's not necessarily shilling for senator hatch's book but he telling how here the president had the first opportunity of any democratic president in 26 years to nominate someone tot supreme court and describes how president clinton consulted with senator hatch and talked about these various potential nominees he had. and senator hatch actually mentioned that he brought up the two names of the people ultimately nominated. now, the proof is in the middle. 96 senators voted in favor of justice ginsburg nomination. only three against. justice brier seaved 87, only
nine against him and senator hatch commended president clinton to find supreme court nominees almost anyone could acclaim. that is a president who could be cited decades before others in our position. that is a role i want to follow. for example, senator specter, widely respected, acknowledges the value of a presidential consultation in advance of a nomination. he has spoken about that. he tells of senator bork then chairman of the judicial ke with president hoover and looking at names. and saying the names this person turned out to be one of the giants of the supreme court. w, even the reagan administration consulted with democratic senators before they
nominated robert bork. of course as a consultant, they didn't listen. and that nomination was voted doun by the senate judiciary ke was reported with a negative recommendation. and ultimately the nomination was defeated by a vote of 42-58 be both republicans and dracts voting against judge bork. so consultation makes good sense. it makes good governing sense. certainly good constitutional sense. i might add especially in this city it makes good political sense. when there's bipartisan consultsation, the supreme court battle can be avoided. on the other hand, if consultation is simply a phone call five minutes before fox news announces the president's choice, that doesn't really cut it. it's reported that supreme court process the congressional
research service has said plainly, it is common practice for presidents as a matter of courtesy to consult with senate party leaders as well as with members of the judiciary ke. this is not a novel suggestion. this has been done throughout the history of this nation. the president's choice unites. and invig rates only a narrow wink of his party that it ends up dividing the american people. who should the president's nominee be? i'm not going to answer that question today. but i will harbor the hope that the president will agree to seek conif i den shall counsel of senate leaders. hats a setting that will be level. i can say this. other conservative republican presidents have nominated justices to the court who had the kind of fidelty to the law that we all respect. for example, republicans in the
mode of justice powell was nominated by president richard nixon. down what the vote was wa heavily democratic controlled senate? 91-1 to confirm it. these are people who understand the importance of the court's insr independence, they know how to be conservatives without being ideological activists. they are a strong value of individual liberties and equal protection. dems strailted record of commitment to equal rights they show the thoughtfulness justice oh conner showed. so the choice of uniting or dividing is the president's alone. none of us are asking to make the nomination. that's only up to the president. 're asking let us do it in a manner that unites the country that doesn't divide it.
if the president wants to incite a confirmation battle then he can choose someone because of their ideology in the expectation that it will be a political nomination and they will bring about political victories. but the united states supreme court should not be an arm of the republican party or the democratic party. it should be there for all of us. now, some activists report to be consulting closely with karl rove. if they convince it want to choose a devicive nominee or to tilt the ideological balance of the supreme court they won't prevail without an extraordinarily difficult senate battle. and suppose they did prevail by one or two votes. what have they given us? now, while these partisans would celebrate the takeover of the supreme court, the american
people are going to be the losers. the legitimatesy of the judiciary would have suffered a damaging blow. and i guarantee they would not soon recover. such a contest would itself confirm that supreme court is just another setting for partisan contest and partisan outcomes. that would ripple all the way doun through all the federal courts. and the independence of the federal courts and the integrity of the federal courts share today would be siverly damaged. so that's why preserving and strengthening respect for the courts is important. this is not the time and a vacancy on the supreme court is not the setting in which a deep in the nation's political and ideological divisions. our constitution establishes an independent federal judiciary. it's a bull wark of individual liberty against incursions or expansions of power by the political branches. the independence of our federal
courts has been called the crown jewel of our whole judicial system. but the independence is a grave risks when any president seeks to pack the courts with activists from either side. of course there's temptations to do that. every president faces that temptation. john adams tried it. president roosevelt was not successful partly because of a filibuster in the united states senate. but no matter how great, one of the worst mistakes a president could make would be to engineer ideological takeover of the supreme court. if that was successful it would lead to decision making based on politics and it would forever diminish our faith in our judicial system. all we're doing is trying to counsel it want to step back from the brink. in my lifetime, there has never
been a greater need for a unifying pick on the supreme court. the independence of the federal judiciary is indiveyissible from our american ideal of justice for all. all americans no matter what our party affiliation should know that we should expect and accept nothing less. thank you. [applause] >> i've done many lectures. but as many as i give this one is less intimidating knowing that i can wrap the whole thing up and bring the house doun. i feel as though i should offer something from my own unique experience as a senator.
i've been a member of the judiciary ke probably served as s chairman and dressed immigration to patent law protection. today i'm chairman of the ske on intellectual property and i'm sure that if i were to discuss intellectual property on the inducement standard adopted in perhaps mr. ase, cats and a few professors would be on the edge of their seat and most would be wanting to go to sleep. because of judicial nominations the senate judiciary ke is among the most partisan kes on capitol hill. it was not always this way. and today, i would offer my thoughts on why the process has become so deeply political and what we can do to correct it. for me, the bottom line is this. the process has become oveertly and overly partisan.
because tomb people want their judges to behave like politicians. when utah judge southerlyland was nominated to the supreme court then judiciary ke chairman went straight tot senate floor. and after remarks made a motion to confirm the nomination. the senate then promptly agreed. that was all it took in 19 22. compare this to judge roberts experience. on the u.s. court of appeals. he was originally appointed by the first president bush. that nomination stalled. and he was appointed again almost 10 years later by the second president bush. s there no doubt that this man was qualified for the work. everyone knows his resume so i won't repeat it here. nevertheless, before being confirmed to his seat he had two
hearings and answered approximately 100 extensive written questions from various senators, mostly dracts. this effort to question him was repeated gwen last month. something clearly has changesed as is often the case i think that justice scleia hit it right on the nose as he explained in casey v. planned prnthood nobody paid much heed tot supreme court until its justices started acting like politicians. when they started acting like politicians they started getting treateded like politicians. where their nominations came to resemble political campaigns. this is mot good for our courts and our country. the rules began to change with the nomination of robert bork tot court in 1987.
some of your professors are probably young enough that they may not remember this debate. i was there. and i still consider his treatment by the senate opponents and organized interest groups to be shameful. there's no doubt judge bork was controversial and he did not shy from any contrary versey. during the recess this year after judge roberts nomination c-span ran footage of past confirmation hearings. judge bork's still stands out for the vigorous deevens that he made of his well reasoned positions. ands there no doubt that he had a conservative judicial philosophy. but that philosophy was wrongly painted as outside of the mainstream of american juris prudence. today many make similar associations about justices scleia and thomas. thesenot know what stream critics were navigating because the constitution puts some limits on congress' ability
under the commerce clause that the constitution protects in the public square and that the constitution does not create a thon qualified right to sexual liberty. main stream views on the bench and in political life. with robert bork, however, we came to deevend him against these unfair attacks. we simply did not anticipate the vigor with which his opponents would put aside the judicial process. we should have known better. fro from the new deal to the presidency the dracts were this country's majority party. believe it or not like ronald reagan i used to be a democrat. but in 1963 things began to change. i once said in utah that i used to be a democrat but then i learned how to read and write i became a republican and everybody laughed but the next day they said every democrat in
the state of utah as ignorant and unbelieving. well, i don't use that any more. in 1968 things began to change. the democratic coalition began to fracture and it became increasingly difficult for dracts to achieve their mainly liberal policy goals the old shioned way, that is through the political process. as a result today the liberal wing has become reliant on judges to do much of their legislating. there are many things that they have been able to accomplish through the courts that they never could have achieved through the respective state and federal legislatures. the confirmed constitutional ability to burn the flag, to ban prayers, the right to same sex marriage and overturned preserving traditional marriage in federal court. their current achievement remains the decision in row v.
wade where they created a constitutional right out of thin air. for those who might disagree with me i want to cite one of the most observant constitutional scollars in the history of our country. in response to row he said that the majority opinion lacks even colorable support in the constitutional text history or any other appropriate source of constitutional doctrine. he concluded that it is bad constitutional law or rather it is not constitutional law and gives almost no sense of an obligation to try to be. another number of liberal pro abortion analysts have said the same thing. a liberal deevender of the one court. he assisted in the case of getty recounted in the famous book gidion's trumpet. he advocated a liberalization of
abortion laws. a as he and many others understood as constitutional law it remains a train wreck. given this political reliance on the court it is no surprise that a political standard is now being applied to judicial nominees. the virtue of a nominee has become his or her willingness to deliver goods instead of dispassion yat judgment and moderation. not surprisingly some demand to know the nominee's views on partisan issues. this process began really with judge bork. it continued with the nomination of kwlarnse thomas where his opponents even inquired into the tisses of the church at which he worshpped. all of this came to a head with the filibuster of president bush's circuit court nominees. with that effort, the politicization of the judicial
selection process has led some to try to change the rules of the game. the result was the filibuster against ten qualified nominees at a seers challenge tot constitution's balance of powers. early in this president's first term a strategy was developed by my cloog from new york senator schumer along wa number of law professors and activists. through a series of hearings senator schumer determined that it was not sufficient to ask what a nominee's qualifications were. rather, a senator determine first what a nominee's ideology is. senators need to know what the nominee's views are. they need to know how a person would approach the case as a man or woman or a person wa particular background. presumably a nominee wa more favorable reading to the americans with disabilities act if she had worked with disabled children would be favorable to
that. and if obviously qualified nominee failed to dwudge these views, he would become fodder for a no vote. when the dracts were last in majority in 2002 these potential no votes turn into fill busters. these with majority u.s.ed judicial nominees were unprecedented. there was only one issue in the whole history of the supreme court in the whole issue of the federal judiciary where there might have been a filibuster. i chalted with the leader of the fight for the last time senator robert griffin the author of the land ham-griffin bill who said they didn't want to filibuster. so there was no reason to filibuster. but this fight against these ten qualified people was the last stop in the attempt to juss if i
a politicized judiciary. it would have given the senate unheard of prouffer over nominations because the founders thought the judges were primarily law enforcers rather than law makers. it was appropriate that it want had the lead role in their appointment. like wise it was thought to be appropriate that those committed to politicizing the judiciary would attempt to reassign the primary role in the appointment of judges tot law making bratch. in my opinion this campaign was not only constitutionally questionable it was misguided and misleading and it would be for either party to do this. first, what exactly will a person's deeply held personal views show us about his or her future judging? for example, justice scleia is no doubt deeply opposed to abortion as a moral and political matter.
but justice scleia would never conclude that a state that permits abortion vile yailingts the constitution. personal views only matter if the nominee believes in giving those views a light through constitutional interpretation. it must be nice to go through life and believe that everything you happen to thinks is good is also protected by the constitution. but it also vile yates our separation of powers. activism is wrong whether it comes from the left or whether it comes from the right. and the extremes both want to have activist judges to enact their ideas of what the laws ought to be. and we've got to be careful of that. this leads to my second point. we should be asking seers questions of judicial nominees. it is not enough to conclude that he or she had a distinguished career. at the same time, however, a senator is not a rubber stamp if
he or she refuses to inquire about personal views. the proper question is quha the nominee thinks of the judicial role in a democratic republic. the proper question is whether the nominee sees courts as the vanguard of social change within our constitutional system. a senator does not act as a rubber stamp by refusing to ask specific questions about future cases possible cases or politics. rather he or she dems strailingts respect for the judicial role by reframing from asking those questions. this is why judge roberts performance was so remarkable. he is a proud judicial conservative. it want was wise to nominate him because he reminded us all of the importance of judicial modesty. judges do not have a constitutional award to engage
in whole sale social and political reform whether from he left or from the right. their duty is assigned by the people to intprit the law. the importance of judicial modesty was on display under the voting rights act at judge roberts hearing. kennedy and i have been calling on the judiciary ke for the past 29 years. but when he laid on to judge roberts he was way off the mark and revealed the real difference between liberals and conservatives. here's the bottom line on the voting rights act. s there no wut member of the united states senate who would oppose reauthorization of the voting rights act. in 1982 the voting rights act was up for reauthorization. by the way, at that time i was the chairman of the judiciary
ke's is sque on the constitution. the issue was never over whether we should extend the voting rights act which i consider to be the most important voting rights act in history and enfranced african americans. advocating extending it without change for 25 years. the debate was over whether we should amend section 2 of this acts. section 5 had the effects test in it. section 5 applied tot states that had historicically discriminated against african americans. section 2 applied to all the states. and what they wanted to do was apply the effects test which some have said if the effects of what happened looks like discrimination even if there was no intention to discriminate then it's discrill nation. and they wanted to apply that to all the states. in section 2.
well, we know there were many existing election rules such as that and multimember districts have proved big obstacles. those election rules were neutral and may not have been enacting with the intngs of diluting minority repation. but they may have had the effect of doing so. so the argument was we should put 2 test in there. so of course before we gt to that position where eventually presented with a classic case of tatutory interpretation. when congress wrote did it intend to ban discrimination only or any voting scheme that merely had the effect of diluting minority votes? the effect. thatupreme court concluded challenging these schemes must
prove intentional discrimination. the fert to amend section 2 of the voting rights act was an attempt then to overturn or the interpretation in the mobile v. bolton case. i believe this amendment to section 2 was a serious mistake. i believed that at the time and fought against it. changing these rules might result in more minority representatives but was not necessarily going to lead to better minority representation. i lost. but when the bill came up for a vote i voted for it. with because i believe that bill to be the most important civil rights act in history. i bring this up for a few reasons. first when you hear that republican nominees oppose civil rights or women's rights i think it's important to take these
the court did get it wrong in texas v johnson when they concluded that there was a here to unknown first amendment right to desiccate the american flag. you have to correct that decision we must actually have to amend the constitution even hough 48 states had ant flag desscration amendments. that's why it's critical to understand the american people. some believe that's supreme court should be the final arter of our most important social decisions. this their eyings the court is not a modest institution but a super legislature.
all of this occurred as a result of actions of elected officials. will not undermine our founding commitment to liberty and equality. it will give americans the room to give life to those commitments through their elected representatives. we seem to have forgotten the simple truth of the founders. the legislature makes the laws. the judiciary is supposed to interpret it. and when interpreting it, we should zo so wa modesty appropriate ot judicial role.
quoting alexander hamilton explained in the federalist papers that there's no liberty if the power of judging be not separated from the legislative and executive powers. now, we've lost sight of this imple truth. foshal of our disagreement. the right question to ask nominee not what their personal views are the right question is how they view the judicial role in our democratic system in process. jeff roberts had the right answer. he does not represent groups. he represents the law. in an insightful exchange he
explained that this is why judges wear black. they are supposed to leave their personal and subjective views orablies at the court house door. otherwise they might put their numb on the scale of justice. judge roberts was right to refuse discuss his personal views or case sthass might come before the court. the testso he stood by laid out by none other than ruth bader ginsberg. she said a judge sworn to decide impartially can offer no forecast no hints so that would show not only disregard fort specifics of the particular case it would display disdain for the entire judicial process. after his confirmation. justice ginsburg stood fimple. she went on to say judge roberts was unquestionably right. my role was i will not answer a
question that attempts to protect how i will rule on a case that might come before the court. we will have to see whether now justice roberts example is a lasting one. he is going to be our chief justice for a long time it appears. will future nominees and judges learn? and will senators learn from his testimony that there are proper and improper inquiries of judicial nominees? now, we're about to find out quite quickly. because already the senate is ready to take up the harriett meyers nomination in just a few weeks. already some senators on both slilse are eager to determine her personal views. personally it be satisfied to learn that she will take a modest approach tot role of unelected judges in this country in our democracy.
again, i want to thank you for having you with me today. like these judges i have a certainly hue millty about what i've said here today. i am sure that i will be followed by 34 scollars more distinguished than mimse and i am happy the students here will be able to benefit from their remarks over the years. while i'm sure that some of you have disagreed, i'm sure i will hear these, i do know that my service for many years my service as a senator. the american people have a wisdom that should not be disregarded in constitutional interpretation. and we do disservice to our political life if we ignore these popular understandings of constitutional rights. thanks sotch. great to be but.
>> the next two speeches in our supreme court special include harry reid then minority leader harry reid deevending the use of the filibuster and saying that the senate has no constitutional obligation to vote on the president's nominees. then mitch mcconnell in 2008 july of that year saying that senate dracts ought to confirm more bush nominees before the president leaves office. here we have two speech that is seem at least somewhat at odds with what those two leaders are saying today. what was different back then and what does this tell us about the process as a whole? >> what was different is quite simple is that each of these senators one had the word minority in front of his title now majority. and the other had majority and now it's minority. and what makes it so dramatic is
that it what it shows is that in the last 30 years, really since the bork era, which was where this -- where these wonderful clips began. ideology has become important. and divided government has become dispositive. in a period of divided government each judicial confirmation is going to be fought tot death. in 2005 speech when senator reid is speaking here this is at a time when senator frist who was then the republican from tennessee then the majority leader was threatening for the first time this so-called nuclear option which is essentially a parliamentry maneuver to take away the rights of the minority to filibuster judges. senator reid was opposed to that. it turns out several years later it was senator reid who actually evening neered this exact same almost the exact same nuclear option that he fought so hard against in the 2005 case the
nuclear option was diffused at the very last moment when a so-called gang of 14 seven senators from each party came together and said we are going to refuse to join fill busters of either president's choosing so long as they are per siveed as in the main stream. that deal held together for only a few years. by the time president obama came to power and harry reid had the chance to -- was truss traited by obama's inability to get judges on the secondary courts, the courts of appeal that gang of 14 deal didn't hold and harry reid got his way. >> i want to remind you that the video we're showing you available at c-span.org. here are the speeches. >> i've addressed the senate on several occasions. to what i believe is setting the record straight about senate history and the rules of this
body. but frankly i would much rather address ways to cust health care costs bring doun gas prices talk about education spirlinge deficit we have. but the majority leader has decided that we will spend this week and next week or at least part of next week talking about judges who i believe are not in the mainstream of american juris prudence. i'm happy to engage in this debate but i would rather not. but i do want the debate to be accurate. for example, my good friend the distinguished republican leader issued a statement last friday which he called a filibuster of procedural zpwimic. i took time yesterday to correct that eessergs. sitting in the record what the word gimmick means. the dictionary desfines it as a scheme. a new scheme. the cated that certainly
filibuster was everything but that. it's not a gimmick that's been part of our nation's history for two centuries. it's one of the checks and balances established by our visionary founding fathers. it's not a gimmick. also, some republicans have ated that improperly the use of the filibuster. they have said time and time again that the defeat of a handful of president bush's nominees is unprecedented. in fact hundreds of judicial nominees in american history have been rejected by the senate many by filibuster. there have been of course the most notable the nomination of abe ford yiss to be chief justice of the united states. he was successfully fill bustored in 1968. here is a "washington post" same
bye line as i picked up this morning. just from many, many years ago. the first sentence a full dress republican led filibuster broke out yesterday against the motion to call up the nomination of chief justice of the united states. a full dress republican lead filibuster. we've had filibusters. that's what's been disappointing to me with some of my colleagues in saying there has not been. there has been. during the clinton administration more than 60 judicial nominees were bottled up in the judiciary ke and never seaved floor votes. of course as indicated by my distinguished friend the republican leader during that period of time democrats were complaining about what was going on saying there should have been hearings in the senate. and even came tot floor and these were accurate quotes of
the majority leader saying let's have some votes. let's have some votes on these people. well, we mever said that we would break the rules to change the rules. to change the rules in the senate can't be done by a simple majority if it can only be done if twhrs extended debate by 67 votes. that the at all say statements made by the republican leader were wrong about our wanting votes. and we were disturbed that there weren't votes. but we never ever suggested that if rule should be broken. but in addition tot so-called pocket filibusters call them whatever you want the 69 nominations never made it out of the russell building out of the ke. iary
but in addition to those performances, republicans engaged in explicit fill busters on the floor against a number of judges when they did get out of ke. and they defeated a number of nominees by filibuster. consent same advise and clause. that's why surgeon general henry foster, it was constitutional, a democratic filibuster fifth circuit nominee unconstitutional fosters constitutional why wouldn't the same apply to priss i willa? republican argument doesn't add up. but i would say this. to my friend the presiding officer. i said let's not dwell on what went on in the clinton administration. let's not dwell what went on in the four years that president bush has been president. i am sure there's plenty of blame to go around as we look back i'm not sure that -- and it's difficult to say this but i say it. i'm not sure that either was
handled properly. i know it wasn't right to simply bury 69 nominations. and in hindsight maybe we could have done these ten a little differently. but the american people are tired of what we're doing. tired of the constant fighting going on. if ts going to take place this continues? we'll have a vote sometime next week. it will be a close vote of course because we only need six republicans. the presiding officer was formerly chairman of the powerful appropriations ke. it's very difficult at best to get the appropriations bills past. most everything is done around here by unanimous consent. we need to avoid this. but sadly now it want of the united states has joined the
fray and become the latest to rewrite the constitution and to reinvent reality. speaking to fellow republicans on tuesday night two days ago he said the senate -- and i quote -- has a duty to promptly consider each nominee on the senate floor, discuss their qualification and give them an up or doun vote. every one of the ten he speaks of have had a vote. every one of them. right here in the senate floor people walk doun to these two tables their name was called and they voted. and referring tot president's duty to who? eradical right. the e within their reach destruction of america's mainstream values. certainly not duty to the tenst of our constitution or the american people who are waiting for progress. not partisanship and petty debates. the duty of the united states senate are set forth in the constitution of the united states.
nowhere in that document does it say snet have a duty to give a vote. it says appointments shall be made with the advice and consent of the senate. that's very different than saying that every nominee seeves a vote. but i repeat all of these about which we're concerned including priscilla owen has had a vote right here. the fact was even acknowledged by the majority leader that a vote is not required. the majority leader right here senator byrd was here the majority leader was here. last week. he asked the majority leader if the constitution accorded each nominee an upor doun vote. the answer was no. senator frist was candid. the answer was no. the ludge is not there. that's what senator frist say. and he is correct. the president should read the same copy of the constitution senator frist had memorized. it's clear that it want misunderstanding the meaning of the advice and consent clause.
the word advise means advise. president clinton consulting extensively with chairman hatch and as a result we have ruth bader ginsberg and steven brier. both fine justices. in contrast this president had never sought or heeded the advice of the senate but now he demands our consent. that's not how america works. is the senate is not a rubber stamp. rather we're the one institution where the minority has the voice to check the power of the majority. today that's more important than ever. republicans want one party rule. snet is the last place where the senate can have it all. and now president bush wants to destroy our checks and balances. that check on his power is the right to extended debate. every senator can stand on behalf of the people who have sent him here and say their peace. in the senate's 200 plus years
of history this has been done hundreds and hundreds of times. stand up to popular presidents, to unpopular presidents. presidents arrogant with power. in the eyes of the senator. and yes even to reject presidential nominations. even judicial nominations. >> this is the one year anniversary of the nomination of robert conrad to be a member of the fourth circuit. when this congress began the majority leader and i agreed that the partisanship in the judicial nominations process was unhealthy and we said this this congress would be different. the los angeles times and the "washington post" acknowledged it want did his part to get the process off to a good start back at the beginning of this congress. they and many others complimented his good faith and not resubmitting circuit court nominees whom some of our democratic colleagues did not
like. the majority leader himself said how much he appreciated it want's good faith. he said i personally want the record to reflect that i appreciate it want not sending back four names that were really controversial. the majority leader also said that he and his colleagues had an obligation to reciprocate and treat circuit court nominees fairly. he said i think we have to reciprocate in a way that is appropriate. and we're going to try to do that by looking at these nominees as quickly as we can. so the question is, have the dracts treated these nominees fairly? have they in fact reciprocated? let's look at the facts. this president in his final two years of office and the senate dracts of course hope to recapture the white house. so obviouslies there a partisan
incentive not to confirm his judicial nominees. this is of course human nature. but the situation is not new. president bush is not the first president to be in his final two years in office when the opposite political party controlled the senate and hell not be the last. even with lame duck presidentses there an historicle standard of fairness as to confirming judicial nominees especially circuit court nominees. the majority leader and i agree that this senate should meet that standard. the average number of circuit court confirmations in this situation is 17. president clinton had 15. this senate has confirmed only 10 circuit court nominees. what happened? unfortunately, old habits are hard to break. and in my opinion dracts on the judiciary ke found it hard thot
to play politics. it started with the renox nation of judge lessly south wick a distinguished state court judge and an iraq war veteran. moreover he was someone whom commit yeedracts approved unanimously. so at the beginning of this congress when it want tried yet again to fill a vacancy on the fifth circuit that existed for his entire presidency he did not resubmit a nominee that the dracts opposed and said he nominated someone whom commitee dracts had already approved. how did the judiciary ke respond? with one exception they did a total about face. and actually tried to filibuster judge south wick's nomination. unfortunately, his isn't the only consensus nominee who became controversial. judge robert conrad is the chief judge of the federal district
court in north carolina. the senate has already approved him to important positions not once but twice first as the federal law enforcement officer in north carolina and then to a liflet position. on the federal district court. in addition, the aba gave judge conrad its highest rating unanimously well qualified and former attorney general janet reno called him an excellent prosecutor. again to resolve a dispute this time over a fourth circuit seat president bush did not resubmit a nominee whom senate dracts opposed. as the judge south wick he nominated someone who they had already approved. judge robert conrad. well, guess what has happened. nothing has happened. as of today judge conrad has been sitting in the commitee for
365 days one full year without a hearing even though he meets all the chairman's criteria has the highest possible aba rating has strong home state support and would fill a judicial emergency. what is the result of all this? while judge conrad rates in commitee the circuit court che has nominated is over 25% vakent over one fourth of its seats are empty, its chief judge states that to keep up with its work the court must rely heavily on district court judges. in short it is robbing peter to pay paul. it goes without saying she says that having to use visiting judges puts a strain on our circuit. in particular it forces the circuit's district judges to perform dubble duty. the situation on the fourth circuit is so bad that the aba has made the crisis on the fourth circuit its lead story
and its most recent edition of its professional journal. it's on the coverage page. now, my friend the majority leader comes tot floor this morning and essentially says judges aren't important. and no one cares about them. given the crisis in the fourth circuit a crisis that is so bad the aba is highlighting it i can't imagine he would suggest such a thing. i'm sure the millions of citizens of the fourth circuit don't think that having their federal appellate court over 25% vacant doesn't matter. i'm sure they care very much about that. but evidently that's what the majority leader believes and apparently he's not the only one in his conference who feels that way given the lack of action in the judiciary ke. the commitee refuses to move judge's nomination or any other pending. we're told dracts do not support his nomination which is supported by the "washington
post" because he's doing too good a job as u.s. attorney. that's an interesting rationale for not moving someone. we have another fourth circuit nominee judge glenn conrad from virginia. he is is a federal district court judge whom snet confirmed tot trial bench without any contra strersy. he has the support of both his home state senators one democrat and one republican. after he was nominated the chairman said he would move him as long as there was time to do so. specifically he stated i have already said that once the paperwork on president bush's nomination of judge glenn conrad tot fourth circuit is completed ifs there sufficient time i hope to move his nomination. well, the chairman's conditions are met with respect to judge glenn conrad's nomination. his paperwork has been ready for a month. and it's only july the 17th.
last time i looked there are 12 months in a year. it is july 17th. clearly we have time to confirm him. but yet we have no action. on this nomination. now, our democratic colleagues continually talk about the so-called furmen rule under which the senate supposedly stops confirming judges in a presidential election yoor. imente concerned that this seeming obsession with this spozzed rule which by the way doesn't exist. senator specterer has researched that thoroughly ands there no such rule. but anyway, this seeming obsession with this rule that doesn't exist is just an excuse for our colleagues to run out the clock on qualified nominee whose are waiting to fill badly needed vacancies. so no party is without blame in the confirmation process. but what is going on now or more accurately what is not going on s yet another step backward in
politicizing the process we had all hoped we would get beyond. it's the american people especially those in the five states that make up the fourth circuit who are suffering the consequences. and i'm sorry the majority leader doesn't think that matters. madam president, i yield the floor. >> final word from our guest. we've seen that the whole confirmation process supreme court process in particular very partisan back and forth on the issue. what's your thought your prediction for the maret garland nomination and the process going forward? how do you see the administration the next administration nominees in the next administration faring in the senate as well? >> i think the dye has been cast pretty solidly on judge garland that senator majority leader mitch mcconnell has said no way no how will the republican senate the longest he is in
charge have a hearing on him. at one point there seemed briefly to be the sense that they had talked about not doing it before the presidential election. then there was a brief rhett orkle window where some said maybe after the election if we lose the election we would be garland.seat judge senator mcconnell says no. he is is a practical man. he is more in macro terms. senator mcconnell is more a practical leader than an ideological leader. for whatever reason he concludes that going back on his very rock p predictions in his party's interest things may change. in the next administration it will all depend on whether we have a president in one party or whether they're aligned. i think one of the things that you are reminded of you can't help but be reminded of is that
it's always the senators or it want on the political losing end of the debate that says let's reform ourselves. let's behave better in the future. and it's always the folks on the winning side that essentially they use the power leverage that has now been developed over the last 30 years. >> we appreciate you joining us. we enjoyed reading your blog. and of course folks can follow you at roll call.com and on twitter. thanks sotch. we will wrap up here wa couple of comments by then senator barack obama on supreme court nominations. inie speech from then senator obama with his thoughts on how the white house ought to handle a supreme court nomination in the future. >> first of all, let me congratulate senators specter and lay hi for moving the process of confirming the nomination of judge roberts along with such civility, a
civility that i think speaks well of the senate. et me also say that i remain distressed that the white house during this confirmation process -- which overall went smoothly -- failed to provide critical documents as part of the record that could have made up -- could have provided us with a better basis to make our judgment with respect tot nomination. this white house continues to stymie a efforts on the part of the senate to do its job. and i would hope that with the next nominee that comes up for the supreme court that the white house recognizes that in fact it is its duty not just tot senate but to the american people to make sure that we can thoroughly and adequately evaluate the record of every single nominee
that comes before us. now, having said that, the decision with respect to judge robblingts nomination has not been an easy one for me to make. as some of you know i've not only argued cases before appellate courts but for ten years was a member of the university of chicago law school faculty. and taught courses in constitutional law. part of the culture of the university of chicago law school faculty is to maintain a sense of collegiality between those people who hold different views. what engenders respect is not the particular outcome that a legal scollar arrives at but rather the intellectual rigor and honesty with che or she arrives at a decision. given that background, i am sorely tempted to vote for judge roberts based on my study of his
resume, his conduct during the hearings, and a conversation that i had with him yesterday afternoon. there are absolutely no doubt in my mind that judge roberts is qualified to sit on the highest court in the land. moreover, he seems to have the comportment and the temperament that makes for a good judge. he's humble. he's personally decent. and he appears to be respectful of different points of view. and it's absolutely clear to me that judge roberts truly loves the law. he couldn't have achieved his excellent record as an advocate before the supreme court without that passion for the law. and it became apparent to me in our conversation that he does in fact deeply respect the basic preseps that go into deciding 95% of the cases that come before the federal court. adherence to press dense.
a certain modesty in reading statutes and constitutional text. a respect for procedural regularity. and an impartiality in presiding over our adversarial system. all of these characteristics make me want to vote for judge roberts. the problem that i face, a problem that's been voiced by some of my other colleagues, both those who are voting for mr. roberts and those who are voting against mr. roberts is that while adherence to legal precedent and rules of statutory or constitutional construction will dispose of 95% of the cases that come before the court so that both scleia and a ginsberg will arrive at the same place most of the time on those 95% of the cases what matters on the supreme court are the 5% of
cases that are truly difficult. in those cases, adherence to press dense and rules of construction and interpretation will only get you through the 125th mile of the marathon. that last mile can only be determined on the basis of one's deepest values. one's core concerns. one's broader perspective on how the world works and the depth and breadth of one's empathy. and those a% of really hard cases the constitutional text will not be directly on point. the ludge of a statute will not be perfectly clear. legal process alone will not lead you to a rule of decision. in those circumstances your decisions about whether or not ooch firmtive action is appropriate respond to the
history of discrimination in this country or whether or not a general right of privacy encompasses a more specific right of women to control their reproduction. or whether the commerce clause empowers congress to speak on those issues of broad national concern that may only tangentially relate to what is sily defined as interstate commerce. whether a person who is disabled has the right to be accome dated so that they can work alongside those who are nondisabled. in those difficult cases, the critical ingredient is applied by what in the judge's heart. now, i talked to judge roberts about this. and judge roberts confessed that unlike maybe professional politicians it's not easy for him to talk about his values and his deeper feelings. that's not how he is trained.
e did say that he doesn't like bullies. and has always viewed the law as a way of evening out the playing field between the strong and the weak. i was impressed with that statement. because i view the law in much the same way. the problem i had is that when i examined judge roberts' record and history of public service, it's my personal estimation that he has far more often used his formidable skills on behalf of the strong in opposition to the weak. his work in the white house and the solicitor general's office he seemed to have consistently sided with those who were dismissive of efforts to eradicate the remnants of racial discrimination in our political process. and these same positions he
seemed dismissive of the concerns that every woman knows it is harder to make it in this world and in this economy when you are a woman rather than a man. i want to take judge roberts at his word. that he doesn't like bullies and he sees the law and the court as a means of evening the playing field between the strong and the weak. but given the gravity of the position to which he'll undoubtedly asquend and the the gravety of the decisions that he will undoubtedly participate in during his tenure on the court i ultimately have to give more weight to his deeds and the overarching political philosophy that he appears to have shared with those in power than to the assuring word that he provided me in our meeting. the bottom line is this.
i will be voting against john roberts' nomination. i do so with considerable rhett sense. i hope that i am wrong. i hope that this on my part proves unjust fid and that judge roberts will show himself to not only be an outstanding legal thinker but also someone who upholds the court's historic ole as a check on the majority impulses of the executive branch and legislative branch. i hope hell recognize who the weak and strong are in our society. and i hope that his juris prudence is one that stands up tot bullies of all ideological stripes. which leads me to conclude with just one more comment about this confirmation process. i was deeply disturbed by some
statements that were made by largely democratic advocacy groups when ranking member senator leahy announced that he would support judge roberts. although the scales have tipped in a different direction for me, i'm deeply admiring of the work and the thoughts that ranking member senator leahy has put into making his decision. the knee jerk unbending and what i consider to be unfair attacks on senator leahy's motives were unjustified. unfortunately, both parties have fallen victim to this kind of pressure. i think every senator on the other slile if they were honest would acknowledge that the same unyielding unbending dog matic approach to judicial confirmation has in large part been responsible for the kind of
poisonous atmosphere that has held in this chamber surrounding judicial nominations. it's tempting then for those on this slile to go at this time for tat. but what i would like to see is all of us recognize that as we move forward tot next nominee, our understanding that in fact the issues are not confronted by the supreme court -- are difficult issues. that's why they get up to the supreme court. the issues facing the court are rarely black and white. and that all advocacy groups who have a legitimate and profound interest in the decisions that are made by the court try to make certain that their advocacy reflects this complexity and don't resort tot sort of broad brush dog patic attack that have hampered the process in the past and constrained each and every senator in this chamber for
making sure that they're voting on the basis of their conscience. thank you very much. >> president obama holds a news conference today at the closing of the nuclear security summit being held this week in washington, d.c. e'll have live coverage. this weekend the c-span's cities tour takes you to long beach, california torks explore the history and literary culture of this port city located just south of lauge. on book tv learn oon about women's contributions from jerry ship ski. >> when the u.s. army was looking for a place to build a plant to produce arkte which they thought we would need in world war ii they picked long beach because just steps away we
have a wonderful airport that was founded in 1923. it was one of the first airport that is had a take off and landing in different directions which the army loved because they could use military planes in a way there that they couldn't use other places. then douglas went into full production mode and was turning out planes 24/7 and it then needed a lot of people to work here rment the men went off to war. the women for the first time were brought out of the house and brought into the workforce. and at its peak douglas was employing 45,000 people a day in the long beach area. and about 48% of those people were women. >> on american history tv we visit the port of long beach and discover the nationed second busiest container port. >> established as a formal harbor department in 1911. we are a little over 140 years
old. through this time the port started on a wooden wharf and was a lumber terminal that came up from the northwest and supplied lumber here for the growing city of long beach and the region. in 1940 we had the u.s. navy, the naval station and the long beach naval shipyard. they were here until the early 90s. and unfortunately through the base closure process the naval complex shut doun. what we were able to do was take an old federal facility and actually turn it into at that time -- and it still is one of our modern container terminals. where we are today 104 years later sitting on the most modern sustainable marine container in the world. >> watch the c-span city's tour saturday at noon eastern on c-span 2's book tv and sunday afternoon at 2 on american
history tv. the c-span city's tour working with our cable affiliates and visiting cities across the country. >> democratty presidential candidate bernie sanders held a rally in new york. he was introduced by rose aryo dawson and director spike lee. this is an hour and 15 minutes. >> we're going to bring tot mike one of our own. she's been in two of my films. osie dawson. cheers and applause]
wanted to get on stage twice. i'm supposed to introduce him. ok. i love you. i'm hearing the love and i've got to throw that right back at you. all right. bear with me. i have a lot to say. ok. facts someheard some information that was being misconstrued. ery mission leading and very÷÷÷ devicive. today a lot of news outlets and the other democratic candidates -- booing.
no. e're better than that. now, there's this rumor that is being perpwutted that trump talking about abortion and punishing women and doctors for it that somehow bernie sanders was saying that that wasn't an important issue. regardless of the fact that he has always stood up for women's equal pay, equality. and is pro choice. which the other democratic candidate very well knows. there's this rumor that is pitching out there that because he's saying that we're giving drumpletooch time on the air waves and we need to stop feeding into that hate and talking about the issues that somehow that meant that he doesn't care about women's issues.
shame on you, hillary. now, sorry. hold on. et me watch my tone. because we very, very much want a debate which she already agreed to. and considering that in 2008 there were 26 debates and she held obama's feet tot fire saying that she would debate any time anywhere, because that's what you should do when you're let's to run the country,÷÷÷÷÷÷ very much hope that she does come. so i will stay wa smile on my face that i'm excited about the fact that i don't have to vote against someone. that i get to vote someone. [cheers and applause] who hasn't called undocumented
people illegal. like the other democratic candidate. or called our children who needed care super predator that is needed to be brought to he'll. who called people on welfare dead beaths. no. well, yes, she is under f.b.i. invest congregation. thank you. that's not getting promoted very is about to be ÷÷÷÷ interviewed if a little bit. but, no. the reality when you're saying the types of thing that is have been said and trying to miscontrue and obfiss kate the facts you're trying to divide people. i appreciate gloria steinham saying i'm sorry for saying that us women bernie supporters are only here because the boys are
here. i'm realedly glad to see quite a lot of females and males here. and also this idea that you're only white. well, my daddy my biological daddy anyway is irish. so bernie didn't need to make me white. but apparently all of you all are white. that's crazy. must be having issues with my eyes. no. the reality is when they're talking about that stuff is that they're trying to divide us. only e trying to say that÷÷÷÷÷÷ trump supporters are racist. which there are a lot of racist wloss follow trump but they're not all racists. that all followoers of bernie are all white males. but that's not true, either. and i think it's pretty amazing that what you're seeing in really large populations of white males and females in certain states that have been poorly talked about, that they're there cheering for justice. and equality.
specifically racial and environmental and beyond. that's something to celebrate. it's a beautiful thing. so this is what bernie meant when he was talking about trump getting tooch attention and why do you think that is? do you think it is an accident? you have to think about the fact that they are saying, vote against him, and forget about him, so what does that mean? we have to vote for the other democratic candidate? no. we are not in the general election. we are in the primary. everyone should have their say.
i don't have to vote against somebody because i get to vote for someone who is on our side, and said, no fracking. who marched with martin luther king. [applause] and, who can jog crowd that makes me dizzy with happiness, love, and affection. she had a fraction of that made people yesterday at the apollo, mention, which he senator, 2 million people were stopped because of stop and first. which were% of innocent. not judge ayou can
criminal by the color of their skin. is not ok.iling it is unjust, unnecessary, and we need to and not -- end that. i just want to say something. i love you. yorker.ew on 137ths raised street in the bronx. born in lincoln hospital, which .lready burned down grew up in the lower east side. [applause] say, we don't need to be divided. we need to be reaching out, and talking to the folks who are .upporting trump÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷ they are supporting him for a
reason. they are standing up behind him because he is against the establishment as well. i am supporting the guys looking at all of us, and saying, you're i know that means a lot to you because i know new yorkers, you're not interested in being dooped÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷ or divided age.r race, gender, or the reality is, when 9/11 happened, people came together when the syrian
refugees were walking, something that mirrored their experience. we wanted to reach and hold them back in. was aebrated when there÷÷÷÷÷÷ blackout for three days because we were not attacked. taking care of each other during hurricane sandy. making sure our neighbors had , chargers,ood generators, so they could get their phone charged because that is now as important as water.
[laughter] marched against the bailout because they knew that people need at bailout, not the banks. but, they are still getting bailed out -- what does that look like for us voting in the future? this is a community that i love. i grew up, a melting pot, the center of the world. get a tiny food role, a slice of pizza, you can jump on the training go to philly, and cheesesteak.÷÷÷ go to coney island and run the site -- ride the cyclone, and get a headache from it. we go to new jersey. we go across the washington state bridge so we can go see mountains, and greenery, and
bears. we have seen what gentrification does to our community. broadway was an indian trail. for the first time, it has been disturbed and interrupted. we get that, we know our history. ÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷ i want to say, i love seeing you here, but don't complain to me if you didn't make it your business to bring at least five vote. to at least five.
to show the world that we knew the bailout was wrong. we knew that we should not go to iraq and invade that country. who sold us that is also trying to sell us the person who voted for it. by the way, when there is a sit at cnn headquarters on sunday in l.a. -- i think at noon, if you want to tell anyone to be there -- they are working .gainst us right now does not win,ers net neutrality will be a big issue. they don't like us. stake.s a lot at a lot. person who voted no for the patriarch twice --
patriot act twice. vote for the person who voted no to the iraq war who didn't waste chili dollars, and more life,antly, millions of÷÷÷÷÷÷ that started isis, and the destabilization of the middle east that we are still feeling of today.ussions that doesn't apologize when back. don't come someone who doesn't think that regime change is good foreign policy in hunters, and beyond -- in honduras, and beyond. someone who is telling us to , who will go into the oval office, and keep the door open, and say, but get to work -- let's get to work. i'm back excited to work for bee
sanders. i'm excited to work for all of you. [applause] all right, obama. >> bernie! bernie! dawson: i wish this time i was introducing him, but i am .ntroducing bernie i just want to say, thank you much for being here, and showing what new york is really about, coming together, and understanding that real change comes from the bottom up. remember, when martin luther king was killed, it wasn't because he was pushing on the civil rights movement because he was coming together, and asking
bronx. glad to be here. i'm glad we are here to support our guy, bernie from brooklyn. bk, where you at? wicklund -- brooklyn in the house. it is all love. we although this thing is rigged , as has been talked about many times. they don't want to see us together. say it again. where is obama at? .urned to the crowd dead ringer. i thought that was him for sure. separated.not be this is the great thing about new york city. diversity. look around. this is what makes us the greatest city on earth.
thethe bronx, home of champions, the new york yankees. [applause] fans booing?s we are supposed to be unified. seen a have you ever streetcar, monty? ,ou cannot win with a streetcar wejinks, shenanigans -- cannot go for that. everybody has to register to vote. we have to vote. we have to talk to our parents. old generation is on this thing, and we have to talk to her older parents, and
>> spanish or english? both. it will be difficult for me because i speak spanish, but i will try to speak english so you can understand. i am not here to talk issues because÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷ i'm not an economist. i'm not here to talk about our right to free quality education healthe accessible care. i'm not here to talk about our commitment to save the environment from pollution in order to save ourselves. i could speak about the racial
injustice that people are suffering in this country and the rest of the world, and the need for comprehensive immigration reform. [applause] all of these are serious issues in america, but today, i came to speak briefly about the history of what the rico -- puerto rico, with a little bit about the history of latin america, and why i am here tonight in support of bernie sanders. world thinksed the÷÷÷÷÷÷ to my music, and it traveling, more about the world than ever learned in college. my name is rene, many also know me as residente, and i am rico.u puerto of therico is a quality united states, the oldest colony in the world. for years, we have been used as an experimental island, from
medical experiments to chemical experience on our land -- experiments on her man. until 2003, the u.s. navy undertook experiments with different biological and chemical weapons while using the island as a bombing range. to this day, the land of people have not fully recovered from this devastation. ,here is a political prisoner who has been incarcerated for over 34 years, longer than nelson mandela. ,is name, oscar lopez rivera and he deserves to be free today. [applause] 200,000 puerto -- ricans have served in the u.s. military. in our school, children are
taught more about u.s. history and the history of their own .ountry÷÷÷÷ that is a colonial education. without giving you exact numbers, i can tell you that the u.s. gets more out of puerto rico economically than puerto rico received from the u.s.. we are currently living and economic crisis, and has the highest rate of unemployment that any place in the u.s., yet the u.s. does not even allow us to restructure our debt. this is the best one. people in puerto rico cannot vote for the president of the united states. in other words, we are not allowed to choose the person who makes crucial decisions regarding our country. i did not come here to complain,
in context.gs÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷ you may wonder what i am doing here. i will explain. i support bernie sanders because he has been the only candidate with a logical proposal, and has for myed support country. not come out to support this now in the middle of an election cycle to get votes. he spoke out from the minute to economic crisis began. i support bernie sanders because i think he is the most honest candidate there is. [applause] becauset bernie sanders he is the only candidate who stands up for human rights and the rights of the lgbt
community. becauset bernie sanders theas spoken out against latin american dictatorships which left half a million people dead or disappeared. guatemala,÷÷÷÷ argentina, just to name a few. support bernie sanders because someone like hillary clinton does not deserve my vote. clinton,ht of hillary who has dared to praise the , the of henry kissinger architect of latin american dictatorships, responsible for all of those who disappeared in 1980's,'s, 1970's, and
is enough for me to not vote for her. i'm not for her. it is an insult to consider yourself a latin american, and vote for her. not an insult to yourself, but in insult to the countless children who lost their parents and grandparents. i support bernie sanders because i know there are still good people like him this country -- in this country. when senator sanders wins the up coming election, people will see the united states in a different .ight thatll not be a country intures or believes
colonies. instead, the united states will be a country that strives for unity, equality, and peace. [applause] if bernie sanders were puerto rican, i'm certain he would fight with all his might and all ricansrt as many puerto have done to bring freedom and self-determination to his country. i'm here, like all of you, does port -- to support bernie sanders because we support change in the world. thank you. -- here >> bernie! ♪
lived in the 3.5 room rent introlled apartment brooklyn. i learned a little bit about what it means to grow up in a and i that has no money also learned a little bit of about the immigrant experience. lessons i will never forget. campaign is about is creating a political revolution. [applause] the 15,000 people here this you are the heart and
soul of this revolution. what we are saying loudly and .learly is enough is enough want want government that represents all of us, not wealthy campaign contributors. we want a campaign-finance system that is not corrupt. economy that is not rigged. we want a criminal justice not broken.is÷÷÷÷ determined that instead
dollarsing trillions of on the war in iraq that we should have never gotten into, we are going to reinvest in the south bronx, and communities all over the country. [applause] >> bernie! sanders: there is no reason why people in this country should be paying 40%-50% of their limited incomes on housing. there is no reason why people should not have access to the
health care that they need. there is no reason dollars on the war in why, in this country, we should not have the best educational system in the world for all of our people. or is the reason why we should have the highest rate of childhood poverty of any major earth. under -- on there is no visa wife we should have more income and wealth inequality than any other major country. what this campaign is about is telling wall street and the billionaire class that they cannot, they will not have it all. he are going to create a nation,
in which our people have decent childrenbs, where our are not unemployed, where our parents and grandparents can live with dignity on social security. why we are going to wage to $50nimum÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷ $15 per hour. it is why you are going to have .ay equity for women it is why we're not going to inner deteriorating cities, why we are going to build affordable housing.
why we are going to build -- rebuild the road, the bridges, the water systems. when we do that, we create 13 million decent paying jobs. today, we will not toppt a situation where the muchof 1% owns almost as wealth as the bottom 90%. situationt accept a where the 20 wealthiest people own more wealth than the bottom half of america. create anng to