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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  April 10, 2016 1:01am-3:01am EDT

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♪ ♪ senator susan collins news withrence on meeting
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announcer: republican senators susan colin of maine called on senator majority leader mitch judiciaryand the chair or to allow the nomination to move forward. she is one of a handful of republican senators who agreed to meet the nominee. here's what she had to say after meeting with judge garland. senator: -- sen. collins: i just concluded a more than one-hour-long meeting with judge garland. meeting thatellent allowed us to explore many of the issues i would raise with any nominee to the supreme court
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as well as some of the criticisms that have been levied against him. me moreing left convinced they and ever that the process should proceed. step, in my view, should be public hearings but for the judiciary committee so that the issues that we explored and my office can be publicly aired and so that senators can have a better opportunity to flash out to all of the issues we discussed. i would be glad to take any questions. it is my understanding that senator grassley has agreed to meet with judge garland, so
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let's see if after that meeting senator grassley still holds to the position there should not be a hearing. leader inthe majority senator grassley are very sincere in their believe that the next president should make this decision. i do not happen to agree with shouldd i believe we follow the normal order in proceed with public hearings. >> what about the [indiscernible] sen. collins: i found the judge to be straightforward. i brought up issues ranging from second amendment cases to executive overreach to the role of the court to perceptions of the court and he gave a very
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thorough, impressive at responses to all of my questions. toif you had an opportunity vote, would you consider voting for him or would you -- would you vote form if you have the opportunity? : it is premature for me to reach that conclusion for stop collins: it is premature for me to reach that conclusion. is only prudent because after public hearings you have a far better sense of the nominees. we covered a lot of ground in our hour-long meeting but hearings withic many senators posing questions allows for far more in-depth qualifications,
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decisions, philosophy of the nominee. -- >> how disappointed are you in the stance of no hearing. my time inlins: in the senate, i have found that whether it is legislation, nomination, or treaties, we are best-served by following the regular order. bills, itces better makes sure nominees are fully bedded, and that to me is the way we should proceed. i am not optimistic that i will be changing my mind on this if more of myink colleagues sit down with judge garland that they are going to breathe impressed with -- be impressed with him. will you indeed tried to recruit senatorial support?
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: i have already spoken out at the republican caucus and expressed my reviews. so, my views are not a secret to my colleagues. i would encourage all of my colleagues to sit down with judge garland. i believe that is how the process should work and works best when we have these one-on-one meetings followed by public earrings. -- hearings. >> can you comment on the strategy of mcconnell on how risky it is that hillary clinton could be nominated and have someone much more liberal? not want to comment on the majority leader's strategy. that is a question that should be directed to him. i will say from the conversation that i just had i found judge
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he has a humility about him, he has clearly thought very deeply about the issues confronting the court. there was not to any question that he could not handle and he has a longer record of onomplishment as a jurist the washington, d.c., circuit for 19 years. nextuld be ironic if the president happens to be a democrat and chooses someone who is part two judge garland's left, but we really do not know what is going to happen in this very strange political year, so i think what we should do is all of the normal process with the nominees that has been set up by the president and that, to me,
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is the best way to proceed. do you think you could actually change some of your colleague's minds? it is hard to predict what one's colleagues are going to do or how they are going to react. all i can do is report on my meeting. i found it judge garland to be well-informed, thoughtful, impressive, extraordinarily bright, and with a sensitivity the i look for to appropriate roles that the constitution a signs to the three branches. they keep. >> thank you. announcer: new hampshire senator jeanne shaheen also met on
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tuesday. virginia senator joe manchin, who said he hopes republicans will give judge garland a confirmation hearing and vote. >> i am starting this process the same thing i have done. meeting with the nominee. we have our discussion. about everything from our children to our family. and i'm job specific there, i am hope all it moves into the hearing, the committee hearing where the detail will come out. to make a judgment on whether i will support or not. the facts, he has my support and we are hoping the procedure will go through the right pathway.
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with that, we will take a few questions. your leadership has taken a big effort to get republicans to change course. as someone who works across the aisle as a lot, what is your sense as to whether or not the democratic strategy can succeed? >> i find it hard to believe that to all of a sudden we are changing our modus operand him. as you know, i was very much opposed to the fda nominee. it was not because of personal, it was basically because of the cultural change of the fda. he gets on and, i am trying to slow down because i want to make sure this country
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does not have an epidemic. i was not successful. but it went through the process. that has only been one month ago. how can the process work that way and expedient leeann and come to a halt now? it does not make sense? i go home and cannot explain why i am not able to have these same process with judge garland as the doctor. youoes that mean manchin:nible] sen. these are all my friends, as you know. the democrats, everybody. i consider all 99 as my friends. they know i don't go out and campaign against them, i do not raise money any -- against any
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sitting colleague. said, this isat not who we are as a country. as a senate. the body should be at a higher level. indiscernible] i cannot comprehend that, i cannot process that. [indiscernible] manchin: once you develop relationships, you never try to say, how come you're wrong and i am right? that is not dialogue. the dialogue is, give me an understanding of your position so i can better understand the position. i might not agree with that but i can respect the position. what iso find out --
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wrong with this country that we cannot still be civil. can you talk about gun rights and how that will affect your decision? i have been: briefed up on all of this and we are going to have a discussion on a lot of issues. coming out against this nomination, regulations and environmental law you will be talking about -- manchin: we will talking up -- we will talk about my constituents and the whole nation. this again is to my friends who have not shown a desire to talk to judge garland, i cannot answer the questions you are asking me until last them in the way you are asking me.
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why not? them why, this is who we are. >> we appreciate you putting your good name out there and your lifetime experience. manchin: thank you all. you. announcer: senator chuck grassley a of iowa has said repeatedly he will not hold a confirmation hearing to fill the supreme court justice vacancy this year. he discussed this on the senate floor for 20 minutes.
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grassley: that we have a unique opportunity for american people to have a voice in the direction of the supreme court. the american people should be afforded the opportunity to weigh in on this important manner. our side, meaning the republican side, believes very strongly the people deserve to be heard and they should be allowed to decide to their vote for the next president d type of person that should be on the supreme court. as i have stated previously, approach, aasonable fair approach, and in historical approach. one at guard then-chairman the senator schumer, and other senators. and i might say it was something that was practiced during president lyndon baines johnson
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administration and it was also something that happened during the eisenhower administration. theother side, meaning democratic side, has been talking a great deal about the so-called pressure campaign to try to get to members to change their position. secret that to the white house strategy is to put pressure on this chairman of the judiciary committee and other republicans in the hopes that we can be worn down and ultimately agreed to hold hearings on the nominee. this pressure campaign, which is targeted at me and a handful of my colleagues, is based on the supposition that to i and they forward onand move the consideration of president obama's pick.
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this strategy has failed to recognize that i am no stranger to political pressure and to strong-arm tactics. not necessarily for more democrat residents but from more republican presidents. when i make a decision based on sound principle i am not about to flip flop because the left has organized what they call a pressure campaign. colleagues, and especially my constituents, no, i have done battle with administrations of both parties. i have fought over responsible budgets, waste, fraud, policy disagreements. tough decisions. i have stuck with those tough decisions regardless of what pressure was applied. the so-called pressure being applied to me now is nothing.
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it is absolutely nothing compared to what i have withstood from heavy-handed white house political operations in the past will stop in and let me say, by the way, most of that has come from republican white house is. -- republican white houses. a new member of the senate and a brand-new member of the senate budget committee, i voted against the first president reagan's first budget proposal because we were promised a balanced budget and it did not balance. specifically a budget committee markup april -- apriln president 1981 on president reagan's first
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budget. i was not alone, i was one of three republicans to vote against that resolution because it did not put us on a path to a balanced budget and you can imagine when a budget has come a partyline vote, you cannot lose three republicans. republicans that were elected on 1980 on a promise to balance the budget did not go along with it. what a loss it was for this new president reagan, that his budget might not get adopted by the budget committee. we were under immense pressure objecton the president's regardless of the deficits it would cause. principle andn did not succumb to the pressure. just as an example, right after that wrote, that was not voted on the budget committee, i was home on a spring recess like we
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just had here when all of this stuff on these supreme court comes up at our town meeting. i remember calls from the white house. i remember threats from the chamber of commerce when i was home on easter break. even interrupting my town meetings. i led the later, charge to free spending and to end the reagan defense buildup as a way to get the federal budget under control. the year was 1984. i teamed up with senator biden, a democrat, and senator kassebaum of kansas, a republican, to propose a freeze of the defense budget that would have cut hundreds of billions of dollars from the annual deficit. now, funny at the time, it was
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-- grassley budget because it did not fit in with -- because it came out kgb defense freeze, but it should glb freezehe gk be - . but i guess you can tell the logic of why it became the kgb freeze, but it does not matter. budgets were responsible. whether it was defense or anything else. so for months i endured pressure from the reagan administration and from my republican colleagues that argued a freeze on defense spending would constitute unilateral disarmament. president reagan had put together a less aggressive deficit reduction plan.
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it went farick enough. my bipartisan plan was attacked for being dangerous and causing for coney and cuts to the defense budget. listed -- is really knew it was a realistic response and i did not act out. we 2, 1984, budget committee forced a vote on the senate floor and that particular year we were not successful. required the senate and the nation to have a debate about the growing defense budget. about the that debate waste and the growing federal despite theits weeks-long pressure from conservatives and the reagan administration i did not back down because i knew the policy was on my side.
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, i stood up to pressure from president reagan, defense secretary caspar weinberger, secretary barry goldwater, chairman of the committee and many others. i remember meeting at the white house. i reminded the president ian khama talking to the campaign about the welfare queens fraudulently on the budget. it happens that i reminded him queens as was defense well. i started doing oversight in the defense department, and it was not long until the evidence of waste and fraud appeared. we uncovered defense contractors 400 34 4:00 hammer, $695 for ashtrays. pot cost $7,600.
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a coffeepot that cost $7,600. i had no problem finding democrats to join my oversight effort accident. but it is somehow interesting how hard it is to find bipartisan help when doing oversight in the third democrat administration. nevertheless, on december 2, 1985, after one year of work to make the case the defense department needed structural reforms and slower spending growth, i was successful. to freeze the defense budget and allow for increases based on inflation was agreed to when a motion to table of 48-51.a vote a majority of the republicans oppose me and a more majority of the democrats were with me. that did not matter because i knew we were doing the right thing. i went against my own party, my
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-- toesident, the whole hold the pentagon accountable and i never backed off. i had a similar experience with president george w. bush 1991. in january 1991 the senate debated a resolution to authorize the use of united states armed forces to remove president saddam hussein's forces from kuwait. i am posted because i felt what i just voted for should of been time to work. i was not ready to give up on sanctions in favor of war. was one of just two republicans, along with senator hatfield of war gone to oppose the resolution. i was under pressure from president bush, vice president quayle, white house chief of staff john sununu, i was even
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pressured by then-i was governor terry branstad. from a lot of iowans, particularly republicans who were disappointed and even angry with my position. even considering a public review because of my vote. being one of just two republicans, it was difficult to differ with a republican president on such a major issue but as i stated at the time, my decision was above any partisanship. it was a decision of conscience rather than republican versus democrat. after a tremendous amount of soul-searching, i did what i thought was right regardless of the political pressure. now, the same is true today with regard to the supreme court vacancy.
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under president george w. bush i faced another dilemma. president of the new republican congressional leadership determined after president george w. bush was elected president on a policy to get tax cuts done and i agreed with that policy, that they wanted to provide a one in 6/10 or you and dollar tax relief. i was chairman of the senate finance committee. the problem is we had a senate that was divided 50-50 at the time. the parties numbers were equal also, not only in the senate but on the senate finance committee. my side whobers on were reluctant to support a tax cut because they had concerns about the deficit. as we saw a few years later, their concerns were not totally unwarranted but at the time the
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administration leadership would have nothing to do with anything except what the presidential wanted. 16 sent of a trillion dollars tax increase. the white house was not thinking anything about what republicans might vote against an aunt when you have a 50-50 senate, you cannot lose a lot of republicans. after very difficult negotiations i cap -- finally rounded up enough votes. what happened? there was a hailstorm of criticism. there were republican house members who help press conferences denouncing the fact i was not able to achieve the and 6/10 trillion dollars. now, those house members were more professional in their criticism then we witness almost currenty with the
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minority leader about my role of chairman of the judiciary committee. but it was still a very contentious and difficult. -- very contentious and difficult time that included the process. minority leader reid has already brought up the pressure i came under in regard to obamacare in two thousand nine. of course his version is his usual attempt to rewrite actual history. at that time i was ranking member of the finance committee. involved in a very in-depth negotiation to try to come up with a health care solution. we started november 2008. etween three republicans and three democrats on the finance committee. met hours and hours, almost time
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consuming totally. so we met in november, 2008, and mid september, 2009, and then they decided that they -- the other side decided they ought to go political and not worry about republicans. the minority leader in his very unusual, inaccurate statement of facts about ten days ago, about three days before the recess, he's trying to say that republicans walked out of those negotiations on obamacare. the fact is we were given a deadline and told in that deadline that if we didn't agree with the latest draft of the bill, then the democrats would have to move on. and i would ask anybody in the senate that wants some reference on this talk to senator snowe,
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senator enzi. i was the other republican. talk to senator baucus. talk to senator conrad. and then the then-senator from new mexico. the president called six of us down to the white house early august of 2009, and the first question i got, would you, senator grassley, be willing to go along with two or three republicans to have a bipartisan bill with obamacare at that point, and i said, mr. president, the answer is no because what do you think we have been working on for nine months? we have been working trying to get a broad bipartisan agreement. it's something like 70-75 votes that you're trying to get if you really want to change social policy and have it stick.
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we didn't abandon this until 2009, but my idea is that probably it was that meeting at the white house early august, 2009, where this president decided we don't want to mess around with those republicans any more, we have got 60 votes, we're going to move ahead. well, that happened then in that september. the fact is we were given that deadline and we were shoved out of the room, so when we didn't bow to this pressure and agree to the democrat demands, that's -- it ended up being a partisan document, and that's why it still doesn't have majority support of the american people. i want the minority leader to know that's what happened, not what he described a couple of weeks ago. eventually, as we all know, the former majority leader, now minority leader, had his staff
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rewrite the bill that came out of the health committee and came out of the finance committee and the secret of the back rooms of his leadership office, and we ended up with a disaster that's called obamacare that we have today. the senate minority leader also recently proclaimed that rather than follow leader mcconnell mcconnell -- and these are senator reid's words -- republicans are sprinting in the opposite direction. the minority leader also wishfully claimed that the republican facade was cracking on the issue. senator schumer fancifully stated -- quote -- "because of the pressure, republicans are beginning to change." end of quote. you can almost hear the ruby slippers on the other side
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clicking while they wish this narrative they describe about us on this side of the aisle were true. the fact is the pressure they have applied thus far has had no impact on this senator's principal position, and i would have to say the principal position of almost everybody on this side of the aisle, and on this side of the aisle, the people that disagree with us, i wouldn't say that they're unprinted. i'd just say they're wrong. our side knows and our side believes that what we're doing is right, and when that's the case, it's not hard to withstand the outrage and the pressure they have manufactured and the the -- the headquarters for that is the white house.
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this pressure then as i have given you this whole thing about my career in the united states senate and the more opposition i have had from republican presidents putting pressure on me that i have been able to withstand, this pressure we're getting on this issue pales in some pair son to what i have endured and withstood mostly from republican presidents, but now, of course, i face it from the democrats. i yield the floor. >> judge garland will meant with senator grassley on tuesday. the judge will meet with other republican senators this week. on wednesday, he will meet with senator kelly ayotte. on thursday, ohio senator portman. he will also meet with senator
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flake and senator murkowski in alaska although those times have not then announced. now, a discussion on retirement accounts and whether americans are saving enough with their retirement needs. from washington journal, this is 40 minutes. us now is christian weller. he is the author of the book retirement on the rocks. he is also a public policy professor. the white house has new rules targeting the conflict of interest between financial advisors who help americans plan for retirement.
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what would these rules do? guest: we need to take a step back. that many people prepared for retirement outside of so security for a pension plan from their employer. the employer done with the financial service industry and people invested the money. we'vehe past 30 years, moved to sink or swim retirement plans. 401(k)s, individual retirement accounts. people have to figure out how to invest the money and how much to pay in terms of fees. the distinction between a 401(k) and an ira is very critical. are with employers. there is a lot of regulatory structure and legal structure to make sure that the employers are doing the best they can for their employees. they have lowest fees and lowest
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risks. on the iras, they have been growing very quickly. that same structure doesn't apply. that is the individual that happens to negotiate a multitude of different investment options. fidelityypically with or another brokerage. money andere is my you tell me what i should invest in. problem is the rules that govern iras in particular are weaker than the rules that protect individuals in a 401(k). this new rule is trying to address that. it's trying to strengthen consumer protections. it it says the standard to which we hold the people who give the advice, if you go to the bank and say this is $100,000 and i
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want to invest that, the rules that govern that advice are being strengthened. there are two things here. the rule has a lot of different pieces to it. ups the standard. it raises the bar to which we hold the advisors. giving advice are on how people should invest, you are being held to the same standard that someone who gives advice to a 401(k). the distinction is here that it used to be you gave only suitable advice. the other new rule is it discloses more of the fees that the advisor gets. sometimes you as an investor bringing your money and you pay some fees to the advisor. sometimes the advisor makes money.
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there are range of different options. they will get a commission. they have to disclose how much they will get. that's fair. people should make money for work. if somebody sells a far -- fund are they steering me towards the plan that gives me advice or the highest commission. that's with the new rule is trying to get at. it will be for the rest interest of the participant. ultimately, that's the goal to reduce the costs. the individual has more money
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that will be available to them in the future for retirement. those who are giving financial advice may not be 'bestg in the clients interest. this is the fiduciary standard you were explaining. how much transparency is there currently? aboutch do people know the system under which people giving them advice can make money? rules andre are some regulations in terms of what firms have to disclose. you can look at the fees. it's not all fees that are disclose. ,he most important part of fees you have to remember that fees especiallyportant, if you have a reasonably large account balance. sound like may not
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that much over 30 years, you are robbing yourself of tens of thousand dollars. reducing your fees is very important. generally, there are two problems with the fees. the first is they are not all disclosed. you can see the administrative investment fees. expense ratio. what you often don't know is the third-party commission. else payingsomebody ? are you paying indirectly for interactions between the advisor who is selling you another investment product? that's what the new rule tries to get at. is many of the rules and fees are disclosed,
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but they are hidden on page 12 of a prospectus. the rule does not say how you have to disclose it, it says you can't hide them. that is an important point. the white house estimates that it can save investors $17 billion each year. that's about 1% of the annual returns of investors in their retirement savings. i want to bring in our callers as well. you can start dialing in. if you're under 40 there is a number. caller: thank you very much and
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good morning. what i would like to say is this. if you study statistics carefully, you can go back to about 1950 forward. patriotismrporate and there is financial patriotism. my wife worked at gm. the 401(k) was designed to supplement it. asyou study your history, the corporations and the ports realized how this was working, they transitioned over this. now the burden is on the worker as opposed to the corporation. you willudy history find that during the reagan administration, the loopholes and the laws of her past allowed a lot of hostile takeovers. this has all been constructed deliberately.
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of responsibility corporations and people working for companies should go back to the way it was. this is not healthy. people don't understand the stuff like corporations did. they protected themselves and consequently we were protected. i'm 68. i get on social security and i get a pension. i quit work and 58 because i wanted to enjoy my life. stressed up to be to 70 years old. a lot of people have a nest egg. that's another con. people should not have to work until they are almost dead before they can enjoy some of life. this is from the national institute on retirement security. million to not own assets
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in a retirement account. they showed the breakdown by age group. 45 and 54, 10.5 million do not have any assets in a retirement account. that's the largest number of any age group. how prepared are we? are not particularly well-prepared, and the situation is getting worse. the basic data point i would pull out is about 52% of working aged households can expect to make cuts in their standard of living when they retire. we have had a growing crisis. the other part is the crisis is much worse for communities of women than it is
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for their counterparts. the problem is we have lived through a period of rising economic insecurity. wages have become less stable. wage growth has beenmake cuts if living when they weak. the housing market has become unstable. all of these things together basically would have said, from a policy perspective, getting people to save more for retirement, people need to make is secure.st egg especially those with more volatility in the labor market. in the policy issue, we have risks, more people more risks onsive growing
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their own. we did not offer people the right protections. we can talk about what those mean. host: let's get another caller, jason from california. you are calling in on the under 40 line. have you started planning for retirement? caller: yes, i have. i find it a little bit difficult. as an accounting student, i have been taught that one has to assess the securities markets very carefully, and research securities. it is his sleep -- hideously difficult to get the data, and especially difficult for those savvy. not financially
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even with roles -- rules, it will be difficult for anyone to choose securities carefully, much less with brokers were incentivize and are to push bad securities. host: that is jason from los angeles, california. for investors who don't think their age and are -- agents are acting in their agents are acting in the best interest, what is the recourse? guest: let me start by answering
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jason. jose can answer the other questions at the same time. most people have other jobs, they are not financial experts, .nd they don't want to be that is why we expect them to turn to something else. in the ira world, with -- this raises the bar. the point is you will not necessarily fix anything in
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terms of the retirement crisis, ule is important to lower risks. that is important. the question is what happens if your advisor does not follow the you, and does not give advice that is the best interest of you. the recourse primarily is through the court system. a class-action suit is the primary way of going after it fighters who don't have the best interest of the clients. that as of total fees irm financial service f earns, you can do just that from the annual statement. host: the rules of conflict of interest in the white house have kind of official,
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years in the making. here's a statement about regulations. host: we're talking again with christian weller author of, "retirement on the rocks." is this an area that the government should be regulating? guest: absolutely. retirement,s to there are two things here. the first is the government already subsidizes all these investments through the tax code. the government has a big stake at making this work. they are subsidizing this. want people to do this.
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they want to make sure the money is there for retirement. they don't give tax breaks so can makencial firms money. they do it so people can save for retirement. this is incredibly complex. you have to rely on some employees are financial service firms to make this work. because of the complexity, there is an unlevel playing field between the people who have the knowledge and the individual in the government. and that -- in that case, the government should step into level the playing field. the fees should be very clear. you should know how much it costs to investor money, and who the advisor is working for. they are working for the investor, but also for themselves, they want to make money. , with theirbe known
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commission is. i know, they give me advice, but they also have their own interests at heart. steve.ur next caller is how do you feel that retirement? are you prepared? caller: no, not even close. with the decline in wages for the vast majority of people -- .nd talking real wages mr. weller is a trained economist, so he should know what i'm talking about. with the decline in real wages, my ability to save money is virtually impossible. and want to ask a couple of questions. you are where the a money supply you are aware that debt.ney supply is
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with the entire money supply being debt, you add into that safe law markets. the only way that person can save money is is you consume less than you produce. inis impossible for everyone the economy to save money because it is impossible for everyone to consume less than you produce. for every person that consumes less, someone else has to do the exact opposite. the only way they can do that is debt.urring if you look at the global economy, you have a vast majority of people in debt, and they have to be. when you compound that with an unconstitutional monetary system based on debt, it is
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mathematically impossible for the vast majority of people to have savings. could you comment? i don't want to go too much into monetary theory, but the point is well taken that rising income inequality and stagnant wages make it harder for people to say. it does not make it impossible. when we look at what kind of help people get to save, most of go to high income .arners very little goes to low income
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earners. if we redesign it, we can have better tax credits go to low income earners. you put in $.50, and the government gives you one .ollars, in tur i don't want to say that changing policy can solve all of the problems. inequality.ddress economyhave a growing with rising wages, with rising incomes, with rising savings, and continue to grow. new jersey is up next. what is your comment or question. caller: am i on? host: you are on the air. started a roth ira
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back in 1990. basically, i was with one over to and i switched one through my wife's company. , know that her regular 401(k) or whatever it is, i guess they watch out for the best interest , it is set upring for the conservative, and goes up the line. one 56 now, and it won't not quite conservative. , i said, let me gamble a little more.
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they are telling me i should go work conservative, as i get older. i'm watching the stock market bounce up and down. it seems like the ira and the less withs more or what the general stock get is doing. to change? guest: the short answer is i cannot give that advice on the air. i also cannot give that advice in person. on how tonvest money structure my investments, not only for the rest of my working life, but also as they move into retirement, how do i then stretch the money i have saved over my career into retirement income? what kind of insurance product should i buy?
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how does it fit together with my house? join you be want to sell my house and move to a smaller one or larger one? all complexities the people face as they get older. they do need a partner. there is important role for financial advisors to say, you have a house, retirement savings, and as you older, how do these things fit together. the important part is most of us are not financial advisors. most of us are not financial experts. we do need a financial advisor to help us, and guide us to make the right decision. the partner i work with, yes, they should make money as they mee me advice, as they lend expertise, but want to make sure the advisor is in the best interest of me.
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as you said, i want to be less conservative, more conservative, i'm willinge risks to take, i want to be in your my kids come i don't want to be near my kids -- you have goals, and you can specify them. the financial advisor say, this is how much money i will and as i keep you the advice. i think that is reasonable. when the plumber comes to repair your toilet, i know much that will cost me, and i should know how much it will cost me to make a long-term plan for financial advice. host: you argue in your book that people are not prepared for retirement, and that is dangerous, as they get into older age, especially with onslaught of baby boomers retiring. policy fixr top to put people back on the road for retirement?
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guest: that is the gist of my .ook, there is no silver bullet we can fix little things here and there. the fiduciary role that just came out from the department of labor is one example of a small step in the right direction. we need many of these small steps. we need to update social security, raise the bottom of social security. we need to make it easier for people to save outside of the employer relationship. sometimes through nonprofits, churches could step into the space. there are different ways. we need better disclosure forisks involved in saving retirement. code.d to change the tax we can reform the tax code, and give the biggest incentives to lower income people. we can simplify the savings rule
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. right now there are 12 different savings plans. we could streamline that. i would argue for one saving plan. there are many things. we can to the fight, update social security, have more risk protections, and create more options outside of the employer world for people to save. each one of these steps will help to address the retirement crisis. there is no magic silver bullet to fix the problem overnight, but every step counts. the fiduciary rule is one step in the right direction an example of what we can do relatively easily, even though it took five years to get there. host: do you envision ever returning to a pension system in this country, or is the era of defined benefits basically over for american workers? guest: i think what everyone is
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looking for is generally something called a hybrid system . benefit system works well in some instances, particularly well when there is a number of employers coming together, and the pension plan is a separate company. it happens in the public sector for state and local governments. work well is often defined pension plans attached to one employer. the employer is an airline, or car manufacturer. that is what they want to do. they want to make cars, fireplace, they don't want to manage multimillion dollar plans. that is where the problem comes in. the other part is we know there are problems with defined contribution plans. that in thelexity
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more than help people. is there a way to between them? can we establish new entities at a low cost,ns low risk. one example is multiple employer plans. the idea is the financial service firm can bring together a number of small employers. this is a new rule, regulation that everyone supports, both republicans and democrats. a low risk, low cost plan. that is a hybrid model. it brings together money. you can layer on options that look like a pension, but are not really a pension. you can do that in a cost-efficient way.
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that is generally, when you ask people, where they want to go. you take the best from benefits world, low cost, low fees, the risk, and bring in some choices, and take away responsibilities of the employer. i think that tends to be -- there are different ways, that is just one example that is currently in the books. allhybridization works around the world. host: let's hear from more callers. covington, georgia. you are calling on the line for those reaching retirement. what is your situation? and 67 myself. to be honest, i'm from the world where the 401(k)s were put in place by the witnesses. moving forward, with the younger people, and what we have point on in the job market today, with some people working with
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agencies, some businesses going out of his, if the government plan like the a way social security works, with the government in control of it. you give incentive to any company that would take money from this person, it would go into a 401(k) pot, and you would get a statement like you would on social security, showing what you're running record is, and in addition, since we are starting this out fresh, i think that 2%-3% could be devoted towards coming off the top, letting the , it will come off downop towards paying national debt. this is to get america on a more secure foundation. i think this would work.
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i think people believe in social security. then, you would not get into -- you know, you have so many different companies. the company that makes you feel fill out this application will get an incentive from the government to allow them to do this. you are paying down the national debt. long-term, a lot of younger people can feel more positive about themselves because it doesn't matter if they have 10 different types of jobs, they will have this running record. host: let's get in another caller. then, we will hear from our guest. next, larry from minnesota. i'm concerned about the latest thing going on in wall street, where they are short selling stocks to the point they are robbing the life savings of people from across the country. basically, we should either outlaw shortselling, where
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everyone out there should take the retirement funds, put them in government bond funds, where they cannot be short sold. you can get 1%, maybe 2% on that money. if you have a 401(k) that matches at six or more, you will be able to hold on, and turn it into seven or eight. that, youare not -- will not get in the market right now. going intoat they're the market place after they savingsthe stock, your will pay back their so-called stock loans. host: christian weller, your thoughts. guest: i think the two questions are nicely dovetailing on each other. the first is should we have
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socialng outside of security that is to some degree mandatory. we are actually going in that direction. it is not a federal initiative. it is largely state. there are about 28 states looking to establish private options for workers. illinois and california are looking at those options. airport,up the first and part of the paycheck automatically goes into an irony employee, have designated. the california model is little different. every employer has to get the employees to contribute, and enroll them in the state-sponsored program.
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you then invest in something low cost, low risk, low fees. you always say no. -- you could always say no. that seems to be the model that people are looking at, and the government is encouraging that through new regulations that would make it easier for the state to do it for the private sector worker. i think there is a general groundswell for doing something in terms of savings for people who don't have savings through the state who can negotiate employeesls for the that individuals can. the question is, how should we invest the money? the economy and individuals have different appetites for risks, and the economy has different needs. someone to invest in the stock market, someone to invest in
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government bonds. in all of these things, we should give people some choice. the problem is when we give them 2000 investment choices, it does not lead to good outcomes. if we give them five choices, they can handle that. all of the investment option should be on the table. we know from the thrift savings plan for federal government employee work is that it works well when you give people five investment options. from over stivers, and people can mix and match. that works for the economy, for the individual, and we know that is the standard model around the world. host: next is mike from california. you are calling on the 61 and older line, do you feel like you are prepared for retirement? caller: i have already retired, i'm collecting social security.
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ryan wanted to privatize social security, and give a percentage to wall street. we all know what happened after that. wall street went belly up. thousands of americans lost tons of money. wall street walked away. we built -- the health amount -- bailed them out. , could this beme good or bad for america? i don't feel like getting screwed over twice. the idea of social security privatization, which was championed by george w. bush use005, the idea was to ine money that people pay individual towns, and some people manage that money. the more we knew about the plan,
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it got more and more confiscated. it basically left people with very few choices, but exposed them to a lot of us. privatization of social security is unpopular. there is no politician, in my .ind, who is pushing that even paul ryan has backed off social security card efficient. the idea now is to leave social security alone, strengthen it update it. at the other end, do something better outside of social security. make it easier for people to save, and protect those savings through lower fees. .hat is the fiduciary role
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also, make it easier for people to understand the risk, for the commit proper choices that online better with their own preferences. if i don't want to invest in something risky, i should know that i'm not investing in something risky. if i want to, i should know what the options are, and what the risks are. there is room for disclosure, ideafor your fees, but the to get more people to save through something like state-sponsored retirement plans, redefining of the tax code, and make sure that people get to keep all of their money, most of their money for themselves. host: amassed caller is christina from maine, calling on the 61 and older line. go ahead. caller: hello? host: you are on the air. caller: thank you and thank you for taking my call. i guess i had a comment and
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question. my first comment is unfortunately, when financial companies talk about what management, they are talking about maintaining their own wealth. my situation, unfortunate, when i retired early because of illness, i was encouraged by my financial planner to roll over my pension into a variable annuity with hidden fees. it's a months going through the contract action find all the hidden fees. is there any retroactive for was the person has in this kind of situation? host: your final thoughts? isst: i'm not sure if it retroactive. i think it grandfathers old contracts. the example is exactly why the old rule is nothin necessary.
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ands meant to disclose fees offer some recourse through the courts, if things go wrong. the important part is as we move forward, we need a strong social security system, we need to update social security, for instant, by creating a real benefit, the people don't have. to get going on making easier for people who need to save more to save more, redefined the tax code, lower , and wherever we can better disclose, and offer more risk protection so that people can be sure the money will be there when they need it. host: christian weller is a public policy professor at the university of massachusetts. his book is, "retirement on the
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morning, thenday national security team at the center for american progress examining the speech by ashton carter. touted as the most sweeping in a generation. then the director of the international consortium of investigative journalism talks about the impact of the plant to panama. havens like the to protestn in washington this weekend. washington journal at 7:00, join the discussion. general david rodriguez given up it on the
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fight against isis and other terrorist groups. this briefing is 35 minutes. in north africa, the big threat there revolves around libya and the growing threat of isis in the region. we have worked with many partners there to help that situation out, from the european union, which has a strong mission in the mediterranean sea to mitigate the challenges of migration, to tunisia, where we are continuing to build from a significant partner capacity, as well as chad, who also are
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challenging borders in the area . that continues if you look from libya down to the southwest border, a challenge. the french are leading the effort there and we support the french and their leadership in the task force across and although he over to molly, where they are leading the efforts there. down in west africa, the challenges built around boko haram and the threat in northeast nigeria which also overlaps into niger, chad, cameroon. we're working there with all of those partners to help them improve their capacity to defeat boko haram, doing significantly
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-- significant intelligence sharing leading the effort there. with that, i will take your questions. >> on libya, what is your assessment right now of the number of islamic state fighters that are in libya? give us some perspective on how the threat is changing from isis. the president during his meetings raise the possibility that perhaps nato might be able to help the islamic state fight there. how do you see this going forward? is the u.s. hampered taking straights there now because of the government chaos or is it the lack of intel? >> first of all, in libya, u.s. intelligence community has says -- said it is around 4000 to 6000, probably about doubled in the last 12 to 18 months based on what their assessments were last year.
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first, the huge effort around libya by all the african partners have insignificant, let mainly by tunisia, which has done a tremendous job of holding capacity and working challenges across the border, as well as niger who has had a long-term effort to disrupt lines of communication, as well as chad who is worried about challenges in southern libya. you asked about nato, they are looking at what they can do based on the discussion you mentioned. if you remember a couple of years ago, nato had signed up in that situation to help with some of the capacity building and the institution and strategic planning effort for libya.
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on your other question about what we are hampered by, right now, we are continuing to go after targets that pose an imminent threat to personnel and that was the case with the leader of isis as well as the effort recently. we continue to do that. >> as a follow-up, since the number has doubled, are you not able to see targets, and is it a lack of isr? we understand training camps in libya, what are the hurdles you are seeing? >> going after continuing threats to u.s. personnel, we are continuing to do that.
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we will continue to develop situations in our efforts in accordance with their development. thank you. yes, ma'am? >> where are you seeing most of these fighters coming from? where are they coalescing? are they developing a capital in libya? gen. rodriquez: for the threat of isis in libya, their largest and biggest strong point, they have a presence out in the east
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in benghazi as well as over in the west. as far as where the fighters are coming from, the foreign fighter flow goes back and forth across north africa, not only internal to north africa, which get -- which generates all the foreign fighters across syria and iraq, but the fighters who have come back some have just moved over and pledged allegiance to isis, who were already there. >> in the past week or 10 days, al-shabaab specifically, one targeted like 150 fighters. has there been a change in the last several weeks? is there some imminent attack the u.s. is aware of? what has changed in the last few weeks? are these targets of opportunity?
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do these have a real impact? gen. rodriquez: yes, in al-shabaab over the last several months, they have evolved what their tactics and mode of operation in somalia. what they have done is the pattern they gather and trained a significant number of people, they disperse an attack and focus the energy, that has had a negative impact on a companies because they have lost multiple types of these attacks. the one you are mentioning is defensive fire to protect. we were not sure exactly which one they were going through although we have multiple intel streams. there were 10 outposts in a couple of hours at that site.
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they took defensive fires to prevent that. one was a strike against the high-value target. there have been a couple of ones in defense of techniques to prevent casualties to the partners. thank you. >> can we go back to libya for a minute? do you believe that the foreign fighters and the fighters in libya, that their goal is to attack in the west whether it is europe or the united states to plot and plan and train for external attacks? do you think that is their goal?
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gen. rodriquez: yes, that has been their aspirations all the time. they are continuing with the same threats isis is making. yes. >> what i don't understand, if the u.s. believes that is the goal, doubling the fighters in libya, i guess the question is, why only two strikes, essentially, against them? gen. rodriquez: their level of what they are doing. the strikes that we continue to do against the ones that have a continuing threat, they are not as far along in their ability to do that. >> i apologize, i really do not understand. gen. rodriquez: what we are going after and we continue to go after are the ones that have imminent threat to u.s. personnel and facilities.
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not the intent to do that, the ones who do that. ok? >> when you look at libya right now and the presence in libya, what is your top concern? gen. rodriquez: the top concern about that presence is really the challenge it presents for any movement for the government so they can reduce the chaos there. that chaos contributes to the migration issues. it continues to some of the threats to libya and the threats external to libya as in the situation with tunisia. >> two questions, on libya, how confident are you that the forces with whom the united
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states and its partners might work or support in the future, the remnants of the libya national army, how confident are you that they can set aside the differences they had is 2011 and especially 2014 to conduct the ground operations needed not just to clear isis out but to impose order throughout the country? that is on libya. the second question regarding al-shabaab, they are also following up on courtney's question. there were reports of an strike last night. can you comment on that? gen. rodriquez: on the first one, that is really the second major challenge of the government and national word as they work with malicious and how strong their allegiance will be. there are more and more people
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in libya focusing their efforts against isis and against each other. and that is part of the challenge, because of the conflicts between militias. i think because it is all about the power and the influence, it will depend how the government actually develops and bring those people alongside to be part of the future. as far as the ability to actually conduct operations and activity, it is a wide range of activities. some of them are really good and some of them are just fair, relatively speaking for the malicious and national army. it will really be determined by how well an effective those militias support the g&a that really makes the difference in the end. they were talking about the
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fires to protect the people we were working with. ok. >> i have a couple of questions about the shabab girls. kidnapped. an outcry across the world. can you tell us what the u.s. military has done, what it plans to do and what is hampering you finding and helping to release these girls? gen. rodriquez: thank you. the shabab girls were taken by the book around milton's and harame taken by the boko
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and taken to isolated places. the u.s., not just the military but the entire intelligence community, sharing information with the nigerian military as well that they had anything to do with anything near the anders basically of chad cameroon over the last just under two years. the efforts involved in that effort have reduced the area that boko haram maintains control over and has opened up major lines of communication. now, boko haram operates out of a terrain that is pretty tough to get at and to get to. all the international community and efforts continue to develop intelligence to help get the growth back and also release not only the girls, but also a huge number of people they have
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kidnapped and are holding against their will. cahdigerian as well as the cameroonian military have gained a lot of freedom for many of those overtime. some of them have been found in different things. it is not an exact science and they are not all in one place. many of the people detained against their will include many of the girls who have been recovered. >> i wanted to take another stab at this unity government issue. i think a lot of us have an hearing folks say, it is established, the light turns on, and allies could go in and u.s. could potentially get more involved in libya.
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i wonder if you could help make us a little bit smarter on what changes currently understand the idea of a viable partner on the ground, but what changes in terms of what the u.s. would be able to do post unity government that you could not do in some fashion now? gen. rodriquez: it really depends on what that government wants the community to do. because the government is just getting his feet under itself
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there, as you can even today, one of the former political leaders is not now fledging allegiance as they were yesterday. this will take some time for them to move these things forward. the united nations and the international community, as well as many of the libyan people, are starting to move to support this. but it will be driven by their leadership and what they want the international community to do. a lot of planning efforts are going on if you look at what is happening in italy with the international assistant mission to assist the libyan forces integrated into a cohesive security forces. it is really going to be driven on how the government and national court develops over time and where they need the support. >> part of the question is what is your assessment of the allies -- without a unity government and what is the risk of playing the waiting game?
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gen. rodriquez: i think the allies will do it based on the threats to themselves. imminent threat to themselves. that is where i think they would do that. that would be as until something changes in the government. >> i would like to ask you a little bit about the chinese military and ask you, what is your take on the chinese intent for the facility, and more broadly, how much more chinese military activity are you seeing it ross africa and to what extent is that affecting your operations? gen. rodriquez: the chinese activity throughout the military has been all inside the united nations missions, as part of the peacekeepers there, it is not that big of a number. they have no real impact on any of the activities we are doing.
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in the base we are starting to build, just like everybody expects us to live in accordance with standards, there would be no impact on our freedom to conduct the things we desire to take. they have for a long time had a presence out in the indian ocean with the whole international community, reduce the piracy off of somalia. not only the u.s. but also the international nations. they are building a logistics ace and a support structure to help those efforts out because it is a long way from home. >> thank you so much for doing this briefing today.
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going back to those buyers you referenced, i would just hearing about them for the first time? also, is the definition broader because it talks about partners on the ground. it is no longer that they are a threat to america in forces. gen. rodriquez: it is a threat to both our partners and ourselves. there has been no change or broadening on anything. the two things that i think that
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have changed over time was the evolving tactics of al-shabaab, and the second thing is that as the contributing countries and the national army develops and grows, they will be more active and i think that is the thing that has driven that. >> and also german our increase in participation such as helicopter or for the somali forces? >> yes. because the only have the threat -- capacity to do some of these things. >> how many personnel are somalian and how would you characterize what the rules are? gen. rodriquez: i will not give you exact numbers because it fluctuates. what we're doing is advising and assisting to selected organizations in contributing countries and the somalian national army. thank you. there any forces on the ground stopping the growth of
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isis, and if there is not, does the fact that a double over the last 12 to 18 months, do they run the risk of the same situation in syria where they could sweep out and start taking lines elsewhere? themselves, both the remnants of the libyan national, the militias, they have got you know significant numbers and groups of them. and yes, they are stopping isis from growing and trying to do that the best they can. they have had some success over in the east and on benghazi. they have challenge them and have not been as successful. they have also challenge them and have been a little successful. there are forces on the ground doing that, mainly the foreign
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libyan national army or libyan militias. they sometimes fight amongst themselves and based on power and history and everything else. so that is why the challenge of the court is to bring them together, to get rid of isis. >> the situation sounds an awful lot like what is previously in syria where you have these groups fighting against one another. doesn't that offer a breeding ground for isis to do the exact same thing, to sweep out? gen. rodriquez: i think it is significantly harder for isis to do that inside of libya because they do not have the homegrown people who know as much about libya like they did in the iraq and syria.
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it is different conditions. libyan people are also different in the way they treat and respond to foreigners. all of that has an impact. the majority of libyan malicious, first of all, they can fight and have been fighting wrong time. they do not like external influences like that. different conditions. >> if the number of isis fighters doubled again, over the next 12 months, with the u.s. be willing to act? gen. rodriquez: that is a decision for leadership and authorities. >> do you anticipate, once the national government is set up, do you anticipate the u.s. working with them, conducting
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airstrikes against libya? do you expect that is a real possibility in the future? gen. rodriquez: the u.s. will support the government and national court here. that will be determined between the national court and the international community and how that moves forward. we will just have to see. yes, that is a possibility, as are many other things. if you look at multiple efforts, whether it is trying to get after the isis problem, or trying to build a libyan national army to bring together the militias in and around tripoli to help support the government, there is a wide range of things that can be done. the situation, and you can see
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it this morning, some guys were part of the solution and some guys were not. changed in the last few days. we will have to monitor that carefully. >> a follow-up, how concerned are you, as you watch this, that the stumbles with setting up the government will really leave the door open for isis to coalesce? is that enough? are you worried they do not have the capacity or the ability yet to take actions you want to take because of the lack of a government partner right now?
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gen. rodriquez: the effort right now and to knees to remain on the imminent threats to u.s. personnel and facilities. we have all of the authorities and resources we need to continue to do that. and we will continue to do that. that is the number one concern for us right now. now, the question, i think what you asking is when that becomes overwhelming, which it is not, then what do you do? that would have to be a policy decision if it gets to that point. it is going to be a challenge for them to get to that point because of the libyan population of people and they are out there. it is possible, but right now, i am not concerned about it. >> by then, it is a bigger
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fight. gen. rodriquez: it could be but by then, we are that carefully and taking action. >> following up on that, based on the idea the libyan population is averse to foreign elements, how much of a barrier is that for the international community on the ground? gen. rodriquez: absolutely. that is the situation any people would find themselves in. we just have to see how the governor national -- the national court develops and what they think is in their best interest and what -- how we are willing to ask -- they like everybody want to do it themselves to protect sovereign people.
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like everyone else, we would be a little bit embarrassed. that all comes out. we just have to watch that very carefully. >> with military.com. the marine crisis response -- has this replacement been affected by the invalid -- evolving threat of libya and elsewhere? gen. rodriquez: first of all, they get employed for multiple reasons. they were a huge part of their reinforcement on the libyan embassy before we relocated that. we provide reaction forces across north and west africa. as well as support for forces as well as personal recovery. they do a lot of things to support our efforts across the region. thank you. >> thank you very much for the briefing. i want to understand a little bit better. are you saying the ability of libyan militias now, that they have been able to do enough to limit the growth of the islamic state compared to how it has doubled previously?
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gen. rodriquez: in different places, you are in a different situation. in the east, in benghazi, they have fought back against the islamic state and it has made it tougher to operate. they have had activities that have limited growth and they are out there.
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it is uneven. it is not consistent across the board. as they are squeezed and pushed other places and everything, we will have to see how the situation develops. they are contesting in several areas. ok? >> to what extent do you see the islamic state and libya as a threat to the islamic state in europe? how much more to the u.s. european outliers as well as to the self? gen. rodriquez: i think the worst threat providing to the neighbors is really tunisia first. that is the biggest one. then follow the european thing, the european threats. but they have not at this point been able to project that power toward europe. aspirational this point. ok? >> as you may know, there are many in libya right now. how would you describe the
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situation -- relationship with egypt or counter the situation in libya? gen. rodriquez: diplomatic efforts are all focused on trying to eliminate the focus is that are trying to shift the balance of power in libya. so the governments, as you know, the general national congress in the west, we want to do the best we can, that they can have self-determination instead of from external influences. trying to mitigate the influences. >> i know the fresh take a lead on this, but we have seen a big jump in the last few months. how worried are you in putting aside how the french are doing and what can you do to work with -- how do you combat? gen. rodriquez: first, it is a huge, international effort. trying to help the best we can. first, the french as well as the
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u.n. mission there, with the intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance, we continue to move and support the efforts. we work with all of the partner military services, as does some of our partners who work some of their intel organizations in each of the different countries, different forces and elements have a mission to defend or protect their capitals in this case. some of them are military and some of them are police.
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some of them are intelligence. we are working across the agency as well as our international partners. the first, intelligence on all those threats, the second piece is capacity building. we have worked with several of those nations on a military force, as well as our partners in the international community and the interagency work and police forces to improve that.
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the threat of that happening continues to grow, not only the three attacks, but also the threat to many of the regions forces. i think everybody is working together to mitigate the risk the best they can and i think it will continue to be a threat because of the challenges of what al qaeda wants to a comp which. i think the evolving tactics, when you go back a couple of years to somalia, they did the same thing. they struck out and i think all of the nation understand that and are working hard to not only keep pressure on them in the combat zone, but protect their soft targets. anybody else? ok. thank you very much. >> our campaign 2016 bus continues to make stops.
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we visited phoenix, arizona, to present awards to winners from the west division. video, rethinking reform. second placeone for their video on gender equality in the workplace. then the bus stop in los angeles andthe third place winner in other areas to present awards to winners. partners,ur cable caulks, time warner cable, and comcast. tory week this month be sure watch one of the winners at six 1:50 a.m. eastern time before "washington journal." on wednesday, a discussion on the future of nato.
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program, hosted by the atlantic council, also featured a conversation with washington post editor karen d young. >> mr. secretary general, i think the size of the audience shows a huge interest in your trip. i will get back also to a couple of reasons why the interest might be a little higher than normal in nato on this trip. the council was founded with the goal of conducting constructive u.s. engagement in the world along with our closest friends and allies in europe and elsewhere. for that reason, we frequently host global leaders visiting in washington, d.c. nothing gives us more pleasure
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than hosting the secretary general of nato. these are the atlantic council's roots. nato is at the heart of our mission of working together to secure the future and it remains very much at the heart of america's role and purpose in the world. as president obama said today, nato is the linchpin of our cornerstone in the world. in particular, we are delighted that we will participate as one of nato's official public diplomacy partners at the warsaw summit. the warsaw summit comes at a time that is testing nato's ability to respond to an unprecedented array of global challenges. i will list just a couple. number one, terror attacks in brussels and paris. number two, external challenges from a resurgent russia on europe's eastern front, and the expanding instability from the
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middle east in need south. the south. third, of course, we face nato as a u.s. presidential campaign issue and see it as a chance to engage the broader public in a reaffirmation of the alliance and enduring values of specific contributions. secretary-general, you have been wise to stay clear of american domestic politics during your visit here, but we don't need to do that as the atlantic council. we actually welcome donald trump's interventions on the question of nato, because it has once again focused the united states and the importance of the alliance, the relevance of the alliance as it is today, and the specific undertakings of the alliance. i think it is the right time for this kind of public discussion and public debate. we also believe that beyond the grim recent events in europe, there is significant reason for hope. taking a step back, one sees how
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far europe has come from a painful history and centuries of bloody conflict culminating in the 20th century's two world wards before the foundation of the alliance. it is important to remember what a miracle today's alliance is. europe has never enjoyed such a long and broad measure of peace, prosperity, and democracy as it does today. it is one of history's great accomplishments, made all the more remarkable by the post world war expansion of democratic ideals and institutions. it is an accomplishment, and one well worth defending. we do not stick our heads in the sand. we know many political leaders do not view nato as central to their strategies. much of the public does question

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