tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN May 17, 2016 9:00pm-12:01am EDT
to pulling the united states back from the middle east because ending the military engagement in the middle east is the president overall goal. the president had been upfront and said he wanted to pull the u.s. out of the middle east and he would have uncovered immediately is of political backlash which would have undermined his whole project. ,he former defense secretary said as much to the "new york times" magazine. now, that is the need for a propaganda operation that to deceive the american people. it is not just to misrepresent what is in the iran deal but this represent everything around it which is the strategic goal of the president and the middle east. i would like to say a few words
if i may about what is the anatomy of the deception. bothis, the main lines of -- of paul's narrative that the war room and echo chamber put out. in my prepared statement i go into more detail. i would just summarize. number one, conjuring moderates. the echo chamber created the impression that the president of iran was a moderate coming to power, representing a wave of moderation and iran. it is i to fundamentally change relations between iran and the west. this is been the gift that keeps on giving to president obama's diplomacy. story ofs a pleasing breaking down the barriers.
it creates a moral equivalence and political terms between those who are critical of the deal in the united states and hardliners, the suppose it enemies -- suppose it enemies in iraq. it blows us into a false sense of security about all the concessions made to iran. the sunset component of the nuclear deal which is iran a completely legitimate program and the ability to move quickly towards a weapon. we are supporting a process of moderation in iran, then allowing it to have these capabilities is really no danger. second deception is falsifying the chronology of the negotiations, which began much earlier than the election. iranck to july 2012,
initiated by the united states. the third reception is a racing concessions from the united states along the lines of what mr. rubin just discussed. before that is hiding the regional cost. the president has, in effect, recognized syria as an iranian spear of influence. one of the goals of the deception of mr. rhodes is to prevent people from connecting the dots between the syria policy and the iranian nuclear policy. the fifth part of the deception is blaming allies. the white house on background is on public -- in public very willing to criticize our sunni allies as creating secretary and extremism. it is willing to criticize and very derogatory terms prime minister yahoo! of israel. minister-- prime
netanyahu of israel. now what we need to do about this. two points. number one, i agree with you chairman that we do not actually know what is in the iran deal. we still did is they do not know. i completely agree with your assessment about the activities of secretary of state kerry in europe last week. drumming up business with the iranians and they are saying this is part of the deal. is it part of the deal or is it not? we do not know. i would support further investigation. how anyone who looks at this and a season war detail ease from
around the executive branch and the white house with the job of monitoring communications and creating a false narrative in the media, is a legitimate part of the nce's mission. it should be a coordinating body, it should not be a muscular body running roughshod over the executive branch. i would add my voice to those who are saying the nce should be cut back severely from the 400 members a currently has to something more like 100. thank you. recognized mr. hannah for five minutes. on behalf of the foundation for defense and democracies, thank you for the invitation to testify on the iran nuclear deal. for me as a foreign-policy analyst, perhaps the most
important revelation made in the recent "new york times" profile of an rose with the -- profile of ben rhodes -- a purpose which until now has been largely concealed from the american people. according to the article, quote him up by eliminating the fuss nuclear program the administration hoped to eliminate a source of structural tension between the two countries, which would create a space for america to disentangle itself from its established system of alliances with countries like saudi arabia, egypt and israel, and turkey. with one bold move, the administration would effectively begin the process of a large-scale disengagement from ,, close quote. ? doesgested elsewhere, it
represent nothing less than a radical shift in american foreign-policy. according to the article, mr. rhodes's -- did not arrive from any investment in the technical details of sanctions or the future of iranian policy but rather, quote, "from his own sense of urgency, radically reorienting american policy in the middle east in order to make the prospect of any american prospect a lot less likely." whether you agree or disagree with this inclination to step back from the leadership role which the united states has played in the middle east since world war ii, the troubling fact remains that this fundamental shift in american strategy has never been openly communicated to the american people. it has never been debated by the u.s. congress, and it has never been revealed to america's longtime allies in the middle east. determining whether or not this
very substantive claim is true, that is, whether the white house is now in reality seeking to engineer a large-scale american disengagement from the middle question of vital importance to u.s. national interests. whether you agree with it or disagree, and it is one i think the congress should seek clarification on. if in fact the nuclear deal with iran is the center of the art for president obama's effort to radically transform u.s. policy come and raises a host of concerns. it casts doubt on the administration's repeated claim that no deal was better than a bad deal. to the extent that the preeminent objective instead in mr. rhodes's view was to eliminate the fuss about iran's nuclear program rather than to actually eliminate the program itself. one wonders whether the administration did demand or at a tough enough posturing in
negotiations that it might otherwise have been. concern exists now that the deal is in place and being implemented. when congress was reviewing it last summer, the illustration made repeated assurances to congress that it would they were asleep enforce the agreement while using every tool at its disposal to counter iranian terrorism, star rising -- stabilizing the region, and human rights abuses. since then, iran's bad behavior as -- dramatically isolated. it has significantly increased its combat role in syria. it has arrested additional u.s. citizens, conducted multiple ballistic missile tests. file -- fired rockets very close to u.s. just in the persian gulf. threaten to's -- the u.s. response to these repeated provocations, despite the ministrations early
assurances, as so far ranged from quite different to nonexistent. even more worrisome perhaps has been the reported u.s. willingness to at least contemplate granting iran additional sanctions relief that it failed to negotiate. specifically, iran is the many access to dollarized financial transactions. as a be a huge unilateral concession that would greatly expand iran's ability to do business internationally while legitimizing an iranian banking sector. it remains mired in illicit financing activities. let me close by stressing that in light of the questions raised by the "new york times" file about what america's true underlying purposes and pursuant to the iran deal, it is extremely important that congress now hold the administration's b2b buyer when it comes to the commitment to combat iran's continued aggression. they should do everything in
their power to make sure iran receives no new relief. far more aggressive, you should aggressive use to be made of the current sanctions to deter the iranian guard corps from their destabilizing activities. the bottom line is the united states should not be sending iran the message that we now place such a high premium on its continued adherence to the nuclear deal that it will have carte blanche to pursue its increasingly threatening policies and other areas that endanger our interests and those of our eyes. thank you again mr. chairman for the opportunity to testify. i know this is the place where i would say i look forward to your questions, the more appropriately i'm ready to stand by answer questions. -- to stand by and answer your questions. >> thank you.
mr. rhodes i wish were here. andaid some truly amazing over the top things which were quoted in "the new york times." i haven't heard any review of that. one thing that would concern all ,f us is the quote he said quote, i do not know anymore where i begin and obama ends. if you let it settle in, that is a truly stunning statement. he also said some of the things i think are concerning. all these newspapers used to have a foreign bureaus. but he says, quote, now they do not. they call us to explain to them what is happening in moscow and cairo you most of the -- and cairo. nothing.rally know
end quote. he went on to say, quote, then there are the sorts of force multipliers. i will reach up to a couple people. i would not want to name them. then he goes on, and, anyway. it is really interesting in his approach. that is one component. but you compile that on top of --this isalso hear what secretary panetta said. and this is a quote. you know my view, talking with the president was, if i wanted to the point where we had evidence that they are developing an atomic weapon can i think the president is serious that he is not going to allow that to happen. but then panetta stops according to the article, and the author says, but would you make that same assessment now? panetta'scretary
quote is i would make the same assessment now? probably not. probably not. he said it once, i repeated it twice. this is the concern. think it would be naive to glosses over and say we have this deal, it is in the best interest of the united states. i would hope that we would walk out with an understanding from the three of you of what those big outstanding questions are. but maybe somebody could shed some light on these so-called side deals, these things where i ran as maybe -- do you have any insight, any of you, what these so-called side deals might be? mr. doran: no. there is what we have uncovered, but as time goes on we keep putting out more and more.
course, the obama demonstration says there's nothing else but the iranians are saying that there is a larger deal, in particular in regard to access to dollars and expanding their economy. and the behavior of our officials suggest they are right. hereare not correct, but we have secretary kerry in europe less meeting with banks, trying to get them to overlook concerns about iran's illicit activities and drum up business for iran. there is a mismatch here between what we are saying and what we are doing. what we are doing actually does match quite closely with what the iranians are saying. that has been a characteristic of the deal from day one. the deal has been shaped by the red lines of the supreme leader
and not by the red lines of the president of the united states. our lives have dropped all along the way and the iranians have stayed consistent with theirs. quickly, is also -- almost like a timeshare agreement. you sign the deal and then you only find out that what the true cost is. one would be in regard to changing the language of iran's most of -- ballistic missile. was it a confession or a result of a competence? -- incompetence? thatans will now complain we are not enabling enough openings for their economy, and yet what did not hit the western press was last week the iranians on the order of the supreme leader canceled a 20 million -- $2 million order for chevrolet. the answer was we should not be doing business with the americans.
who is knee capping the iranian economy, us or the iranians? it is time they take account ability for themselves. i will now recognize the ranking member. >> thank you mr. chairman. , your dick cheney's national security advisor? from 2005 2 2000 and nine. 2009.m 2005 to think it is. we played an important role in making the first draft of the speech to the united nations, that was true. did, you were involved in making the first draft? mr. hannah: that is correct. >> is this the draft he presented to the united nations?
i know you go through many more dress. mr. hannah: sure. -- drafts. mr. hannah: if you hear them tell the story now, they say my draft was filled with inaccurate reports, reports that could be supported by the intelligence community. at the end of the day they throughout my draft. --retary powell that's not then spent four days with the intelligence community at langley doing a new draft saying he was -- which was primarily based on that. didr claim is that my draft not actually form the foundation of what he presented to the united nations. that, i aming heard sure that you probably said, let me at least listen to what he did say, is that right? mr. hannah: sure, yes i did, absolutely. ofwas there any mention
weapons of mass destruction in your draft as compared to the final draft of secretary powell? mr. hannah: both of our dress were entirely focused on weapons of mass destruction. >> what would you say was the difference. a very disappointed with the information that you had provided him. he said it was a blot on his reputation and pre-much until the day he dies is going to regret it. i'm just curious. mr. hannah: when he said was a blot, i think that was what he presented. i do not think he was talking about the draft i presented. it was what he did that he ended up presenting that was obviously filled with errors, most of it was wrong. draft, the instruction to meet when i started the draft was that you need to go look at
all of the intelligence there is, including raw intelligence, which we regularly got at the white house which were individual reports by individual intelligence forces -- i did that and put it into a draft. and then had the intelligence andunity look at that draft decide what pieces of intelligence could be support, which ones could not support, that source was not reliable, didn't have enough of a reliable record of reporting, and they would throw it out. i wrote the draft knowing it largest segments will be thrown up because the intelligence community did not have the necessary confidence level in that reporting. let me read what secretary powell's chief of staff said about your document. hannah was constantly flipping through his club or try to source and verify the statements. it was clearly think was put together by chick -- cherry picking everything. it was discovered you do not use
the dia report properly, you do not cite a cia report properly. and you quoted an intelligence report out of context. so this draft, as you said, your entire document, it was described as this way. i quote, finally put the paper down on the table and said, this is not going to cut it. this was the chief of staff, right, for secretary powell? how can you have given him such a document that appears, in his opinion, to have been baseless and misleading? mr. hannah: well, there is a long history of this. he has a long record that anyone can read about his views of the iraq war and his regrets. i think we just have a different view of the draft i presented.
i do a note included a lot of stuff i knew that came from the intelligence community that they would not be able to support if they thought it was not used properly to my could use it properly they thought it was useful. so, we just have a basic difference of view about what i actually provided and what the purpose of my draft was. it was not meant to be a final draft, the final word that would go to the united nations. it was meant to be a rough draft intelligence committee would go through and pick out those parts that they thought -- made -- thought were the strongest case that saddam had weapons of mass destruction. also george tenant who reportedly turned directly to you and said, you have wasted a lot of our time. is that true and did he say that? mr. hannah: he certainly didn't say to me and i can easily see him saying that kind of thing
but he did not say to me. >> thank you very much. >> will now recognize the gentleman from michigan. >> we wish there other members of course. in your testimony you discuss the need to restore checks and balances and note tha t while mr. rhodes'behavior is scandalous, it was not a rogue operation, but that he was carrying out the will of the president. questions that i'm sure my constituents representing them in the people's house would want me to ask in reference to this is not number one, how can congress take steps to prevent this president and future presidents from circumventing congress? mr. doran: i think this is part of the inherent tension in our government.id --
is doing thehodes bidding of the president, it is important to remember that. we have numerous accounts, mainly from former defense secretary's panetta and gates especially, showing how there is an inner court in the white house of five or six people who consult closely with the president about his views. anybody else is pretty much left out of the conversation. on theng principles national security council. mr. rhodes is part of that inner circle. the only answer i have for this, i spent a lot of time taking about it. the only answer i have only two that i gave you. one is exercising the oversight responsibilities that congress ,as, asking the hard questions and continuing to put pressure on the executive branch to come clean.
the second is cutting back the size of the nce. it is simply wrong. i think anyone on both sides of the aisle would see the national security council was created to be a coordinating body, not an operational arm of the government. under president obama it has slipped into becoming an operational arm. when you look at the war room as described not by the, but by mr. rhodes, this is an operational white house. one last thing. there is an issue here that we need to be aware of but there is .ot we can do about it that is the collapse of the press. one of the reasons why this is a threat to our checks and balances is because of the collapse of come i would say,
certain informal checks on governmental power that have disappeared over the last decade quickly because of the rise of the internet. rhodes said in that thecle about foreign events reported from washington and from the white house by young reporters who do not know anything and not have any other source of information is completely correct and it is a danger. there's not much we can do about that but we need to be aware of it. it is a double danger because not only do those reporters not have alternative sources of because all the information is coming out of the white house they have a special interest in maintaining good relations with the white house and reporting the news stories as the white house wants. >> let it go on from that as well. ben rhodes'assistant in the article, his comments in the "new york times" article
indicated there were compiled raise involved with this. somewhere in the think tank community. -- some were in the think tank community. who would he be referring to? what? the plowshares fund. ,upposedly neutral assessors for example in various arms control the thanks thanks, and the atlantic council as well. and elsewhere, were receiving grants. one could say just because one has received a grant from this high-level funder -- by the way this funder has also provided grants to senior iranian working in the united states as well as universities and so forth. just because they have funded doesn't necessarily mean that there is a quid pro quo.
but what you will find is anyone who has received funding, especially for the bulk of their grant or their salary, never, not once, contradicted the assessment which ben rhodes thought to put forward. >> thank you. from newrecognize york. >> thank you. ofer a good deal deliberation and research, i voted against the iran nuclear deal. at the time i was hoping very much that i was wrong. but everything that has happened since and the additional information that has come forth, it literally has convinced me that i rate -- made the right decision. but i have to say as a member who took the time to carefully study the plan before making the decision, as i believe all my colleagues did, i had absolute complete access to all
documents. i read every document, even classified documents, every meeting was addressed in various areas. the administration and over backwards to provide accurate information to us. and i must say that this was one of the most hotly debated issues that i have experienced since i have been in congress. both sides were deeply involved in putting for their cases. therewere demonstrations, were petitions, there were meetings, there were conferences. there were debates -- it was completely and totally open to everyone to learn and to make their own decision. so, my colleagues on the other side of the aisle are now taking another opportunity to attack the administration with a futile fishing opposition based on a
widely questioned profile of an advisor to president obama. i believe it is quite a stretch to suggest that the white house building a copperheads of information campaign -- a comprehensive information campaign amounts to anyway and misleading the american people. and i find it incredibly hypocritical to invite mr. hannah, who worked for dick cheney and helped market the iraq war based on false ustenses, to come now before as an expert witness on and he false white house narrative. i find the hypocrisy really beyond belief. i would like to ask mr. hannah, do you know who scott mclennan is?
other people might not know, he was the white house press secretary and he wrote a book about his experience. he explained how a small group helpedgroup of advisers sell the iraq war by misleading the american people. and i am quoting from president bush's press secretary. he said the white house iraq group has been set up in the summer of 2002 to coordinate the marketing of the war to the public. , was in scooter libb your boss -- libby your boss? mr. hannah: i'm not 100% sure but i think you are right. mcclellan for the road, he explained exactly how you and others misled the american people. and i quote, as the campaign accelerated, qualifications were downplayed or dropped altogether.
contradictory intelligence was largely ignored or simply disregarded. , why did youh ignore and disregard evidence that contradicted your political narrative for the war? congresswoman, i would just say that to the extent that i got it wrong in believing that saddam had weapons of mass destruction, an awful lot of people got it wrong. it was not a figment of the imagination. he wasyou saying that wrong in the book when he said this group misled the american people? say isnah: all i can their work bipartisan commissions that looked at the of massence of weapons destruction and came to the conclusion that the president of the united states did not lie. >> i'm not talking about the president, i am talking about mcclellan. was he lying?
wrote we are misleading the american people. we downplayed any contradictory administration -- information. mr. hannah: i have not read his book. --an tell you is that basically if he was wrong in his judgment -- >> are you saying you did include contradictory intelligence showing that your case was weak or nonexistent? mr. hannah: no. i think we were instructed to write what we thought was the best case for why saddam had weapons of mass destruction. >> time has expired. >> no, i have 21 seconds left according to this. >> you are over. >> i would like to put my closing statement in the record. it is a zinger. it is very hypocritical mr. chairman.
mr. hannah is your to answer questions, mr. rhodes is not here to answer questions. >> thank you for your testimony and for providing valuable information to this community. lights -- even when presented with the facts like each of you have laid up in your testimony, the ministration doubles down and try to discredit anyone who disagrees with the false narrative, including me. s'en asked about ben rhode revelatory interview, he decided to lambaste several members of congress. truly eliciting the principles to their core. dealnder this illegal iran
that iran will be able to access $100 million that was previously frozen? it will be worth about $100 bi llion. the president of iran said his country would get about $100 bi llion. the white house is now trying to brand me as a liar. the point is not whether it is $100 billion or $50 billion. the real problem is president obama is funding the world largest state sponsor of terrorism. iran is no friend to the united states, christians, jews, or ev en muslims. president who loves his country and support our allies would never lift sanctions and give this murderous regime money, much less billions. this strained our national character. our next president we can only
hope will terminate this nonsense. women,egime that stones maine's homosexuals and kills others. dram. -- here i am. where is ben rhodes? i guess you can run and hide. we know that no one operates in a vacuum. represent ades rogue employee of the spin campaign purposes something more deeply about how the white house handled the iran deal? i believe it represents the president's strategic vision and the president's will. the president is on record as early as 2006 think he wanted to improve relations with iran and syria and he saw iran and syria as a sharing core interests in
stabilizing iraq and we should work with them to do that. i do not think he ever lost -- you would say he is ultimately responsible for developing this capitulation? mr. doran: absolutely. we're not actually trying to stop them from getting a nuclear weapon can we are trying to develop a partnership . >> the lies and misrepresentation are just the latest example of a culture of deception and this administration's mo since its inception. this is the same administration that sold the people out to health care reform. his congressional minions drove a garbage truck through congress and over american's pocketbooks by knowingly and willingly the me like a you like your doctor you can keep your doctor.
this is the same administration that lately violated federal law by engaging in unlawful lobbying in order to provoke -- promote -- they confirmed the executive branch unleashed an illegal propaganda campaign in order to foce down the throat of the american people. it is clear they had a covert agenda that was driven more by the optics of diplomacy and legacy than the real lies on the ground. what are the dangers of such a narrative driven approach to policymaking? when one constitutes --the cost is often paid with blood. iran has not become less of a terrorist sponsor. if we just take the $50 billion figure, that is 10 times the
budget of the iranian core. take the ability to designate state sponsors of terrorists out of the hands of the state department and put it in independent commission so it does not become a political football. this behavior has become the status quo for an obama administration which is lately disregarded the law and the american people. dangerous president and needs to be stopped by congress. thank you. we will now recognize the gentle one from the district of columbia. we can discuss the central allegation that brought us to this hearing. that is what i would like to pursue. republicans, my colleagues, accuse ben rhodes of
misleading the american people by claiming that the obama administration began negotiating the deal and the operative area elected a after iran so-called moderate president. the claim is if the american people knew that the president was working towards the agreement before 2013 they would have rejected the deal. dede's how the claim is wor in the "new york times" magazine, that rhodes spade -- shaped the story -- the iran deal began in 2013 when a moderate faction within the liranian regime be the hardliners leading to an
election where there was more openness. so the author says that mr. rhodes claimed of story began in 2013. but the problem is that is not true. efforts with's respect to iran were widely reported from the time he became president. so i will ask from a clip from "the washington post" 2008 when the president became president, be posted. it describes how the iranian president wrote to president obama after he was elected in 2008. you are all a panel of so-called experts. i assume you read "the washington post" on occasion. were you not aware of this 2008 report? any of you unaware of that
2008 report? rememberh: i do not the report exactly but i think you are right and everyone knew going into the election that president obama had a clear that he thought he would be the one to end our three decade old war. negotiatingis about the agreement itself and being in touch with the iranian regime before they was a regime change. let's go to "the washington times" in 2009. i assume you read that. it describes how president obama tont -- sent two letters iran's supreme leader. - that is 2009, this iw well before 2013. from are many reports every year of the administration.
this is why this hearing befuddles me. 2010 from "the economist." mr. obama says the various components of as policy should not be seen in isolation. first he tried to engage iran noty and it directly, because he was naive about the regime but in order to make clear to the world that america was not the aggressor and he was willing to work with iran if it reasonably. 2011 from "the atlantic." this is 2011. fixed -- six-party body negotiating issue.
2012. all of this is before 2013. you are supposed to be experts. some of experts not invited here has said that it is nonsense tha after regime change did the president begin to negotiate . the president of plowshares fund called the other nonsense -- nonsense.utter claim oflaim -- official deception were never substantiated. , so we these experts could have a bounced picture, or
call your. unfortunately by not invite these experts we are getting a very one-sided authority. i yield to the chairman. democrats always have an opportunity to invite a witness to the hearing. democrats chose not to invite a witness. and the person we call the white house, mr. rhodes, also refused to show up. >> i understand mr. chairman. the ranking members already heather beent time, there would have been a democratic witness. thank you, i yield back. >> we now recognize the gentleman from ohio. youentlemen, are any of familiar with the name jonathan gruber? do know that name? anyone? mr. rubin: i know the name. >> do know what his occupation
as? mr. rubin: i think he is an economist with was enlisted to help with health care reform. do you know what title he was given when he was helping with obamacare and health care reform? anyone remember? architect of obamacare. he got a little notoriety in the press index we had to come sit where you guys are sitting if you use ago. he wasyou guys know why brought in front of the committee and had to sit here? want to take a guess? yes, he was deceptive. he talked about the stupidity of the american voter. this is a direct quote. lack of transparency is a political advantage. --way of nice way
thing if you do see people you might get your case. so here the architect of obamacare talking about deception. if you like your plan you can keep it, if you like or dr. you can keep it, premiums are going to go down. everything turned out to be false. now we hear about another person in the obama administration, mr. rhodes. he comes along and is given the title, the single most influential voice in shaping american foreign-policy. things are starting to sound familiar. he creates a false narrative as well. chamberout this echo and deceiving the press, and his derision for the press is kind gruber's derision of the american voter. they literally know nothing was one of the lines i believe mr. rhodes used in his piece. , you talk about this
false choice in your opening set upnt that mr. rhodes and used this echo chamber of folks who literally know nothing to further this message to the american people, this binary choice either it is the deal or it is war. the thing that strikes me mr. chairman and i will not take my full-time, i just want to make this point. the first time this administration on some big policy decision has deceived the american people. but maybe more importantly, it is not my judgment the first time mr. rhodes on a big policy issue has tried to deceive them. mr. rubin, you are getting ready to say something, go ahead. the deception oftentimes comes in the form of cherry picking. if you want to look at previous
acknowledgment of letters, what is interesting is when the supreme leader come on the 30th anniversary of the seizure of , he mockedn embassy president obama for the letters he was sending and said we are not going to talk to the americans until they fundamentally change their position your so one of the reasons we need the transparency about what you're saying is sometime around 2012 the american's fundamentally change their position but then didn't come clean to the american people. >> i thank you for that. let me finish up with this. just to make this point. deceived the american people on obamacare. along comes mr. rhodes on the iranian deal. uses deception to create this false choice and help get this agreement passed. as a said, this is not the first
time mr. rhodes has that. i think he did on the benghazi issue. i think he did it there as well when he said any now famous thought it would which became the catalyst for the reason the house of representatives and the speaker formed the committee, when he crated this false choice. failure policy, it is rooted in a video. again, a pattern with the administration, what appears to be a pattern with mr. rhodes himself, then when he is getting the task toen testify, is not have the courtesy to show up. mr. chairman, i yield back. >> i will now recognize the german from massachusetts. frome gentleman massachusetts. if only the president have been upfront about withdrawn by middle east.
i have to say, the president was clearly during his campaign going back to 2007, 2008, at not nauseam. ad on of the fact that he was one to get those people out of there. he was going to withdraw plain middle east. i think he got elected based on a claim. but like trump does with we are going to build a wall and we are going to make america great again -- president obama went on a non-. he hammered away at that and said if i get elected and i am going to withdraw those troops. he is first 16 months going to get all the combat brigades out of iraq. he was very much upfront about that. he was perfectly clear on that. the other fiction here is that the american people were tricked by ben rhodes.
we were the audience, us here. they were trying to get the bill , the iran agreement through congress. we are the ones getting all the information. i have to say i was never tricked by ben rhodes. to ben rhodes,ct in terms of the merits of that agreement, he was probably not as qualified as a mother people who are coming to congress and testifying before both republican and democratic caucuses. we had a list of experts. 78 nuclear experts, five former investors to israel, 29 nobel prize winning scientist, 36 retired generals come over 100 former u.s. ambassador's command over 500 iranian americans with experience in the u.s. and iran. 340 rabbis, 53 christian scientistshese test -- who createdsit this
the first hydrogen bomb. we had stone cold experts on this. those are the people --actress sat with one of the experts from the i.a.e.a about what he iraq.t happened at and what they actually thought of the ability of this agreement to stop iran from developing a nuclear weapon. those are the people we also listened to. it was not been rhodes in some -- ben rhodes in some political spin. but if we are trying to measure this agreement, we are all rehashing this agreement. i think the best way would be to .a.e.a. because they are the ones we put on the ground and ask them to do these inspections. i would just like to come up for the record, i'm going to ask to two admitted the first
.e.a., the the i.a verification for the islamic republic and iran in light of the united nations security council resolution 2231. this is an expression -- inspection done because of the agreement. i will tell you what they report. i will give you the greatest hits. iraq,determined that heavy water research reactor. they determined iran was not pursuing the construction of the reactor. they had removed the existing calandra you from that reactor and filled it with concrete. they had stored under conditions , continuous agency monitoring all existing iranian pellets and
if you'll. they modified the-- and fuel. they modified the plant so that it cannot be used for the fabrication of furl. -- fuel. iran was not procuring rich uranium. it goes on here. a lot of that stuff -- a lot of good stuff here. were not conducting any iranian enrichment, had removed all of its nuclear material. so, i'm getting to eight seconds. had completed facility inspections to allow the agency to examine transparency measures. . ishat is what the i.a.e.a exactly doing and that's part of the agreement. advantage to us no
matter what happens in the future is that up to the time a disagreement was signed, we never had people in the ground on those facilities. we were always guessing about the level of progress they had made on their nuclear weapons program. now we have people on the ground. even if the breach, we will have the benefit of having people on the ground looking at those facilities. that is a good thing. i yield back. we will enter those into the record unless those -- there is an objection. we now recognize the gentleman from south carolina. onlywant to thank you not for the penalty for us but the panel he tried for us. odes not did ben rh appear and cost us an opportunity to question mr. rhodes, the cost us the opportunity to question tommy
cotton. before a senator congress would have really created a constitutional congress. good thing or us, tommy was willing to come on his own. the contrast would have been interesting. the white house is very critical of senator cotton. of course, when he was serving in the united states army in afghanistan and was neverrhodes getting the mean streets of a creative writing curriculum. i mean that literally, that is not figurative. he has a masters in creative writing. if you are interested in writing haiku's and novellas, he is probably the right guy. when you are advising the leader of the free world i do not know how a haiku helps.
but i would have enjoyed the opportunity to ask mr. rhodes how his background prepared him to sell the iranian deal and yet tommy kinds not -- tommy cotton's did not. that would have been an interesting dichotomy for me. but i want to ask mr. rhodes what he meant by certain things. he said we created a negative chamber. does the chairman know who "we" is? ? >>i do not. >> he then invoke executive privilege and he cannot be talking about what other presidential advisers said. so, i could be that, could it? >> i do not know. >> then he said reporters call us to ask when to them what is happening in moscow and cairo. i'm curious which reporters that would be. which ones call him to find out what is going on in cairo?
but we cannot ask him because he is not here. he has plentyd, of time to sit down for what he had hoped to be a fluff piece in times." york this is what really concerns me, mr. chairman. in talking about those reporters, he said they literally no nothing. how does someone literally no nothing? he said there were 27 years old which suggests they at least have a drivers license. if they are 27, they would be eligible to vote in the democratic primary. you have to know something. when i say they literally know nothing, that struck me. i wanted to ask him about that. also, i think that his
appearance today, had he bothered to come, would create an opportunity for bipartisanship, which i know our friends on the other side of the aisle like from time to time. he expressed contempt for editors and reporters at the new york times and washington post and the new yorker. that may have provided an opportunity for bipartisanship. we would have shared our own frustrations. but he didn't come. mr. chairman, you do a great job leading this committee. it is up to you whether or not you assert the people's right to question ben rhodes. but this selected use of executive privilege on one day, but it is not executive privilege of the next, congress will have to stick up for ourselves and decide whether we have a right to question people. and if you have time to make these comments to a reporter, you ought to be able to explain it yourself. if you have time at the white house to send a bunch of mean tweets about a guy who served
two tours, tommy cotten, and he is willing to come, but the creative writing expert isn't to come -- willing to come, at some point, this body will have to stick up for itself. >> we recognize mr. conley, the gentleman from virginia, for five minutes. lordy. the outrage of my friend from south carolina does the heart good. does the heart good. from my point of view, this hearing is nothing but a smokescreen, yet another in a long chain of attempts by my friends on the other side of the aisle to deny what is manifestly true, that the iran nuclear agreement is working. panacea for all
iranian behavior. they would like you to believe that. just as disarmament agreements with the soviet union during the cold war, not designed to address every aspect of soviet behavior. they are not designed to be the be-all and end-all to circumscribe an entire relationship. they were designed, and this was designed, for specific set of goals. almighty, we have a hearing, the foreign affairs onmittee, again, my friends the other side of the aisle desperately wanted not to talk about compliance, but being the skunk at the picnic, i did. and let me see. compliance, we found agreement has reduced the number of centrifuges, as planned come from 19,002 6104.
the fuel enrichment plants, the centrifuges reduced. iran is no longer enriching uranium above 3.67%. verified by the iaea, as my friend mr. lynch indicated. it has reduced its stockpile of --r rich -- and rich enriched uranium to more than three kilograms shipped out of the country. centrifuge production in mines and mills under constant verified.ce, the plutonium production capability, eliminated. i asked point-blank, is there any evidence, because this is all we heard, they were going to be -- they were going to cheat, and this was in a -- enabling behavior to allow iran to becoming nuclear threshold state.
the answer, no. so far, no cheating. ,y friend from south carolina we are friends. we are sometimes sparring partners. he is exercised about the fact that somebody who knows why does not accept a friendly invitation to calm before the committee. we are a hospitable environment to witnesses. once in a while, we deny them their fifth amendment rights while we badgered them, we call wem names, once in a while censor them. a lot of times, we interrupt them when we don't like their testimony. you are lucky, mr. rubin. you are really lucky to be here today. mr. hannah, when you received an invitation in 2006, did you accept it? getting anremember invitation. >> it is in the committee report . did you see the report?
they published a art. >> i must not have. >> let me refresh your memory. they issued a final report, and they said that every request made to you for an interview was denied. and it concludes, these decisions inhibited the committee's ability to pursue legitimate lines of inquiry. any reason why you would say no to the senate intelligence committee when it was under democratic, actually it wasn't under democratic control in 2006. but you still said no. that doesn't refresh your memory? >> i can tell you that there was obviously a special -- especially in the vice president's office, the council there was a regressive opponent --executive >> go ahead, say it. >> you say it for me. >> executive privilege. there you go. so, for a republican white
house, it is ok. you had an aggressive counsel, saying you are not going. but here, with somebody who gives up -- a profile for a magazine where he boasts about himself, we should haul him in chains before the committee because we are being denied access. you agreed to testify about it. you think, mr. rhodes should be here? in the way that you were not 10 years ago? >> in our administration, what i remember is that dr. rice, when she was nsc advisor, actually did testify. i think -- >> i am talking about you. you were named by the senate intelligence committee, and singled out for your refusal to make yourself available to that committee when it was doing its work. gravity to the issue at hand 10 years ago, involving you? than the risk today, involving
mr. rhodes? grave in were very both cases, i think. mr. rhodes actually is more influential than i am, and he has been willing to talk about all of these issues. and with such contempt, for so many people. >> we are glad to have you here. the sure my colleagues -- deservesse counsel another. >> the chair recognizes the gentleman from florida for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i would think ben rhodes would be falling all over himself to come here. he seems to think he is smarter than everybody. well, educate everybody. tell us why those of us who oppose the were wrong. educate the american people. it would've been a great opportunity for him, if in fact he is as smart and worldly as he says.
i think part of this, yes, there is deception involved, and anytime a major policy is sold to the congress or the public, that is a major, major thing. mr. rhodes himself said the iran deal would be the obamacare of the second term. of course, with obamacare in the first term, the president fame like famously said, if you your plan, you can keep it. not only was that not true, the administration knew at the time it would not be true, yet they did it in order to engineer passage of obamacare. and then, with this deal, the president was in the presidential debate in 2012, he said the deal was simple. program.their nuclear it is straightforward, he said. what we see now is iran retain, really, a major, major nuclear program. i believe they are on a path to a bomb. once that eight-15 years goes up. there's a lot that is important
about that, and it is important to talk about it. i also think that some of what we are talking about with mr. rhodes, the idea that rouhani's election changes everything. he is a moderate. nevermind he never would've been allowed to run by the ayatollah if he wanted to change the nature of the regime. you have a regime that is the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism. people fail to mention, the regime was responsible for his many as 1500 american deaths in iraq. a were leading -- they were funding these massive efp bombs, which took out at least hundreds of our soldiers, maybe as many as 1500. that is the nature of the regime. the notion that was propagated, mr. rhodes said, this is an opening. we have to take this opportunity. it's a once in a generation opportunity. turns out, they never believed that. they knew the regime, they were negotiating with the regime before rouhani had been elected.
all of that was a ruse to camouflage the basic policy, and hit on it. doran this policy understands the radical major of the iranian regime, understands a hostile nature of the regime, and is doing a deal with those hardliners, effectively solidifying those hardliners, and they think that is the way to have a more peaceful world. and so, the deception is important for itself. what it really masks is, when we were going through all this, this is the biggest thing we have done this congress. i thought john kerry and the president were very naive about how they conceived of the iranian regime. turns out, they weren't that naive. they know what we knew, and they still wanted to go ahead with it. that is why it is very troubling. we are seeing that now play out with gratuitous concessions, such as giving iran indirect access to the american dollar. that wasn't called for by the
iran deal. yet, that is something the administration is doing. i think this is important. i don't think we have done an issue that is important in the congress and years and years. so the idea that you are not upfront with the american people is important, but what this should allow us to do, i would like to tease out the implications now of this policy with somebody like mr. rhodes. is your view?t they admit it is a rose, they knew the nature of the regime and they think that us unilaterally stepping back from having a confrontational posture with iran will be better or the world's security. >> i think that is right. i think the president has a vision of the middle east as a the of roundtable now, security architecture is a roundtable and we have all the stake holes around -- stakeholders around the table, and the assumption is if we treat them with respect and
respecting their interests, they will come towards us and that they, the key assumption i think, the false assumption is, they share the same interest we do, the same core interest, defeating isis, stabilizing iraq, and so on. theicularly relevant are views of fred haas at the atlantic council, president obama's point man on syria from 2009-2012. he is somebody who understands, closer toobody who is the obama administration's policies on syria than fred hoch . he has come around to the view that president obama has, in effect, recognized syria as in iranian sphere of interest, and did so to reach the agreement with them. >> i appreciate it. the upside of all of this, the nuclear is very significant. beyond that, iran it -- is emerging as the dominant power in the region.
how you can see that is good for our security is beyond me. i yield back. >> we recognize the gentleman from pennsylvania. >> at this time, i would like to associate myself with the words of representative lynch of massachusetts, and also, representative maloney of new york. possible tok it's overstate the amount of studied it went into the iran deal on both sides of the aisle. it is with great regret that i see that it has turned into a political football the way it has. let me get this straight. you grew up the false talking points for colin powell when he spoke in front of the u.n., and you wrote in the talking point that there were weapons of mass distraction in iraq, and that was ended up in his speech. you are here today to question someone else's credibility, and somebody else's professionalism.
am i getting that straight? >> not exactly. i am not sure i am chris turning his friend -- questioning his professionalism. we based our intelligence on the intelligence that was there. it was wrong, that was a mistake, it wasn't a purposeful, desire to deceive are not give the american people luttwak you told us earlier in your testimony that you drew up that wasch not knowing if it true. knowing that it would be vetted by the intelligence community. drawing it up as a piece of salesmanship to see if anything was true, and if it was, it would stick. your words were clear on that. one of the parts of the ,alesmanship was this idea that the bush administration cooked up this idea that there was yellowcake uranium coming from the african nation of niger going to saddam hussein. ambassador joe wilson who gave
the lie to that fiction. he said it was a bunch of nonsense. he wrote an op-ed in the new julytimes in 2003 in debunking the claim that yellowcake uranium was going to saddam hussein from niger. but mr. hannah, you are one of dick cheney's national security advisers. you worked with him and scooter libb he before he was convicted. surely, you discussed ambassador wilson's op-ed with him, with vice president cheney, especially since it was contradicting one of your key talking points in selling the war in iraq. did you talk about ambassador wilson's op-ed with vice president cheney? >> i did not talk to the vice president but we did talk about it within the office -- >> did you talk to scooter libb he about it?
said, it was highly doubtful that any such takenction had at -- had place. he contradicted information you put out publicly in response the bush administration retaliated against him by publicly outing his wife, valerie plame, who was a cia operative at the time, and mr. hannah, my question is, what was your role in outing valerie plame as a cia operative? outing no role in valerie plame. ita special counsel was -- was patrick fitzgerald, special counsel, who concluded that there was, and i am quoting, concerted action by multiple people in the white house to discredit, punish, or seek revenge against ambassador wilson. you dispute those findings? >> i haven't looked at them. yes, i dispute the way that the
name of valerie plame reached the press. it was by a person who seemed to have no desire, and the state deputy secretary armitage, happen to mention her in a conversation with a reporter. >> mr. hannah, the bush administration smeared ambassador wilson and his wife, ruin her career, sacrificed the national security asset in the cia, all because ambassador wilson had the temerity to debunk your false claims, and he told the truth. your boss and dick cheney's chief of staff, scooter libby, was convicted. president bush commuted his prison time. that is correct? >> i don't think those were the exact, he would never charge -- was never charged with releasing the name of a cia operative. >> the second voice you talked about outing valerie plame, that was karl rove, wasn't it? >> i have no idea.
i have no dealings with carl. >> mr. chairman, i yield back. >> we recognize mr. meadows from north carolina. >> thank you, mr. chairman. mr. rubin, let me come to you. as these decisions continue to get made with regards to the validity of the iran deal, as we would call it, decisions by member of congress in john berry small, sometimes minute pieces , where they can justify going one way or another. do you believe that some of the statements by mr. rhodes was a factor at all in some of the members of congress casting their vote one way or another? >> yes. i can give you examples, if you would like. >> please. >> when it comes to verification, according to u.s. law, incumbent with the corker cardin compromise, all agreements are supposed to be
presented to congress. now, it emerges that there were secret side agreements with the iaea. one of these agreements that comes into play with regard to verification is that the state department says the iaea would not need to report to the level it has reported under sanctions, especially with regard to the possible military dimensions. so to say that the iaea said verifications was complying with like someonet is who was the valedictorian at summer school. it becomes a problem. it lets them off the hook. we only found out about that afterwards, because the white house kept it secret. testimony,had sworn in a number of house committees and senate committees, where the sworn testimony by administration officials were that there are no, and were no,
secret side agreements. would you say that is a credible ?rgument under sworn testimony >> they are lying to congress. >> that is a bold statement, that they are lying to congress. if we go back and look at the tapes where they say that there was no side agreement in sworn testimony, do you think it is incumbent upon this committee to hold those particular individuals, who gave sworn oftimony in contempt congress? >> yes. >> thank you, mr. rubin. let me go further. the troubling aspect of this is, somehow, members on the other thatof the aisle suggest there is run doing in previous administrations that would justify wrongdoing in a current administration. is it your opinion, mr. rubin, that regardless of who the be, whetheron might
it be republican or democrat, that it is incumbent upon them to be honest and straightforward with congress when they are negotiating something of this type of magnitude? >> yes. national security should not be a political football. >> is it your sworn testimony here today that, because of the talking point of mr. rhodes, and the inaccuracy, or as you would characterize them, lying that took place, that the whole debate that transpired within congress was based on faulty assumptions that had no relevance, will relationship to truth? if, insteadmost as of looking at the whole chessboard, the white house was directing congress to look at four pieces. --we were only look at
looking at four pieces in something that is critical to national security, and to the security of our allies, israel, to you think that it was disingenuous to suggest that some of the talking points that were coming out of the israeli government were indeed characterized as being dishonest truthful? do you think an apology is owed by this administration to that government? administrationis has a sorry record at this point of coddling adversaries and throwing allies under the bus. perhaps apologies are due when domestic washington politics got in the way of serious foreign-policy discourse. >> i thank you, mr. rubin. mr. chairman, i yield back. >> thank you. we recognize the gentleman from vermont. >> thank you. mr. chairman, at the heart of this is a question whether this was the one faced by the
president, and iran without nuclear weapons is better for the world than an iran with nuclear weapons? that was the question. wasengagement of mr. rhodes one significant person among hundreds, and along with our best allies, france, germany, england, and also our sometimes frenemies, china and russia. the collective decision of those countries, and us, was that the iran nuclear deal was in our collective interest. now, there was fierce disagreement about that among the witnesses, and among many of my colleagues in congress. but this was a long and complex negotiation. it was ultimately ratified by our strongest allies, and there
was the judgment of the commander-in-chief had to make as to whether or not disagreement -- this agreement was in the it national security interest of this country. i agree with him. i work closely with mr. rhodes and found him to be an exceptional public servant, knowledgeable, and despite what you say, candid and direct. let me ask a couple questions here. the decision the president made was in contrast to decisions that a previous president made. that thef you believe american people got the right information, that there were weapons of mass destruction in iran? each of you. iraq. thank you. >> no, it was shown that it was false. >> no. >> no, the american people got what the intelligence community believe. >> thank you.
-- has supervisory of authority over the intelligence community? >> congress. >> the president has no role? >> the buck stops with the president, but talking about oversight, separation of powers is about that. >> by the way, i will go along with this. congress blew it. on the iraq resolution. but are you suggesting to me that there is not ultimate responsibility for making the decision and evaluating the recommendations of the intelligence community, on the matter of sending troops to war, spending trillions of dollars, throwing the mideast into and he is not the one who ultimately bears the responsibility for that decision? made theesident decision to go to war. i am not willing to put the broad instability in the middle east on his shoulders.
be middle east needs to accountable for the middle east. >> the second thing. ,e went into this war in iraq we toppled saddam hussein, we were promised we would make money on the war. that was testimony from some of the president's advisers. they said it would be over in 60 days and the troops would be greeted with flowers in the streets. didn't work out that way. war instan, the longest the history of this country. we still have troops there. the place is a mess. nation building. an arrogant policy embraced by a prior administration. didn't work out so great. is of you think afghanistan on a solid footing for democracy at the moment? just a yes or no. >> no. >> sir? >> no. >> no. says,have a president to
you know what? this war approach is not so great. he had to make a decision, and he said, look. let's try negotiations. i supported sanctions. every tough sanction that we were able to impose on iran, i supported, as did virtually all of the democrats and republicans. you know what? the sanctions worked. it brought a run to the table. this decision you are focusing on, this fine public servant, ben rhodes, because of a newspaper article, is something that then disregards the fact that we blew it in iraq, we are blowing it in afghanistan, and the president decided to pursue negotiations, got an agreement, and has the full support of our, of those allies, the p5 plus one. if there are implementation issues, let's get on it. i am all for that. but to sit here and suggest that the history of failure, when war
is the option, we should have done that, that is essentially what the alternative was. what thessentially alternative was. i don't buy it. i don't believe the american people by it. we are picking and choosing, trying to come up with some little detail that somebody somewhere said to suggest that we ought to unravel the whole thing. i disagree. back.d >> we recognize the gentleman from north carolina, mr. walker, for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. on september 11, 2015, cnn stated, the effort was one of the most aggressive drives ever to take shape between congressional democrat leaders and the obama white house on this bill, hr 34-61. now, among the people who voted no were 25 democrats. we heard today, mr. maloney acknowledged that. on the't the only person
committee. there were others. my question is, what did those 25 members now that -- know that the other members didn't know, or chose to ignore, or even lied? in regards to mr. schapiro, we heard a lot of talk today. i am sure you maybe dads. it is interesting when you confront your child and ask if they did something wrong. the telltale sign is when the immediately acknowledge that another brother or sister did something wrong. that is what the smokescreen is here today. so much of the smokescreen has been about mr. hanna. nobody wants to talk about mr. schapiro. let me talk about the difference , if i could for a second. a big difference between mr. hanna and mr. schapiro. mr. schapiro enjoyed running to the press, sharing also information. mr. schapiro became the poster boy, almost the spokesperson, of a flawed and horrific iranian deal.
mr. shapiro became the poster boy. did mr. shapiro, in your opinion, mislead the american public? grexit mr. rhodes it certainly did. the key here was that i lying about whether mr. romney was a moderate, he covered for the fact that iran was left with centrifuges and wants the agreement expired, there was no iran would beting any different. that is the number of centrifuges with which pakistan build not a bomb, but in arsenal. hannah?
mr. hannah: if the article is accurate, you yes. i think he engaged in certain deceptions about what the administration was really up to in what we were facing in iran. lists exceptions and after eight years lifts the ends on building ballistics potentially capable of reaching the united states. can you elaborate on the threat the ballistic missiles poses to the united states? to cutle tended themselves on the back every time there is a failed missile test. you learn a lot every time there is a field missile test and i rain has made it clear it intends to continue with ballistic missiles until it can strike anywhere, anytime. a major flaw in the agreement is for fivethe arms sales
years for offensive weapons but never defines what offensive is. that is why iran is on a spending spree with russia and china right now. mr. rubin: one of the things it did was remove ballistic -- effectively remove ballistic missiles from the kind of sanctions -- the things itn did was effectively remove ballistic missiles from the kind of sanctions they were under. if congress had been told the in awas going to result end iranian-russian military alliance which was going to intervene in syria and result in the rise of iranian power around the region, we would've had a very different debate. >> i would say on the ballistic missile, everything my colleagues have said is right, thisis determined to do
and it is important to note that the only really rational military use of these missiles if you can put a warhead on them. a nuclear warhead makes them militarily useful and the fact that iran is so dedicated to and program, essentially icbm. not only being able to hit all neighbors,val -- including iran, but eventually the united states and having such a close relationship with north korea which already has an icbm. this is kicking the can down the road and they pull he believed that at a point down the road, what they are more able to stand up to sanction and an american power to go ahead, once the vans are lifted, to go ahead for a nuclear weapon. the gentlemannize from missouri for five minutes.
think theou and witnesses for being here. mr. hannah, you worked for did cheney. you -- you worked for digg cheney. dick cheney. thatd it incredibly ironic the chairman and by did you hear to testify about falls white given yourtives involvement in that debacle. one of the primary claims for war was that subtle hussein had so-called mobile labs of roaming around inside iraq manufacturing biological weapons. secretary powell showed a cartoon drawing of one of these mobile labs during his speech to the united nations. a slide of it.
could someone please put it up? there it is. labs.are the mobile mr. hannah, who drew this picture? mr. hannah: i do not know. i assume whoever was in that committee was responsible for the graphic presentation. >> did you use this as part of your preparation of mr. powell for that speech? >> my guess is yes. the biological labs would've been in whatever i provided for the labs. >> let me read what mr. powell -- in his speech. one of the most worrisome things which arises from the thick intelligence file we have on weapons is the production of mobile facilities used to make biological agents. thatwas the source of claim, mr. hannah? mr. hannah: i believe the
primary source was a defector with human intelligence. i think it was a defector. >> wasn't it to a source known as "curveball." mr. hannah: yes, i think so. hade warned that barak enough biological weapons and i quote "in a single month to kill thousands upon thousands of people." isn't that right? is what he that said, if you are reading it accurately, yes. wase now know that claim false. in fact, secretary powell said his claim had "totally blown up in our basis." do you believe with secretary powell? yes. >> isn't it true that no one
interviewed curveball before they use that information? >> i do not know that firsthand but i think the cia said this was controlled by german intelligence services. >> yes. they said they could not believe you are using this publicly because he was someone unreliable. isn't that true? asked that is the kind. it was never relayed to me by the cia. a they said that, it was not claim they relayed to me. >> i have a quote from the l.a. times from 2005 that says this, and i quote. the senior officer who supervised curveballs chafe said he was aghast as he watched them misstate curveballs claims as a justification for war. we were shocked, the official said. my god, we had always told them it was not proven.
mr. hannah, is that true? mr. hannah: i don't have any -- >> that the germans warned from informationg this was not verified? mr. hannah: that is historically what was reported between their intelligence and the cia. that is what the germans claimed. transmit it got into secretary powell's speech. it was at best misleading and at worst, blatantly false and as a result thousands of people were killed and injured when this nation went to war based on this false claims. have any remorse about that? deepannah: i have great remorse about any american soldier lost especially if it is based on information we put out in good faith and our intelligence communities and communitiesigence
around the world. we thought it was true and we acted in the best interest of the united states. just threw the information out. mr. hannah: that is not true at all, that is not accurate. >> gentleman -- >> the gentleman yields back. also -- it was revealed that mr. hannah worked for mr. powell. >> thank you, mr. chairman. it seems there's a great deal of confusion about the purpose of the hearing which is supposed to be about the current administration, the white house narrative on the nuclear deal. and mr. samuel's article, it was stated that as director of the he neverg the tenure sought the letters that obama covertly sent to iran's supreme
leader in 2009 and 2012. he goes on to say he would like to believe that tom donelan, then national security adviser hillary clinton, then secretary of state, had a chance to work on the upper they presented. mr. -- on the offer they presented. is there any proof that sec. clinton worked on those letters? >> know there is not. tracks ok. relevant withng major office headset in policy typicals -- is that behavior for members of the national security council and other white house staffers? gone is a problem that has on with time, dating back to administrations.
practice?s a common >> yes, it has become common. mr. hannah: i think it has become common. we have someone whose job is policy andp develop pose foreign policy to the president and the guy who is selling it. administration, the fact is people like karl rove who was in charge of our communications never sat in national security council meetings. there was a strict divide. >> how much undue influence do you believe these staffers have over national security policy? said, i believe this administration has blurred a line that has existed over previous administrations both democratic and republican. tracks mr. hannah, you mentioned in your testimony earlier that
with one bold move the administration effectively made a radical shift in american foreign policy. is that a correct assessment in your opinion? yes.annah: >> ok, the question comes down responsible.o is would you say it is ben rhodes, other staffers, or the president? retrenchment from the middle east seems clearly to be president obama's. he is in charge of that. ask there are some influencers in his life, ben rhodes is referred to as recognized as the single most influential voice on foreign policy to the resident. so what kind of role did he have in shaping this radical shift? him and i wantw to have the caveat that this is the shift presented by the policy although i think it is consistent with the general
thrust of the administration's policy towards iran and the middle east since 2008. i just do not think it has been presented this way. they want to distance themselves from our closest allies including israel let what they tell our allies and the american people is that their relationship is stronger than ever and they were forever -- and they will forever have israel's back and that is what is presented in the article and it is that contradiction that worries me about what is going on. are we having a full and open debate? you have to hand it to mr. trump. at least he says, i want to get out of this place. it is too expensive, it is too much trouble, i want to distance ourselves. >> it is extremely troubling that the american people in congress, our allies, when there is such a radical shift of the magnitude of this type of foreign policy, that the
american people, congress, and our allies are not aware of it. do you believe the american people and congress would support a shift that major had they known about it? >> no. jeanette is quoted in this piece is saying, they had -- if they had done that they would have gotten the blank kicked out of them. >> so they are spinning the truth and making people get on oard something that is not -- >> it is an extremely strong suggestion of the article you had to spin it. >> down the line, would you agree with it? >> yes. >> mr. hannah? strano: yes. >> i yield. assume youn, first i are vigorously opposed to the iran agreement. mr. rubin: yes.
i thought there could be a much stronger agreement and i think we could have had leverage to get a much more favorable agreement. myself -- associate >> just to be clear, for instance, former secretary of state colin powell, as he is called the regime vigorous, this is a remarkable change. ". so we have stopped this highway race they were going down. i think that is very, very important. would you agree with secretary powell's quote? >> it reminds me of the agreement with north korea which we now know did not merit those and fort smith's. >> the former adviser to president ford and george h.w. bush, i quote, to turn our backs would be an abdication of america's role.
that quotegree with as well? mr. doran? mr. doran: i disagree. >> mr. hannah, it strikes me in your response to some of my colleagues, comments about your role as spies -- with vice president cheney and the decision to invade iraq is that it was a mistake. you apologize for that in your own way but we should just move on tonight. is that a misrepresentation of how you view your actions? >> it is more complicated but too long to explain, but yes. if the case depended upon weapons of mass destruction in iraq, that was false and americans did not understand the grounds on which we were going to war to take out a major dictator. the congress in 1988 passed a law almost unanimously saying, we have to do something to get rid of this guy. it did not necessarily say war,
but instead we have a big problem with iraq. >> but it was based on the assumption there were weapons of mass destruction in these mobile labs. 19 -- in 1998 it was the clinton administration. you had secretary of defense holding up a biological -- a bag of sugar and say, if saddam had would -- he >> but that was not the communication we were having an order to send young americans to war in iraq will stop it was weapons's which you admit now was a mistake. clearlyhat intelligence was false. the bipartisan commission looked at it and said most of it was wrong. >> so by comparing this, the beinguences struck me as much more significant, obviously, to the decision of telling people we were going
there, not because we do not like saddam hussein although that was the case as well, but because there were biological weapons and weapons of mass destruction. you can assume, as experts, this is not going to turn out well. but at this time they are not equal in terms of negative consequences to the peace in the middle east. how could you possibly say that at this point? >> i would say that you are right. that war and death and injury of american soldiers is a terrible price to pay. we have not seen a lot of americans dying but look at the middle east right now after eight years of this administration. it is hard to say it is better because americans are not dying but half a million syrians are dying. chemical weapons are being used. >> but that is all because of a decision you were very much -- >> it is much more complicated than that. >> know it is not. not from my perspective.
i am not an expert but i have gone to funerals of my constituents who are dead who were in their teens because of what you and mr. cheney did in iraq. >> it was because of a rainy and weapons thater kill. not the narrative. >> how did that -- how did our invading iraq do that? it continued to support terrorists in the region. >> we did not invade yemen, on theyet we see a ran warpath -- iran on the warpath all over what this did was it increased the budget by an order of magnitude. >> we were doing that before, that is what went into iraq, that is what you are saying. >> you are blaming the narrative on the fact that iran has been a leading state sponsor of terrorism since 1984 and to try
to somehow distract from that narrative offrom a false moderation is counter -- counterproductive. >> i feel like i am in a sequel or a replay of dr. strangelove and it would be nice to have a balanced discussion. >> i agree. that is why we invited ben rhodes and the participation of senator contin. -- sen. cotton:. at the white house refuses to make them available. that cannot have discussion and that is what makes it a shame about today's meeting. >> and dealing with the iranian nuclear issues, i am saddened that rather than looking forward to how to best secure the united states from a real nuclear threat, we see a progressive threat on our entry into a rack around the issue. classicmost like the
page, admit nothing, deny everything, may counter accusations. to the twistedn narrative that our entry into a wreck was based on false print was based on false pretenses. if an abusive neighborhood threatens everyone in the neighborhood with destruction, should we sit idly by and not take action to secure ourselves from such threat? , saddam had technical capacity to develop a bomb. in the summer of 2003 i had firsthand knowledge that the first infantry along with special operation forces secured a centrifuge, which is of the highest order for the refinement of nuclear material and it was smuggled out of europe. saddam's nuclear physicist gave it is welland
documented and his book. an account the cia describes as accurate and balanced. i served in iraq during that time when we were hunting for saddam and i said it would be major news as the centrifuge came to light. totead, it is likely hidden this day. it is interesting to note that senior leaders, one in particular who related to me syrian flood major he was directed by saddam hussein to move into real to an eastern syrian site. of a nuclearrial and chemical nature. it is interesting that that airy site was attacked during operation orchard during an israeli airstrike and it was because they were making a nuclear reactor. the silence on this news is deafening. those who -- as someone who
helped track down and capture saddam hussein, it is hard to hear members of congress condemn our efforts but it is not surprising. from day one as we sacrificed in the field, members of the congress condemned our efforts even going so far as to declare while wewar was lost buried our friends in the field. that steady drumbeat forced us to bury friends not only there, but should him home and put them in section 60 of arlington and then come home to watch politicians, many still in office, destroy what we fought for. they persist even today, mr. chairman. i will never regret bringing a dictator to justice and i am it.d to played a part in history, should we allow it, will judge us and our efforts accurately. i am not sure the same could be said of congress. now we turn to get another
nuclear threat with a ran. -- with iran. nuclear programs, and i quote, share a common weak spot. they need in our international duplicity. rhodes, in this administration, it appears they provided all of it to a ran. two iran. mr. rubin, how and how early did they start talking about administering oversight to the iran deal? >> i am not privy to the talks within the administration but it appears almost from the beginning. >> i have passed the iran terror financier act, the only real effort to oppose the nuclear deal, which now sits in the 'snate and with mr. rhodes
exposure, the need for congressional oversight, there are key provisions and it sits in the senate. that language even today could be acted upon by the senate and provide a ski oversight. the president acted unconstitutionally. while he is free to make negotiations, he is not free to bind us with treaty-like obligations. do you think if we passed the key provisions out of the measure that currently sits in the senate it would increase the oversight as was noted last week by politico. do you think it would be helpful in deterring and making what we do have better? >> yes. the strongest and most effective actions taken by iran during the come in is to ration -- clinton administration and ratherlateral sanctions than the watered-down united nations security resolutions even though the bush administration achieved a number of those as well.
>> thank you for your service and being here today. i yield back. ask mr. russell, we thank you for your service and sacrifice and time. we are better for it. thank you. i now recognize the gentlewoman -- >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you for the opportunity to talk about what i think is really important in this and issue. making sure we are holding our as accountable and are clear to what those accountability issues and measures are. not just how it is being communicated but how it is being verified. the only disappointed is that we are having conversations at talkingat if we are not to the folks, with no disrespect to the panel members, about really who is enforcing, who is accountable.--
a number of individuals i spoke to with expertise either as concerned citizens or organizations and the administration and people outside the administration, that is my core focus. as part of the hearing of this nature, i was more concerned and more -- i would like information about the reduction in the uranium stockpile. the status of the centrifuges and a ran. that -- in iran. does anyone in the panel have any specific authority or expertise on any of those issues? it is you are directly involved in that accountability. >> are we serving government right now? the answer is no. however, we have dedicated years to the study of these issues and so could give suggestions if you would like.
tracks i appreciate that. example, i have 30 years in the health care industry and i have a variety of credible opinions but at the and of the day i am not your physician so i cannot talk to about your specific health. what i think is important, and with no disrespect, one of the things i appreciate about this hearing is that we tackle tough subjects. i expect that if this committee hand of the chairman particularly on this issue. keeping america safe. being clear that we will make sure that everyone is accountable and we are clear about what the risks are. those are all incredibly valuable things for us to be paying attention to and i could tell you my constituents back home and in the country expect that. but to know exactly where we are , i think we ought to be talking
who arendividuals absolutely responsible for assuring us on these issues so we know exactly what is going on. what can we do better to get and make sureon our accountability efforts are what they should be and that we have a bipartisan way to reshape them productively if need be? anyone? agree.tally i agree with everything you said and i think i would like to have a discussion with those people that the administration has worked to obscure kate the entire agreement -- obscure kate the entire agreement. that is one of my main messages. not that i am the expert on centrifuges or sanctions or so on, but those of us who would like to understand what is happening are not being given
the information we need. have an open and honest debate because we do not have the key facts. i have made a cogent argument to that fact. >> anyone else? >> what i would say is that when surgery goes awry, often times the doctors will conduct a study wrong.hat went likewise in the private sector, businessmen will look at negotiations and what they could've done better. military, sergeants, majors, and chiefs will be right soldiers for making mistakes, not for a political ax to grind but to make better soldiers and sailors. conducted andnot after-action study about diplomacy. so that we can say this is what iaea needs to be looking
for. there has to be independent testing of work being conducted siteanian nuclear military and there has to be extra territoriality and inspection and case iran take some stuff -- action.iran takes you have to look at why diplomacy has not worked. how can the state department be introspective. if they are not going to do the due diligence, congress should. again, without having that expertise in this hearing, if we do not have a debate waste on facts, and i might disagree with efforts, our complex without having those individuals before the committee we are ill-equipped to do that. i yield back. >> i concur. that is why it is so frustrating
when mr. rhodes was at the center of this he was as of monday morning to appear and then suddenly he was not. congress is kept in the dark because the administration will not share information. is not the place to debate that but i appreciate the chairman more than he knows and i mean that earnestly but i'm not sure mr. rhodes is the right person but we do need to continue to have an effort to regulatingre not about where we are enforcing this agreement. so thank you for giving me maybe the last word. >> thank you. recognize the gentleman from wisconsin for five minutes. slide three?ave ok. better read it over here. ok.
a quote from a new york times article. the easiest way for the white house to shape the news is from the briefing podiums, each of which has its own dedicated press corps. but then there are sort of these multipliers. i will reach out to a couple people and go with one and a number. i will say look, some people are spending this narrative that this is a sign of american weakness. since he will not name them, do you want to take a shot at who he was speaking of when they talk about the white house's comp and joys in the press? mr. doran: i would not want to speculate on individuals. i would just note that in general, the major newspapers and the major networks have a -- have supported the line coming
out of the white house and one of these things that mr. rhodes through our attention to and it is important to focus on is the blurring. as a result of the fact newspapers and networks are reporting foreign news from washington, we have a blurring of opinion and news so that the line mr. rhodes is putting out is finding its way into news articles and into opinion columns which then they have a mutually reinforcing effect and we also find at the same time only 13% of americans believe what they are hearing anymore and i think we can draw our own conclusions from that. ask after being here for 14 months, i do not believe anything in the papers. papers, and you consider that to be new york times, washington post? >> i will give you an example.
audis put tos death this cleric -- the saudi's were to death this cleric. you have papers and news articles and opinion pieces and that there was a huge saudi sectarian escalation destroying relationships with iran. muscles likeg its dr. rubin described, we're not hearing about will stop -- iran flexing its muscles like dr. rubin described, we're not hearing about this and i believe that was reported of the white house. we have all of these nontraditional news sources now putspeople go to and it enormous pressure on the serious reporters out there. of people like davis singler and michael gordon of the new york times. serious reporters.
they are not thinking about it directly and her own mind, the editors know if they take a line that is hostile to what the white house is saying, the white house can go to fox or buzzfeed or somewhere else and give the story. break awaying to from this program and take you live to carson, california where senator bernie sanders is holding a campaign rally. this is being held at the stub tennis center in carson. live for it to the white house coverage in c-span. -- butthey have no chase they have no choice but to change history. they see the truth and they know the truth stares them in the face. it affects their lives every day. it affects whether they go to jail. it affects whether they go to
jail. they know that and they have no choice but to come here. but they have to believe in something. they have to believe not in the personality, but someone who is on a mission to tell the truth. someone who is on a mission to and talk about real change. our hands, right in the grasp of our hands to begin to build a movement for not only our kids today but for the future, the future of everything we inc. about. for the future of everything that we have. this courageous man from vermont has the audacity to come up your and tell the truth. and thate audacity
audacity did not begin yesterday. begin 10city did not days ago. it did not begin 10 years ago. it began decades ago, more than 50 years ago when he stood up as a member of the congress on racial inequality. justice asod up for the mayor of burlington, vermont. hery time he has done that has brought us together with a u.s. senate.of the he brought us together because he knows your story. he embraces your story. about filling the community with love. with justice. and he stands for justice right here. [applause]
>> and every vote counts. every vote we have gotten along the way. south carolina, michigan, new york, wherever we have been. get outportant that we here. to make sure our voice is heard. to make sure. [applause] danny glover: because every vote is a sign of the truth. every vote is a commitment to the truth. building the movement of real change. that is what we are here for. something,tell you you never get too old for this. you never get to old. [applause] [laughter]
know,glover: because you you know that there is kindred the hygiene. i know that standing behind me are young men and women, men and women my age, communities. communities who want to talk about having a just immigration system. a practical one. thatnities who understand we have to create jobs. minimum wage jobs. createat allow us to families and build communities. we understand that. for the oneto fight person in my generation, the one person after all the struggles i have seen, the one person who is willing to do that and stand up. a hand stand up.
-- in stand up. up.stand [crowd chanting "bernie"] i do not have to go down every single list of the things he has spoken about and how his ideas are quantitatively different from any ideas we are faced with. he knows the planet, this -- weus mother earth know. we know it is important that we take this step right now and we know that we are the moral consciousness. whenever we look at the history of bernie sanders, we know he has been on the compass for justice. he has been the moral symbol of
justice and always that. i want you to understand that whatever we do in these next three weeks, we have three weeks here. we do it with passion, we do it withlove, and we do it "indiscernible -- [indiscernible] -- "bernie"] ting announcer: ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the stage the next resident of the united states, senator bernie sanders. [applause] ♪
thanking -- let me begin by thanking all of you. what a fantastic turnout. say to you, and let me give a special thanks to a very good friend of mine and one of the great actors in our country danny glover. is not only an extraordinary actor but as many of you know, he has spent his entire adult life fighting for economic justice, social justice, racial justice. danny, thank you for all that
you have done. let me also take this opportunity to say a word of tanks to the people of kentucky. closed primary, something i am not all that enthusiastic about where independents are not [crowd to vote -- ooing] -- sen. sanders: where hillary clinton defeated barack obama by 2000 votes in 2008's, it ends up tonight we're going to end up with about half of the delegates. [applause] "ernbernie"]ng
sen. sanders: not want to thank you all for coming out because this is the beginning of the final push to win california. [applause] when we -- and by the way, i should tell you there are a lot of people out there, many of the pundits and politicians, they say "bernie ." ders should drop out [crowd booing] sen. sanders: the people of california should not have the right to determine who the next president will be!
well, let me be as clear as i can be. i agree with you. last ballottil the is cast. you know, when we began this campaign a little over a year we were 60 points behind sec. clinton. we had no political organization, no money, very little name wrecking nation. and the pundits determined that we were a french candidacy. -- a fringe candidacy. campaigny thought this was going anywhere and on top of , we were taking on the most powerful political organization in the country and
an organization that is elected bill clinton twice and ran a strong campaign for hillary clinton in 2008. well, a lot has changed in the last year. [applause] sen. sanders: as of today, we have one night teen state primaries and -- we have one 19 19 statee won primaries and caucuses and over 9 million votes. no one can predict the future but i think we have a real shot to win primaries in a number of these states that will be coming up. [applause] hand, -- sen. sanders: don't
tell sec. clinton because i think she will get nervous, but i think we're going to win here in california. [applause] sen. sanders: and as all of you know -- "bernie"] ting senator sanders: as you all know, california has 475 plus delegates. and let me mention something that i am especially proud in i believe every primary and caucus, those we won and those we lost, we have received a significant majority of the votes of young people.
[applause] sen. sanders: and by the way, one of the things about getting older, the older you get -- well, yeah -- people who are older appear to be younger. that is what it is. people 45 years of age or younger and what that tells me is that our vision, a vision of social justice, economic justice, racial and environmental justice, that is the future of this country! [applause]
sen. sanders: as of today, i am proud to tell you that taking on virtually the entire democratic , almost all of the senators and members of the house, mayors, governors, we have one over 45% of the pledged delegates. [applause] sen. sanders: and in a couple of weeks if we can win big in new jersey, mexico, north and south dakota, california, we have the .ossibility it will be a steep climb. i recognize that. but we have the possibility of going to philadelphia with the
majority. [applause] sen. sanders: now, some people say we have got a steep hill to climb. that is absolutely true. but you know what? together we have been climbing that's detail from day one and hill from dayteep one in this campaign and we are going to continue to fight for 14ry last vote until june and then we're going to take our fight into the convention. [applause] sen. sanders: you know, there is a lot of discussion about the role of super pac's. [crowd booing] sen. sanders: and i am very proud to tell you i am the only
candidate running for president who does not have a super pac. we made a decision when we began this campaign that we were not going to reagan wall street or corporate america or billionaires for campaign contributions. today, without a super almost $8ve received million -- almost 8 million individual campaign contributions. know what that average contribution is? that's right.
$27. world inthat shows the a time when big money is dominating our political process is that you can run a strong, winning national campaign without baking billionaires for campaign contributions. [applause] [crowd chanting] sen. sanders: let me also say something a lot of people may not be aware of and that is that virtually every national and state poll taken in the last six polls,- in all of those
we are defeating donald trump! and not only are we defeating donald trump in most cases by double digits, in almost every case whether it is a national poll or ace eight paul we do much better against donald trump thing and does sec. clinton. a poll just came out to i think it was yesterday in the state of georgia, not a good steak for us, donald trump was beating sec. clinton by four points and we were beating him by five
points! [crowd chanting "bernie"] the democraticf that wants to be certain donald trump is defeated -- and together,st do -- we, are the campaign to do that. just the polls, the polls go up, the polls go down. is that our campaign has the energy and the enthusiasm and the grassroots capability. [applause]
sen. sanders: the grassroots capability to make certain that in november in the general uuuuuuuuuugehave a h voter turnout. here is a political truism -- when the voter turnout is low and people are demoralized and do not come out to vote, republicans win. when there is excitement and energy and people are prepared to's dan. and vote progressive and democrat, we win. [applause] sen. sanders: i do not have to theain to anybody here that american people will not elect a candidate like donald trump who insults mexicans and latinos.
crowd booing] sen. sanders: go insults muslims. muslims, whos insults women and veterans. and, who is a leader of the so-called her third movement, tries to delegitimize the presidency of our first african american president. [crowd booing] we will not accept as president aman who wants to give hundreds of billions of dollars in tax breaks to billionaire families like his own. that we do told us not have to worry about raising of starvation minimum wage
$7.25 an hour. we will not accept a president who recklessly talks about using nuclear weapons and to changes his mind every day on every issue. let me also say a word to the leadership of the democratic party. and that is that the democratic make as going to have to very, very profound and important decision. andan do the right thing open its stores and welcome into the party people to wear prepared to fight for real economic and social change.
applause] that is the party i want to see, people who are willing to take on wall street. to take on corporate greed. fuelo take on a fossil industry which is destroying this planet. i say to the leadership of the democratic party, open the door, let the people in. [crowd chanting "bernie"] o'er, the other option for the
democratic party, which i see as a very sad and tragic option is the truce to maintain its status quo structure, remain dependent on big money campaign , and be a party with a limited participation and limited energy. [crowd booing} and the party, which incredibly, is allowing a right-wing extremist republican party to capture the votes of a majority of working people in this country. [crowd booing} now, i come from the working and iin this country, if we will allow
the republican party, whose job it is to attract the rich and the powerful, to get the votes of working-class americans. [crowd chanting] let me say a word about why i think this campaign is doing so well. you know why? because we are doing something very unusual. we are telling the american people the truth.
[crowd cheering} here is a very important truth. if we as a nation do not get our act together, this great nation is going to slip into in oligarchic form of society, where a handful of billionaires control our political and economic rights. let me cut you how absurd it is. the brothers, the second aalthiest family in america, family worth tens of billions of dollars, extremely right-wing, contributing over $40 million to trying to make the united states stay republican. $40 million. [crowd booing}
what is even crazier. adelson,ed sheldon also one of the wealthiest people in america. this is a billionaire who is prepared to contribute huge sums to another billionaire, donald trump. the american people are sick and tired of billionaires running our economy. [crowd cheering} together, we are going to overturn this disastrous , and we areted going to move toward public
funding of elections. country to be a vibrant democracy. that means, whether your progressive, conservative, or moderate, if you want to run for office, you should not have to beg millionaires for campaign contributions. [crowd cheering} i want this country to have one of the highest voting turnout rates in the world, not one of the lowest. but before we will have the opportunity to defeat donald trump, we will have to defeat secretary clinton. [crowd cheering] campaign is about issues and
ideas, and let me very briefly and straightforwardly tell you some of the differences between secretary clinton and myself. number one, i am proud to tell you, i don't have a super pac, and i don't get money from wall street. secretary clinton has a number of super pac's. and in the last filing. bang, reported receiving $50 .illion from wall street our job is to take on wall street, not take their money.
federal minimum wage of $7.25 is a starvation wage. wants to raiseon that to $12 an hour, that is ok. but it is not good enough. hold of that sign up, let everyone see it. anare talking about $15 hour. i am proud to tell you, i have been on the picket line with .hose workers they are standing up and fighting for a living wage, and all of us will stand with them.
state of washington a few months ago. we just won oregon. and we are going to win california. i am getting to like the west coast. [crowd cheering] this campaign, when we talk about equitable wages, it is not just waging the minimum wage to a living wage, it is also ending the disgrace of women making $.79 on the dollar, compared to men.
together, i know that every man here will stand with of the women in the fight for payee equality.pay i am a member of the u.s. senate committee on the environment. and i will tell you what all of you know, and that is, that , it is change is real and,d by human activity, as everybody in california knows, it is already causing devastating problems. you in california have witnessed the devastating impact of climate change with your own eyes.
you have seen historic wildfires, which scorched 118,000 acres of land here in california in 2014. mudslides,en massive rising sea levels, you experienced a massive heatwave in 2006. obligation tol system awayr energy from fossil fuels. [crowd cheering] two energy efficiency and sustainable energy. in my view, if we are prepared
to be aggressive in transforming ar energy system, we need packed on carbon. impunity,allow with the fossil fuel industry to our planet.troy i believe in a tax on carbon because i see climate change as one of the great global crises that we face. secretary clinton does not support a tax on carbon. one of the great crises that we are beginning to see unfold is whether or not, in our country and around the world, we will have the clean drinking water
that our people need. why i believe we should move to a ban on fracking. [crowd cheering] that is my view. unfortunately, it is not secretary clinton's view. in fact, when she was secretary of state, she pushed fracking technology on two countries around the world. -- onto countries around the world. the great public policy debate, the most important we have had country,story of our
centered around iraq and whether to go into iraq. toistened very carefully what president bush and dick said. and the others i voted against that war. secretary clinton voted for that war. i believe that when you have a handful of large financial institutions on wall street, institutions who have a business institutions,, which through their illegal behavior and greed drove this
country into the worst economic downturn since the great believe that now is the time to break them up. [crowd cheering] that is my view, that is not secretary clinton's view. reasons that the middle class of this country has been in decline for the last 35 aars has to do with disastrous trade policy which has ended up shutting down thousands of the factories in america as companies shut down here, send workers out on the street, and moves to china, and other low-wage countries.
i voted against every one of those disastrous trade agreements. secretary clinton supported almost all of them. what this campaign is about is whether or not we are going to create an economy that works for all of us, or an economy that continues to work for the 1%. it is not acceptable to me that in america today we have more income and wealth inequality than any other major country on earth. it is worse now than at any time since 1928. it is not acceptable that the
almost asf 1% owns much wealth as the bottom 90%. that not acceptable to me in my state of vermont and here in california, and all of this country, we have millions of people working not one job, but to cobbleree jobs together the income and health care they need. works dadhen mom works, the kid works, it adds up that 50% of all new income goes to the top 1%. that is not acceptable. this campaign is listening to the american people, and not just to wealthy campaign contributors.
this campaign is listening to young people. and young people are asking me how it could happen that when they do the right thing, when they go out and get the best education they can, they end up $30,000, $70,000 in debt. we should not be punishing people for getting an education, we should reward them. 40 or 50 years ago, if you had a high school degree, you were in pretty good shape. you could go out and get yourself a good job. by and large, are gone. we have a changing economy, changing technology, and a
changing global economy. we need to have the best educated workforce in the world. and that means, that when we think about public education, it is not good enough now just to think about first grade through 12th grade. we need to make public colleges and universities' tuitions free. i want every kid in california in the fourth grade and a sixth grade, kids in vermont, to understand, that if they study hearted take school seriously, theirter what the income family has, they will be able to
get a college education. [crowd cheering] here arepeople carrying student debt right now? i have talked to people all over $50,000, 100,000 -- $100,000 in debt. but what crime did they commit? get a decent to education, crazy stuff. we are going to take give students with debt the right to refinance their student loans at the lowest interest rate they can find. and people say, my critics say, bernie, your santa claus, giving away free tuition, how will you pay for it?
i will tell you exactly how we will pay for it. 2009, congress against my vote, bailed out the crooks on wall street. today, wall street is doing just fine, and i think it is appropriate to impose a tax on wall street speculations. and that tax will more than pay for free tuition and public colleges and universities and in lowering student debt. now, wall street does not like that idea, and i say, so what? [crowd cheering] [crowd chanting "bernie"]
if we win this election, wall street and other people who now run this country, are going to learn a very profound lesson. and that is, they will not continue to get it all. i am sick and tired of the greed of corporate america, and the greed of wall street. a new moral compass in this country. pope francis talked about a moral economy, and i agree with him. that is what we need.
this campaign is listening to our latino brothers and sisters. countryr came to this at the age of 17 without a nickel in his pocket, so i know a little bit about the immigrant experience. are 11 million undocumented people in this country today. many of them are being exploited on the job, because when you yout have legal rights, can't stand up and protect yourself. believe we why i
must pass comprehensive immigration reform and citizenship. that is why i believe we must stop immediately the current to deportation policy. if congress does not do its job, i will use the executive power of the presidency to do it right. this campaign is listening to our brothers and sisters in the african-american community. and they are asking me a very
simple but important question, how does it happen that this country has trillions of dollars to spend on a war in iraq we should never have gotten into, but somehow, we don't have the available funds to rebuild our inner cities? i have been to flint, michigan, and visited with parents whose children have been poisoned by lead in the water. i have been to detroit, michigan, where their public school system is on the verge of a physical collapse. i have been to baltimore, maryland, where tens of thousands of people are addicted to drugs and do not have the treatment available to get them
off that substance. together, aren, going to change our national priorities. [crowd cheering] we are going to rebuild our inner cities, build affordable housing, improve the schools for our children. and this campaign is listening to a people whose pain is almost never heard, and that is, our native american brothers and sisters. we owe the first americans a
debt of gratitude that we can never repay. much,ave taught us so including the very important lesson, that as human beings, all of us are part of nature. .e must live with nature and, we cannot continue to destroy nature, because if we destroy nature, we are destroying ourselves. [crowd cheering] together, this campaign, and our presidency, are going to reform a broken criminal justice system.
, i believe,ceptable to any of us, that we haven't 2.2 million people in jail today, more than any other country honors -- any other country on earth. whether in inner cities or rural 40%, 50%experiencing unemployment rates. we will put those kids to work in good jobs. invest ine going to education for them, not jail, or incarceration. we want this country to be the best-educated country on earth, not the country with more people in jail.
what this campaign is about, is thinking outside of the box, outside of the status quo. every other major country on earth, whether the united kingdom, france, germany, scandinavia, canada, every other major country guarantees health care to all of its people, as a right. the affordable care act has done some very good things, but we have a lot more to do. i believe, from the deepest part of my soul, that health care is a right, not a privilege.
today, we have 29 million peoples with no insurance, and even more who are underinsured with large deductibles and copayments. and everyone and every one of us is getting ripped off by the greed of the drug companies. [booing] pharmaceutical companies judge -- charge us by far the highest for the medicine we need. by the way, on the ballot year in november in california, you are going to have a proposition making sure that california can control the outrageously high cost of prescription drugs. [cheering and applause] sen. sanders: i congratulate those people who put that item on the ballot.