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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  May 20, 2016 7:00am-10:01am EDT

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defense contractors from getting work if they discriminate against the lgbt community. you can join the conversation on facebook and twitter. >> is friday morning, may 20, 2016. the morning and welcome to "washington journal." congress left washington ahead of the legislative break. the president meanwhile, departs from washington this weekend and stops in vietnam in japan. we are a week away from the start of the memorial day weekend, please start of summer unofficially and the start of the travel season. and with long tsa linesz in the news, we thought we would ask about your thoughts on, are they worth the wait for your summer travel plans?
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are you concerned about the security lines? for those of you on the ease coast and in the central time zone, the number is 202-748-8000 . in the pacific, the number is 202-748-8001. edia.ou can join us on m you can also look us up on facebook as well at facebook.com/cspan. perhaps the lung problem with t sa is exacerbated by the egyptair crash yesterday, which is on the front page of most newspapers. the washington post's headline this morning was "paris to cairo flight disappeared." we will take a look at the wall street journal and their front page. the relatives of passengers on the missing egyptair plane head to a gathering on thursday as this spurs terror fears.
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this is inside the washington post, the map of the flight from paris, headed to cairo and the last recorded position at 2:30 a.m. thursday morning. the washington post writes that egypt faces a range of militant threats, including a group affiliated with the islamic state active in the sinai peninsula. they claim responsibility for bringing down a charter flight, with a possible bomb smuggled aboard, killing 2200 people. that is from the washington post. looking for your comments on twitter as well. he will take a look at what egyptair is treating this morning. some confusion on the wreckage overnight. here is what they are saying, and this was at about three clock a.m. eastern. the egyptian air armed forces have informed egyptair that they have found debris from the missing aircraft operating
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flight ms804. we are looking for your comments more broadly, on the subject of airport security. we are joined from jennifer, who is with politico. she is the transportation reporter for politico. this is typically, a problem around the big travel weekend, some oil they and labor day, but it seems to have gotten bigger this year. what is behind the longer lines at airports? guest: the lines are really long. i have not been to the airport, personally, to go through the screening. that i have seen them at chicago. it is definitely a real thing that is happening. this is something that jeh johnson, the head of homeland security, had forecast back over the summer.
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about, will the lines be longer and he was very candid in saying, the lines probably will be longer going forward. one of the biggest reasons for that is the tsa failed very extremely in covert testing that was leaked to the media last year. the results of that word that the tsa failed 67 out of 70 times to detect fake bombs and weapons. the agency had to go back into this overhaul and a star to do things they had not been doing, not let people through those pre-check lines that had not gone to the background checks and the fingerprinting. and then on top of that, since they have taken those steps, air travel has increased substantially. thanksgiving some record numbers. charlotte douglas international had one of their busiest, i
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think record-breaking days during spring break. they had more passengers in one during spring break them i had during the time when they hosted the democratic convention. now,ou are singing right 7% to 8% increase in passenger air traffic over the last fiscal year. tsa expects it to track at those levels through the summer. it is this convergence through extra security measures and the, just more people flying. host: it would seem that with these does, in terms of trying to get material through some of the airports across the country. it would seem that would make it harder to get people who pass the background checks, the ability to work those lines and detect those sorts of things. guest: yes, they are really struggling to get enough screeners in their workforce. one of the requirements that jeh
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johnson handed down to the tsa director was to do more back to basics screening. not only is it difficult to get people to become tsa screeners. they are paid at various levels. they aren't you know, millionaires. it is hard to get people to be tsa screeners. also, they are requiring them, in most cases, to go down to georgia for a full training at the federal law enforcement training center. you know, just requiring them to go through more vigorous training to do those jobs to start with. they think they will get another few hundred screeners into the workforce by june. the exact number is 768 new screeners. that is the goal and the agency and department seem very confident they will be able to get those screeners.
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congress just gave them permission to shift $34 million within their budget to attain that. but june is too late in most people's minds. the lines are already long now. the agency is taking steps and lawmakers are tried to think of things they can do immediately that will have some kind of impact because this is a huge story all over the country, not just a national story. but locally, it is very eye catching when you have people posting on social media, these lines that snake through the entire airport, sometimes out the door. as congress comes back for one more weekend before the memorial day rbe itbreak, is it like -- memorial day break, is it likely we will see more meetings? guest: peter messenger will be there wednesday morning. andthen thursday, airline
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airport officials -- maybe just airport officials. aviation officials will be before one of the subcommittees of that committee and both of those lawmakers that had those panels -- michael mccaul, have proposed legislation so i think they will be trying to check in to see what the industry and the department think of their ideas. and see if they have any ideas of their own. choltes isifer ss covering that and you can follow her reporting on twitter for politico. we would love to hear, your experience so far. those tsa security lines, are they worth the wait? 202-748-8000, the number to call for those of you in those central time zones. 202-748-8001, for those of you in the mountain and pacific time zones. caller: thanks for taking my
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call. the question is foolish. is it worth it? ? what does that mean? is it worth it that people try to make sure nobody has a bomb to get on a plane. no, i don't have time for that. let's just wing it. the question should be, is the agency doing a good job? obviously, no. we have to look at the way israel defends its people and protects its airlines. they have a stellar record. that is because they don't waste time looking into 73-year-old white women from minnesota getting on a plane. but they would, if they found a middle eastern guy heading one way with no luggage. that might throw a flag up. i think it could become much more efficient. but the premise of, is it worth it, i don't understand what that would mean. host: walter from butler, indiana. welcome. you can find your comments on
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twitter. this one is from tj, he was really concerned about stopping terrorists. if they were, they would protect our borders and check lisa's. twitter.lso from anything run by the government will be slow in less it is related to bathroom degrees. here is what this republican on the house for had to say. >> we do know the lines are longer and tsa efficiency is questionable. to find that out, just go to any of our airports and try to travel. travelers are faced with wait times in excess of three hours just to get through security. flights are missed. flights are delayed because of the security check point. it is ironic that people wait in line longer than it is -- then it takes them to fly from point a to point b. security lines should not take longer than the flight itself. but that is happening in our airports.
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so, the tsa director blames the passengers for the delay. so, it is not tsa's fault, it is the flying public's paul. -- public's fault. the cost to american taxpayers is $7 billion a year. are we safer, better off, and more secure because of this massive bureaucracy? americans need to answer that question. host: those tsa security lines, are they worth the wait. this is joe from our independents line. actually, we have broken up our lines geographically. joe, in the nation's capital, good morning. caller: thanks for taking my call. did fly.kend i fl we travel frequently and that comes with the territory. lived in a society
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that has been pretty adjustable. we've grown by 7 million people. the population has grown. the workload gets heavy for those guys. but it kills me when people will always complain about the government. this is not a convenient world. god said it would not be easy. people complain about everything all the time. if we did not have the security system that we have, then what would it be? we are top-notch, compared to other places in the world. host: how much opportunity do you get to travel? caller: i travel maybe two or three times a year. and when i do, i appreciate what we have. host: here is kenneth in san francisco. good morning. caller: good morning. host: hi there. caller: i just wanted to say that i do have problems with the
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security lines. i'm a commercial fisherman and last year, i was there on june 1 when they were having those things and it was horrid to see the people running around. you know what? , it told a guy earlier really looked like people who were caught -- like deers caught in the headlights of a truck. they were stunned, they couldn't do nothing. i was appalled that we could allow our citizens to be represented by tsa employees like that. i pay my taxes. i have to fly for my commercial fishing and everything and i have flown for 41 years doing it. and has not gotten better. it has gotten worse. host: kenneth, has it gotten worse in the last couple months? caller: i will be flying 6th and i canhe 2 get back to you on that for my
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fishing season again. i really have not gone down that way. i know some friends say who went up earlier, he said the lines were better because we flew up together last year. let us in, it was appalling. our flights were disconnected. i like america. i think we could do better. but i feel kind of bad that we let thi terrorists do this much to us. we have to do things like this to feel safe. you know what? when you get crowded together, they tell us not to do that. host: we are asking this question, tidying into the missing egyptair flight. greg it has been found -- wreckage has been found180 miles north of egypt.
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jerome, good morning. caller: good morning, how are you today? host: fine, thanks. caller: has anybody thought about the danger of exposing those people standing in front of those pews, waiting to go through security? what happened in belgium -- right from the terminal. secondly, i think it is time to lower the age from 75 to say, 65 or 60, people having to take their shoes and belts off. how many terrorists have we seen over that age? and lastly, i remember that congress had a free check in, or do they have to stand in line like the rest of citizens? host: that is a good question. i can't answer that. this is from the chicago tribune, it is on the website too. the lines as
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it takes flak over waits. they write that, as airline passengers throughout the country move through unusually long security lines, the transportation security officials thought to see how they could help speed the process. with the agency under fire for willful understaffing, the officials put on a demonstration to show how forbidden items can exacerbate the weight. the demonstration involved tsa volunteers, who pretended to be part of the pre-check program. pre-approve passengers who do not have to remove their shoes to go through security. carryinglunteers, few more than one bag or personal item, went through the line twice. any mr. could items and another time with various people carrying a water bottle, a firearm, and a laptop or knife. it took them less than two
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minutes when the volunteers were not carrying anything problematic. again, that is at the chicago tribune this morning. tsare asking you about security lines. are they worth the wait? , central and eastern. 202-748-8001, mountain time zone. tom, go ahead. caller: good morning. i wanted to make two points. first of all, why are the taxpayers paying for the service? why is it not a charge on each plane ticket? and have that charge go through a private company, and then, a private company run the screening. it would be so much more efficient. they complain that they cannot get screeners to work there. raise the pay, ok? when you have an economy with low unemployment, you have to
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raise what you pay people in order to attract them to that job. and it just doesn't make sense, you know. if the taxpayer is paying for this whole thing, that does not make sense either because it should be added to the price of the ticket to the person applying, or the taxpayer should not be paying for this. that is about all i have got. host: there has been a lot of talk about private security screeners. in the new york times, they have a number of questions and answers on the issue. the question, can airports hire private security contractors? the new york times writes, yes, under the screening partnership program, 22 of the 450 commercial airports in the country, including san francisco international airport, now his private screeners. some airport executives and republicans have proposed hiring private screeners to replace tsa workers.
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the port authority of new york and new jersey, which operates kennedy international airport, laguardia airport, and new ark liberty international, say they are considering private security options. caller: we are talking about the tsa. it is very inefficient. help.eed privatized if we get more workers for tsa, they need more benefits. we need private enterprise. let them fork it out the taxpayers should not be paying for somebody to get on a plane. we need to privatize it out. host: let me show you some pictures too, some folks using hashtag #hatethewait.
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dale says, no, tsa, like most personnel at major airports, are unprofessional, lazy, and rude. the national guard would do a better job. another person says, unless subject togage is the same scrutiny as passengers, does the length of lines really matter? they don't open the screening lines until one hour before. next up is jean in park ridge, illinois. caller: good morning. i think what we need to do is to look at the entire picture involving o'hare airport. it was classified as one of the most corrupt in the study back in 2004. there are new runways. o'hare wants to eat with two f orks. they want one million flights by the end of this year. we have to look at the great lakes region, rather than just one airport. there are too many planes, too many air routes.
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it is come back in. 30 seconds apart with these planes landing here. that is causing the issue -- the issues involving the people here and the passengers. if the passengers have air rights and pilots have air rights, what about the people condemned under the flight paths at nighttime? o'hare is a victim of its own success. and now, they are talking about privatizing. mr. burke, who is in charge of the finance, that is the worst thing. can you imagine who would be running this airport? he had his hands in all of the pockets here, sir. let's get really creative here and let's start at square one and put back the flight cap at o'hare. host: thanks for your comments and questions on whether the long lines are worth the wait. eastern and for the central time zones. and 202-748-8001 for mountain
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and pacific. one tsa official you have probably seen several times on c-span's peter neffenger, the administrator. he went before the house oversight and reform committee, talking about the increase in passenger traffic at airports. here is what he had to say. >> we have seen a huge increase in passenger volume, there is no doubt about that. we are seeing more people moving to the system than ever before. four years ago, a big day in this country was about 1.6 million passengers going through screening checkpoints. we are well above 2 million passengers daily right now. there is a volume increase. and i do think we need to grow the staff slightly to get up to that and we are working hard on that. in fact, we got our appropriations bill passed in december and we began accelerated hiring. as you know, if you are going to reduce 1600 people, we cut into that people well in
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advance of the fiscal year. the good news is, we have people who want to come to work for the tsa. >> it seems to me, and i know you know this as a good management visible. three hours is unacceptable. we have to be setting for ourselves, a time frame that is acceptable and we don't go beyond that. whatever stuffing that is correctlymr. mike talk about staffing to traffic. that is part of that. >> that is right. closelybeen working with the airlines and airports dimming sure our staffing meets that. i think we have improved significantly in the past few weeks. host: peter neffenger before congress. news this morning, political news, front page of the new york times. the most recent poll survey with cbs news, voters via the presidential race.
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the headline is that from preserves the party's backing. an overwhelming majority of republican voters think their party leader should get behind donald trump, even as he enters the general election, saddled with toxic favorability ratings in the broader electorate, according to the latest new york times and cbs poll. and as mr. trump faces deep skepticism with a general election voters and republican holdouts, the democratic front clinton, isary grappling with bernie sanders and how to win over his impassioned supporters. donald trump favorable, 26%. this is with all registered voters. not favorable, 55%. hillary clinton, favorable 31% and not favorable 52%. bernie sanders, 41% favorable and not favorable is 33%. i will show you the front page of the life section of the usa today. the headline about the death of morley safer, who died yesterday
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at the age of 84. this was just after retiring from "60 minutes." they had a special sendoff program sunday night. the icon dies at 84. we do want to remind you we had a conversation with morley safer back in 2012 on our "q&a" program and you can find that on www.c-span.org. you will probably see the program on our schedule in the coming days here on c-span. let's go to alex who is in austin, texas. go ahead, alex. caller: yeah, so, first you were talking about privatization. that was something unheard of a few years ago. it was laughable. if it were to be privatized, there are already standards -- it is still a racket anyway. it is a scanners,
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racket. you can't see the blatant corruption? it is seriously funny that it would be a thing. and that clip you played earlier of that general and talking about staffing. so, how many more tsa agents does it take to stop the lines from being three hours long and touching shoulders and old ladies? how many more tsa agents does it take? host: on the issue of staffing on air marshals, a piece in usa today, air marshals can't cover all of the skies. that is the headline. they write, as investigators examined whether terrorism causes the crash of the cairo bound jet, many u.s. travelers take solace in that u.s. flights are often staffed by pairs of undercover federal air marshals.
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but 55 years after the birth of the program, and nearly 15 years after the post 9/11 heyday, the air marshals program may be less omnipresent than many travelers expect and perhaps, less effective. hard numbers are hard to obtain. federal officials would not release any statistics on the program, but during a congressional oversight hearing last summer, the lawmaker put the number at about 4000. that is from usa today. up next is bernard from california. your experience from the tsa lines and is it worth of the way? caller: how you doing? host: doing fine, thank you. caller: i feel it is worth the wait. that is the times we are living in today. people say they are afraid, so that is what they have got to do to field you know, comfortable. -- to do to feel you know, comfortable. republicans are talking about privatizing tsa, or any type of
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government job. that is a racket, just to get in on the government jobs. they are just cherry picking, because they know they are going to have tsa. then, the private companies come in and get that easy money. i mean, it never stops, you know? just like they want to privatize the prisons and everything else. it is just easy money, seriously. host: thanks, bernard. camille is up next from new jersey. caller: good morning, thanks for taking my call. i told the screener, i live in new jersey. i am planning a trip to boston in july. i have the opportunity to drive. it is about a five and half hour drive or fly. i can afford to fly. i will not be flying because it is not worth the time. host: is is because of what you are seeing in terms of the wait
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lines recently? caller: just in general. never mind recently, the last time i flew to boston you kn ow, you have to be there an hour and a half early. i only live 30 minutes from the airport. you have to be there early and then it takes two hours to go through sometimes. it is just not worth it. if i have the option to drive, i will choose to drive for five and half hours. honestly, we decided we would get there sooner. host: thanks for being with us this morning. looking at comments on twitter. this one is from milan who says, it looks like all that stuff that people are carrying on, that is the problem. usually it is us, not the government. karen says, if people have not learned the tsa screening rules by now, they should stay home. and jan says, in all my years i
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have never had that problem. onk nonessentials carry what it have to have. they are absolutely worth the wait, if you want to live, take all the time that you need in order for people to get .n the plane why don't we just leave the middle east alone and then maybe the lines would not need so long . maybe if we sent george bush and dick cheney as a sacrifice to leave us alone, maybe we will do better. or do what poor people do, they packed some bologna sandwiches, get some snacks, get some candy, and they drive. the only time we get on the plane usually is to go to a funeral or something. people, in eight volts wagon going to a funeral. -- folks wagon going to a
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funeral. host: we are asking this question in relation to the egyptair crash and the memorial day weekend, the headline in the -- they areried saying, the exact cause is unknown, the egyptair redeye from paris to cairo, and airbus 320 with 66 people aboard had entered egyptian airspace on the final part of the journey. we go to hair most of each, california and tj. caller: good morning, how are you? host: fine, thank you. anler: i think the tsa is illusion of safety. never once have i heard a tsa hero found a bomb or stop a terrorist -- terroristic threat. it is an illusion of safety,
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there are too many people who .ave access to airplanes it is an illusion, it is a waste of time. with the gentleman talking about the money grab, i am also with the lady from new jersey who would rather -- who rather would drive. i fly a lot less since these lines have gotten -- they are out of hand. i live from -- i live 10 minutes from lax, it is ridiculous. host: talking about the personnel involved, that was an issue for the chairman of the oversight committee and their hearing with the head of the tsa, here is a little bit of their conversation. >> it is a standard national agency check, the same check you do for people into the military for the first time, you do a criminal history background check, you check their name against the terrorist screening database. you look for any disqualifying
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activities, offenses, or the like in their background. >> and there are some infractions that would be accessible to be hired as a tsa question mark -- tsa? if you could provide whatever the current standard is. you said they you -- you said you that those daily -- if someone were to get arrested or had an assault charge or a murder charge, to pick something heinous, how would you know that once they have been hired? >> evening after they have been hired, we do a current criminal history background check. i believe it is on an annual basis, i will verify that and then we do daily recurrent, it is a continuous check against the terrorist screening database for our employees. host: all of that hearing available at www.c-span.org. next up in washington. caller: i am calling because i
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had these people calling and complaining about the tsa and they want more security -- they wanted more security protection, they got it, this is the consequence of it. i think the tsa is doing the best they can. if congress was not bickering they could have passed a bill to higher more tsa operators. secure, youto be have to do the things you have to do to protect yourself. if it takes four hours of standing in line to get on the plane, you stand for hours -- you stand four hours to allow the tsa operators to do their job. also, i have to say, if congress does their job, if congress did twor job to hire more tsa years ago, the lines would be much better. host: that is in the nation's
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capital, another view from dylan .atthews here at fox.com the headline is, the tsa is a waste of money that does not save lives and may actually cost them. you can read this at vox.com. he writes that things are not looking great for the tsa, o'hare airport becoming o'wait airport. this is from vox.com. while tsa weights have never -- ashort, as trouble summer travel start, many airports are leaning toward junking the tsa altogether and using private security screening . he writes it is not a bad idea, the tsa is not just aggravating and unnecessary, by pushing people to drive instead of fly it is actively dangerous and
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costing the lives. less invasive private scanning would be better. we hear from jerry, next in nevada. good morning, go ahead. caller: we had a bad experience recently in orlando. we showed up two hours ahead of time and the dsa operator was about, you should have showed up 3-4 hours early. fortunately there was a much more sympathetic operator that allowed my wife to go to the tsa pre-line and get through much faster. to me, the issue is, obviously, airlines now charging for bags. obviously it is calm -- competition and people can do what they want, i guess. so many people bringing things through the lines, as opposed to frequent flyers who have the ability to have a pre-checked bag. i, myself, having a security -- butnce, get tsa pre-
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the problem is you have to pay to get tsa pre. they should seriously look at the option of allowing people to get pretty background checks for free and get the primary lines much shorter. host: was your extreme that orlando unusual? us, we it really shocked usually fly out of reno and you are in and out much thicker. .ll -- much all of a sudden we were finding ourselves standing in this obnoxiously long line that was just insane. my wife, literally, was down to two minutes where she would not have made the flight. host: thank you for sharing your experience and you talk about tsa pre-check that was also part of the conversation of the house oversight committee and peter neffenger. .> we still have tsa pre-check we are growing that population,
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we have doubled the enrollment of that population over last based approachsk is, the more people in the trusted traveler programs, the more we can focus on those who are not. we discontinued the practice of arbitrarily assigning and randomly assigning people from an unknown population into the expedited population. that pushed a lot of people back into the standard screening lanes. we have a significant larger population of travelers this year than previously. they grew faster, at a higher rate than predicted by those who set the predictions for our budgets which have been built in the past. when i came into this organization last year, i found feweranization with 5800 screeners and fewer frontline officers than it had had four years previously. one of the first things i asked congress to do was to hold any
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further reductions to the workforce because it was my suspicion we did not have enough people to staff our lanes, my suspicion was correct. we do not have enough people currently. we have been a systematically scrubbing -- >> i respectfully disagree and yield back. host: all of that hearing available online. this is front page of "the washington times" talking about the legislature in oklahoma. oklahoma lawmakers hope to take abortion bans to high court. it seeks to imprison and revoke licenses of doctors. they pass a bill thursday making abortion a crime hoping to set in motion a legal challenge to the supreme court decision. the desk of head to governor mary fallin, a pro-life republican who has five business days to either sign or veto the legislation. if she does neither the bill automatically becomes law. if the bill is signed into law,
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performing an abortion will be punishable by up to three years in prison. doctors performing abortions will also have their medical licenses revoked. not indicateds whether she will sign the bill, but she has a strong pro-life record in office. that is from "the washington times." the president will head out this weekend for a trip to vietnam and also japan. human rights confront obama in vietnam, saying pressure to lift a decade-long arms embargo and complains about human rights violations will confront president obama when he makes his first visit to vietnam on monday. 41 years after the yeti of one of the most divisive wars in american history. arms for obama to lift an embargo, arguing it is necessary to counter an evermore asserted china on the border in the south china sea worthy countries have
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overlapping territorial claims in the resort rich see. the united states eased the embargo lifting a ban on maritime defense items. the sticking point over lifting the arms embargo is the -- imprisonedd and dozens of rights activists and bloggers according to human rights watch. we have about five more minutes of your comments and calls about the tsa lines, are they worth the wait? four eastern and central time zones. mountain and pacific, 202-748-8001. and on twitter @cspanwj. says, i do not drive anymore, i rediscovered america's beauty. if tsa screening is effective, it is worth the inconvenience. if not, we need to fix it.
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back to the story leading in, this says that tsa -- what happened to egyptair shows that efficient screening is worth it. here is judith in wake forest, north carolina. caller: i have two negative sides to the tsa. one time, going home for a funeral, i was there only three days, packed very lightly, and not only did i have them search my luggage, but i was put in that tank -- that profile thing for the shape of your body and and the people around just laughed and they thought it .as a big joke another time in chicago, one of the tsa person, he looked like a slime ball that did not have a shower in some time, they went through my carry-on once again and i was just -- it was first
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class and believe me, we never traveled first class. this just happened to be one time where we were able to do it because my husband had points.tion of it was very degrading, this guy was so filthy and they touched my clothes -- clothing and i packed where my bras are behind the screen mesh and it was like they were touching everything. once again they think it is a big joke. thank you for your time. host: did you or your husband complained to the manager on-site or contact tsa regionally? caller: no, we did not. i hate to fly, i would rather drive. i live on the east coast and i would like to go to phoenix for some warm weather and i would rather drive. it is so humiliating and
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disgusting and the planes are filthy. i had one other occasion where i came home from a long trip and areautside of my tooshy was so inflamed, it took almost seven days for it to heal and i would rather not fly. thank you very much for your time. host: here is caroline in mission hills, southern california. make sure you meet your television or radio. go ahead with your comment. is, whetheromment or not i like hearing people say on the air, i think if they would close the border and stop letting other people over here that do not believe in the god we trust that we do. it means they will do anything they want to do and live, just like muslims who are part of their religion is they can tell
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you anything they want you to say and say some words to their god and it is ok to lie to people. if they close the border, close the mexican border and stop letting everyone over here that is not even ready for america, maybe they would have to -- maybe they would not have to have so many searching everybody. host: more and your comments ahead, we will be joined by fawn johnson here to talk about the latest role from the obama administration over overtime pay. that wasvertime rules passed last week, we would have about the impact on workers and businesses and wages at jobs. we will also hear from john wonderlich who is the policy the recent dear between -- recent deal between the rnc and donald trump to fund for the election. american history tv has
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marked its 40th anniversary of the release of the church committee final report. tune in this week to hear testimony from two fbi informants. from december 2, 1975, we will show a clip of a ku klux klan informant by the name of thomas roe. he explains how he purchase made in beatings. >> in connection with the freedom riders incident that you mentioned, did you inform the fbi about planned violence prior to that incident? >> i gave the fbi information pertaining to the freedom writers approximately three weeks before it occurred. i explained i had been contacted by a birmingham city detective who in turn wanted me to meet ofh the high-ranking officer the birmingham police department to set a reception for the
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freedom writers. that? told the fbi >> that is correct sir. >> where they beaten? >> they were beaten very badly. minutes withsed 15 absolutely no intervention from any police officer whatsoever. was passed on to the bureau, we had our 15 minutes. approximately 15 minutes after the freedom writers were attacked, a police officer ran over to me and stated, god dammit, god dammit, get out of here, your time is up. >> let me have you underscore from the public exactly what we are hearing here. we just heard testimony that the fbi and the birmingham police comeded to allow people to
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in and beat the freedom writers unaffected for 15 minutes before the authorities moved in, is that correct? >> that is what you just heard and that is what happened. "washington journal" continues. host: joining us is fawn johnson here to talk about the ruling this week by the obama administration concerning overtime pay. what does the role say? guest: it is a pretty big change, it is essentially taking the salary level that people under which were automatically qualify for overtime and doubling it. originally, under current law, if your annual salary is under about $24,000, you are automatically eligible to get overtime pay if you work more than 40 hours a week. the administration is taking ist up to, the exact number
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$47,476 a year. it equals out to about $913 a week. they are saying almost everyone under that threshold would be qualified for overtime pay. it is a huge increase, 4.2 million workers, about a third of the full-time salary workforce. host: the rule would kick in december first of this year, the very end of the obama administration. what did the administration say about why this rule was necessary now? guest: they are trying to go back to the original intent of the fair labor standards act. this is the law that set the minimum wage, set the 40 hour workweek, all of the things we are familiar with now. under an older workplace situation, more manufacturing -based and maybe less service based. the original intent of the law was to make sure people in the middle class or somewhat middle-class type of salaries
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were not being subjected to over work unless there was some sort .f special circumstance they do exempt professionals and supervisors from these overtime rules, and they have done that all along. they want to make sure if you make below a certain salary threshold, it would be hard for an employer to make you work more than 40 hours a week. the threshold has stayed at eight dollars level throughout the 1970's. it has been dusted a little bit from that time until now, but you can tell with inflation, a $23,000 salary is not that much. it is hard to live on at this point. some people would consider that in poverty. host: any idea on how long this adjustment -- this role has been in the works? this is by the labor department? guest: for much of the administration, that is my understanding. they do not do it without thought. the proposal came out a year ago
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and the original proposal was actually for a higher salary threshold, little over $50,000. they originally suggested it would go into effect 90 days after the rule was published, which is a very short amount of time for employers to have to try to adjust. they are giving a little bit back to the employer community, not much, the employer community is still mad, but they are giving a little bit act by lowering the threshold and giving a more -- giving a longer. acrosshis is been done the country, by states, cities, etc.. guest: the labor to permit cannot raise the minimum wage, the -- that is something congress has to do. they -- make sure people are not being cheated by being hired as a contractor, when what they effectively are is an employee
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of an organization and that means employees are allowed certain things. like they are allowed breaks, they are allowed time off. host: all of the signs we see on the employee break room? guest: exactly, yeah. what they worry about a lot is people who are effectively hourly workers but are being called managers or salaried employees for the sake of having employer not have to pay them what the law says they are entitled to. that is there evidence those types of descriptions have increased since the last time this was raised? when is the last time it was raised? guest: the minimum wage or the -- host: the overtime pay. guest: the last time the overtime pay was adjusted was in 2004. they did a little bit, but they took it at the lower level. it only covered less than 10% of the salaried workforce. it was under the bush
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administration, it was a controversial role because one of the things the bush administration did was suggest that if you have an hourly employee who has some managerial responsibilities, think a shift manager at a fast food restaurant, for example. that person, if they had 20% of their duties that were managerial, that person would be exempt from overtime. labor advocates and the democrats went crazy over that rule, they said it was a real abuse of what is essentially an hourly worker, because you give them managerial spot to abilities. it was a fight that took place throughout the appropriations process in congress for an entire year before the democrats backed off. host: fawn johnson talking about the new rule prompted by the administration set to go into affect at the beginning of december, the end of the year on overtime pay. we will break up our lines to hear from you and how this may or will impact you.
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202-748-8000 if you make under $50,000 annual. for those of you making between 50000 and $100,000 that is, 202-748-8001. over $100,000, 202-748-8002 and business owners, that is 202 -748-8003. we will get tear calls momentarily, but i want to play comments from the president's spokesman -- >> we would anticipate that this executive action that would would extend overtime protections to more than 4 million american workers. these are 4, million of the hardest working americans, individuals who are already working overtime and the president believes they should be paid fairly for their work. the economic impact is also
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significant. the economic impact, according to our estimates, is that american's wages would increase by $12 billion over the next 10 years as a result of this rule. this is an impactful way to make sure american workers are paid fairly and to do something that many people have identified as an important goal which is to put upward pressure on wages. we have seen strong economic growth in this country and strong trends related to job creation, but not as much progress made on increasing wages in this country. this is a tangible example of way,e can do that, by the by definition, this is increasing wages for people who make $47,000 a year or less. this is consistent with the president's strategy that our economy will be strongest when we grow from the middle out and we are looking for opportunities
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to expand economic opportunity for middle-class families and families that are working hard to get to the middle class. johnson with the morning consult, what are you hearing in the administration's message there? guest: they are trying to make sure they are going to attack the middle class. this is an easy talking point for democrats, for the administration, for everyone, really. it is not that difficult, but what they are trying to -- they are trying to argue against the pushback that comes from the employer-based community that says it will be very difficult for them. employers across the board, including nonprofits, i would add, have been very concerned about this rule does if nothing else, it is a huge administrative change for them which is going to cost a lot of money. we have the administration basically saying this will increase our economy, it will increase wages by $12 billion and that will outweigh whatever
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it costs. host: a number of nonprofits testifying before the house committee, you can see it at www.c-span.org on some of the business reaction, here is the ceo of the national federation of business, when needed to -- business, juanita doug. she says, the new rule means higher labor costs for millions of businesses regardless of whether they are making more sales, generating more revenue. many are struggling now and they will have to make tough choices that might affect the same workers from the labor department -- who the labor department thinks they are helping. you said they had a chance to weigh in? guest: they weighed in pretty strongly. host: against it? guest: against it, and that was expected. this is a massive change to how we are regulated in the united states. it is probably the biggest
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regulation the administration will put out this year, if not for the most of the second term of president obama. it affects all workplaces. the thing that i think was interesting to me is to see how much -- it did seem like the administration listened, but they were never going to back off of adding 4 million people to this particular category of having some overtime protection. host: let's see how our c-span viewers are affecting and it might affect you and our c-span radio listeners. bob, makes between $50,000 and $100,000. caller: could you please explain to the folks the difference between a rule that you are ?peaking about and law the way i seem to understand is rule by the president, i would
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assume, is doing the same thing law.ngress creating a please expand the difference there. guest: i appreciate the caller for asking this question, sometimes people do get confused . the administration, whatever the administration is, the white house in this case, the obama administration has the ability to set rules that if congress gives them the authority to do so. in this particular case, congress gave the administration the authority to set the standard by which people were eligible for overtime. they did this a long time ago, decades ago. this is a final rule, that means unless there is a lawsuit or action on behalf of of congress to stop it, it will go into affect in december. as we were talking earlier about the minimum wage, that is a different set.
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the administration does not have the authority to set the minimum wage, that is something only congress can do on a federal level and the state can do. under this statute, the stick -- the fair labor standards act, it is the administration's call. they write that the administration is rushing this rule and others out now because they hope to get ahead of the 60 day legislation provision that -- in the congressional review. once a new role is made final, the congressional review act gives congress 60 legislative days to overturn the rule with the majority not subject to the filibuster. mr. obama does not want congress to see who the next president is and avoid the rule of bill clinton's ergonomics rule which was overturned by congress. guest: that was one of the first things i covered in washington in the way back, we can review what happened there.
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there is a law called the congressional review act that allows congress to rescind a rule -- a final rule that will go into effect by the administration if they do it within a certain amount of time after the law -- after the rule becomes final. under the clinton administration, in the final days, they finalized this big rule on ergonomics, which essentially how you sit -- host: in the workspace. guest: in the workspace and it was massively protested by the business community. they did it too late, it was effectively rescinded by the bush administration because we get a new president who would sign it into law and they did not have to deal with a filibuster or anything like that and it was a huge win for the sincess community, but then, administrations have taken a lesson from that and they realize if they are going -- at the end of the administration, if they want their roles to be in effect, they have to do that
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before the 180 day window. host: so they are acting now. guest: exactly. host: lori is making under $50,000 on the new overtime rule. caller: good morning. host: you are on the hair -- you are on the air, go ahead. are you there? i will move on to towson, maryland and hannah. welcome. county worker here in baltimore and i make under $50,000 and i do pull over time and they will not give me, time -- they will not give me comp time because they base it on salary. will this affect us? guest: how much is your salary right now. you say you are under $50,000, is that right? are you under $47,000?
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caller: i am probably right at that threshold. guest: just a quick question, we have not talked about comp time. anyone who is considered eligible for overtime would fit into this category once the rule goes into -- under the new rule. anyone eligible for overtime cannot be given compensatory time off for overtime. employers are not allowed to do that. that would excite why they are time.ving you comp a lot of people would prefer that, they would like to have extra time off rather than get paid extra. the law prohibits that from happening. there have been efforts in congress to change that, particularly organized labor is really concerned as they do not want employers to back out of paying their employees extra money when they are forced to hours.tra
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if you work a 60 hour work week, he should get paid extra no matter what. morning, also making under $50,000. caller: yes, i am right here and i'm a $24,500. $24,500. i do not see how this rule can apply for me, the only tax break i got all my paychecks was on the bush administration had a tax law that allowed me so much act as a tax incentive. when that expired it was taken away, that was the last time i saw a raise. guest: just a question, are you a manager of any sort? caller: i do both, a run shop and i run an office for the owner. guest: that would explain it. caller: i have been doing it for 35 years. guest: this is an excellent example of something the administration is trying to deal with. someone who makes $24,000 and
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someone who has supervisor or managerial duties. we are in a place where we do not know, the actual bash there is a whole list of what they call the duties test which would explain looking at your duties as an employee, how many -- how much of your duties have to do with managing some sort of professional or independent judgments with running an office , say, administrative type duties. that has not changed under this rule, it is a very heavily litigated part of the law and as our caller, we might find that she, especially because she runs an office, could be exempt, which means she would not be eligible despite what i would be considered to be a relatively low salary. host: issued by the administration, set to go on effect december 1. we are asking for your comments
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and calls and how you might be affected. for those of you under $50,000 a year. $50,000 to $100,000, 202-748-8001. and $100,000, 202-748-8002 for business owners, 202-748-8003, we would love to hear from you as well. is,er: one of the problems i think the federal government is doing about getting them paid. a person making $7.25 an hour, it takes 10 years for them to make the one-year salary oa politician, i do not care who it is. it takes than 10 years and they get an expense account and staff. congress should pass it, they would not even pass infrastructure that would provide jobs for the state. -- that ist 100 days the pipeline in alaska.
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it is hurting the people and people need to realize that a lot of people are thinking out of the well of the taxpayer, especially the politicians and here they are treating us. you know who controls it? the chamber of commerce, we have companies coming in like miller brewers, they control it, they tell them, and you cannot pay a certain salary because it will bring a precedent on other countries -- on other companies. they are doing a good job in georgia, alabama, they control the agriculture towns. host: that is herbert and camilla, georgia. offer i feel like he has the exact reason why the administration put this rule out and when we watched josh earlier bringing $12 million -- $12 billion into the gdp, it is true the federal minimum wage at
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$7.25 is low. there are a lot of states that have raised it higher because you cannot live on that. it is also true that groups like the chamber of commerce and other business groups have fought to keep the federal minimum wage low and they have fought hard against rules like this. in fairness to them, they are saying that cost them a lot of money and what they do is employ people and if you start putting more wage requirements and more protections on people in terms of -- especially if they are in the middle class category, it will prevent them from hiring more of them and creating more business. that has been their argument all along and they are pretty effective at it. as our caller noted, that cannot always affect well budget -- against the general public. host: another color is from georgia, atlanta, he is a business owner. thank you for joining us, peter. caller: i know there is a tone of president law in terms of, a
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longtime ago. . minimum wage being set forth i think this especially happened during the. of the 1960's. -- during the period of the 1960's. from a systemic point of view, being a business owner, why is or whereal government does the federal government and where does the executive branch and the attitude of congress, who basically seem not to care because theyt it run their entire intellect off of polls. if you remember, it was abraham lincoln who said, once we start running our country off of polls, opinion polls, that will be the downfall of our country. host: before you go. caller: i am just wondering, systemically, how does this keep
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exacerbating from a federal level and what can be done to we dot it or rivers it so not -- reverse it so we do not destroy our economy? host: can we ask you what type of business you run and how many people might be affected? caller: it is an internet business and employs over 1000. guest: and how many of your employees would be affected. host: i just lost him there. guest: so we do not know. the tech community has weighed in saying it would be difficult for startups. it is no secret that employees and startups work long hours and do not get paid in the beginning because you get paid later. i am glad we had an internet caller. host: overtime updates will extend projections to 4.2 million workers. next up is centreville,
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massachusetts. phil makes between $50,000 and $100,000. caller: good morning, the business community. i do not see what they are harboring about. they target executives, ceos are making millions a year, plus bonuses. you tell me they cannot pay the workers that are actually doing the work a little more money? poor people do not save their money because they have to spend it. it would go back into the economy. with the executives, what rich people do, they tend to save their money and for the most part hides their money on offshore bank account. mean, i think it is disingenuous for congress to sit up there and try to make the american people seem like they do not deserve a break when main street has been getting breaks for the past 40 years. host: are we expecting congress
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to react to this with legislation? guest: they will react, i do not think they will be successful. i think there are a couple of different things they can do, ity can pass -- there is our he and process what they call resolution of disapproval, that does not do very much. it just says, we disapprove. the place where it can really cause a bit of trouble is if they were to try -- if republicans were to try to attach an amendment to the funding bill that funds the labor department and those are the controversial policy riders that tend to get in the way of the year and spending bills. if republicans were to add such an amendment, the president would put a veto threat onto the spending bill and that is when you start avoiding with government shutdown, so my guess is it will not go that far. i do not think republicans want to be responsible for that kind of thing. host: they tweeted, after the
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rule was released, this is the step in the right direction, and good news for millions of workers. you can tweet us @cspanwj. another user -- commerce goes on occasion. sandy says, what prevents businesses from reducing employees hours to keep them under 40 or laying off easy workarounds? guest: nothing, that is the question and that is an argument we see from the -- from "the wall street journal" and other places. they are arguing the $12 billion will get turned into the economy because of these extra overtime payment are not going to happen. what employers would do, they would stop people working extra hours. i have heard accounts of employers suggesting they would not let their employees take work home with them or that they would have their new managers start at a lower salary member
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-- salary numbers so they could account for the extra overtime being paid. there is nothing the administration can do about that . that will not happen in every case and i think the understanding is, as we heard from some of our callers, there is not a ton of sympathy for the business community and employers. they say, we would like you to pay workers a living wage in one way or another. there are a lot of businesses that will try to find ways around it and it will probably not help the workers by the state cutting their hours. host: a real inside congress question, in the enabling legislation -- allow for inflation increases? let's be clear about this, the role does allow for an inflation increase, which means every three years it would be the salary -- the salary level would be adjusted and it is based on the lower -- lowest
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paid region in the country. it will not keep track with inflation, necessarily, but there is an adjustment built into the rule here is the business community believes that is an overreach on the part of the administration and it is probably going to sue over that because under the fair labor standards act it says the labor secretary has the authority to periodically adjust the salary level for overtime pay. it does not say they can do it automatically. it is not again, legislation, it is the rule propagated by the administration. we go to matthew in -- who makes under $50,000. i made i am retired, but 27,000 a year in salary and i worked seven days a week, 10-12 hours a day, for seven years. i needed some help and when i finally got to hire somebody, he was on non-salary, he was
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hourly, he was not able to work hours. he got overtime when he did work and he was making more than i was by being hourly. i do not see that this program -- this rule is really going to help anybody because what will happen is the company will fight it, they will lay off more people, people lose their jobs and then they have no money instead of the little bit they do have and what it is going to do -- if i told everyone listening right now i will send out a check for $100 to everyone in the united states, i would have everyone's attention and they would be happy. i cannot do that, and the president is promising something he cannot do so people will vote for hillary or bernie and it is a political deal and set of something that will actually help people. if he was going to help people he would've done it seven and a half years ago and still -- instead of waiting until the end
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of his term to do something like this. i am really aggravated on the policies he comes up with at the end here that are not to help americans, but the help the next democrat may be coming in. it does not seem like he is really doing any good for the country. thank you host:. thank you. guest: i find it fascinating to hear that kind of reaction to it is true that the administration is selling this particular rule as an influx of cash for the middle class, but it is not true that he is not doing anything. this is actually a huge change, if it holds up in court, which is the place it may be a little bit of trouble, it will change how employers and the salary level and the way the workplace works for the next eight or nine years. host: our color in georgia talked about the politics of
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policy moonshine delight on vice presidential picks talking about the labor secretary, but on secretary perez they write, the labor secretary stood with vice president in ohio to formally unveiled changes to overtime work rules. administrative officials and close associates, he writes, and since the policy res have been in effect for years and have nothing to do with jockeying for the vice presidency but every move by castro and perez is now scrutinized by a political prism. ,uest: right, and i think, that to me, it is always interesting when you get close to an election that people watching, we have a whole list of people both for donald trump and hillary clinton has said as their possible vice president of nominee and who they would be and how they would affect the
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electorate. tom perez has been on the list for a while, although i think for most people -- for hillary clinton, julia castro is the most likely choice. one of the things you can see ish perez, in particular, his ability to talk about wages, particularly wages in the middle class and how people are being offered for those wages. just judging from the people who have called into the show, today, you can see that message resonates. sometimes we do not believe it, necessarily, but he is a good salesman for it and a good salesman for making the case that all we are trying to do is recapture what we had back in which is what we said, if you were relatively middle-class, we wanted to make sure employers could not exploit you by making you work more and less there was a reason. say you are a manager or starting a business or a law
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degree and you are billing by the hour. that is what they intended in the sick -- in the 1960's and that has changed because the economy has changed and the workforce has changed. host: in a piece on the labor secretary, "the new york times" says he coming labor secretary in 2014, mr. perez has continued to be an advocate for underdogs and most recently issuing new laws to protect investors. he has found a surprisingly receptive audience against permission- reduce -- pollution and promote well-being. host: let's get to a business owner in new castle, indiana. caller: thank you for taking my call. this change, i think, is long overdue. the reason why i say that, i have seen changes in the way repaying, hired and or gotten rid of across the
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spectrum of type of work. i live in an area that is fairly rural, fairly low wages compared to the coast. the numbers they are talking about, as far as people getting paid salary, would be laughable if i was living in philadelphia or say, san francisco. the amount of money they are talking about is the difference ,etween people surviving getting their kids fed and , and the- clothed lights caps on. -- kept on. when employers can hire people and say, i am a contractor, for me, for example. say i have to work on a house, i have to take hours in the day to get that done them a so i hire some people, we will say day laborers, but even employees. or has it -- as it is around
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here, contract employees, because they all get a 1099 at the end of the year because they are not really my employee. i say, i will pay you $100 a day to get this job done by the end of the day. depending on how the job is, they could work for teen -- 14 hours a day, but they will only make x amount. that is not really a living wage for a lot of them if after the eighth hour, they are into the ninth hour, still pumping shingles, the sun beating down, they are working harder and harder and that is time they are not at home. not enjoying their life or taking care of their kids are other commitments they have. that was the intent of the fair labor standards act, so that people were not in the salt mine all day. as an employer, i am cognizant of work -- of that because i have been a working person.
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i know what it is like to not be able to meet the bill. i think this is a small baby step toward fairness in the workplace because there have been so many workarounds in the last generation of employers not wanting to hire people because of the tax killer, because of the insurance, because of the different things. the burden is borne by the working person. host: all right, kurt, a contractor in indiana. guest: i am in just think to hear what you talked about, he has gone through a lot of different ways of paying people true their jobs and it is that, if you are an employer, you spend a lot of time thinking about, what is the best way to get this particular job done. i also notice, we have heard from a couple of business owners who do not seem to have a ton of sympathy for the outcry about this. there are laws about how people are supposed to be paid and all this does is update it. it is a huge change, but it is
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something that labor unions in particular have been saying it is long overdue. you do not want someone making $30,000 a year forced to work 80 hours. host: you said it is an update to the fair labor standards act, it could have been fixed or updated legislatively. guest: it could have been, the fair labor standards act is one of the laws that, as soon as members in congress start going and playing around with it, that immediately brings up a minimum wage because that is part of the fair labor standards act and it brings up all sorts of other questions. time ihave seen, every have seen legislation introduced or even if there is an effort to move it in congress to change pieces of it am it becomes difficult because automatically all of the other wage related issues that are covered under the fair labor standards act come piling on and try to change it. it becomes very difficult and that is why -- one of the
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reasons we have not seen a lot of change in congress aside from wendy administration comes out with a rule -- aside from wednesday administration comes out with a rule. caller: i just want to say i am very happy that this past through because so many people, at least from what i know in columbus and dayton, they are working a lot of hours only getting paid a certain amount with salary. to me, i do not think that is fair. i make hourly, but my wife, she actually makes $50,000 a year, she is in management, but she visa. i am just curious, does this help her out or apply to her? guest: it would apply to anyone on an h1b visa. these are for people from a -- another country and brought in
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to work for a limited amount of time, sometimes 3-6 years or longer. this particular case we are talking about, making $50,000 is above the threshold. so it would not change how she is paid extra. host: let's hear from charles in lynchburg who makes over $100,000. caller: i have a background in corporate management and owning a small business and i have worked in a turnaround for many years. what is going to happen, i think, as has happened in the past, the ruby a lot of commotion by business owners about this. in the end they have to have a certain amount of time -- it will adjust, those business guys that cannot adjust will go out of business, that is the capital system, we think that is a good thing. the people who can adjust are the ones we want to stay in business and i think they will. i think that sums it up. guest: i would not disagree with
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that, it is a huge change to ask employers to deal with right now. the next six months will be tough for them, because there is actually -- there are systems that process paychecks that do not even have the ability to log people's hours right now, so they have to build them and then there is the sense of, how do you handle payroll, particularly for small businesses, this will be an adjustment. peopleess -- less punching a clock or filling out a timesheet. particularly for the smaller businesses, they have not had to deal with this and it will be tough for the next six months. as our caller noted, there are ways to adjust. probably the sky will not fall for everybody. it could mean there are some workers who are not allowed to work from home or take work home . starting salaries for some
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employees are lower to make up for the overtime they would make later. those are the kinds of things that happen as businesses adjust . in general, all it means is there is a new threshold now and it is much higher than the old threshold and that will change over time, how employers set their salary schedules. host: a question on the rule from sea of tranquility, being in management means you do not get overtime, does their -- does this new law-rule, by the hands of employers who want to test management skills? guest: i do not think it does anymore than it would undercurrent law. essentially, we are talking about anyone who has any sort of managerial capacity, me, for example, i run a newsroom, i am exempt from any overtime protections because of that. let's say i wanted to take one of my reporters and try to train them as a manager. host: and they are making under this threshold. guest: maybe, this is the
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question you have to deal with. it can get to be a little bit of a difficult question. let's say they start doing half of their job as a managerial job and all of a sudden that may kick them into the realm of being what they call exempt from overtime rule. question, none of that is changing from existing law. you might take outside counsel to tell you at what point does a trainee become exempt from overtime laws. they have a whole raft of legal knowledge based on the last 20 years that they can pull from, nothing in the rule changes that . it is an individual question. it has always been a little fuzzy, and it will continue to be fuzzy. host: host: we will get another call from a business owner. go ahead, bob.
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caller: nice conversation. i have a different issue. i heard you talk about how nonprofits are speaking out against this. as ahave a lot of concerns person that runs a nonprofit because a lot of micrograms are federally and -- my programs are federally in state-funded to feed seniors and help disabled folks. this will cause me to pit my employees against my clients. that is a big laundry for me because i am limited -- that is a big laundry for me because of the 5%. i come in under 5% so i have a little wiggle room. we are very efficient. i have a lot of employees at work overtime because of the mission of the agency to help people. based on long profits --
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nonprofits, they probably don't make $40,000. caller: i have quite a few managers in this. it is interesting because i'm doing with this and then i have minimum wages. i am very happy for this. i think people taking care of our most vulnerable should have increases. but what i am not seeing is that variance. admin rural also give -- rule also give? does the funding increase to cover these minimum wages and , and with sequestration and other things, it is just the opposite. it is just a big fight. when you do get an increase, it is very minimal. it does not even cover the cost of these things. host: appreciate your points. fawn johnson? guest: that is in a one point.
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i think we know the answer. to be clear, nothing in this rule will change necessarily the kind of government funding they goes to these kinds of programs. it is not going to change the administrative funding. it will not change the tax base. our caller is dealing with the same administrative and legal restrictions he had earlier and now must worry about paying his employees overtime. it is tough. host: fawn johnson is the chief lsc editor at "morning consult." thanks for being with us. "washington journal" continues. we will hear next from john wonderlich, the policy director of the sunlight foundation. we are going to talk about fundraising for campaign 2016, including the recent deal between the r.n.c. interim campaign to jointly fundraise for the general election. about leo shane to talk
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the $610 billion national defense authorization bill. the programs and policy bill for fiscal 2017 past on wednesday evening. also had this weekend, our c-span cities tour takes booktv and american history tv into the deep south as we visit mississippi to explore its history and city life. if you are looking at a map, abouteople probably know lexi-gulfport. we are about six to five miles north of biloxi-gulfport, 85 miles south of jackson, 85 miles west of mobile. we are called the hub city because you can go anywhere you like from here. we have a military base here. when you have desert storm and
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those kinds of fights or trainthose people came to in hattiesburg, the largest mobilization camp in the united states. during the second world war, that was a major stopping point for troops going overseas. they were trained and mobilized their. we had certain senators who served in the senate who went .hrough there peter it was the place to be. it made hattiesburg one of the places to come to. museums, african american museums, in the united states like that. shelby still is one of stool weee legs of the
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have during the afghan and iraq wars. we had hundreds of thousands of troops coming through here to be trained and moved on to the war zone. >> "washington journal" continues. joining us is john wonderlich, the policy director of the sunlight foundation, here to talk about fundraising in campaign 2016, especially with the general election looming on the presidential side. the news this past week of the joint deal between the r.n.c. and trump campaign. they finalize a joint fundraising deal. what do we know of the deal? how unusual is it for a campaign and party committee to do a joint deal together? guest: it is not unusual in the current state of our presidential politics for the leading candidate to have a deal
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with the party to share and how they manage the fundraising responsibilies. trumps unusual is donald ran against the party, in a sense manning is the party. theyhat he has won, have to figure out a caution deal or how he would support the recovered and party. the other thing that is different is the nature of the joint fundraising. the amount of the checks in place much bigger after the supreme court's mccutchen decision, the limit on the amount of money someone can give to campaigns and parties is much higher. host: what is the amount an individual can give to a presidential campaign? guest: to a presidential campaign, it is a much smaller number. it is something like a few thousand dollars. what we have is a new legal entity being created that says we are not just going to solicit checks to support the campaign.
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donald trump can call someone and say you should give our joint fundraising committee a check to support the republican party, state parties, and other candidates. each of those limits as up to something like $300,000 or $400,000. the conversation about $2000 is very different from when you are approaching a wealthy donor and asking for half $1 million. host: these are different entities from political action groups? guest: right. that is part of why camping finance can be confusing. we have these different entities with different responsibilities. the news that just occurred is we see donald trump suddenly having to share responsibilities with the republican party and the kinds of dollar figures we are talking about are very large. host: your organization is the sunlight foundation. what do you shine light on? guest: it is dedicated to openness and accountability in government. one of our main focus areas is around campaign finance and money in politics, exactly this
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kind of issue, so the public can understand whose money is helping our politics to run or keeping it from running properly. host: how do you folks get funded? guest: all of our funders are public on the website. you can see all of our donations. we are largely supported through american foundations. it is all public. with a name like sunlight foundation, is a good idea to have all your donors on the internet. host: we invite our callers to talk about campaign financing. the number to call for democrats , republicans, independents, and others. and a reminder you can send us a tweet. back to the trump deal announced this week, your colleague posted a piece that says donald trump does a 180 on self funding his campaign writing we fact checked
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his self funding claim and highlighted his history for hosting fundraisers for others. funding like everyone else and taking money from big donors. trump has only six months to form an organized coalition. of support. the resources current --trump needs now are "huge." what was he doing differently in the primary campaign? guest: in the primary, he distinguish himself rhetorically by claiming he would be byependent and unsullied funding his own campaign through his personal largess. that claim was largely not true although he did lend himself large amounts. he lent money to the campaign from his personal finances. even that is tricky to understand because his campaign spent money on his own businesses that were part of the campaign. it is a tight financial circle.
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he claims to be about money in politics issues because he was running on his own money. that was not completely true at the time. 180now it is a total because he is establishing these legal structures so he can raise money. he cannot make a claim at all in it is based on his wealth and he is independent. candidates whoad have self-funded largely through the general election? guest: it has primarily been third-party candidates. ross perot is someone who comes to mind it was able to mount a challenge. that would be the most significant in recent times. of a primary, main level candidate. host: the question from trigger -- a question from twitter. think part of the reason he is raising money is so he can
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pay himself back the money. host: how does that work? back donaldity pays trump? guest: there are at least three donald trumps. there is the donald trump campaign he controls. there are the businesses his campaign is spending money. and then his personal bank account is being filled by both because his personal money lent money to the campaign. it is a tight circle of different financial entities, all donald trump controlled at this point. host: what about the hillary clinton campaign? what is she doing in terms of fundraising? what number is she at them? --now? guest: hillary clinton has a similar arrangement that has been in place for a year where she established a joint fundraising committee and negotiated with the d.n.c. to raise money for her campaign and for the state committees. that is a similarly complex situation where our campaign
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finance laws are being undermined by the way hillary clinton is raising enormous checks, distribute them to state parties who are transferring money to the d.n.c. the whole thing is an end run around how our campaign-finance limits are supposed to work and is in serious tension with hillary clinton's rhetoric about campaign finance reform. host: does the sunlight foundation have an estimate of what you think the overall presidential campaign tally will be? what will it cost when all is said and done? guest: easily $1 billion. the political cycle is going to be $4 billion or $5 billion in terms of campaign spending if you include congress. host: let's get to calls. from wisconsin, michelle, go ahead on the democrats line. caller: good morning. wasgentleman from sunlight talking about an individual can give up to $3000. have come that is not true for
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big corporations and other amountwho can give any and yet they don't have to expose who they are and how much they contributed if it is over the $3000 mark? i don't understand how that personnd how a regular can only give $3000 in a multimillionaire business or billionaire business can give as much as they want to sway the vote. personend, the small really does not have a say when it comes to voting. it is the big people who have the money and big corporations who have the final say, just like with the superdelegates certain congress men or women or senators hold.
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could you explain that to me please? ure.t: s i agree with you that the way the law works gives a lot of advantage to wealthy people or corporate interests. it is also important to is ontand the limits contributions to the campaign. corporations, it is legal for them to give directly to the campaign. what is different and why we are so concerned about these unlimited contributions is campaigns are not the only game in town anymore. citizens united changed that other entities, super pac's, are able to act like campaigns. super pacs can take in as much money as they want. they can get a $10 million contribution if they want. it is not a donation to the campaign. group,ns to an outside often stuff that used to work for the candidate, is acting very much like a campaign.
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legally, they are not supposed to ordinate with campaigns to require them to be independent. but no one really believes that coordination does not take place. they clearly coordinate in various ways. effectively, it is an end run around that limit on contributions. this is happening on both sides of the presidential race and in congress. host: our guest is john wonderlich, policy director of the sunlight foundation, talking about campaign fund-raising. the number for democrats, republicans, all of this. -- and all others. on our republican line, florida, brian, hello. caller: that is the independent line. maybe i missed the number -- misdialed the number. gather, these businesses get the opportunity to hand this money to politicians. once these politicians get this money, they pass these bills
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that benefit these businesses. here is the funny part. the seems corrupt to me on its face. haveis exactly why we these two guys, trump and sanders, who are holding on for dear life to win this election because this has to stop. you look at what happened yesterday where these votes changed about contacting lgbt rights. you look at those same 200 senators -- i'm sorry, 200 house numbers that voted not to protect the citizens, but to protect the businesses. these are the same 200 people reignoted to give free over just one entity i can account for that i am sure is the tribal nations, so they can
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hand them free money as they waltz in and out of the reservation to get this free money. host: following up on brian's comments, he talked about bernie sanders. we have not talked about how bernie sanders is approaching fundraising. guest: i think the distinction in terms of how bernie sanders is approaching it, bernie sanders is also running in a sense against the party and establishment. the difference is cents he is very unlikely to win, bernie sanders has not needed to negotiate a way he is going to manage the party's fundraising apparatus and support the state parties. i think that is a big distinction. the other distinction is bernie sanders is running against how the money in politics system currently works. and hillary clinton is more or less defending the status quo. host: or is kyle in exeter, new hampshire, independent line. caller: good morning. i have a comment and then a question.
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my comment is the american people on the airwaves. we leased to the broadcasters. we don't charge them. they are supposed be providing public good. why couldn't they just set aside so many hours per week and andidates that getting signatures to get on the ballot can come on for an hour and give their presentation? and that is how elections run and they should be limited to six months. but is my,. my question -- that is my comment. my question is, rather than a third party, what couldn't democrats and republicans if they did not like the candidates put forward, what could they not ritet in a candidate -- w in a candidate and wouldn't that boat be counted? guest: i think both your suggestions can work. those happen occasionally in elections.
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around the world, we see laws that limit how -- when campaigning can function and subsidize political campaigns. one of the political reform proposals that gets discussed very much in our politics is the idea of public funding for elections. what you are describing, having a set aside time for political discussion, is one approach that exists in many countries. you can also have a tax break or direct subsidy to campaigns that meet some kind of threshold. the barrier to all these proposals is political support. what we have now is not a clear consensus among the federal lawmakers that they want to change the law. that is a difficult place to get out of because the are people that got here because of the way the current laws exist. that is the tricky situation about political reform in the united states right now. host: a couple of comments on twitter and a question for you. an trump talk about
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olden tobolden -- beh wall street now that he is campaigning the same way? guest: i will defer on who is especiallyhigh road, because sunlight is a nonpartisan, nonprofit. is not our job to weigh in on the election. this issue is a central want to how the president election will carry out because everyone is sort of trying to run against washington and decide how much they want to stand up as an outsider at a time when the federal government is unpopular and people are clamoring for change. what does it mean to claim you are against campaign finance and then quietly be innovating in the way you undermine the law? in terms of trump, claim your independent and end up in charge of the party. these are questions they will have to contend with.
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host: mike in north carolina, democratic caller. i want to compliment the caller. he is correct. campaigning and working and lobbying for environmental groups, so i have a good understanding of how this works. even though we have democracy, we have a corporate run aristocracy that makes the rules. we need to limit campaign spending, limit individual businessions, take interests completely out of it. they should not be allowed to dominate. managed on the public airwaves and be allotted [indiscernible] stuff like this. we do not have a democracy.
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it is absolutely more like a political advertising campaign run by corporations. it is absolutely hideous to call it a democracy. host: i appreciate your comment. now,: i would say right campaign finance reform and tried to create political accountability for money in politics in the united states has been a losing battle for at least a decade. time,e that at the same the public consensus that something is wrong and we need to fix it in the federal government has a role in fixing it is grown clearer and clearer. as two forces are colliding. they are colliding throughout the obama administration and in president elections and in the presidential election right now. how that lays out, we are not sure, but we are confident disclosure is going to play an essential part in how we sort out the mess. a fundamental, defining
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feature of our politics. host: where does most of the money raised go? does most of it go to television or advertising on the internet? guest: yes. i think that is the primary campaign expense, to buy advertising, so it ends up going to the station's that manage time between tv programs. host: here is in california, republican caller. caller: thanks for taking my call. i feel well intentioned people are focused on the wrong thing. the problem with the electoral process is not profits. it is process. our nominating season is too long. it is designed to extort money from the rich. we need a national primary day and national standards for getting on the ballot. the minute you shortly primary process and make it uniform, you get the american people involved again in nominating.
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when you get them involved in nominating, you get them involved in the general election. our low voter turnout has to do with the process that favors the rich. it is absurd that people in iowa and new hampshire have an outsized say in who is nominated. tens of millions of voters in california have no say in who gets nominated. we need a national primary day and national standards for getting on the ballot. thank you. allt: i think there are sorts of electoral process reforms that can have a positive benefit. i suspect that would have an incidental effect compared to the amount of process -- pressure behind money flowing into politics. host: you talked about one of those reforms. you wrote congress should mandate tax return disclosure for president of candidates. and a picture of richard nixon from 73, publicly releasing his 1973 tax returns. you write presidential candidates and sitting presidents should be required by
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law to publicly disclose returns. for decades, candidates and sitting presidents have disclosed returns recognizing public expectations for transparency demand no less. according to research on presidential tax returns, every president since jimmy carter has disclosed at least one year of returns prior to taking office. what do we learn most from returns a potential presidents? guest: from tax returns, we get to understand the candidate, not just in terms of rhetoric or promises, but in terms of their financial history. sometimes there is a big gap between how someone was to present themselves and how many houses they own or what their effective tax rate is or whether they are trying to use offshore accounts too high funds. that is what there is such a strong expectation we will get to see candidates tax returns. that is why mr. trump's resistance to releasing his tax returns is so alarming, because
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we have had a reliable voluntary process for decades. suddenly it may not work. it is time for congress to step up. host: he says in part because he's undergoing an audit? guest: yes, although the justification shifts week to week. he says it is in part because he has an audit. host: next is cambridge, massachusetts. good morning to mike, independent line. hello, go ahead. caller: yes, i am here. host: go ahead. we talkmy question is, about the immense amounts of money in the campaign. said it would be billion to $5 billion for the total presidential campaign. in round terms, if we say it is $3 billion and there are 300 million people in the usa, we
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are talking about $10 per person in this country. is that an outrageous amount of money to spend on a presidential campaign? how does it compare to other countries? thank you. guest: that is a great question. i don't think it is an outrageous amount of money in terms of the sheer amount of discussion. we are talking about an american presidential election, so this should be the subject of an enormous amount of debate. the concern is that money is being raised by large donors are sleep -- largely. the discussion is not how much discussion or how many tv as there are, although in some markets the ads can be alarming. the concern is more about what that money means and what has been given in exchange for it. how many conversations had to happen between members of congress that should have been representing constituents but some room away from the
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capital making phone calls to wealthy people? host: is the biggest concern on the possible quid pro quo for a big campaign contribution? how do you track the? guest: i think the question of quid pro quo is smaller than the question of how money in politics changes how our government functions. i think it goes well beyond the joint fundraising committee or campaign. if you look at either president of candidate, they are both responsible for a vast network of organizations, both corporate and nonprofit and political, that are colluding and cooperating in order to benefit a single person at the helm. our laws do a very weak job of holding that accountable in foundatione clinton involvement for years and what hillary's historical role has been. a lot of us questions or
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unanswered. if you look at donald trump, our , nothing is ton stop him from continuing to be the board of every one of those companies. that gets discussed for a little. but the president is exempt from our conflict of interest laws. when you look at the kinds of power these people represent, in a deregulated campaign-finance world, these entities become much more robust. host: on hillary clinton's campaign earlier this month, clinton fund-raising leaves little for state parties. the democratic front runner says she is raising big checks to help state committees but they have gotten to keep only 1% of the $60 million raised. next, quakertown, pennsylvania, independent line. caller: good morning. i have a question for the guest. i would like to know why the
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media has not done due diligence with bernie sanders as far as his fund-raising. i had gotten involved in an aganization called moveon.org few years back because of fracking in pennsylvania. from the beginning of this campaign, i have received anywhere from two to five e-mails per day from moveon.org, raising money for bernie sanders. i would save them or delete them. one day, i rolled to the bottom of the page, and he is a political pac for bernie sanders. oneuld like to know why no has ever challenged him as he $27 a he has raised person from individuals. i think it is deceitful. i feel the media has not done its due diligence. i appreciate your answer. thank you very much.
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guest: as a fellow pennsylvanian, i share your concern about fracking and follow a lot of those issues closely. i am not familiar with moveon.org or its link to bernie sanders. i will say there is a lot of incentive for political reporters to find stories. if there is a sense of hypocrisy around how bernie sanders is engaging fundraising while making other promises, i think there are a lot of reporters who would love to be in charge of that scoop. i suspect many of the stories that can be told are being told. our political system is so complicated, there are probably a lot of other stories that have not been. host: you may want to check on some commentary by daniel gross on what bernie sanders is doing with the money he raised. $168 million spent. bernie sanders decisively won the west virginia primary.
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his campaign continues to chug along. if the sanders campaign manager convention business or campaign, it would likely be liquidated now. for bernie sanders has constructed his own economy and business model. immune to the typical pressures. here is eddy in los angeles on the independents line. caller: good morning. talking about socialism in a negative term because even c-span is based on a socialist theory. host: what do you mean by that? what are you talking about? caller: it is done for the people. basically fors everybody to call in and give their opinion. it is a socialist environment. host: ok, go ahead with her,. caller: and my wrong or right? we cannot do that with other
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television stations. they will feed you what they want you to know. this is my question. how come the public has to go through a private attorney to get to a public event? to vote, you have to be from harvard or yale, democrat or republican. the majority of americans are independent. getdid our electoral system snatched by two different oligarchs? thank you. guest: one interesting thing is it is easy to be concerned about how political parties are somewhat unaccountable. often the way they operate is not the most in the credit -- democratic. but in a sense, they are private organizations by design. if the government designed for local parties, they would be
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totally different and much less representative. if you look around the world, if you don't have strong political parties, rather than a fight between democrats and republicans, you get a fight between military and church or something worse. there are a lot of things that are worse. not that our system is perfect, but we have a lot to be thankful for having a robust debate in this country. host: judy on the republican line. caller: am i on the air? host: you are, judy. caller: i think our country is out of control. we have too much hate. we have all these commercials on tv and our children are listening to this ilth. i think we need to turn to god and turn our country around. there are a lot of people that ain't paying taxes the sides interim that are here in
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illegal and nobody is doing nothing about it. i have worked all my life and cannot get no help from the government. to me, the government don't do their job right. typicalat is a contribution from an individual? guest: i would imagine it is in the 10's of dollars. bernie sanders would be low at $100 or $150. host: doniphan missouri on the independent line -- donna from missouri on independent line. caller: i wonder if you would comment on the idea there are entities through which contributions can be made and even be counted as tax credits or tax-deductible because the entity has a certain classification. sprangy of these things from an intentional plan to get
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information out to grassroots that was definitely tilted towards the extreme conservative agenda. thank you. host: any reaction to donna's comments? guest: super pac's are the organizations that can accept unlimited donations. super pacs have to disclose donors. to get to dark money is one step deeper. there are organizations that can give money to super pac's that in turn was other organizations don't have to disclose their donors. sometimes you get the multimillion dollar donations to another c4, a different nonprofit organization that donates to the super pac and says we got $2 million from americans for a greater america. that is the way it works. it is essentially money laundering through nonprofit
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structure. host: a headline from the "wall street journal" about donald trump and self funding his campaign. they did an analysis. donald trump would not have had the ready cash to self finance the entire campaign. with trump moving to raise big sums, an estimate of his 2016 income shows he would likely be short of the cash needed to fund his entire campaign. donald trump is now working with the r.n.c. to raise money. guest: no one knows exactly how much money donald trump has. it seems unlikely he has $1 billion to self fund his campaign. he is boxed in after saying he would sell fund, to not only deal with the lens he let his campaign to run a viable presidential campaign. but at the same time be responsible for congress and r.n.c. by extension, the presidential nominee ends up being
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responsible for down ticket races and is the big red room a -- breadwinner. they have organized a legal entity that can. share of administrative burden and allow people to fundraise enormous checks that get distributed to all participating entities, which would be state parties and others. host: what do we know of how the clinton campaign is trying to seal themselves off from the clinton global initiative, which is its own fundraising nonprofit? guest: the clinton foundation is the nonprofit the clintons founded after bill clinton's presidency. is a philanthropic initiative. they have a number of projects. one is the clinton global initiative. it lines up people and organizations to make commitments to solve problems and announces we are going to commit tens of millions of dollars to solving the health problem in a specific place.
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the issue is inherent in this project design is that the clintons are brokering investments and access to powerful people, whether foreign countries aid money or other nonprofit omissions or just wealthy people that want to be involved in philanthropic causes. billion ofmanage $1 investment in the world's problems of the same time you're trying to manage running for president? the way they solve that is by removing themselves from the board or direct involvement anytime there is a perceived conflict of interest. that line, they will return to it when they are done. how do you draw the viable line when it is your family foundation and you are a future president and your husband is a former president? and people will be angry some will say that is how the foundation works.
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they are both right because that is what it was designed to do. host: more calls, tennessee, jeff, independent line. caller: are used to be republican until recently. i think they have sort of lost their way. i have two questions. question number one, is there any likelihood there will be some relief or change from the courts on campaign financing? limiting it in some way or some fashion. i think most people feel the wealthy and powerful have a disproportionate influence on the campaign. secondly, who is the most effective candidate among the three remaining candidates per dollars spent in the campaign? thank you, mr. wonderlich. guest: thank you. the first question on the courts, it is possible this changes.
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there is constantly litigation relevant. with the supreme court makeup in the balance, it is likely change comes in the fm of the courts. that is much more difficult. you cannot really plan for that unless you are designing a litigation strategy. that is one way the problem could resolve itself. in terms of the other question, i think that is up for everyone to decide on their own, who is doing the best job. that is something one consult with data to say how much money has been spent per vote, but i don't know that off the top of my head. host: we are talking about presidential fund-raising. and event earlier this week with congressman david jolly from florida and rick nolan from minnesota. jointly, they have proposed legislation which would ban members of congress from personally asking for money. has the sunlight foundation been able to look into that or that issue in terms of congressional fund-raising? guest: we have.
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i think it is a great initiative. there are some first amendment concerns and political concerns as to whether it can pass. i think the intentions are exactly right, which is members of congress should not be spending 30 hours a week calling people on the phone asking for money. that is not the job we expect them to do. that is not what we need. we need people engaged in leadership and the issues our countries facing. that is a serious problem when most of the time the primary job is asking people for money. every time you see a member of congress and say, what are they thinking? remember they probly just got off the full of a wealthy person asking for money. it is a telemarketing job. i used to have a telemarketing job. when members of congress look out of touch, it is because they have a telemarketing job. host: if you want to see that news conference from earlier this week, you can find it on our website, c-span.org. back to our calls, the door is
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on the democrats line. caller: my name is dora williams. they are giving clinton a hard time. all of them is getting money like bernie. he hides his little gig. he needs to be investigated. why are you giving her a hard time about the super pac and the way she gets money? guest: i am not sure we are giving hillary a hard time about how she is getting money. although there is a distinction because bernie sanders does not have the same kind of network of outside groups like donald trump or hillary clinton has. but they all deserve our scrutiny certainly. host: another fairly direct question for you on twitter. bottom line, is the system too corrupt? guest: the system has a lot of correcting problems. it is not unable to be fixed. we have been through also is a complicated situations as a
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country before and managed to right ourselves. most important accountability laws rose from having problems and finding solutions to make more accountable government. the situation now is the perfect recipe for an accountable campaign finance system. we just have to figure out how it will work. host: we want to your from rachel next in forney, texas, independent line. caller: my mother is 82 years old. five years ago, she gave a donation to the republican party. ever since then, her phone never stops ringing for donations. my father two years ago has stage four cancer. he was on morphine. i pleaded with these people, please quit calling. my daddy is dying from cancer. this phone constantly ringing.
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could you put them on a no call list, let him die in peace? but no, they kept calling. my daddy has been dead for over two years now. they still, mother. my mother is crippled. she has hardly any money and they keep calling. them keeps calling. she has no peace. host: this is a campaign call you are getting? caller: my mother is getting these campaign calls for donations. she donated over five years ago. how: rachel in texas, successful is that method for fundraising for campaigns? guest: in general, it is very effective. everything depends on the quality of the list you are calling from. if it is people that donate every year, if you get a person on the other end of the phone, there is a good chance they will call again. that is why there is so much conversation about e-mail list
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and lists of different kinds. it is because access to a list of half a million people translates to tens of millions of dollars. access to people involved is really important. i'm sorry that happened to you. it sounds terrible. it is an interesting question. as to whether one could apply the no call list to political campaigns. host: one more call from georgia, democratic caller. caller: i have a comment and a couple of questions. i have been listening to your , inr callers and everything the gentleman summing everything up with a quick answer so nonchalant about all this fund-raising stuff. it blows my mind about how much money is thrown away through these foolish commercials. not that it is not good for the
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people to hear the way these candidates do act and so forth, but to think about the way the world is, the united states is today and so many people struggling. millions and billions of dollars getting thrown away on nonsense. it really is disheartening. another question i have is about sanders. if he was to be the representative for the democratic party, what he have to do the fundraising like trump is having to do now for his campaign to be president? when he stuck it to -- what he stuck it to stick -- when he still get to stick with the $27 deal? i think it is awful about trump talking about being self funding. i think that is misleading to his voters thinking he is doing
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a wonderful thing for everybody because it is not as straight up as he is talking. host: you left a lock on our plate --you left a lot on our plate. john wonderlich, if you would like to answer some of her questions. guest: we saw the media attention around the meeting between reince priebus and donald trump. one can imagine if bernie were what the summit would be like between bernie sanders and debbie wasserman schultz. i'm sure there would be as much media attention and questions around how that would function. if you're interested in parties, the political we collect invitations to political fundraisers. you can see the way politicians are marketing themselves to potential donors for $2000 to attend a breakfast or box seats for a concert. host: thanks for putting sunlight on the issue of campaign fund-raising.
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john wonderlich with the sunlight foundation. you can also follow him on twitter. thank you for being here. "washington journal" continues. we will hear from leo shane who covered the passage of the $610 billion defense authorization bill, the bill that says pentagon -- sets pentagon programs and policy for the next year. your comments and calls ahead on "washington journal." our campaign bus continues to travel throughout the country to recognize winners from this year's studentcam competition. the bus stop in massachusetts. they went to the school where all students attended a school ceremony to honor seventh for their honorable
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mention video titled "gunning for safety." the bus also made a stop to recognize the honorable mention winners and their winning video called "veteran services." in front ofnored classmates, family members, and local officials receiving $250 for their winning video. a special thanks to our cable partners for helping to coordinate these visits in the community. you can view all the winning documentaries at studentcam.org. michaelsunday night, kinsley talks about his new book on living with parkinson's disease. >> parkinson's is a brain disease, so that was a nonsensical question. but what i really meant
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thinking, is it going to affect my thinking? thinking is how i earn a living, so that became pretty important. numerologist -- neurologist what is going to happen. he was trying to tell me it was not such a big deal. edge,d you may lose your as if that was nothing. i thought, my edge is how i earn a living. it is why i have my friends. maybe why i have my wife. night at 8:00 eastern and pacific. >> "washington journal" continues. host: this week, the house passed the $610 billion defense authorization bill. covering congress for "military
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times" is leo shane. this is the bill that sets the pentagon's programs and policy for the coming fiscal year. what stood out in your mind in terms of items in this authorization bill? guest: every year, this has different policies and procedures of importance. this is the second year in a row where thedline -- headline is how they are funding the measure. is saying you're going against the agreement last fall. aside $18has set billion of temporary war funding and put that back into the base budget. the white house is saying that is not the deal. that is separate. you are not supposed to use that money that way. republicans are saying this is a readiness issue. we have to get the money in now and better fund troops and
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equipment. if we don't put the money in now, it will cause bigger problems down the road. post"the "washington points out the difference between the house and senate version, the critical difference in the way they choose to fund military. the senate follows a budget agreement struck last year. the house using the extra $18 billion of war funding to cover the president's request. that means the country would run out of money to pay for military campaigns necessitating an emergency spending measure. the chairmancern of the armed services committee? guest: what chairman thornburg has said there is a new administration coming in. they need new priorities. they had a temporary supplemental at that point. the next president should have that. this funds overseas operations through april. different versions would extend that more.
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there is a big concern among democrats and the pentagon saying if you are not funding is for the whole year, there is the potential for all sorts of problems. host: this is the start of the debate on funding and other issues. debate how this sets up on the actual spending measure for the pentagon. guest: in the house, we had the defense appropriations committee pass their version this week following the same sort of guidelines. the house is together on how they want to fund things. we will use the temporary money to supplement the base and make sure we have enough. the senate takes up its bill next week. one of the senate committees will take up the defense bill. they have said we will stay within the budget caps. senator mccain said he will go to the floor and argue that needs to be a $17 billion plus on the floor. all this goes back to the issue of the 2011 budget control act,
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sequestration, spending caps, and the fact congress has not been able to find a way to get around that and find a long-term fix. we have seen short-term deals. when democrats and the white house are pointing out is if they go ahead with this house spending plan, next year when the budget caps go back into effect, we will see defense spending come down and there will be a giant cliff the military falls off of. host: how does this budget compared to previous budgets for in obama administration terms of priorities? this is what we have seen. there is not a dramatic shift. most of the things that are unusual are coming from congress. the has been talk about reforming the military health system. the senate and house have broad ranging plans on that that would
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mean new hours at facilities, new structure of how that is delivered. there is a lot of acquisition reform coming from congress, not necessarily the white house. their parts the white house opposes and parts they don't. . the big bugaboo for the white house beyond funding is the issue of guantanamo. the white house continuing to try to close the facilities there, and the folks on capitol hill continuing to say we are going to keep that open. host: democrats tried again to get the policy included, but that was shot down. guest: it was. this has been a frustration. this has been one of the reasons the president has threatened a veto for eight years. he got a clean sweep of his presidency. every time this has come up, there is some issue with guantanamo. host: eventually, he does wind up signing a bill? guest: every year, he does sign.
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last year, he did veto the first version. they did come to an agreement and he signed that. host: leo shane covers congress for "military times." they finished their work on the defense authorization bill. your forging saying a bigger military pay raise -- your reporting saying ebola terry may your reporting saying a bigger military pay raise. guest: this is a frustration for the white house. the cuts proposing to army in strength and other services is too drastic and will leave the military not prepared to face the threats of the future. administration request for next year, we are looking at 20,000 more soldiers added to the bottom line. the republicans will say we are keeping it fairly steady. a slight increase but we are looking at maintaining the army,
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not cutting it down as much as obama wants to. adding more people means adding more personnel costs, health care costs, and housing costs. it is a compounding problem if they cannot figure out how to pay for it passed next year. host: the measure calls for a 2.1% military pay raise starting in january. guest: if that goes through, this would be the first time military pay keep space with private sector wages. the first time in four years this has come up. this has been a major source of contention in military addressing -- advocacy groups. they say you are creating a pay gap that is frustrating as. the pentagon and senate is saying we are talking about $12 a month for most of the junior enlisted guys. it is not that much and will save us $330 million. we can reinvest in better training and equipment to help the overall welfare of the force but not necessarily put money in
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the troops pockets. host: there was the passage this week of the defense authorization bill. leo shane our guest. we would love to hear from you. the number for republicans, democrats, independents and others. for active and retired military, that number. let's go to south bend, indiana, and james on our democrats line. caller: good morning. another $610 billion to tack on to the national debt. i was going to make a comment but i think i will defer to george washington who said stay warsf other countries' and squabbles. also, eisenhower, the military-industrial complex will bankrupt america. here we are $19 trillion in debt.
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i think the way to solve this problem is we should look to the bible on this one. we need to beat our swords into plowshares. i think that is the solution to this nightmare, is over militarization that is making america less safe every day. guantanamo, isf their policy about placement of troops overseas? guest: the temporary money is setting policy for afghanistan, for continued operations in the middle east against isis. some money dealing with the ukraine situation and russian. this is affecting all spending worldwide. the military does have a big footprint across the globe. they are there. you have to figure out a way to pay for them. isn't it difficult to make a d.o.d. budget with the drifting, undefined pentagon
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east. the isis issue has been a source all over d.c. here largely because the congress won't take up the issue of the authorization of new military force and the parameters of it. a white house has sent version of what they'd like to see, limiting the presidential operations to certain things. emocrats on capitol hill are saying it's too brad. republicans are saying it's too narrow. been stalled for about 18 months now. getting any t closer to a resolution on that hasas a result the congress
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with what they have. ost: mark is next on our military line. caller: mark, i have a question you. i would ask for you to explain listeners. platoon sergeant in union storm and i'm a democrat. i would just want to let the listeners know where i'm coming from. leo, what percentage of the goes to ion actually soldier and sailor pay? also in that budget if you the amount escribe of generals. heavy t be a little top in terms of brass when it comes to pay. in this budget how much
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really goes to the proliferation manufacturing. our number one export from this take is the selling of weapons to other countries which is really making the world a more dangerous case. i'm all ears. you. ess >> thanks for those questions. a lot to unpack there. both the senate and house versions of this bill include down ge to start cutting on as you call it the top heavy four stars there. i believe the senate version has a reduction of 25% of the general's and admirals in the the house version had a similar number. i don't think it's the exact same. at this idea ng that the military infrastructure top he amount of people up and the staff they carry has gotten too big and needs to be pulled back down. terms of unpacking personnel and weapons and where all that fits.
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little tough to define some of that because training money goes to folks. money that ipment you can argue is for the troops how that works. s have it from 30 to a half. advocates say just because some of this stuff is costly, that mean you have to immediately attack that part. of the $18 million is to fund some extra planes and pieces of equipment that were on the pentagon's unfunded m mandate manda mandate. what republican law makers have is we think this is important so we're going to give you that extra money.
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then we get into that fight ost: when the bill passed this eek the speaker talked about the bill saying it helps to readiness gap. that issue was also addressed by the armed n of committee. the things i've come to realize is we're not going to just is readiness problem for putting more money into operations and maintenance. getting to the point in terms of aircraft mechanics, we the don't have enough and ones we have were working harder seven days a work week and some of them are going airlines. we have to stop this. >> has it gotten to a point
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service member lives are at risk because of these budget cuts? maybe.n't know but really the alarm bell that went the or me was when i saw class a mishap rate, and that eans you lose the aircraft or somebody dies. o up drastically for the marines and also up for the army. as we dig deeper, and we're way into ing by the what's happening out there, it looks like the air force has navy has real problems. and so lives are exactly what is here.ke it's not just a matter of budget leverage political when they don't get the training, when the aircraft are is lives.ined, it strongly i feel so about it. on h that full conversation
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sunday. host: heard from donald trump in we covered last night n new jersey talking about pilots stripping the parts off of old jets. does this bill address that? >> the republicans say it does. say u heard the chairman there, there's only so much you parts and ddress old problems.ue this from the chairman. my colleague has been covering hese issues and tracking some of these. you know, we're hearing from uys that they do, they have to find old planes. find old parts. make things ys to work just to keep aging systems
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flying. had lots of meeted discussions and cursing on the house floor. it was quite a scene and it just shows, you know, how some of unrelated issues can ecome part of the larger defense budget. can become part of any larger point. at this >> why does military construction come up in a separate bill? >> they've always handled that eparately with the veteran's affairs budget. t makes for some complicated
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math problems. the house e had approve their military budget.tion and va for en it comes time congressional -- minibus.ini hear next to from ashville, north carolina. morning.d republican line caller: good morning. but i'm not ican trying to push any particular party. not be in anyould fighting and shedding blood when they're rich to start that country.g to have to leave iraq and have
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do it over and over again. paid well and own place there order they should not go. speaking for a marine guest: donald trump was asking this. issue. complicated one that's not really dealt with in these annual budget bills looking at what their footprint is now and what with, y have to deal national security needs, and funding folks overseas. ertainly a lot of frustration about what it means to provide foreign assistance and just what owes and is owed to the rest of the world. >> and a reminder too, folks. have a line set aside for retired military.
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okay, jim from kentucky good morning host: hi, jim wanted to make a quick number of comments. in regards to the amount of spending, i wonder has a shortage. how we can -- our soldiers have message to a text find out if they're allowed to fire their gun or not. leave hundreds of up armored vehicles for isis to leave a country. seems to me we have plenty of for the military. guest: the issue of isis and the trucks, that's getting into
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that n military aid, who was intended for. there is a risk with any foreign military aid that when you give it to one group, it goes to group.r i do know the house armed services committee has started looking into this. does it fit in. are there different parameters? contracting is something that when these committees on at wayshill have looked to save money. efficiencies.d at there's been some fighting with investigator and inspector general for he sees as over what wasted money, how some of the and classified, who ends up with it. complicated issue. when they issue defense contracts, it's not something undone.n be quickly it's not like going to the store
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nd buying some tools or here.ries
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he's going to say let's bust the budget. let's forget all this. not been ach has successful. we've had this ongoing fight of epublicans wanting to add more for defense and democrats saying if you want to add more for add more ou need to spending as well
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beverly from missouri guest: i have a question. is from of this problem us being in war for 15 years and aving to go back in and redo all of this to find out where we're really standing on the situation? mean, how many trillions of bush wasnder george w. wasted? guest: so a lot of the issues with iraq ando do afghanistan. less so than now. afghanistan in which is something when i talk troops, ns groups and they would like the american to remember there are people over there fighting and risking their
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lives. donald trump engaged -- later, president obama's verbal n performed more it.o talk about guest: there are 3,000 some in the area. three u.s. service members have been killed over there. and the white house is saying this is not a
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slippery slope escalation into rack war ok cooper, t call from texas. it's margaret. democrats line 65,000 i'm one of the whose husband husband died. to s wondering are we able get back our svp that my husband our paid into during marriage and now i'm being denied because i'm receiving dic. that in the like budget this year? guest: there is. up for a minute. his is an incredibly complicated issue. what the caller is referring to the benefits that military widows receive once a
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service member passes away. the way it's structured, there are certain benefits they can receive but if others, it offsets that and they end up losing dollars.s of also if a military widow or remarried he or she benefits and loses all of that. o it's a complex array for those who have lost a service member and then can't get their benefits. this bill, there's a bill.ary it's extended for another year. senate a plan on the side to extend it even further. fix. is just a temporary it's another supplemental to this. some of wouldn't get them the entire amount of money but they would money while congress the larger ure out
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issue. host: i was e-mailed a question military e, are in this budget? guest: i'm not quite sure. the military depends on them. a lot of functions that they have either become dependent on or have asked them to take over. so you are seeing more attention to g paid on capital hill not just how much we're spending treating these folks.
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to e borrowing from china support troops. just want to know how many countries does china help guest: a little outside my scope. there's quite a u.s. footprint and there are agreements with countries oversea. in some cases, it's the temporary operations like in iraq.istan or in some cases like germany where we have a permanent presence there, we have an agreement with folkslitary bases and the there.
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back and saysomes did you get enough helicopters? pentagon says we'd always like more but this is the money we were given so congress white house fight over how much money there is to add and if they're giving more money helicopters, the naval fleet, the military pay healthcare issues? host: let's go to our active and
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military line. georgia.om caller: good morning. here right near an active duty military post. i'm real concerned with what's missions and r as deployments. i pay attention. noticed that i don't see many soldiers walking around with a combat patch on their right shoulder. and it seems like every time hat we've had a democrat in office that you see a big withdrawal of forces. mean, the democrats seem to just cut budgets. lose all our experienced soldiers. those are the ones we need to pay and keep. you know, they're the ones that have the experience nd knowledge to pass down to soldiers.er
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really need to listen to personnel more yes.t: it's been a big issue and concern of the services specially given all the years of war. i can tell you that, you know, two, lot of folks who did hree, four, even more deployments in afghanistan, folks that you couldn't pay enough money to keep them in. are exhausted from it. but what we've seen is an effort of those some retention issues. last year we saw a major reform military retirement system and is there a way to get ore money to younger enlisted troops and more officers. diving into y're
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military medical care issues and will that make it more having to find private healthcare. t's something they're always looking at. there are a lot of mid career with a lot of experience and knowledge. line is n our military don in westchester, pennsylvania. ey there caller: hi. host: go ahead may question is related paul's 2012 statement of why do we need anymore overseas bases? nobody ever followed up on any of that. great placed like a spending --
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defense spending without our security. >> does the new authorization bill address basic closing at all? doesn't. it specifically has lines in closing any u.s. bases. in the last several years the what on has looked into the overseas footprint should be. the idea of pulling everybody lots of t away has complicated dmro mat issues. of joint training , dmro mat i. we have a lot of joint traini,d. we have a lot of joint training. we have a lot of joint training. we have a lot of joint training agreements. the obama administration and the pentagon agrees that we need to up some of our
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presence in the pacific to react threats worldwide, react to potential problem spots the line. host: why do contracts and years?tions take no different than wal-mart. everybody else doing a deal different a little than wal-mart. an aircraft in and let uslease call know because the military would get a deal in bulk there. unitions are not something -- ou can't buy a javelin missile on the shelf now. noting in this bill there's been a priority of dealing with defense acquisition
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reform and does it need to be as complicated as congress has made it. host: and leo will be covering the senate as the authorization bill is discussed. us up for this morning's washington journal quote. have a great weekend.

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