tv New Hampshire Senate Debate CSPAN November 2, 2016 9:00pm-10:01pm EDT
announcer: on election day, november 8, the nation decides our next president and which party controls the house and senate. stay with c-span for full coverage of the presidential race, and follow key house and senate races. c-span, where history unfolds daily. political events to tell you about tomorrow. melania trump, wife of donaldntial candidate trump, campaigns for her husband in pennsylvania. in the evening, hillary clinton holds a campaign rally in raleigh, north carolina. watch live road to the white c-span.verage on coming up, new hampshire senator kelly ayotte debates challenger make the hassan.
then donald trump holds a campaign rally in orlando, florida, president obama campaigns for hillary clinton in chapel hill, north carolina. >> c-span's washington journal live every day with policy news that impacts you. thursday morning, the republican campaign lawyer from ash belaw.com, and kristin clark, president and executive director of the lawyer civil rights committee, will join us votinguss this years process. the topic, thursday integrity ie voter booth. then a political science professor on african-american voter turnout. and a political science department chair at temple university will talk about pennsylvania's role as a key battleground state this election
cycle. be sure to watch washington journal live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on thursday morning and joined the discussion. >> him sure republican senator kelly ayotte and democrat maggie hassan debated earlier tonight in manchester. is currently a tossup. this comes courtesy of wn you are tv. -- wmur tv. mur special, thea great debates. >> with the balance of power and the u.s. senate in play, the stakes couldn't be higher. >> i wake up every day with a sense of purpose to make a difference in washington. >> i will put new hampshire
first. >> each candidate is making a claim to the title of washington outsider. it is the most expensive race in state history, and both candidates are seeking an edge as this race appears to be going down to the wire. >> i am going to be working to make sure people understand the choice in this election. >> there is so much more that needs to be done. foronight, the candidates new hampshire senate. evening,: good everyone. img mikell then, and tonight, we will be discussing top -- i am mcelveen, and tonight, we will be discussing the top issues. each candidate will have one
minute to respond. rebuttals will be at the moderators discretion. begin with a threat emerging at a rapid pace. we are talking about cyber terrorism. just about 10 days ago, i new hampshire company was the victim of repeated attacks. it was an attack experts say could easily happen again. some people worry attacks like these could disrupt the financial markets or knock out our power grid. a lot of people are talking about it. senator ayotte, have you recommended any action that could be taken to stop this type of threat? my priority has been
to keep new hampshire and the country safe, serving on the armed services committee and serving on the homeland security committees. this issue of cyber terrorism is a grave threat. i have worked to make sure there are stronger agreements in place, including supporting legislation to allow the sharing of information between companies and the government when things like that happen to make sure we if itke the steps we need a state actor. we have to take this very seriously from states like iran and russia. military diminish our because cyber command, which i needs the support and
resources if we are going to stay safe. governor hassan, you recently signed an executive order. the press release that followed was a little vague. i want to ask you what you think we should be doing at the federal level to counter cyber terrorism. ms. ayotte: thank you for moderating tonight, to senator -- you foran: thank moderating tonight, to senator a out for being here, and for the forers -- senator ayotte being here, and to all the viewers for being here tonight. is keeping usity safe. in addition to adding troopers and making sure we have active shooter training for law enforcement and enhancing school safety plans, cyber security.
making sure state employees have cyber security training. establishing standards, getting rid of outdated hardware and software that made us more vulnerable. and the integration center you talked about is the next step in that process, making sure the stakeholders are working together to share information. >> governor, over the past several months, security experts in the u.s. pointed to russia as the culprit in several high-profile hacking cases. chinaear, they pointed to as most likely involved in the theft of data at the office of u.s. personnel management. u.s. cyberhere security officials have evidence of a hack or cyber attack, should we encounter attack, try
to steal information, or shutdown their systems? should we counter with conventional warfare, or should the u.s. do something else to respond? thehassan: thank you for question, and it is nice to see you tonight. tableeverything is on the when it comes to keeping our country safe. what we have seen from russia in particular are acts of aggression, including, what looks like, according to our national security community, aggressive cyber attack. we have all seen aggressive inion taken toward china regards to the cyber security arena. we have to continue to confront and hold accountable our nations for those kinds of attacks. among the things we should consider doing are increasing sanctions against russia. some acts of aggression have
post-closeimir putin business allies great concern and weakened them. but everything is on the table. i think it is important that we continue to combat cyber aggression and cyber attack. click same question. ms. ayotte: i think very clearly, whether it is russia, china, or frankly i ran or other countries who are using cyber attacks, we have to address what and that means having the staffing capability within our armed services, making sure our armed services have the resources they need and the technical background. an if someone takes aggressive step, we need to make sure we address it in return. unfortunately, when it comes to russia, this administration has not held russia accountable. been aet policy has
failure. we have not held them accountable for the invasion of ukraine or looking at what they have done in violating the inf treaty, whether it is cyber attacks or what they are doing in syria now. when we are not strong in terms return, wesay in will see them continue to act badly. moderator: return, we will see them continue to act i have a follow-up. h acceptedty muc that russia is trying to influence our election. do you think they have been responsible -- have been successful in doing that? ms. ayotte: i think our defense department will make sure they do not have an impact on our election or any other matter. i think this means being tough on actors like russia when they are violating international when they are
circumventing international law in terms of cyber crime, and when they are undermining our interest. i have been a strong critic of the lack of action on russia going back four years from now. certainly, we have to do as much as we can to hold russia accountable. we talked about that just a little bit ago. but look, one of the things we know we have to do is continue to build alliances with nato allies, for instance, to make sure we have the resources and partnerships to hold russia accountable for its acts of aggression. i am very proud that in new hampshire we have paper ballots and our voting machines are not hooked up to the internet. hereprovides some security for voters. i know our national security experts are working hard to make sure we are protecting our electoral system. concerning to me that
the republican nominee in the presidential race has showered praise on vladimir putin, has praised him and in some ways invited him to make an attack of some sort on our electoral system, and that's one of the reasons i am so concerned that senator ayotte spent so much time supporting the nominee. want tote: when you talk about cyber security, , who governorn hassan has followed on so many issues -- and really, has failed to call out on this issue -- she set up his private server transferring classified information, one of the most positions- important in our government, and that put national security at risk. if you want to talk about cyber crime, that could have put our national security at risk. if she is not going to break with hillary clinton on this, when is she ever going to break with her?
we need to make sure that we are standing up for the people of new hampshire and the people of this country. this was egregious. ms. hassan: i will always stand up to serve and protect the people of new hampshire as i always have. i disagree with secretary clinton on her support to close guantanamo, for example. i disagree with her on the internet sales tax. i disagree on the vetting of refugees. and let's be clear, i have said repeatedly that her use of e-mails is a mistake. she has apologized. i think that's appropriate. inhink what is on the line this race is whether we will have a senator who continues to fail to stand up to corporate interests. or whether we will have somebody who puts new fans are -- new hampshire first. moderator: speaking of the top
of the ticket, you have both been asked repeatedly about it and now you will be again. [laughter] decision to's investigate new e-mails related to the private server has thrown on the election. are you prepared to say tonight that you still believe hillary clinton is a leader americans can believe and trust, and do you have any concerns about her character? all, wean: first of definitely need more information from director comey and the fbi. this issue has been investigated exhaustively. secretary clinton has said she in the way shees used her e-mails and has appropriately apologized for that. this election is about how we can come together and build a stronger, more innovative state.
we have an unemployment rate of 2.9%, one of the lowest in the country. we have been named the most business friendly state in the country. today inle are at work new hampshire than at any time in our state's history. we can work across party lines to build a brighter future for all people. class ise growing and thriving. that is the vision i have and work toward. i support secretary clinton because she shares that vision and has a record of delivering on it. you said you wanted your 12 year old daughter to know that rejecting him for his vulgar comments about women was more than winning any election. insultedously when he muslims, mexicans, and a disabled reporter, you did not pull your support. why not? i called donald
trump out on numerous occasions, including the examples that you gave. i stood up to my party on issues like the government shutdown, and i will stand up to both sides on behalf of the people of this state. but governor hassan, to call what hillary clinton did a mistake that has been exhaustively investigated, she has not stood up to hillary clinton. she will give you her talking points of where she differs, but what about issues like the trillion dollar tax increase hillary clinton wants. will she stand up to something like that? or addressing the concerns of health care laws? the flawed iran agreement she followed hillary clinton on that is dangerous for the country in terms of the largest state sponsor of terrorism in the world having access to nuclear infrastructure. i will stand up no matter what.
i have done it and will continue to put the interests of the people of new hampshire first. ms. hassan: the fact is senator still supporting donald trump. she has sent out flyers that in donald trump needs are the senate to support his supreme court nominees. she supports the agenda of overturning roe versus wade. she can try to distance herself, as she did on multiple occasions, but in fact she has set on 35 different occasions that she supported him. she called him a role model for our children. when the political winds seemed to change, she changed her position. she has stood with her party, voting five times with ted cruz to shut the government down, and on a supreme court blockade. ms. ayotte: these are the talking points from governor hassan, but my actions speak for themselves. she has not stepped away from
hillary clinton on one thing. i have taken the action of being that i am not going to voting for our nominee because i am concerned about the actions that he has talked about and takes. be voting for our nomineethat spea. i have done that time and time again in the senate. that is why i have one of the most bipartisan records. i focus on getting things done for the people of this state. she can use her talking points all she wants on this issue, but the people of this state know i will stand up for them no matter what. she is certainly not going to stand up for hillary clinton. if she can't call her out on the private e-mail server, when is she going to call her out? >> it is great to be with both of you tonight. one of the reason these stakes party high is that one may be able to shape the landscape of the supreme court
for decades to come with as many as three justices. how muchhassan, latitude would you give a president donald trump if he is duly elected by the american consideren you nominees for the supreme court and other federal judge ships? for thean: thank you question. i am proud of the system we have in new hampshire where the governor nominates people for the court and the executives confirmed those nominations. we have a nonpartisan judicial selection commission that recommends candidates to the governor. i have always taken every -- any nominee from that list of recommendations. over the last year or so, i have made 12 nominations to the court of new hampshire, and 11 of those have been confirmed by a republican majority executive council. i know it's possible to work across party lines to do this, which is why i am concerned about senator ayotte standing
with her party to block a supreme court nomination. i look for character. agh-quality experience as lawyer. temperament, and someone who will protect the civil rights of every american. , you were ayotte opposed to holding a hearing on senator obama's nominee mary garland. people weigherican in in 2012 when they elected barack obama? certainly, the american people are going to weigh in next tuesday. they will cast their vote and will nominate someone to the supreme court. we have a divided court right now. we also have divided government. letting the people weigh in, i thought, was important. but i also have a very bipartisan record where i voted theonfirm many of
president's nominees, in fact, close to 100, and worked to fill members of his cabinet. make sure that whoever is nominated by the next president understands what their constitutional philosophy is and what their demeanor is in terms of serving on the highest court in the land. regard to the supreme court, do you think it is appropriate to have lifetime appointments? ms. ayotte: i do. it's a lifetime confirmation. our founders wanted to ensure there were three coequal branches of government and that branch would not be subject to political influence. so, this is important and obviously an issue i will carefully review on behalf of new hampshire to make sure there constitutional rights are protected. ms. hassan: i support lifetime
withntments in accordance the constitution, but i am very concerned about senator ayotte's support of the supreme court blockade. divided government right now and unfortunately, the executive branch and legislative branch have been it ought. the supreme court served as a tiebreaker for that. decided to bring gridlock as they having congress to the court. just as she brought gridlock to that, she voted with ted cruz five times to shut the government down, only deciding andr it was shut down feeling the political heat of that in new hampshire, then she decided she would be part of a solution. similarly, she has voted to defund planned parenthood six times, standing with her party as she has stood with the koch brothers. she has been highly partisan and
stood with her party and its backers at very critical times when she could have broken and really helped people in small businesses. to talkte: if you want gridlock, is vetoing a bipartisan budget because there is a reduction for business taxes and then both parties overwriting your veto. that's gridlock. that's bringing washington style to what happened in new hampshire. she keeps talking about the government shutdown. the papers in this state described the work i did with senator shaheen and other womens editors to open -- senators to open the government. saying iswhat she is not true. i stood up to ted cruz and my own caucus on the shut down i led the effort to reopen the government, and people of this state know that. i am certainly proud to have senator shaheen's endorsement in this race.
i will always stand up for fiscal responsibility. senator ayotte had a few facts wrong, but at the end of the day, we had a continuing resolution, kept the government going, brokered a compromise, and i encouraged everyone to vote for a compromise budget that had important safeguards so that we could invest in critical economic priorities. and prayershoughts are with the families and friends of two police officers in iowa who were murdered today, ambushed while sitting in their patrol cars. we don't know all the circumstances surrounding this yet, but it is reported that the alleged shooter had a violent past with guns. incidents like this continue the discussion when it comes to gun laws in the country. that is where we are going for the next question. quick senator ayotte, you are known to have widely opposed
universal background checks at gun shows. how can checking to see if someone has a criminal background be a bad thing? ms. ayotte: first of all, my thoughts and prayers go to the families of those officers. i prosecuted the case where a hero was killed in the line of duty. to me, standing up for police is so important. having been a murder prosecutor and working on difficult cases like that in our state, having worked as attorney general i appreciate how important it is that we keep guns away from criminals and terrorists's. i also believe it's deeply important that we stand up for the second amendment rights of our citizens. i support background checks. i have worked to get records in the system that are not in there now and mental health records in that newt gotten hampshire has not gotten in. i have also supported more ofsecutions of the law
violations of the background checks. right now, new hampshire needs more resources to do that for our troopers. the system is not working the way it should. i very proud to have the endorsement of the troopers and patrolmen. they know i will work to keep them safe in light of all the threats we are facing. >> governor hassan, you have twice vetoed a repeal of the states concealed carry law that requires people to get a license to carry a concealed gun. given the millions of dollars spent by pro-gun groups to support your candidacy, why people believe you will support the second amendment? ms. hassan: my thoughts and prayers also go to the families of the officers taken from us this morning in iowa. i fully support the second amendment. i believe responsible gun owners have the right to defend
themselves, to recreate, and to hunt. i think that has to be balanced with public safety. as governor, i thought it was appropriate to keep the gun laws that have been in existence in new hampshire for about 100 years the way they were. they were described as the former governor as pretty good gun laws that worked pretty well, so i made sure we sustained those. at the end of the day, one of the big concerns i have is as a national security and public safety issue, we should be closing loopholes so that terrorists cannot buy guns online and at gun shows. even after the tragedy in orlando, senator ayotte had the opportunity to vote to close those loopholes, and she has declined to do that. that is a real difference in this race. i brought a group together after orlando to address the ability to purchase firearms if you are too dangerous to get on a commercial
flight while also setting up a system for those who are on the list wrongly to be able to go into a court and get off the list. unfortunatelyre, the state police need more resources. they have gaps and forcing current law because they don't have enough resources. it's one of the reasons i supported more prosecutorial resources at the federal level. moderator: i don't mean to be the bad guy when it comes to times and rebuttals, but your campaigns will certainly let me know if one goes longer than the other. new hampshire is dealing with the crisis of addiction. the next question goes to senator ayotte. continues at crisis levels in new hampshire where the state medical examiner projects nearly 500 people will die from overdoses this year. senator ayotte, your campaign d that you and
senator shaheen sponsored that you said will save lives and help families get the care they need. and honest ad representation of the bills ability to fight this epidemic? yeah, in that i mean you have doug and pam griffin who lost their beautiful daughter, courtney. so many people i have gotten to know in new hampshire have lost a family member that they loved. this bill for three years we worked in the united states senate to get it passed. it works on prevention, treatment, and recovering. i have been fighting for more resources through the funding appropriations process to assist states, making sure we are addressing these programs. was signed into law
the summer, and it is going to make a difference. when government funding expires moreptember, we will seek funding. this will be a bill that makes a difference. this issue is about all of us working together to save lives. finally, we need to deal with addiction at the southern border. i have done that at the armed services committee. border,ver the southern it is being trafficked here by mexican drug cartels. laweed to support our enforcement in securing the borders as well. >> governor, you have made this a priority, but your critics have said you have been slow to respond at times. you appointed at drug czar who was later called incompetent. you were unaware of a $12 million federal grant to fight the drug crisis until the media ask you about it. how does this reflect on your
leadership? all overn: i have been the state, as you know, talking with people every day about the impact of this devastating epidemic on our families, our businesses, and our way of life, whether it is talking with a colleague about her sister in recovery but trying to regain the trust of her children, or mourning the loss of one of my son's classmates. this has impacted all of us. since my first day in office, i have been fighting to get the resources we need in new hampshire, fighting for drug task force teams. fighting for medicaid expansion. that is what providers told us is the single must important thing we can do. we have gotten $25 million out the door to places like harbor hope for recovery, and other places, to make sure bethlehem,house in
to make sure we are doing everything we can to put a dent in from every angle, prevention, law-enforcement, treatment, recovery. we need to continue to work together to do that. >> thank you, candidates. we are going to move into the lightning round. relationships. senator, we will start with you. who is your most trusted advisor who is not a member of your own party? ms. ayotte: members of my family. my husband and my mother. i turned to them first. also, the people in new hampshire who give me such great advice. on the heroin epidemic, it was people like doug and pam griffin who lost their daughter, people like melissa cruse who founded hope for new hampshire recovery. advisors ihe best have. >> to you have a conduit to
communication from a democrat in washington? withyotte: i have worked claire mccaskill on sexual assault. i have worked with senator shaheen on many issues for new hampshire, whether it is support for the shipyards, refueling units, care for veterans. i am always looking for common ground to get things done. >> governor, who do you reach out to for a republican counterpoint? ms. hassan: first of all, the people of new hampshire are great sources. there are so many times when i talk to people in this state and nobody identifies by party, which is the point. we work together to get things done. if elected leaders followed the example of the people of new hampshire who solve problems without regard to partisanship, we could do pretty well. i have a lot of friends and family who happened to be republicans, and i have a close friend in new england who is a republican, and we talk a lot about various issues.
moderator: i kind of blew it on the lightning portion of that. according to pew research, 57% of americans are now in favor of legalizing recreational marijuana. do you agree with the majority? ms. hassan: i don't. i was proud to sign into law the bill that allows us to have medical marijuana. i think that is the right, compassionate, appropriate thing to do. i don't think any person should have their life ruined by a simple possession charge. i was proud to enact a bill that allows our court system more flexibility in terms of don't thinkut i legalizing marijuana is appropriate, especially the epidemic we're dealing with -- given the epidemic we are dealing with with opiates. ms. ayotte: i do not support legalizing marijuana. i have heard from first responders and addiction experts the concerns they have about legalizing marijuana and how it
issues likeected to our heroin epidemic. i would not support this. going back to being attorney general of the state and working closely with law-enforcement, i could not support it. >> are you in favor of federal term limits? ms. ayotte: i am and i have cosponsored legislation on term limits. ms. hassan: the best term limit is the ballot box. i think we have an engaged citizenry and we can decide when people deserve to be reelected and when they don't. isthe federal minimum wage seven dollars to wife of sense. what do you think it should be? .- is $7.25 what do you think it should be? anyonesan: i don't think working full time should live in poverty, which is what happens right now if you work for minimum wage. it also means people do not have
disposable income to spend on goods that drive our economy. i would support raising it and phasing it into $12 an hour, but we have to do it while working with our businesses. ms. ayotte: i believe the focus should not be on minimum wage, it should be on better paying jobs. i look at jobs in manufacturing and technology around our state that are well beyond minimum wage. families cannot live on minimum wage. i think that our stem and career leads to education better jobs in this country. in washington, one of the things i am more in about is that we lose between half a million to a theion jobs according to economic analysis. my first job was as a bus girl in new hampshire. what i want to focus on is better jobs than minimum wage jobs. moderator: i know it is the lightning round. i will end on the october , even though it is
november. i'm sure a lot of people will be watching. cubs or indians? i like to root for the underdog, but the cubs came from behind, so i think the cubs. i would have liked to see big papi in the world series. ms. hassan: i am also rooting for the cubs. we are going to circle back to foreign policy. the next question is for the governor. >> we are going to circle back to debt. there is a new nonpartisan study out there that shows that more leftampshire graduates school with loans more than any other state. the average student debt was
more than $36,000. senator ayotte, you voted twice for large budget bills that included cuts to pell grants, money for needy students, then voted against a bill to restore $90 billion in cuts. why? senator ayotte: that is not true. that budget did not cut pell grants. it made sure there was oversight over the spending of pell grants. i want that for all federal spending. but i have actually worked to expand pell grants. if i were against pell grants, i would not have done that. i worked with tim kaine to expand them to career technical education and also so you can seek access to them year-round. perkins grants, they were trying to end those in washington. 5000 students in new hampshire would have been impacted. you can see my speech on the senate floor from september 29, 2015, where i fought to keep those available for the people of new hampshire. for me, i had student loans myself, pay them off, then transfer that money into childcare. i know how important this is for the kids in new hampshire. this is very important.
by the way when it comes to , education, i would like to talk about that more. because what governor hassan did o the kids in lloyd and by -- oydon by vetoing a bill that would have allowed parents to spend -- send their kids to the school they wanted to. and she vetoed a bill that would allow them to do that. i want parents to decide these issues, and there is a big issue in terms of how we view education. moderator: take a little extra time to respond. ms. hassan: i know how important about our families and businesses, making sure higher education is affordable and it is something i have made a priority as governor. we want to make sure people who work hard have an opportunity to get ahead. that starts with access to affordable higher education, which is why i worked as governor to freeze in-state
tuition at our public state universities for the first time in many years and lower it at our community colleges. it is why in washington i would continue to make bringing the cost of higher education down a priority, but my economic plan also speaks to expanding programs, because it is such a pellll grants, bikinis -- grants, because it is such a critical issue for young people and our businesses. moderator: we have got to keep moving forward. >> governor, you support pell grants, but new hampshire is one of two states that does not offer need-based aid to students. why hasn't that been a priority in the last four years? ms. hassan: i will continue my answer to just say, on the pell grant issue, people should check for themselves. she voted for a budget that had billions of dollars of cuts to programs. the day before, she voted for an amendment that would not ever -- that would not restore it is $90 million. one of the reasons senator shaheen voted against it.
we should be doing more on scholarships in new hampshire. i was glad in my first budget, we were able to restore scholarships that having cut in had been cut in previous budgets. moderator: your option? sen. ayotte: you can go read it yourself, the senate concurrent resolution 11. you did not cut pell grants. but also, this issue about education and the fact that governor hansen here in new hampshire does not want to allow parents and local school boards to decide where it is best for our kids to go to school, i think that is perhaps because federal education unions have pumped millions of dollars into this race. they are supporting her campaign. i'm going to stand for the kids first, not unions, and make sure that kids can go where their parents think is best. gov. hassan: what i would like senator ayotte to do and agree with me about is to stand for new hampshire constitution. the new hampshire constitution says that state dollars cannot be used to fund private schools. we have a court ruling that says
we can't spend the money that way, and so, we can't spend the money that way. we will work with the people of croydon to make sure their children have access to a good quality education, something we worked to do throughout the state. moderator: moving forward to foreign policy. >> this is first you, senator ayotte. as iraqi forces continue to push into mosul to unseat isis, there are reports of how complicated it will be to defeat them considering how entrenched they are. if this is truly a stronghold for the terrorist group, should the u.s. be sending and a significant ground force to back up the iraqis and debilitate isis? sen. ayotte: this issue is so important. serving on the armed services committee and chairing the readiness subcommittee for the
nation, keeping our country safe. we do have to destroy isis and radical islamist terrorists who want to destroy our way of life. what our men and women in uniform are doing -- we have to understand, we have 4500 troops were there. -- who are there. we have members of our own guard who have been there in the middle east and supporting those efforts. we need to make sure that they have the rules of engagement that they need to go after the enemy and to keep us safe, making sure that we engage our allies -- both our arab allies and also nato to take greater action against isis. we don't need a traditional ground force right now to take out isis, but we do need stronger american leadership and engaging nato in a more aggressive way. our arab allies in a more aggressive way, and we have to push back against russia, who is undermining our interests and iran at this point. if we don't do that, even taking mosul, the post period there will continue to be a challenge.
we have to do all that we can to defeat isis. >> governor, what is your take on this? gov. hassan: first of all, the campaign to take back mosul is critical to our strategy to destroy isis. i am fully supportive of the campaign to do it. i think we are doing it in the right way with iraqi forces taking the lead and the united states during airstrikes and providing support and training with special operations. i am particularly proud of the new hampshire national guard for its support and training activities in the middle east, and i hope everyone viewing tonight keeps the men and women of the guard in their thoughts and prayers. i have laid out a clear plan to defeat isis. it includes increasing airstrikes, making sure our special operations forces are going after command and control of isis as well as doing the support and training they are doing. surging intelligence, working with international allies to
make sure we're arming moderate forces. it is long past time for the united states congress to take up and pass a revised new authorization of use of military force so the american people are clear about what it will take to destroy isis. >> would you support sending a significant ground force? gov. hassan: no, i think it is appropriate level of support and training that our special operations are doing, but i don't support ongoing continuous ground troops. >> as a result of the fighting around mosul, the un's suspects -- expects war than one million -- expects more than a million civilians to be affected. governor hassan, you were the only democratic governor to call for a temporary ban on syrian refugees coming into the u.s. several months later, you said the federal government had improved its communications with state governments about who is coming in. how did the communications improves specifically, and how many more syrians, if any, should the u.s. allowing going forward?
gov. hassan: as governor, the security of my state is always the first priority i have. after the attack in paris, i thought when the fbi and cia directors expressed concern about whether our refugee vetting system was working, as it was supposed to, as the guidelines and policies laid out on paper said it was supposed to, i thought it was appropriate for the administration to take a temporary pause and really do the kind of audit you need to address the concerns raised by the cia and fbi. that is something i still think they should do, and i'm disappointed they did not. they did improve communications in terms of giving us more much more regular updates about refugees coming in, but at the end of the day, what we should be doing is focusing on making sure our vetting system is better. we should be making sure all of our entryways, including the visa waiver system, is better, monitoring social media, and working with our european allies on their information and vetting processes as well.
>> just to be clear, do you believe a ban still needs to be in place? gov. hassan: i think a temporary pause makes a lot of sense, i still do, so we can address the concerns the cia and fbi have raised. moderator: senator, please. sen. ayotte: certainly serving on the armed services committee, this issue -- unless we can guarantee that someone coming here from that region has no connection to isis, they should not come here. unfortunately, in the senate, we had votes on strengthening that vetting system, including requiring our national security advisers and making sure the armed services had to certify that no one coming here was a threat. that got blocked by the senate democrats, and this is an issue that has not been addressed. president obama keeps pushing to have more of these refugees who have come here, in terms of more communication, i have not heard what that is.
my concerns are that we know isis is purposely trying to infiltrate the refugee population. we have heard that in the armed services committee from our commanders in europe, some our -- from our top intelligence officials, and hillary clinton wants to bring more refugees in here. we have not heard how that is going to work when we still don't have the information to know that some of these refugees, whether or not they're connected with isis or not. moderator: moving forward to the affordable care act. everybody's favorite get along topic. >> governor, under obama care, employer health care premiums have gone up. the obama administration announced that individual premiums would go up 25% nationally. although the rates are lower in new hampshire, some plans as high as 15%. how can you tell mom and pop businesses that the aca is a good deal for them?
gov. hassan: as many of our viewers you know, my husband tom and i have two children, the oldest of whom has severe disabilities and medical conditions that go with that. at various times, ben has had nine or 10 doctors and over a dozen medications, so we are well aware of the strengths and flaws of our health care system. the affordable care act certainly needs some very important improvements, but we can't go back to a time before the aca, where people with pre-existing conditions could not get coverage. we cannot go back to a time where students could not stay or young people could not stay on their parents' health insurance. for small businesses, there are some real challenges with aca. one of the things that aca allowed us to do in new hampshire was put together a bipartisan medicaid expansion, this expansion program providing health care to hard-working granite stater's. if you repeal the aca, you pull the rug out from those folks.
and my opponent has voted to repeal medicaid expansion five now -- now five times. we know we should improve the aca, but we cannot just repeal it. >> this is an issue where people are skeptical anything is going to change. the house republican congress has 40 times past a repeal of obama care. all have fallen flat. tonight, what can you say can honestly be accomplished next year in congress so that people continue to have health insurance but it is not outrageously expensive? is such an this important issue that i am hearing about from so many people who are facing higher deductibles, co-pays, premiums. the affordable care act is not so affordable for new hampshire families or small businesses. having roundtables with small business owners, my husband has a small business. others who are hearing very significant increases that they are getting, especially for
those small business owners. if you elect to governor hassan to the senate, you are going to be in a position where we won't make changes to address more competition, choice, transparency, and really, making sure we drive down health care costs. she talks about my votes. did vote five-- i times to see if we could repeal and replace the affordable care act, but i have also voted when it came to a vote on medicaid expansion to expand that for two years so we could have more flexibility for state serving those populations. i do not want to go backward on pre-existing conditions, but if we don't make changes to this law, instead of one-size-fits-all from washington -- which hillary clinton wants to expand, not address the rising cost -- that so many are struggling for in new hampshire. moderator: thank you. take 30 seconds. give us an example of improvement. gov. hassan: our medicaid expansion -- bipartisan -- in new hampshire is a state specific solution that senator ayotte has voted to repeal.
when you think about what the improvements are, we need to, among other things, lower the cost of prescription drugs. one of the things that senator ayotte has failed to do in the senate is stand up and allow medicare to negotiate for prescription drug prices, which i support. she has voted against allowing us to import prescription drugs from canada. that would add competition. she has stood with big pharma as they have been a major donor to her campaigns, and that is my -- one of the differences between the two of us. it is one of the major things we could do to lower health care costs. moderator: governor, thank you very much. it is well documented this is going to be the most expensive race in state history -- $100 million have been spent in outside money, much of it on negative attacks ads. you are able to deny ownership since you can't coordinate with third-party groups. but tonight i want to ask you,
what is the most unfair negative ad -- for you first, senator ayotte -- what is the most unfair negative at that aired in this -- added that aired in this race about the opponent? sen. ayotte: about your opponent? as i look at the ads that have aired, i think in the beginning i called for some of the ads that came down that attack governor hassan on the heroin epidemic. i think there are issues you can raise, as kevin asked her about tonight, and how she has handled this. i want to work on solving this problem, so i have already done that. she has not called out any of the ads that have been run against me, and we could have kept this money out of this race. i offered governor hassan the people's pledge that was in place between elizabeth moran -- elizabeth warren and scott brown that senator shaheen offered in her race to keep this money out. how we would conduct ourselves. unfortunately, she did not want to accept that because you see all the ads on your tv -- she wanted the special interest money to come in this race, and
it is very unfortunate because this should be about new hampshire. moderator: senator, have you seen anything that is unfair or has crossed the line about senator ayotte? gov. hassan: i signed the pledge and sent it to senator ayotte, but she refused to sign it. at the end of the day, there is only one candidate standing before you who supports campaign-finance reform and overturning citizens united. i support that, which is the decision that says operations -- corporations are people. i don't think corporations are people, i don't think they should be able to bring on this dark money spending entire -- into our state. senator ayotte's voting record tells you that she thinks corporations are people, too, because she votes with wall street, big pharma, the coke -- the koch others and big oil. -- the koch brothers and big oil. they are running these ads against me because they want her o return to washington.
moderator: 30 seconds to respond. sen. ayotte: i offered her the people's pledge, the same language in place in the massachusetts race to keep the money out. she wants the money in, because you have seen it on your tv. harry reid super pack, mike bloomberg, over $7 million, the unions, millions of dollars. hillary clinton super pack, millions of dollars. you can see it on your tv right now. all of these false misleading attacks that come forward -- that is because she wanted this money in this race. she could have kept it out. moderator: our time is flying, we need to get to our final question. new hampshire is the only state in the lower 48 that does not have a full-service va hospital. you are also aware of the choice option that senator ayotte and senator shaheen have been working on. do you think we need a full-service hospital? ms. hassan: i think we need a full-service hospital for our veterans.
i am the daughter of a world war ii veteran, and one of the things i focus on as governor is how we can make sure veterans have the benefits they deserve and have access to employment, housing. i am proud of the work we have done in new hampshire to expand veterans homes, add more beds and create a new dimension for it along with the vets connect program and many others. i think we need a full-service veterans hospital, one, because our veterans in new hampshire deserve it. they should not have to travel long distances to get the care they need. i also think it is very critical that as we have more and more people -- veterans -- who have specific injuries because of the new and evolving kind of threats that our enemies and adversaries have, they have difference in new kinds of injuries. -- different and new kinds of injuries. we need to bring the expertise of the veterans -- moderator: at one point, senator, you were in favor of a
full-service hospital, but you say it is not as urgent because of the v a choice card. sen. ayotte: one of the first bills i introduced in the senate was to have new hampshire have a full-service hospital. i am the wife of a combat veteran. my grandfather served in world war ii, my stepfather in vietnam. we are a family of service. as i think about all the issues that are out there, we have to get this right for our veterans and their families. i have been working with senator shaheen to get the vh1's program -- the v a choice program right. there is too much bureaucracy in vna -- the va right now. our veterans should be able to get the best care. there should be more accountability in the va. i have introduced legislation to clawback bonuses for people who committed misconduct. there is no more important issue to me than making sure our veterans get the care that they have earned defending this great nation.
i have been proud to work with senator shaheen, and we will continue to fight to make sure the choice program is right and continue to fight for a full-service hospital. moderator: we have some time for you to deliver closing statements. senator ayotte? sen. ayotte: thank you, josh, and governor hassan for being part of this debate. most of all, i think you are -- i want to thank you at home for listening. this election is not about the negative, misleading ads on your tv. this election is about you and your family and who is going to stand up to be that independent voice for new hampshire with a positive vision for our country. i have one of the most bipartisan records in the senate because i know the only way we are going to get things done is by working together. like the law i worked on to address our heroin epidemic, or solutions i have worked on to help our small businesses or make college in health care more affordable. there is so much more work to do. i am proud to fight for those who keep us safe as the wife of the combat veteran. the only way we're going to get
things done is to stand up to both sides when they are taking us in the wrong direction and finding common ground, when we can agree to deliver results for our state and country. that is what i have done in the senate. that is why i am running again. i ask for your vote on november 8 so we can continue the work we have started together for this great state. thank you so much. gov. hassan: thank you, senator ayotte and josh, our panelists, and to all our viewers. growing up, my dad, who fought in world war ii the battle of the bulge, would sometimes look at us at the breakfast table and ask, what are you doing for freedom today? dad was serious, because my father along with his generation -- the greatest generation -- by believing in a cause greater than themselves saved the world and build this country into the greatest military and economic power the world had ever seen. that is the spirit i have tried to bring to my work as governor, and it is the spirit that should inform our work and washington,
d.c. unfortunately, what we see is the nation's capital captured by corporate special interests. the choice in this election is clear. are we going to continue to have a senator who votes with those corporate special interests whose agenda is shaped by them? they already have enough senators in washington. or are we going to have a senator who has a record, as i do, of putting people in small businesses of new hampshire first? that's my commitment to all of you. i will always put you first. >> candidates, thank you very much for participating tonight. best of luck to both of you in the final days of the campaign. thank you to the audience for participating and the panelists. thank you for watching. we are back here tomorrow, night number three. >> tuesday night's results could be an early indicator which