tv Politics and Public Policy Today CSPAN December 6, 2016 9:00pm-12:01am EST
because technology makes it completely impossible to shield impressionable minds from violent ideologies. is trying towho kill and living to be killed is dangerous, particularly when we are living in a country where it is very easy for that person to buy a weapon. so rather than offer's promises -- offer false promises of deploying more troops and fixing ourselves off from the rest of the world, we have to take a terroristof the threat, and we have to pursue a smart strategy that can be sustained. in the time remaining, let me suggest what i think should guide this approach. arst of all, sustainable counterterrorism strategy depends on keeping the threat in perspective.
the terrorist threat israel, and it is dangerous, but these terrorists want to cast themselves as the vanguard of a new world order. they are not. they arethugs, murderers, and they should be treated that way. [applause] pres. obama: fascism threatens to overrun the entire world, and we had to wage total war in response. communism threatened only to overturn a world order -- threatened not only to overturn threateneder, but the nuclear holocaust, so we had to build arms alliances to contain it. kill's terrorists can innocent people, but they don't pose an existential threat to our nation, and we must not make a mistake of elevating them as if they do. that does their job for them.
it makes them more important and helps them with recruitment. a second and related point is that we cannot follow the path of previous great powers who sometimes defeated themselves through overreach. whiletecting our homeland drawing down the number of troops serving in harm's way overseas, we helped save resources, but more importantly we saved lives. you during the course of my years that i have never shied away from sending men and women into danger where necessary. it's always the hardest decision i make, but it's one that i have made where the security of the american people is at stake. and i have seen the cost. i have held the hands of our wounded warriors.
i have met the caskets of the fallen. and that is why i make no apologies for only sending our troops into harm's way when there is a clear mission that is achievable, and when it is absolutely necessary. number three, we need the wisdom to see that upholding our values and adhering to the rule of law is not a weakness in the long-term, it is our greatest strength. [laughter] [applause] pres. obama: the whole objective of these terrorists is to scare us into changing the nature of who we are and our democracy. is, people and nations do not make good decisions when they are driven by fear. terrorists can never directly destroy our way of
life. we can do it for them if we lose track of who we are and the values that this nation was founded upon. [applause] and i always remind myself that as commander-in-chief, i must protect our people, but i also swore an oath to defend our constitution. and over these last eight years, we have demonstrated that staying true to our traditions as a nation of laws advances our security as well as our values. we prohibited torture everywhere , at all times, and that includes tactics like waterboarding, and at no time has anybody who has worked with me tell me that doing so has cost us good intelligence. [applause] pres. obama: when we do capture
terrorists, despite all the political rhetoric about the need to strip terrorists of their rights, our interrogation valuablee obtained information from terrorists without resorting to torture, without operating outside the law. our article three courts have delivered justice faster than military trials. and our prisons have proven more than capable of holding the most dangerous terrorists. consider the terrorists who have been captured, lawfully and take her -- lawfully interrogated, and prosecuted in civilian courts. the one who tried to set up a car bomb in times square. tsarnaev, the boston marathon bomber. the so-called underwear bomber. american juries and judges have determined that none of these people will know freedom
know freedomwill again, but we didn't lawfully, and the wheels of justice are , such as thethers accused leader of the benghazi attacks. we can get these terrorists and stay true to who we are. in fact, our success in dealing with terrorists through our justice system reinforces why it is passed time to shut down the facility at guantanamo. [applause] pres. obama: this is not just my opinion, it is the opinion of many military leaders. during my administration, we have transferred over 175 detainees to foreign governments with safeguards to reduce the risk of them returning to the battlefield, and we have cut the population in gitmo from 242 to 59.
the politics of fear has led congress to prevent any detainees from being transferred to prisons in the united states, even though as we speak we imprison dangerous terrorists in our prisons, and we have even more dangerous criminals and all of our prisons across the country. even though our allies often times will not turn over a terrorist if they think that terrorist could end up in gitmo. even though groups like isil use gitmo in their propaganda. so we are wasting hundreds of millions of dollars to keep fewer than 60 people in a detention facility in cuba. that's not a strength. until congress changes course, it will be judged harshly by history, and i will continue to do all that i can to remove this block on our national honor. [applause]
pres. obama: number four, we have to fight terrorism in a way that does not create more terrorists. for example, in a dangerous world, terrorists seek out places where it is often impossible to capture them, or to count on local governments to do so, and that means the best option for us to get those terrorists become a talker did strike -- become a targeted strike. so we have taken action. -- we have taken action under my command, including withdrawals, to remove terrorists from the battlefield, which has prevented real threats to the american people. [applause] under rules that i have put in place and made any threat is taken outside of a war zone, there must be near certainty
that no civilians will be killed or injured. and while nothing is certain in any strike, and we have acknowledged that there are innocentsidents where have been killed by our strikes, this is the highest standard .hat we can set nevertheless, we still have critics who suggest that these , and i say toong them you have to weigh the alternatives. deny atrikes allow us to safe haven without air strikes which are less precise, or invasions that are much more likely to kill innocent civilians as well as americans servicemen -- as american servicemembers. the actions we have taken have saved lives at home and abroad. that we do have to be careful to ensure that when we take actions, we are not
alienating local populations, because that will serve as recruitment for new terrorists. number five, transparency and accountability serve our national security not just in times of peace, but more importantly in times of conflict. have made public information about which terrorist organization we are fighting and why we are fighting them. we released assessments of noncombatants killed in our operations. taken responsibility when mistakes are made. declassified information about interrogation methods that were wrong, so we learned from past mistakes. and yesterday, i directed our government for the first time to release a full description of the legal and policy frameworks that guide our military operations around the world. this public information allows for a more informed public , and it provides a potential check on unfettered executive power.
the power of the presidency is awesome, but it is supposed to be bound by you, our citizens. [applause] pres. obama: but here's the thing, that information does not mean anything. work if the people's representatives in congress do not do their jobs. if they are not paying attention. [applause] pres. obama: right now we are waging war under authorities provided by congress over 15 years ago. 15 years ago. i had no great here 15 years ago. hair 15 years ago. [laughter] ago, ibama: two years asked congress, let's update authorization for a war against isil, reflecting the changing
nature of the threats, reflecting the lessons we have learned from the last decade. so far, congress has refused to take a vote. democracies should not operate in a state of permanently authorized war. that's not good for our military , it's not good for our democracy. [applause] way, obama: and by the part of the reason that's dangerous is because today, with our outstanding, all volunteer force, only 1% of the population , whichally fighting means that you are carrying the burden, which means that it is important for us to know what it is we are doing and have to explain what we are doing to the becomes toouse it easy to just send 1% of the population out to do things even if they are not well thought through. toa threat is serious enough
require the sacrifice of our men and women in uniform, then members of congress should have the courage to make clear where they stand. , not on theidelines toes, but by fulfilling their constitutional duty and authorizing the use of force against the threat that we face today. that's how democracies are supposed to work. alongside our outstanding military work, we have to drop on the strength of article policy. -- of our diplomacy. terrorists would like to see us walk away from the type of work that builds international coalitions and stop the spread of deadly weapons. it would make life easier for them. it would be a tragic mistake for us. think about what we have done the last eight years without firing a shot area to we have firing a shot.ut
we have rolled back iran's nuclear program. that's not my assessment. that's the assessment of iranian intelligence, even though they were opposed to the deal. eliminated syria's chemical weapons program. all of these states have helped keep us safe and keep our troops safe. those are the result of diplomacy. and sustained diplomatic efforts, no matter how frustrating may sometimes appear, are going to be with wired -- are going to be required to solve the conflict boiling in the middle east, and if we don't have strong interests there, the more you will be called upon to clean up the failure of diplomacy. similarly, any long-term strategy to reduce the threat of terrorism depends on investments that strengthen some of these fragile societies.
our generals, our commanders understand this. this is not charity. it's fundamental to our national security. on development is worth a lot more than a dollar spent fighting and war. war.ghting a [applause] pres. obama: this is how we prevent conflicts from starting in the first race. -- first place. this is how we can ensure peace is lasting, after we have fought. it's how we stop people from falling prey to extremism, because children are going to school and can think for themselves, and families can feed themselves and are not desperate, and communities are not rabbits did -- are not ravished by disease. as americans, we have to see the imperial society, and we have to support entrepreneurs instead ofusinesses
destroyed. we have to invest in young people, because the areas that are generating terrorists are -- which having a huge makes them more dangerous. and there are times we have to help refugees who have escaped the horrors of war in search of a better life. [applause] pres. obama: our military recognizes that these issues of governance and human dignity and development are vital to our security. it is central to our plans in places like afghanistan and iraq. let's make sure that this wisdom is reflected in our budgets as well. fight, wey, in this have to the civil liberties that define us. terrorists want us to turn on one another. and while defeating them
us to draw upon the enormous capabilities of all our governments, we have to make sure that changes in how we address terrorists are not abused. this is why, for example, we have made extensive reforms on how we gather intelligence around the world, increasing oversight, placing the restrictions on the government's ability to maintain a new surge of communications so that people trust us, and that way they cooperate and work with us. we don't use our power to indiscriminately read emails or targetedto phone calls at folks who might be trying to do us harm. we use it to save lives. by doing so, by maintaining the civil liberties, we sustain the confidence of the american people and we get the cooperation of our allies.
liberty, that's something we do for all americans, not just some. [applause] we are fighting fight ons who claim to behalf of islam, but they do not speak for a billion muslims around the world, and they do not stay for american muslims, including many who wear the uniform of the united states of america's military. [applause] stigmatize: if we good, patriotic muslims, that just feeds the terrorists' will --e area if you narrative. it fuels the same false grievances they used to kill. we act like this is a war between the united states and islam, we will not just lose more americans to terrorist
attacks, we will also lose sight of the very principles we claim to defend. , asn my final words to you your commander-in-chief, be a reminder of what it is you are fighting or, what it is we are fighting for. the united states of america is not a country that imposes religious tests as a price to freedom. we are a country that was founded so that people could practice their faith as they choose. the united states of america is not a place where some citizens have to withstand greater scrutiny, or carry a special id card, or prove they are not an enemy from within. a country that has bled and struggled and sacrificed against that kind of discrimination and arbitrary rule. here in our own country and around the world. nation that believes freedom can never be taken for
granted, and that each of us has a responsibility to sustain it. the universal right to speak your mind and a protest against authority. to live in a society that is open and free. a presidentticize without retribution. [applause] pres. obama: a country where you are judged by the content of your character, rather than what you look like, or how you worship, or where your family came from. that's what separates us from pirates and terrorists. we are a nation that stands for le of law and strengthens the laws of war. when the notches were defeated, we put them on trial. were defeated, we put
them on trial. some could not understand that. it had never happened before. but as one of the lawyers at nuremberg says, i was trying to prove that the rule of law should govern human behavior, and by doing so, we brought it the scope and reach of justice around the world. we held ourselves out as a beacon and an example for others . we are a nation that won world wars without grabbing the resources of those we defeated. we help them rebuild. -- helped them rebuild. we did not hold onto territory, other than the cemeteries where we bury our dead. foughtatest generation and bled and died to build an international order of laws and institutions that could reserve -- preserve the peace and prosperity and promote
cooperation among nations. for all of its imperfections, we protect -- we depend on that international order to protect our freedom. other words, we are a nation that at our best has been defined by hope and not fear. a country that went through the crucible of a civil war to offer a new birth of freedom that stormed the beaches of normandy, climbed the hills of iwo jima, that saw ordinary people mobilize to extend the meaning of civil rights. that's who we are. that's what makes us stronger than any act of terror. that history. remember what that flag stands for. , the heirsnd on you to that legacy, our men and
women in uniform, and the -- that that were you, support you, to carry forward what is best in us, that commitment to a common creed, a light makeshat might, not the other way around. [applause] that's how we can sustain this long struggle. that's how we will protect this country. that's how we will protect our constitution against all threats, foreign and domestic. will fulfillyou that mission, because you have filled all others. the greatest honor of my life to serve as commander-in-chief. i thank you for all you have done and all you will do in the future. may god bless you, our troops,
[captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] journal," "washington live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. wednesday morning, congressman tim ryan of ohio will discuss the future of the house democratic leadership, his use -- his views on the 2016 election results and donald trump as president. also, congress member larry
bichon will talk about how republicans' plan to handle the affordable care act, and what impact this will have on consumers. a history professor will talk about the anniversary of the bombing of pearl harbor, and its impact on the u.s. today. the short to watch live at 7:00 a.m. eastern wednesday morning. join the discussion. announcer: abigail fillmore was the first first lady to work outside the home, teaching in a private school. wasenhower's hairstyle an inspiration. stores sold clip on bangs eager to imitate her style. jackie kennedy was responsible the whiteeation of house historical association, and nancy reagan, as a young actress, saw her name mistakenly on a list of communist advisers
in the 1940's. she appealed to ronald reagan for help. she later became his wife. these stories and more are featured in c-span's book, "first ladies." the book makes a great gift for the holidays. readers a look into the personal lives of every first lady in history, and how their legacies resonate today. share stories of america's first ladies from holidays. "first ladies," in paperback, published by public affairs, is now available at your favorite bookseller and published as an e-book. announcer: next, president-elect donald trump asked supporters in fayetteville, north carolina. at this rally, he officially announced that retired marine corps general james mattis was his pick to serve as defense secretary.
trump! trump! [cheers and applause] trump: so, the weather was really bad, really bad, and they these are great people in north carolina, they won't mind. rep. scott: -- [cheering] said they won't mind if you cancel and make it another time. and i said, what? and they said, we have a big just, but they won't mind, because the weather was so terrible. i said, you've got to be kidding. for 2.5ve been driving hours. but there was no way that we were not showing up tonight, that i can tell you. [cheers and applause] we could not land at your local airport. we landed a long ways away.
the drive was about three times longer than the flight. but we made it. that's all that matters, right? [cheers and applause] mr. trump: and i'm here today for one main reason, to thank you, the people of north , for being so incredible. we want to thank you. you went out and pounded the pavement, you organize your fellow citizens, and propelled to victory a grassroots movement, the likes of which nobody, nobody has ever seen before, and that's beyond our country. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: and i want to give a special thank you to the incredible military service members and veterans of north carolina. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: they were great.
i got such numbers. oh, those numbers are good. i want to talk about that. we don't talk about numbers, we bring people together, but boy, were those numbers good. and our veterans, do we love our veterans? [cheers and applause] your state's legacy of service is an inspiration to us all. north carolina has produced many of the finest soldiers, airmen, sailors, and marines the world has ever seen. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: so true. our men and women in uniform represent the absolute best of us. ,e must follow their example working in unison toward a shared goal across every social, racial, and economic line. they understand that to accomplish the mission, we must all be pulling in the same
direction. we have to get together. [cheers and applause] know that weey must leave no man or woman behind. these patriots have shed their blood to defend our country in distant fields, and battle across the earth. our debt to them is eternal and everlasting. amazing people. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: amazing people. and we have a very special person here today who we are going to introduce. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: boy, it has been such a popular choice. their sacrifice, and we salute the flag they bought to protect -- fought to protect. we love our flag. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: we love our flag, and
we don't like it when we see people ripping up our flag and burning our flag. [booing] don't like it. we will see what we are going to do about that, ok? [cheers and applause] is the 75thomorrow anniversary of pearl harbor. it is the milestone of those who bore the great uniform. it is a reminder of the valiant efforts of america's fighting men and women who liberated millions from tyranny and oppression. now today, our brave men and women are the first in line, defense, defense, against radical islamic terrorism, words some people don't like to say, an ideology of death that slaughters innocent men, women,
and children. to protect our people, we are going to protect our country, believe me. [cheers and applause] generation,n every a new threat to freedom arises. just as we defeated these threats, we faced generations in the past, and you understand that. so too will we defeat the forces of terrorism. unseen in many cases, but we are going to defeat that force, and we are going to defeat it strongly and quickly, believe me. [cheers and applause] we will prevail. we stand here today just miles from fort bragg, the home of heroes. [cheers] forces at our special fort bragg have been the tip of the spear in fighting terrorism. the motto of our army special forces is to free the oppressed,
and that is exactly what they have been doing and will .ontinue to do at this very moment, soldiers from fort bragg are deployed in 90 countries around the world. can you believe that? 90 countries. the 82ndfort bragg is airport -- 82nd airborne division, also known as the all-american division. aw of their achievementse, we really do. not far from here is 45% of the entire united states marine corps at camp lejeune. i have been to camp lejeune. we love camp lejeune. --000 citizen shoulders citizen soldiers fill the ranks of the north carolina army and air national guard.
the national guard rushed to the scene to help the victims of hurricane matthew and so many other catastrophes. and we continue to send our thoughts and prayers to those recovering. the military families in north carolina are a national treasure, and it will be the duty of my administration to make sure that we protect those who protect us. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: and i just want to that we are going to be taking care of our veterans, and i am right now working -- these are great, great people, but they have not been treated fairly, and i am working on picking the people who are going to be helping our veterans, and they are really outstanding. we have some of the great people, and a lot of people are making great sacrifices to do
this, but they will be unbelievable. you will see such a change like you have never seen before. protect and help our veterans, believe me. [cheers and applause] brings me to the second reason i am here, to discuss our action plan to make america great again, beginning with the rebuilding of our we will -- you are going to see it -- i am looking forward to next week. we are going to see what will do to take care of our vets. a lot of things are going to be announced. stay tuned. there are things that will guide veterans' policy. all men and women will have the supplies, support, equipment, training, services, medical care, and resources they need to
get the job done incredibly well in perfectly. you watch. [cheers and applause] the best care in the both atr our veterans, public mva facilities, as well is the right to see a private doctor when the lines are long -- [cheers and applause] mr. trump: i have been saying this for the last year and a half, people have been writing -- have been waiting in line for seven days, eight days, nine days. longer. he just said longer! longer than that. when that happens, you are going out to see a private doctor, a private hospital, a public hospital, somebody who can take care of you, and we are going to pick up the bill, and not only is it going to be great for you, it's going to be less expensive. and i wonder, why didn't somebody do this?
more is going to be no waiting of our great people in line for weeks to see a doctor. commitment to only engage the use of military forces when it is in the vital national security interest of the united states. we don't want to have a depleted military because we are all over thatlace fighting in areas we should not be fighting in. we are going to have such a strong, powerful military. it's not going to be depleted in longer. i mentioned equipment previously. we are going to have the finest equipment to the world. it is going to be new, it's going to be modern, it's going to be clean, it's going to be the best. that's what we are going to have. we are not going to be a depleted military anymore. [cheers and applause] on, it's: from now going to be america first, america first. [cheers and applause]
mr. trump: we will stop racing to topple foreign -- and you understand this -- foreign regimes that we know nothing about, that we should not be involved with. instead, our focus must be on defeating terrorism and destroying isis. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: and we will. in a nation that shares these goals will be our partner in this mission. we won't forget it. we want to strengthen our friendships and seek out new friendships, rather than a rigid dogma, we are guided by the lessons of history and a desire to promote stability all over and strength in our land. this destructive cycle of intervention and chaos must finally come to an end. [cheers and applause]
we have spent, at last count, $6 trillion in the middle east, and our roads have potholes all over, our highways are falling apart, our bridges tunnels are nor good, our airports are horrible. we've got to start spending on ourselves, but we've got to be so strong militarily, like we've never been before, remember that. like we've never been before. [cheers and applause] harmony ande seek good will among the nations of the world, and we believe that respect of sovereignty helps form the basis of trust and understanding, but we don't want people taking advantage of us anymore. we don't want countries taking advantage of us anymore. we don't want that.
we don't want that. we want to be the smart people. we don't want to be what we have been over the last long period of time. we build up our military not as an act of aggression, but as an act of prevention. we pursue and build up arms not only to see conflict, but in order to avoid conflict. we want to be strong. through, we seek peace strength. [cheers and applause] that is why in my first budget report to congress i am going to ask for the illumination of the defense sequester -- elimination of the defense sequester. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: depletion, i call it to depletion. we will show the world that america is going to be stronger
than ever before. be stronger to militarily than ever before, and hopefully we will not have to use our military, but we will be stronger than ever before, and there has really been a time where we have needed this strength more than we have right now. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: but in order to succeed with our defense policy, we must find the right person to lead our defense department, is that right? [cheers and applause] mr. trump: this is why i'm proud to formally announce today my intention to nominate general mattis -- dog" [cheers and applause] as the next secretary of defense for the united states of america.
jim is a marine corps, four-star , the former commander of u.s. central command and data does supreme -- and nato supreme allied commander. this is going to be so great for us. he led an assault battalion in operation desert storm, and you saw what happened. that's the way you are supposed to lead it. there was no games. mad dog plays no games, right? [cheers] mr. trump: let the forces that when after the taliban and, and the first marine division in iraq. he is one of the most effective generals we have had any decades -- had in many decades, an extraordinary leader of our time who has committed his life to his love for our country. general mattis is the living
embodiment of the marine corps model, semper fidelis, always faithful, and the american people are fortunate that a man of this character and integrity will now be the civilian later a ,op the department of defense under his leadership, right? [cheers and applause] under his leadership, such an important position. ,e will rebuild our military destroy terrorists, face our enemies had on, and make america safe again. it is now my honor and privilege to welcome to the stage your next secretary of defense, mattis."mad dog" thank you. [cheers and applause]
gen. mattis: thank you. thank you, ladies and gentlemen. thank you, president-elect, for the confidence you have shown in may. thank you for the opportunity. i am grateful for the opportunity to return to our troops, their families, the civilians of the department of defense, because i know how committed they are and devoted they are to the defense of our country, the defense of our constitution, and with our allies strengthened, with our country strengthened, i would forward to being a civilian leader as long as the congress gives me the waiver and the senate votes. thank you very much. [cheers and applause]
>> mad dog! mad dog! a great guy.at he's going to be a credible he will get that waiver. if he did not get that waiver, there will be a lot of angry people. such a popular choice. the process are in of putting together one of the all-time great captives that has ever been assembled in our nation's history -- cabinets that has ever been assembled in our nation's history. we have so many great people who will be named over the next couple of days. but to accomplish our goals, we must reject the bill approaches of the past. the tired,e past conventional thinking of washington, d.c. , webraham lincoln said think anew and act in new, my plan begins with bold structural reform to create millions of
good paying jobs and great paying jobs. you have seen what has been happening over the last couple of weeks, and we have not gotten there yet. saving very proud of 1100 jobs in indiana with the help of mike pence. vice president-elect, who is incredible. we are very proud of mike pence, by the way. steel, it is producing building cars, or. disease, we want the next generation of innovation and disease,n -- or curing we want the next generation of innovation and production to happen in america, and right here in north carolina. and don't forget, when we started, even four weeks before, they said we would have an awfully hard time winning florida, winning north carolina. we are not going to win pennsylvania. we are not going to win
michigan, we are not going to win wisconsin, we are not going , and ohio is going to be tough. we won ohio by more than eight points. by a massive number, 10 points. then we went down and won florida. remember that fantastic evening? we have breaking news, donald trump wins florida. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: donald trump wins north carolina. [cheers and applause] we won so many states. we won 30 states, 32 states. just keptmuch, and we winning, and then we topped it off by winning pennsylvania, winning michigan, right? wisconsin, states that
have not been won in area years, a lot of states. it was a fantastic evening. that's why we are here tonight, because we want to thank you. first, our taxes. we are going to undertake one of the great tax reforms and supplications in american history. in americanations history. this includes lowering the tax rate on business from 35% while the way down to 15%. [cheers and applause] and massive tax cuts, by the way, for middle less workers. massive -- middle-class workers. massive, the biggest. on regulations, we are going to eliminate every single wasteful thelation that undermines ability of our workers and our companies to compete. the regulation business is a disaster in our country. we are going to get rid of all
the unnecessary regulations. on energy, we will cancel the job killing restrictions on the production of american energy and pursue american energy independence. [cheers and applause] honoring the legacy of theodore roosevelt, believe it or not, one of our great environmentalists, we will also conserve and protect our beautiful national resources for the next generation, including and anglers and hunters and all of those who enjoy the outdoors like my sons, don and eric. they enjoy the outdoors. they love it. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: on infrastructure, i will ask congress to produce legislation that produces one trillion -- that invests $1 trillion in america's crumbling infrastructure, including major
jects in our inner cities. remember i used the expression, what the hell do you have to lose? i am telling you, you are going to see. and we did so much better with african-american communities, , thenispanic communities anybody ever purchase of dated -- anybody ever anticipated. thank theto african-american communities, i want to thank the hispanic communities, and we are starting to work already. we are working already. the appointment today of ben carson has been very popular, very well received, dr. ben carson. good guy, great guy. [cheers and applause] we will have two simple rules when it comes to rebuilding this country, buy american and higher american, right? [cheers and applause]
mr. trump: on trade, our trade deficit now nearly $800 billion a year. we have a deficit of almost $800 billion a year. you might say, whose negotiating these deals? drag on thenic growth and a destroyer of wealth in our country. in october alone, our nation racked up more than $40 billion in trade deficits. $40 billion, including more than a $30 billion trade deficit with china alone, all right? are we doing a good job negotiating? i don't think so. how many business people did we have in this audience that could have done a slightly better job of negotiating? [cheers and applause] north carolina has lost nearly half of its manufacturing jobs and snapped up. .merica has lost -- since nafta
america has lost 70,000 theories since joining world trade organization. china joins the world trade organization, and since that time we have lost so much. we are living through the greatest jobs theft in the history of the world. there has never been a jobs theft like there has been in this country. .nd we stopped a little we have not really started, because we won't really start until january 20, but we are stopping it. and one of the wealthiest men in masa, great guy of japan, he has pledged that he $50 billion into the united states because of our victory. $50 billion. he is going to be
investing in. he's a great guy. administration will renegotiate our terrible trade deals, stand up to four and cheating, and a few to every last american, and we will do this. we will defeat the enemy on jobs, and we will defend american jobs. and we have to look at it almost as a war, because that's what's happened to us. that's what's happened to our workers. these are great people, and boy, did they come out to vote. remember when they said they did not exist? they existed! [cheers and applause] mr. trump: believe me. and millions went out to the polls, and they voted, big-league. by 35 states we won points, 40 points, amazing. to fireompanies want our workers, leave our country, and then ship products back into
our country, there will be consequences. big consequences. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: on health care reform, every day, the law known as obamacare is destabilizing our health care, really destabilizing it, surging premiums and forcing providers out of the market. will don't act, the damage be irreversible. we are going to act. that is why we are going to repeal and replace obamacare. we have no choice. [cheers and applause] mr. trump: we have absolutely no choice. going to repeal and replace obamacare, and you are going to get health care at a much lower price with a much lower deductible. it is so high now, you really can't use it. great are going to have
health care at a much lower price. on job care, i am asking congress to pass legislation to make safe and affordable childcare accessible to all. that is something that is not ,ontrolled, has -- ivanka trump has everybody heard of ivanka trump? [cheers and applause] -- trump: mr. trump mr. trump: that is something you talk a trump has fought for for a long time. we are going to support -- i vanka trump has fought for for a long time. we are going to support law enforcement and bring this crime wave to an end. on immigration, we will be the administration that ended illegal immigration. [cheers and applause] a. trump: we will construct great border wall, dismantle the
criminal cartels, liberate our communities from the epidemic of gang violence and drugs. we will get rid of the drugs that are pouring into our country. [cheers and applause] we will ask congress to reform our visa and immigration programs to protect jobs in weight -- jobs and rages for american workers, and we will be appointing shortly someone to head up our program. and i will tell you, this person, like general mattis, will do a phenomenal job, because we are going to stop people from coming into our country illegally, but we are going to have people come into our country, and they are going to come in by the thousands and in, they are going to come in legally. but by the hundreds of thousands. we want people to come in, but they have to come in legally. to protect our country from terrorism and extremist, we will
suspend immigration from regions where it cannot be safely processed. now, thousands and thousands and thousands of people are pouring into our country. we have no idea who they are, where they come from, do they love us? in a lot of cases, no, they don't love us. we have no idea who they are, where they comethe administratis put the safety of the american people first. the safety of the american people. ethics reform will be a crucial part of our 100 date when -- .lan we are going to drain the swamp of corruption in washington, d.c.. [applause] impose a five-year ban on executive branch officials becoming lobbyists, and a lifetime ban on officials
becoming lobbyists for a foreign government. [applause] we face many, many challenges. but this is truly an exciting time to be alive in our country, alive inully to be many other locations. because we are representative, to a large extent, of what is happening in the world. the world is looking up to alivn many other us, but they haven't and looking up to us much. and they are going to start looking up again. we are going to be good for the world, not just our country. [applause] the script to what we are doing is not yet written. remember, this has been a great, great movement. the likes of which they have never seen before. the likes of which the folks who write the stories -- >>[boo]
mr. trump: and they are saying it. its like nothing ever seen before. we are going to show them. we are going to do a great job. we are going to create a prosperous country, we are going to have great jobs again. not bad jobs, real jobs. and it is going to be something special. oakley they are going to write the truth. -- hopefully they are going to write the truth. [applause] the pageknow what tomorrow will read, but for the first in a long time, what we do know is that the pages will be authored by each and everyone in this room and in our country. by you. it will be authored by you. together, we will raise incomes and create millions of millions of new jobs. its going to happen. its already happening. rule ofreestablish the
law and defend the constitution of the united states. [applause] way, we will be appointing rate, great supreme court justices sitting. we will be starting very soon. with what to replace justice scalia. great man. we will protect the right of every american to live in safety and peace. we will restore and respect people's rights. we will respect constitutional , and for all america, we will respect our great american flag again. believe me. [applause] divisions andur unify our country. when americans are unified, there is nothing we cannot do. nothing. no task is too great, no dream too large, no goal beyond our reach.
my message tonight is for all americans from all parties. all walks of life. it is a message for everyone. no matter your age, income or background. i am asking you to join us in this great, great adventurous world we are living. we're going to make it less adventurous. we are going to make it safer and better than we -- it ever was before. americans toou as believe in yourself, yourself, your country and your future. what i have seen more than anything else is how great the future of our country is going to be. and if we do that, and altogether, we will make america stronger than ever before. we will make america rich again. a lot of people don't with the
sound of that, but we need that to take care of our military, our veterans, all of the things we need to -- we're going to be a rich nation again, we are going to be a wealthy nation again. like going to make america capsys in all of those that have been sold all over these -- this country. and all of those signs. we are going to make america great again. greater than ever before. thank you, north carolina. thank you, we love you. god bless you everybody. we will be back soon. thank you, north carolina. thank you. [applause] [choir] ♪
will take you to key events as they happen without interruption. watch live on c-span to watch on-demand at c-span.org or listen on our freeseas and radio app. the senate panel tomorrow examines the impact of the at&t -time warner merger on consumers. ceos ofhear from the at&t and time warner. live coverage from the senate judiciary committee on antitrust and competition at 10:00 eastern on c-span3. later, the house rules committee works on a resolution to fund the federal government. current funding runs out friday at midnight. the committee will also work on a water resources measure that includes money for flint, michigan's lead tainted water system. that coverage starts at 3:00 p.m. eastern. you can stream live at www.c-span.org or listen live on the free c-span radio app.
president-elect government -- governor mike pence talks about health care and tax policy in the incoming trump administration, saying the president-elect has secured a mandate for leadership. he spoke with the heritage foundation's president's fund in washington. [applause] >> thank you. john has a sense of humor. the last time he introduced me, i gave him a hard time because it was a rough introduction. he overdid it this time. but what a great crowd. i really apologize for those of you who had to stand in line for so long, but it is going to be worth it, i promise you. i understand they got you something to drink wine were standing and everything. so thank you all for being here. trying not to be too giddy
tonight. there is just something about standing in the trump hotel [applause] just a few blocks from the white introducing a great friend of mine and his wonderful , who are going to be the next vice president couple of the united states. it is very sweet. [applause] mike and i got to know each other because we spent a fair amount of time being called on the carpet together when we were in the house. a lot of times, it was just the leadership office because we were trying to stop some nonsense, so we would end up in a small room where they were trying to persuade us to go along with their nonsense. time we were actually called to the white house by george bush and we were at the
table, we were holding up something that he shouldn't have been trying to pass in the congress. it was president bush and dick cheney and karl rove, and the whole group. mike pence and i were there, and he really went after us. he looked across the table and said, i know some of you are running in the senate. and i was. he said if we didn't go along it, our political careers were going to be over. i went on to be a senator, mike went on to be a leader in the house and governor of the state. somehow we survived standing our ground. but that is what i remember about mike. [applause] and one other thing. tea party movement set the stage for what has happened this year. when a million people came to washington in 2010, we've got some tea partyers here.
if yourself a hand. [applause] tea party leaders did not ask politicians to speak. they asked one from the senate and one from the house to speak. i got a chance to speak to the group, and i remember when mike pence got up there, he looked out over the whole crowd and said, the calgary -- cavalry has arrived. and they have. but what a great friend, what a great hero. i would like to sit a turning point of the trump campaign was when he released our list of supreme court justice, [applause] maybe a tax plan that steve moore had worked on or some of our defense stuff, but i think we all know when this campaign turned. it is when donald trump said that mike pence would be his vice president. [applause] so folks, please welcome
[applause] thank you so much for that warm heritage welcome. i am very humbled to be before you today, and my wife and i are so glad to be back. i can say i was for heritage foundation before it was cool. [laughter] supporting the extraordinary and historic work of the heritage foundation. you have made a difference in america. and we are just getting started. [applause] as i look around this room. i see so many people that i deeply admire. people that have been a mentoring role -- role in my life. second lady in the united states is a particular joy.
awaye are just 44 days from when donald trump will be inaugurated as the 45th president of the united states of america. [applause] he did it. and it was commonsense conservatives all across the land, just like all of you in this room, that made the difference. but i am here today to pay a debt of gratitude to the heritage foundation. and to express appreciation on behalf of the president-elect for your generosity to this as we that is, even speak, continuing to play an extraordinarily important role in the formation of this new government. a government that will take office on january 20, and a president who i know will make america great again. [applause] friend jimhank my
for that wonderful introduction. jim and his wonderful family have been friends for a long time. i so admire jim. we were foot soldiers in the conservative battles, back more than a decade ago on capitol hill. to hear -- to see his role here wrapping up, jim we are so proud and thankful for your strong, conservative stand on the national stage. [applause] are good enough friends to know that that kind the one ion he gave, prefer is a little shorter. i'm a christian, a conservative and a republican, in that order. and it is an honor to be with you today. [applause] i am also so grateful to your chairman, tom, the vice theident -- mice -- and incomparable ed, who every day
is showing up for work at the transition office of the next president of the united states of america. fuller a give ed standing ovation? he has made a difference in america and he never quits. [applause] i really here to say thank you. thank you so much for your support. of our new president-elect. and for the ongoing support of the heritage foundation. jim and i talk on a regular basis. i want to sure -- pressure all of you patrons of the heritage foundation that this administration has already, is now, and will continue to draw on the extraordinary intellectual resources and
creativity, as other republican administrations have done in the past, of the heritage foundation. that ourdo believe president-elect has secured a mandate for leadership. and here at heritage foundation, you know something about that. [applause] 30 of 50 states, more counties w reagane can -- ronald was the candidate in 1984. it was a historic victory. and it was a victory born of ideas. i want to share with you some of the president-elect's priorities, and call for each one of you to draw on the resources of this great organization and continue to foundation, ase the challenges our nation faces in economic prosperity and making sure we have the supreme
court of the united that will uphold the constitution of the united states of america. [applause] but in each of these cases, i truly believe, what has always inspired me about the heritage foundation, is its underpinning commitment to free enterprise. in a little more plain open -- spoken way, its underpinning commitment to the vitality of the american dream. it really is what we are about. before i leave the stage tonight, i want to share with you why that is so important to our president-elect and why it is so important. first and foremost, for america to be prosperous and strong, america must be safe. who taughtld reagan us that he's comes through strength. and yet it would be in recent years [applause]
despite the ongoing admonition of the heritage foundation about of aentral mission commitment to a national defense, the reality is today, this administration and in so many ways, we have walked away from our commitment to be that arsenal of democracy in the world. here are some stats for you. remember, the heritage foundation was actually minted back in the day when ed fuller had dark hair and was just a staff intern. [laughter] it was minted around the mission of national defense. one of my president -- predecessors in the house of representatives would go on to start an outside organization that would promote the principles of national security. statistics, though, are rather jarring. , our active-duty armed
forces have gone from 2 million to one point 3 million today. at the same time, our navy has been reduced from over 500 ships, to 200 70 today. navy is the smallest it has been since the end of world war i. our standing army, the smallest it has been since the end of the second world war. the obama era of weakening our national defenses is over. [applause] president-elect donald trump recognizing the policies that have hollowed out our military. my son i am proud to say is a pilot in the united states
marine corps so it is a great pride for our family. think you. the average age of our aircraft in the military today is older than my son, 25-years-old. about to change everybody. i promise you i'm going to roll my sleeve up. to pass a military supplemental. give our soldiers, sailors, and airmen, because guards, and marines the materials they need and they are going to hunt down and destroy isis at its source so it can no longer inspire violence in our homeland or kill our people. [applause] our pence: and president-elect is not just dedicated to those in uniform. tolaid out a 10-point plan
make sure those who served in uniform who have earned the health-care benefits of the ba receive world-class health care hand donald trump as president of the united states is going to fix the v.a. and ensure that all of those who have served have world-class benefits and health care from day one. i was just on capitol hill today meeting with leaders in the senate. the president-elect and i have been on capitol hill and i'm going to tell you, right out of the box our president-elect is going to be in the promise-keeping business for working with leaders in the house and senate and we are going to repeal of obamacare lock, stock, and barrel. the number one priority in this
administration is to keep that promise to the american people. premium increases facing the american people. the heritage foundation did so much to educate the public. arizona, oneof hundred 16% increases. the president-elect has directed the leadership in congress to put on his desk with all deliberate speed a bill that repeals obamacare he and we will set into motion a process to replace it with free market reforms that reduce the cost of health care without growing the size of government. [applause] pence: the president-elect's particular passionate about the opportunity to bring relative asian to states and that is nowhere more true than in health care reform and with the appointment of dr. tom price as the new secretary are going to be
advancing reforms and medicaid, working with members of congress to block grant medicaid back to states around america can innovate with health care solutions like health savings accounts, association health plans, and drive down the cost of health insurance to every american even while we meet the needs of those that are struggling to make ends meet. [applause] gov. pence: but this lesson of congress and the focus ultimately is going to be about growth. 100 days i was visiting capitol hill the other day and i told my former colleagues to buckle up. vacation is over. to work.ing we're going to start out by repealing obamacare and starting the process of replacing it with
free market solutions and right out of the box you are going to see our president-elect get out that pen and repeal every single unconstitutional executive order that barack obama signed into law. as we traveled across this country we heard more about regulation than we did about and many businesses large and small so we are going to work with members of congress to roll back the avalanche of red tape that is been stifling american jobs and growth and we will be working closely with heritage foundation that has long been talking about regulatory reform. red tape stifling jobs and growth but working with members of congress on reforms that will permanently reform and balance of the
regulatory state and lawmakers in washington, d.c. [applause] gov. pence: and make no mistake, it is about regulation but also about taxation. leaders in the house and the senate. before we get to the spring i promise you with your help and with the help of our friends in congress we will cut taxes across the board for working families, small businesses, and family farms. simplify the tax code and lower business taxes in 15% so from 35% to companies can compete and create jobs in this country without seeing them shipped overseas. that the tell you american people, if you saw last week in my home state of indiana, the american people are , ang to see come january 20 champion in the oval office for
american workers and american jobs. some of you may have heard about that because of the initiative of our president-elect i'm happy to say in the state of indiana more than 1000 good-paying jobs are not going south of the border. they are staying right here in the united states of america. into the reason carrier made their decision, i was actually in the room when he called. he called him up and said, i just want you to know we meant every word we said. we're going to cut taxes, make america more competitive for manufacturing and job creation. rollback relations. reveal obamacare. have tougher in smarter trade deal so businesses will see the wisdom in creating jobs for the american worker, the american people right here in the united states. applause] gov. pence: make no mistake
about it, our president-elect and i believe fervently in the free market. it you cannot say you are for by whileets and stand an avalanche of higher taxes, regulations, in big government stifle out the competitive of the american economy. things are about to change in the american economy and that begins on january 20. and lastly a perhaps most importantly when we think about it think about the stakes in this election and so many of you played such a leading role not just us patrons of the heritage foundation but also supporting candidates and supporting our cause in the campaign as well and for that we are rightful. the countryd around i often reminded people that while we were electing a president to survey four-year term right before he is elected to serve another four-year term
i would often remind people as our president-elect would that the next president would likely have the opportunity to influence the supreme court and its direction for the next 40 years. and the american people responded to that message. in that calling. i want to thank the heritage foundation and other great conservative foundations like .he american foundation it is a list the conservative thought leaders have called a gold mine of conservative jurisprudence and you may rest are sure that our new president-elect will appoint justices to the supreme court of the united states of america in the tradition of the light and great justice antonin scalia. -- late and great justice
antonin scalia. [applause] gov. pence: so we have work to do and i am the only one standing between you and dinner. get out of your hair. although it might just single one person out of the room. carly fiorina's right here at the front table. do my standing up, carly? this is a great, great voice for conservative in some and america. conservativism in america. [applause] pence: thanks for your great leadership. so we have work to do. enjoy your dinner. and roll your sleeves up. the president-elect tonight is
on a think utah or north carolina but also making it official that the next secretary of defense will be general james mattis. but he said last week in cincinnati, he said last week in cincinnati words that i want to remind you of tonight before i leave you with a parting thought. and that is that for all the we did together in this country to elect a president who will make america great again, our work has just begun and i hope you leave here tonight inspired to continue to play a role in the his -- heritage foundation and its historical work in this country and i also hope you leave here today and go back to seeective states and as you these initiatives, as you see the president-elect's writing and go into the air and when it comes down i hope you know it
begins. and here is where we do the work. we go back and take all the energy from the campaign to get behind these efforts to rebuild our military, restore our economy, stand up for our constitution, and illegal immigration. repeal and replace obamacare. the work is ahead of us not behind us. i want to challenge you to be ready to do that by doing in a couple of different ways if you would. you know, i said at the republican national convention that the republican party had nominated a candidate this year who was larger than life. charismatic. unfailingly interesting and memorable. [laughter] so he obviously wanted to balance the ticket. murmuring]
and i am humbled to be a small part of it. i truly am. i also want to remind people around the campaign trail in many ways from the first time we spent time together last summer i sensed a certain commonality between us. do you see, my grandfather immigrated to this country when he was about my son's age. from ireland. he drove a bus in chicago, illinois, for 30 years. his family immigrated to this country. my dad was a self-made man who built a small gasoline station business with his own two hands and a small-town in southern indiana. his dad build a great business and a great family. both of us were raised to believe that to whom much is given much will be required. him, that meant the kid from queens went to manhattan island. in the tall buildings.
a national name. for me, it was a calling into public service believing that this nation had been so good to my family. you know, i often tell people that you know other than a whole lot of zeros, donald trump have a -- donald trump and i have a whole lot in common. [laughter] gov. pence: a lot. and that is a believe in the american dream. that is where i started and that to ande i almost want because that is what the heritage foundation has always been about for me. advancing, preserving, defending the ideal that are the very foundation of our nation's prosperity. the american dream. it i want to promise you for our president-elect and for his vice president elect, d american dream is not a bumper sticker.
it is rough. we lived it. we experienced it. mean, his calling into public service itself i know in his heart is born of his sense of gratitude for this nation. he loves this country. he loves everything that has made america great before and he is going to fight every day to make america great again. because we believe in the american dream. and we can bring it back bigger then ever before. have beforework we us. leave here tonight with a burden on your heart to be part of that ongoing work to that matters. ourica matters far beyond shores. last, best hope today every bit as much as the day that was first set. i would ask you to do one other thing if you are of my mind.
to bow your head and bend your approachhe days that january 20 and every day afterwards. i would encourage you to pray. pray for our country. pray for those of us with the awesome privilege to serve this, the greatest nation on earth. they always like to think that abraham lincoln probably had the his times.ayer and he was asked in his day if he thought that god was on his side. and president lincoln said, i would rather concern myself more with weather we are on god's side. then that got is on our side. so just think of that. think of that for our nation and when you do, and when you do, pray with confidence. i truly do believe it in my
heart of hearts that what has been true for millennia still true today. we these divided times where face unknowable challenges abroad and too much division at if his people were called by his name to humble he will doand pray like he has always sent to route the long and storied history of this nation. he will heal this land. this one nation under god. and the visible. with liberty and justice for all. thank you very much. thank you to the heritage foundation and god bless you all. [applause]
announcer: c-span plus washington journal, live everyday with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up once they morning, congressman tim ryan of ohio will discuss the future of the house democratic leadership, his views on the 2016 election results and donald trump's pending presidency. also, a member of the energy subcommittee on health will talk about how the republicans plan to handle the affordable care act and what impact this will have on consumers. us, talking about the 75th anniversary of the bombing of pearl harbor and its impact on the u.s. role in the world since and today. be sure to watch wednesday at some :00 a.m. eastern.
the discussion. >> congressman john conyers countdown ranking members on the house judiciary committee along with other members held a forum to discuss the electoral college. we will hear about the history of the system from authors and law professors. this panel also talks about making changes to the electoral college in the presidential elections. [gavel pound] will come totee order. good afternoon. i want to begin with thanking the members as well as the panelists, all of whom are present, for participating in today's forum on the electoral
college. we are holding this panel because recent elections and public sentiment have made it clear there are serious problems with the present system for electing our president and vice -- in andwill stop vice president. we begin with the fact that hillary clinton received more than 2.5 million more popular votes plan donald trump. the largest divergence between the popular and electoral vote in our nation's history. this constitutes the very definition of anti-democratic in my view. under our current system, the ands of millions of people non-swing states are effectively lost when they voted for the candidate who loses their state because all of that state's electoral votes will begin to the other candidate. this is why members of congress
over three years over the years have introduced more than 700 proposals, 700 proposals to college. the electoral this is why 11 states, accounting for 164 electoral votes, have entered in interstate compact to cast their electoral votes for the popular and legislation to enter the compact has been passed by at least one legislative chamber and five more states. in, this is why a recent gallup poll showed that more than 60% of the voters support direct popular election for president. coldso must face up to the
reality that the electoral college is rooted in slavery. and here's how that works out. as a professor explains to us, slave states opposed direct elections for the president because in a direct election system, the northwood outnumber the south whose many slaves could not vote but the electoral college instead led each state aunt the slaves although with 2/5 discount. /5 of a personor 3 and counting. someone in ahis is criminal stick. somewhat college -- is
anachronistic. electoral college, they say, serves to reflect the popular sentiment. yet they did not provide for this when creating the electoral college. in fact, the electoral college today serves to aggravate those passions when most of our citizens told they are living in either a red or a blue state rather than part of a single indivisible union. defenders also claim the present system helps protect small population states and rural from dominations by large population states in urban areas. and facts, under our current system, candidates overlook most large and small and
instead focus most of their time, it seems to me, campaigning and only a few of the so-called swing states. it has also been argued that the electoral college serves to correct poor decisions by voters at a time when they were relatively ill-informed because of nationwide communications were poor. literacy rates were low. into the nation's political system was undeveloped. today of course, we live in an era of instant mass communication, high literacy rates and a robust and sophisticated political system. most importantly, i want everyone in this room to understand that today's forum is not an isolated event. rather it is part of an ongoing
process that could lead to change and reform. whether that change will come through a constitutional amendment, an agreement between the states comprising 270 more electoral college votes or a subsequent interstate compact approved by congress, i cannot none of us can. each of these options presents important political legal questions and i look forward to exploring them with you today. that change only comes when we have discussions such as today when states experiment and take action and when the people become directly engaged. as a member who cares very deeply about the future of our
democracy and to the principles of one person-one vote, i very much intend to remain in gauged issue in and moving it forward and i hope that all of you will join me in that activity. to now recognize -- i think the distinguished gentleman from new york. worked on these and other constitutional questions quite diligently. >> thank you mr. chairman. i am pleased to join this forum in here from our distinguished panel is. i believe we must move away from the electoral colleges and toward a system that guarantees the one of the popular vote
actually becomes the president of the united states. it should not really be considered a radical idea. this is a matter of crucial importance to our democracy and the good news is considered elementary in every democratic edge of the world. only here is that novel. the good news is there are practical steps we can take to reform the electoral college and make a real difference in how the president is selected. the popular vote winner differed from the electoral college winner just three times in the 19th century. the last time was in 1888. the electoral college did not differ again until 2000. 112 years. so we got complacent. we figured it was irrelevant, did not matter. in the year 2000, al gore won 540,000 butvote by lost in the electoral college after the supreme court stop the recount in florida and awarded
florida's vote to then-governor -- bush.s just 16 years later, hillary clinton won the popular vote by 2.5 million votes. two and half million votes and counting but lost in the electoral college. electric college seems to be getting more disconnected from the popular vote. we didn't have to worry about it for 112 years and suddenly twice, a 2.5 million difference. we are getting less democratic, with a small deed. "d." proponents argue it is necessary to protect smaller states by giving them an outside influence, however the small states are already protected in some far as they need protection by having outside influence in the united states senate. each state guaranteed to votes. wyoming was 600,000 people has the same two senators as california with i think however
many million. 53 seats, it is probably about 35 million people. herthey don't need to ask protection in the electoral college as well. the difference in the population between small and large states is much bigger now than it was when the constitution was written. we've gone to the point where about 20% of the population of the united states can elect the majority of the united states senate. that is ample protection for the small states. your are special remember that the electoral college was enhanced -- was designed to enhance the power slave states. the slaves counted as 3/5 of a person when it came to determining voter representation in the house and electoral college. longertive, although no operative, should not influence anything today. the other reason the electoral college was created to protect us from democracy itself as well as poor communication. the founders feared direct
moccasin. today we do not feel we need protection from democracy and will to move to a system that elects the president from popular vote. asking states that have benefited from the electoral do this is to ask a lot but we don't have to do that. we have the national popular voting issue. i was proud to lay a role to ensure the new york state adjoined the initiative and i think we should continue to pursue this method to render the electoral college moved. this is an interstate compact that state's 270 more electoral votes agree that once 270 votes worth of states ratify that their electoral votes will be awarded to the winner of a national popular vote which seems to me the way to go. whatever it takes it is time to move past the electoral college and empower all of the voters in
this country to choose our president. let me say one more thing. president-elect trump said that, well, maybe it was on his behalf but i think he said it himself when it was pointed out he did not have a mandate but he got 2.5 million votes you are then hillary clinton he said, oh, the popular vote? i would've won because i would've campaigned differently, gone to some of the bigger states. he may be correct. obviously if the rules of the game were changed, campaigning would change and maybe it would have overturned that 2.5 my vote and maybe not but the fact is that is what ought to happen. the majority out to roll this country is in every other democratic country. i cannot think of any real or practical reason any longer to keep the electoral college so i hope we will proceed with reforms and i commend the chairman for taking the issue to call this hearing. i yield back. >> thank you so much.
i would like now to call on the distinguished gentleman from tennessee, the ranking member on the subcommittee on the constitution. steve cohen. >> thank you mr. chair and thank you for calling this hearing. harde introduced -- it is for people to fathom such a large morality, 2.5 million people voted for one candidate and she is not the president. introduced my resolution, i have had quite a , onof comment on facebook
twitter, and letters to the editor. it is amazing that most of the people who responded have been against the proposal. they consider this is most people supported the president who was the populist to drain the swamp. electioning direct would be the tyranny of the majority and you would let the role. it is ironic the presidential candidate was the opposite. he was for the common man. the tyranny of the majority they talk about is hard to fathom. oftentimes our courts give us these rights. but mostly, it protects minorities from the tyranny of the majority. yet most of these folks that
respond to me and i checked them out he closely. ideas.illis, they are not for most of those supreme court decisions that project -- protect minorities from the tyranny of the majority so people seem to take their arguments based on the outcome. i am not pleased with the outcome but i do know that intellectually the electoral sticke is an anaconda anachronistic-- provision. the founding fathers were not perfect. they did deal with slavery being illegal constitution in this country and has not to repeal it. they did not give people the right to directly elect to united states senators.
they believed in their power. they believe there was an aristocracy that rolled and continue to rule. like to see laws change so they make it difficult to amend the constitution and while they made that difficult and that will be a difficult to achieve through an amendment. thomas jefferson said, the laws and institutions must go hand-in-hand with the progress of the human mind. as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and opinions change, with a change of circumstance, institutions must change to keep pace with the times. we might as well require a man to still where the code that fitted him as a boy of civilized society is to remain under ever the rules of their barbarous ancestors. they understood the roles but made it very difficult.
mr. nadler talks about the presses were states could get together and have their candidates pledged to support who won the national vote. another thing they could do is have electors be by congressional district. when you have electors by congressional districts it would make it a little more democratic. it would make it better. it would make candidates come to your state. they argue now that small states would be ferreted out and you would have new york and california decide everything. i think most people who write this do not want new york or california to have any say whatsoever. and they are americans, even if they live on a coast and even if they live in two of our greatest states. the sameshould count as somebody in south dakota, wyoming, or montana. and none of the presidential candidates go to those states. in reality, all of the campaigning is done in battleground states. ohio,lvania, virginia,
the big ten. not the small states. a yield back the balance of my time. >> there is not much balance left. >> i learned that from jackson lee. laughter] >> i am pleased to introduce the distinguished gentleman. >> thank you. this is a timely issue. a lot of discussion about the electoral college since the electoral college went one way and the popular vote the other. i think the discussion has to be about the anomalies. one is this faceless electoral. i think we need to talk about whether we are to score by winning states or popular vote. elector or can be talked about independently. i have been a little disturbed about the fixation on a mathematical curiosity that you could win the electoral vote and lose the popular vote.
of course, if it is close there is a good chance one will go one way and the other another. but if you have already set the rules, that ought to be what you are considering. you could win the world series and lose the first three games 41-zero win the next and the scores now 30-4. you can still win the world series and nobody thinks there is anything curious about that because you won four games. i think, rather than being fixated on the mathematical curiosity that you could win one in louisiana, we are to look at what would happen if you went to a straight popular vote and how that would change things and whether or not that would be good or bad. one of the things i would be pointing out that would not be a good thing is trying to do a national recount in a very close election. my understanding that during the florida recount in new york and texas they found boxes of uncounted votes.
well, you know, it was not enough to change the direction but if that was a national recount you would have to count those empty boxes, you could imagine a very partisan secretary certifying the election results where more votes were counted then they had registered people. exactly how are you going to consider that? election laws are not the same all over the country. one of the things about the electoral college is it requires you to get a state-weighted basis in a majority of the states. weighted by population. a regional candidate does not have much of a chance. you could run up the score in one area. it does not help you because you have got to get support, you actually have to win states in a majority of these states so what effect with a straight popular vote have on regional candidates and third-party candidates on the idea you could win on a
plurality possibly without winning any states or very few states. i think i would take issue with tennessee.rom you could win virginia, pennsylvania, ohio, michigan, in florida. when all of those states and and up with a substantial deficit on congressional districts just because of gerrymandering. hate to elect a president based on gerrymandering congressional districts. i hope we would not go there but generally how would campaigns be different. a friend mentioned trump could've won the public but because he would have campaigned differently if that is of the score would be. has a hugewhere he majority he would've spent time running up the score and possibly change the election. is that a good change or a bad change? rather than just recite the mathematical curiosity that you could win one in lose the other,
hope panelists will tell us how the campaign would be different and whether or not the difference is a good thing or another in and i want to thank all of our witnesses for being with us today especially my freshman roommate from college, professor kaser. >> thank you. >> you are welcome and thank you. we're asking me members of the panel to reduce their introductory comments to 2-3 minutes because it keeps getting larger and larger. next, california. tothank you mr. chairman and this panel, unfortunately i'm going to have to leave in a few minutes but i think this is a very important discussion. coming from california, i am mindful that the votes of my constituents count one-third as compared to a wyoming resident and looking ahead to these
stability of our democracy i do not think that is a sustainable model. that my constituents will be ruled by people whose votes count three times as much as theirs. that is aggravated by disparity in taxation where california, for example, pays more than it gets in services from the federal government whereas some of the smaller states whose votes count three times as much as my constituents actually are net recipient of federal tax dollars. this is merely sustainable today but if you look 50 years and advance where the bigger states are getting bigger into the little states are losing population, i do not think we can sustain our american democracy by having the majority rolled by the minority so the question is how to fix this and
say constitution as written and such a way it is almost .mpossible to amend there are two things i hope the panel will address and i will get a full report. interstateors compact idea and whether the compact can avoid interference by the house of representatives in the senate and the second is the issue of a constitutional convention. we are three states away from calling for a constitutional convention. it is something i have always been opposed to. you cannot limit the subject matter to a single subject, the balanced budget amendment but i will say because of for the second time in 16 years, the people, the americans, the voters elected did not become president. rational people, not the french, are now talking about whether states could be separated from the u.s..
whether we should have a u.s. constitutional convention and i think as time goes on that has become more the case unless we can figure out an answer from presenting the majority from being rolled by the minority. thank you mr. chairman. .> thank you i would like now to recognize the gem of from rhode island, mr. david cicilline. from rhodeleman island. particularly want to welcome our very distinguished witnesses who have studied and written extensively on the subject of the electoral college and welcome you and thank you for being part of this discussion and welcome our jamie raskin,ue, who i know has done extensive thinking and writing on this. i am proud to say rhode island is a what is spent in the national popular vote or compact participantat
states pledge there is electoral votes to the candidates to win the national popular vote as justessman lofgren reference. i am proud to be from a state that recognizes the importance of this. what i think a struggling for so many americans is we recognize this basic fundamental for the that isdemocracy and the right of citizens to elect their own leaders and of course implicit within that is an understanding that every vote must be counted, that no one's vote come once in another persons vote. these are basic principles of democracy and of course the electoral college distorts that in so many ways. one of the things i find particularly challenging as it is very hard to explain this to young people who do not quite understand why it is all the stuff they learned with one person, one vote, and everyone's vote counting equally if not actually the way we elect our president and then we have
examples in our lifetime of people who have won the popular vote, the choice of the majority of americans has not become president. this is challenging to explain. it becomes more difficult one would think about our work internationally. we do a lot of of work to promote democracy and governance and be an example to the world in a bride of ways and it is hard to explain that we in our own country do not have a system where we allow people's votes to be counted equally and electing our own president. seriousthis has concerns in the long-term legitimacy of our own democracy if we do not elect our own president by one person, one vote, but it also affects the good work we attempt to do around the world. thank you mr. chairman for this opportunity to discuss and i want to welcome the panelists and thank you for the work you are doing. i yield back. >> thank you. i now turn to the gentleman from georgia, mr. hank johnson.
i want to thank all the panelists for being here today. particularly if it's a raskin who will join a shortly. hearing,n important the first one that has occurred since 1997, so it has been about 20 years since congress has adressed this issue with hearing. since that time, we have had two instances where candidates for president have been elected based on the electoral vote after having failed to garner the majority of the popular vote. 176r to that, it was over year time between 1824 and the year 2000 that produced three such anomalies and so it appears of time,, the process
technological advancement, all of these things are playing into the acceleration of this annulment on where the people go vote, and then the popular vote does not translate into victory for the candidate they voted for. this is anti-democratic. it is hurting our democracy. people expect more. directexpect representation. that is a fundamental principle that people expect. not a whole lot of people pay a whole lot of attention to the electoral college system, 1913,ularly since back in the constitution was amended so that we could have direct elections of united states senators. if we had not has that amendment, people would -- this would be unacceptable.
as it is unacceptable as more people,, come to the notion or come to the conclusion that their popular vote did not produce the winner in the presidential election. so it is time for us to get to work to change the system so ist the people's will achieved and that is for them to be able to depend upon their popular vote to win an election. and so i am looking forward to the comments of the panelists and with that i will yield back. >> thank you mr. johnson. incidentally everyone on this thel is a member of judiciary committee with the exception of mr. gene green of texas.
bobby scott is an ex-member. he is hereby virtue of his emeritus is the word i am taking of right now. you so much. i am now going to turn to the gentlelady from california, ms. judy chu. rep. chu: i want to thank ranking member conyers for holding this important meeting. in my home state of california, the popular vote to medically went for secretary clinton. while some ballots are still being counted, leaving opportunity for the gap to white even further, clinton received nearly 8.7 million votes to donald trump's 4.4 million's of
the difference comes out to 4.2 million votes and hillary clinton's favor. what does that say to the electoral process and the legitimacy of the results when one of the world's largest centers of economic activity and innovation and one of the nation's most populist and diverse states, california, almost the same amount of those received by the winning candidate. something has to be done about this. i look forward to hearing from the panelists on what can be done to change it. what is reasonable. a constitutional amendment or a national interstate compact. we need change. i look forward to hearing from all of the panelists on your thoughts regarding the subject. mr. conyers: thank you very much. we turn now to the gentleman from texas, mr. gene green. you foren: thank
allowing me to speak even though i am not an emeritus of the committee but i do hold a law license. thank you for having this hearing. my name is gene green, i represent a very urban district in future, texas. my colleague congressman lee and i our neighbors and texas. i represent a district which is about 76% predominately hispanic and in our community mexican-american, north, east, and sell side houston. our common complaint is that when we talk about people voting, your vote counts. what it does not count in our district for president. hillary clinton carried our district over 70% and yet, matter how many more people we'd turned out would not make a difference in the electoral votes from texas. this is not the first time i introduced this election. after two thousand, i introduced it for a number of years and i
was a vanilla not happen again but we see what has happened. was frustrating. last month, senator clinton and 43%tor kaine received statewide, making it the closest race in texas. all 38 electoral votes went to donald trump and governor pence. naturally, secretary clinton is currently leading mr. trump by 10 point 7 million but mr. trump is expected to receive the 306 electoral votes. i do not hold out hope there will be any change in that and that is why a thank the electoral college has outlived its usefulness. we know the history. and a lot of compromises just like we have every day in congress that may not last for 100 years much less 200. nowadays, i think we ought to be able to have people's votes counted whether an urban
houston, urban new york, or even central valley, california, that maybe predominately republican. in that is why think the abolishment of the electoral college is we can trust people to vote for majority for the for u.s. changed that senators to be a majority vote, i think we can trust the people of electing the majority who electing ther president the united states and mr. chairman i will submit my full statement into the record but i just appreciate your time today. >> thank you sir. now we have the distinguished gentlelady from texas, ms. sheila jackson lee. please to recognize her. rep. lee: i thank you for your courage for holding this hearing and for those of you who are likent as well as i would
to mention the congressional progressive caucus because we're joined together as my colleague voices can bed, extinguished and are silenced for the electoral college i join a number of voices and asking for its abolishment. let me also say i will be calling for an official hearing both in the house and senate. i hope there will be sufficient courage to go ahead and address what i think is an and date men democratic system of which the world looks to the united states for its integrity. i would offer to examples. one of which of course is the most famous. rutherford b. hayes and similar tilden, 1988. samuel tilden at polling rutherford b. hayes and of course we know that was the compromise of which fell on the backs of freed slaves who were at that time going through the
through theg reconstruction. the south rose again and the oppression of african-american freed men and women was turned upside down. we lived a life of horror into the early 1900s because of that compromise. elections have consequences. inaddition, as we see today an election where a headline now that if i might indicate headline -- hillary clinton plus margin is about to surpass all of the trump votes and 12 states combined. but the real idea is, it if you would, the consequences. see a seeking of a waiver of a standing rule about the utilization of the military and civilian leadership being shoved onto the floor of the house. we see the threat of the repeal of the affordable care act.
the potential for cuts in medicare and medicaid. i hope in your discussion you will think of these things as i close. andore the history, purpose continued utility of the electoral college. and to address the question of whether this comports with a our of law and constitutional framework for equality for all in the bill of rights and i would equally want to hear from the witnesses if i to reflect on the national popular vote interstate compact versus a constitutional process. i'm excited about the compact. i think it is a winnable one but we want to do it in a way that embraces americans regardless of
their party of affiliation. the shoe is on one foot in 2016 it can always be on another foot at another time. let me also thank congressman raskin and thank you for your leadership. i you back. conyers: thank you for your brevity. i push it up. we want to acknowledge and andome jan of the illinois the one and only glenmore -- glenn more of wisconsin. are both with us. we're going to move to our many witnesses who have been very patient. we're asking you to limit your own remarks to three minutes and with going to begin professor jamie raskin, a constitutional law professor in one who seeks to join the house judiciary committee as soon as possible and we welcome you
here, professor raskin. microphone. professor raskin: you spilled my sigrid to the whole world big as it would be a great honor to join you. hello to the distinguished members of the judiciary committee. i see three basic problems with the way presidential elections are conducted to date. the first is the campaigns themselves are not democratic. as congressman cohen was saying. the second is that the institutions are not republican and the third is that the results are not majoritarian or even plurality area and if we can call a new word. the national popular vote agreement a rise not surprisingly from a movement of the people in the states. the campaigns are not democratic and character. think about what democracy means from the standpoint of your
district. one person, one vote. all of this cap italy and the person gets the most wins. that is how we let governors, u.s. senators, council members, mayors, everybody except for the president of the united states. and, someone said well if we do it the way we elect governors and senators than some people are not going to get any attention in the process. can you imagine running for governor in your statement saying i am only going to go to 203 of the eight congressional districts of my stay? i'm not going to campaign and the others. that does not make sense. our presidential campaigns are different. neverer 2016, there were more than a dozen states in play meaning the people living in 38 states, the vast majority of us, never saw any competitive campaigning in our state. belong to the ignored and forgotten backdrop of americans whose political interests and
desires are taken for granted in campaigns. people living in three of the country's four largest states, are bypassed completely. no rallies, no barnstorming speeches, no tv ads, no field offices, no campaigning except for fundraising to harvest money to export to other states. that is not only undemocratic, it is bizarre. they say then the electoral colleges must work brilliantly for the small states of not for the big ones. no. 12 of the 13 small estates, those with only three or four electors have been total flyover country. hillary clinton did not spend any time, money, or resources andesting the small states donald trump expended zero resources competing for the both of americans living in the small blue states of rhode island, delaware, vermont, who i come of the district of columbia. of the 13 smallest states only new hampshire attracts campaign
visits and budgets and filled offices and so on. the dozen smallest states have about the same population as ohio and because of the two senatorial donors electors, they actually have to but while they spend tens of millions of dollars and tens of thousands of staff hours in ohio, they spend zero resources into times and any small states except for new hampshire because it happens have a rough equivalency of democrats and republicans. the candidates to go to big a small states, they go to swing states. they go to the they go to the big ones. general election campaigns and events staged by the clinton and trump tickets this year took place in six states, florida, north carolina, virginia,
pennsylvania, ohio, and michigan. almost every single appearance and event by the campaigns have been in just 12 states. the vast majority of americans were left on the sidelines. the reason people go to vote -- i wanted to respond to something said congressman scott asked. way that major institutional political changes happened in our country. the states do it first. the way we have dealt with that with the state legislatures is we will delegate -- enough of them did that that it built the momentum for constitutional amendments. when we get there, we will do it
for 1 or 2 rounds, it will be clear it works, and then we can amend the const fusion. -- constitution. >> thank you very much. from yaleitness is university, teaches , clerked forl law david wright, now a justice, in 1984 when he was a judge. has won awards from the hasican bar association and been cited in over 30 cases before the united states supreme court. welcome the professor. >> thank you, it's an honor to be here. i think it was mentioned that there was a cheering on the
electoral college in 1997. i remember testifying at the hearing and expressing some skepticism about the electoral college and i remember representative scott -- here we are, again. two presidential elections in the meantime. i don't believe that the current electoral college has a partisan skew. one of the things to be said on behalf of reform is it's not a partisan measure. something onsted the internet that was a fantasy, a dream about how we could have direct election as a practical
matter that was a prototype. matter jamie passage you that at i surebest it is a way station s a more permanent solution, which would be the federal constitutional amendment. think technology was made to how states improvise direct election senators before the constitution was emily amended , anddify that work around that's the way to think about the national popular vote think.ate compact i was an early proponent. that has some technical problems with it. someuld require legislative -- why should we try to move towards something like that or the idea that has been manyssed i so well by so
is an idea of one person, one vote, the deep idea that everybody's idea counts equally and everyone is a swing voter, whether you are an urban voter in houston, texas or a rural voter in the central valley of california, in a swing state, everyone is a swing voter and everyone is an equal voter. that's a great democratic ideal and it's not just an ideal true of countries around the world, it is a deeply american idea. that's how we pick every governor in america. president.is a mini in 48 of the states they have four-year terms or it they have veto pins, pardon pins. they become president or a presidential candidate. the one person, one vote idea for them -- we don't have a problem with regional candidacy. we don't have a recount problem.
we don't use congressional districts or legislative districts. it works for every governor, it could work in america. thank you very much. >> thank you very much, sir. next, anrn to our important witness, author of six books, the professor of law, professor jack reich off. -- jack. pulitzer prize winner. .> thank you, mr. chairman i like to make three basic points about the origins and evolution of the electoral college. first, we should not give the framers of the constitution more credit than they deserve for
getting together the electoral college near the end of their deliberations and we do need to cut them some slack. no president available in their political science for a executive.publican more important, the framers adopted the electoral college not because it seemed the most attractive alternative available, but because it was a least unattractive alternative available. there were decisive objections against -- people of congress to make the primary choice. the framers assumed that the people voting a large would often scatter their votes among an array of candidates making a decisive choice impossible. if the legislator had the power of election, that would deprive the president of the wish to give the executive. unless he was restricted to a single term, which they opposed. the appeal to presidential elector is schism, the framers had already reached.
the crucial questionings determining who the elect herds would be, how they would be appointed, and whether their votes could be bound, the framers essentially defaulted the entire problem to the states . as soon as contested elections began, the shortcomings of the framers expectations became evident. had there been a popular and 1800,n 7019 six it would have been decisive. elections began, the pretense to the electorates would ask is an independent elite of disinterested citizens immediately evaporated. they always swear and ever will be creatures of their party. the political parties learn how to control electorates as individuals, they also began experimenting with the rules of their appointment. a number of states altered their rules solely from calculations of partisan advantage. the result of this process was the development of winner take
all, statewide system in which it state is a political unit, even we know of florida in 2000 that this electorate is divided into nearly equal political halves. theoriginal history, origins and evolution of the electoral college is not something we need to admire or feel bound to obey. many other critics in the standard criticisms of our current system. it violates the fundamental rules that every vote should have the same weight wherever it is cast. they also believe the existence of the states is a demographic accident. our culture would be better served if both parties -- to turn other voters in every state. there are two additional criticisms. first, the last three presidencies of all suffered serious crises of legitimacy and there's no question that the presidency of donald trump share the same fate. there are multiple explanations for these attacks on the legitimacy of presidential
authority, but the recurring spectre contributes to a persuasive sense of national division. second, any attempt to confront the inequities of the system has to be able to think critically about his relationship to the federal system. as no question the presidential election does reflect the existence of the states as autonomous political communities. reflecting that status is not the same thing as protecting it. many insist the existence of the federal system is somehow dependent on its retention. our schema presidential election adds nothing to these mechanisms, and advocate for popular election to me that case. the something i would love to
hear the committee explained to me. i do not understand how the national popular vote based on a cane waste initiative possibly escape the compacts laws of article 1, section 10. once you are there, you will be back to article 5 amendment. can possibly escape the compacts laws ofif you want to yield thi, there's no choice but to go into the article 5 route and come up with a strategy for doing that. thank you very much. welcome. very our next witness is a professor was cited by both the
american historical cited by boe american historical association and the historical society, and was a finalist for the pulitzer prize award, and we are fortunate to welcome you to this committee for this discussion. >> thank you, mr. chairman. is certainly a pleasure and honor to be here, and i take the liberty of calling the attention of the members to a forthcoming book i have with the apt title, why do we still have the electoral college. minutes tose my 2 say something you little differently than my colleagues have said. i endorse the case that many of the members have made about the need to abolish the electoral with thend replace it national popular vote in one way another. the case it makes for a soundly. i would add one small piece of arithmetic. lest we think there are very rare incidents another. the case when the gap between popular and electoral votes can happen, on 17 other
occasions in addition to the 5, when 75,000 votes or fewer turning would have produced the same outcome of the looser of the popular vote winning the election. it's not such a rare event. that said, let me make a few other points on separate issues. it is very difficult to amend the constitution, and electoral college has been extremely unpopular. i think it's now close to 1000 resolutions have been introduced into congress. , such a occasions resolution was approved by one branch of congress. occasions, 1821 and 1970,
it was approved by one branch of congress and lost by only a whisker in the other branch. it is not an insurmountable task. occasions, 1821 and 1970, the reasons why this is never quite happened is many and complicated, but let me mention two. on numerous occasions, the perceived partisan reasons why r quite happened is many and complicated, but let me interesf members of congress and elsewhere have triumphed over not only the public interest, but over their own previously articulated views. notably, on a number of these occasions, and i can go into this, it turns out their perceived partisan interests were mistaken or very short-lived. they got it wrong, and it was proved wrong in a short period of time. not simply the case that the electoral college was the world of slavery and buttressed slavery but that the politics of race and sectional conflict have been instrumental to preserving the
electoral college over our history. one more point and then a comment about the national popular, interstate compact. it is frequently invoked by opponents of reform that the obstacle is the small states, the small states will never go along with change. there is precious little evidence to support that view. there is statistical evidence not supported, two of the nationaldvocates of popular vote in the mid-20th century were john pas story of and william langer of the very small state of north dakota. on the national popular vote interstate compact, i agree with my colleagues here intending to see it as a way station. is an my concerns interstate compact such as the one drawn up is inherently unstable, because states can
withdraw from it. they cannot withdraw within 6 months before an election but they can withdraw from it, which could lead to precisely the kind of instability and gamesmanship the operation of the electoral college and the allocation of electors between the 1790's and early 1830's, when states gamed the system depending on their partisan interests. >> thank you very much. is next witness representative bob thorpe of the arizona house. we welcome him here. he was one of the first witnesses to come this afternoon, and he has received numerous awards, and has bo ono the constitution entitled "reclaim on thek -- book
constitution entitled "reclaiming liberty." >> thank you. i state representative bob thorpe worried i serve as the chairman of the house committee on education and higher education and government and i am honored to address the committee and lend a state perspective to this discussion. as one of one hundred 54 republican legislatures to sponsor the popular vote interstate compact, this bill with thelve problems way the candidate's campaign for president and how they govern elected.ng it is consistent with the principles of federalism and to preserve the states authority to order electors. federal action to change or eliminate the electoral system is inappropriate and most likely impossible to achieve, as it would require 2/3 of congress or the states to propose an amendment to the u.s. constitution and 3/4 of the states to ratify it.
article 2, section 1 grants a state legislature the authority to address shortcomings within the current electoral system. aretoo many american voters left on the sidelines when we elect the president of the united states. it is atrocious that 94% of the presidential campaign of 2016 occurred in just 12 of our states, while 38 states were largely taken for granted. it is atrocioustypically, battls have much greater political influence and ply over states like arizona. federal policy, which can cause problems during the campaign and when governing. trump won a clear victory under the system's current rules. he did so in part by making the same kind of promises every candidate makes. he promised to keep his hands off social security and medicare for the battleground states and voters in florida. he offered protection policies.
these promises helped him to win, but they were narrowly crafted to meet the needs of specific groups in specific placse. 11 electoral votes cannot counter the disproportionate political influence a battleground state voters, get a voter from arizona or any other state should be valued as much by our president as a voter from florida or ohio. during the last five presidential elections, the 10 smallest states receive no campaign events during the general election. the 2012ad up to ohiodential campaign, in -- ohio received 48 visits alone. ohio has the same number of people as those 10 small states combined. why should ohio get that much more attention than the small states? straight -- state driven reforms give small states an active voice in rural interests, a permanent promise during presidential elections. state-based reforms and compacts
are better used for arizona's electorates then winner-take-al l. the framers of the constitution provide the states with the authority to change the way the electorate is awarded. states like massachusetts have already used this authority 13 times. he would be wrong for congress to strip away constitutionally granted authority from the states. the national popular vote compact achieves three important goals. it preserves the state power to award electors and allow the state legislatures to continue to place federalist checks on the president. it guarantees the president -- presidency to the candidate who wins the most popular vote in all 50 states and the district of columbia and addresses the real shortcomings of the current system. it makes every voter in every state equal and politically relevant during the presidential electors -- election straight electoral college is not broken, but the way it functions with nearly every state using winner
.ake all rules is problematic for future presidential elections, the states have the ability to make every vote in every state matter. thank you. , could i have five more seconds? >> how about four? give a personal perspective on arizona, where we only have 17% of our land in compared torship, the eastern states, arizona all he has 17% of their land. what does that mean? tax,ly reduced property but also representation in this body and representation when it comes to electoral votes. in comparison to the eastern states, the western states have a huge problem being equally treated when it comes to presidential elections, and it comes to just educating our kids. thank you, mr. chairman. >> your point is well taken, but
i notice you exceeded the time allotted by at least 3 seconds. thank you very much, sir. i now turn to a representative, estate representative, who wo for congressman bernie sanders, served four terms in the vermont legislature, and sits on the board of national popular vote incorporated. welcome to our panel. >> thank you, mr. chair and members. i'm proud to tell you that i'm about to take a seat in the vermont state senate. >> congratulations. thank you. i have been involved in the national popular vote for a long thanktime, including participan the legal drafting of the original compact as it stands,
and much of the research that went into every vote equal, a book that explains the state-based path to a national popular vote. it is my interest in change which has left me supporting the electoral college. but deeply critical of the winner take all rule, which is the state law that produces the red-blue map we are so familiar with. as you know -- the constitution does give states exclusive power. my written testimony covers a lot of ground but i will try to use my time to cover points that have not been made and try to answer some of the questions that members have brought up. all ofnt, in addition to the aberrations in a presidential election would favor so few states in such a small portion of our country, we have not covered governance. sitting in the white house, president to our interested in
reelection or getting their own party successor into office do a norm's preference on the battleground states. that is important, if you look at disaster declaration, battleground states get more disaster declaration. they get them faster and they get more money when they get them. they get more no child left behind waivers. battleground states get more visits from members of a presidential cabinet. a perversion goes well beyond just election data. i think coming from vermont, others here have mentioned the that small myth states benefit in the electoral college as it works today. but i do want to talk about this idea that under a popular vote for president we would see new york, chicago, and a lay or the big urban centers control the election. that is mythology. 1/6 of our country lives in urban centers. 1/6 of our country lives in
rural parts of the country. 2/3 of the country are suburban and exurban. we can look at how presidential campaigns happen today in battleground states, states where every vote is equal and the person with the most votes wins. it's look at ohio in 2012, received a great balk, almost 30% of the campaign happened in ohio. four biggest cities account for 54% of ohio's. population-- population the 7 metro areas which account for about biggest cities account for 54% of ohio's. 23% of the state enjoyed 23% of the campaign. the 53 urural counties account for 25% of the population and got 25% of the campaign events. we can see the campaigns will structure of where
the population lives. nobody will be left out when it is about margins everywhere. in vermont, if you want to get involved in an election, you get in your car and tried to new hampshire. this is absurd. under a popular vote, we will not be the center of attention in rhode island or vermont, but the grassroots will have a role to play. we will talk to our neighbors and stimulate the discussion and try to eat out another 1000 votes for our preferred candidate to make up for the margins in states where he or she is behind. it has been mentioned that we should consider a congressional district system. firstly, we would trade 12 battleground states for some 20 battleground districts. if you could magically have it everywhere. second, there is no reason why a witness a surly spread. the more states that came on board with the district system, would in fact advantage the remaining winner take all states.
this is a self halting reform. faithful selectors were mentioned. their heads,ear they never change the outcome of an election. if we were really worried about that, states have power to remove fateful selectors from the process. we talk about recounts. we are seeing it right now. you cannot effectively have a recount under our current system. this is an area where congress does have power, because you have authority over the count and there are proposals that have come forward that would improve that. we should not pretend under a popular vote, a recount would be impossible. let me just say, the compact clause. the national popular vote is an interstate compact and it has a precondition before it takes an effect of passing states. there is a very active debate about whether or not our compact requires approval in congress. in fact, case law, the most recent being u.s. steel in 197
loss consistent that case adjusts and less interstate compact infringes on federal authority, there would be no need for congressional approval. so we believe that is taking advantage of state power. we do not believe that as it stands it needs congressional approval. if the court rules that it does require congressional approval, we would be coming to congress seeking approval at a time when states representing 270 electors and therefore the majority of the country and majority of congress have an activist will. we look for to working with you to get approval. i will leave it there and thank the members for their time. >> thank you very much sir. last person