tv John Mc Cain Newt Gingrich and Nikki Haley Speak at Kemp Leadership Award... CSPAN December 10, 2016 10:44pm-11:27pm EST
he swam and then met me at 7:30. nuth is prodigious in so many ways prolific, prodigious. what other adjectives can we come up with? what you appreciate are doing hair and always appreciate your eating here. applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, newt gingrich. [applause] to moderate this conversation it gives me a really great enjoyment to have michelle van cleeve who has been with me since i started the kemp foundation in 2009 shortly after dad passed away. michelle is a national security expert. she's the head of counter intelligence for president w. bush. she was my dad's foreign policy adviser and national security adviser. michelle is incredibly talented and i really can't think of
anybody better than michelle to guide us in this discussion. and i'm thrilled that you all get the opportunity to hear her. michelle vancome cleeve. [applause] >> are these microphones working? yes they are. well, it's a pleasure to see everyone here tonight. i have to tell you that ahead of time i spoke to senator mccain. i said, i'm looking forward to this conversation. he said, well, it will be lively. i spoke to the speaker and he said, well, it will be amusing. so we'll see if they live up to this billing. you know, coming out of world war ii, starting there, america understood its role to be that of leader of the free world. and we had a purposeful national security strategy to that end embodied in sc-68 and it chartered a central role for
advancing freedom throughout the world. ever since, the call for american leadership has been on both sides of the aisle from our leaders. however, what constitutes american leadership has off been a matter of dispute. so in particular, where to draw the line between 50d vancing our values and our principles and advancing what is seen as national interests has been a longstanding debate in foreign
policy circles. certainly presidents clinlten -- clinton and bush both argued that sprending american values is essential to our interests. i think one would search in vain for any statements by president obama to the contrary. so where do you come down on that issue? go first.ou first i would like to say thank you. i'd like to thank the kemp foundation and kemp family. congratulations to nikki haley for the singular honor in her new position in a very nice suite in the waldorf astoria in manhattan. by the way, i was reminded of the story of the two inmates in the chow line at the state prison. one turned to the other and said, the food was a lot better in here when you were governor. but anyway -- [applause] sen. mccain: can't tell that
joke in illinois. look, i think yesterday -- i saw the president of the united states give one of the most delusional statements i've ever heard in my many years associated with national security. basically, not only denying the failures of the last 8 years but extolling them. extolling the failures. my friends, look at a map of the world in 2009. and look at a map of the world today. you will see al qaeda, you will see bloodshed, you will see millions of refugees. you will see tensions and you will see a total lack of belief and confidence in the united states of america. i would argue that this president probably has the greatest challenge since the beginning, since december 8, 1941, when by the way that wonderful service today down at
the memorial they quoted franklin delano roosevelt and his statement on the 8th. but, look, what the last eight years have proven very simply is that without american leadership things go bad. when you lead from behind somebody else tries to lead from in front. now we're looking at -- you know, there was a person back in the roman times who was an opponent of the romans who said , they made a desert and called it peace. they made a desert and called it peace. in aleppo as we speak, my dear friends, they're making a desert. and sooner or later they're making a desert and sooner or russians and bishara soddy iranianians and the
revolutionary guard and hezbollah will stop after they've slaughtered 5000, 10,000, 20,000 more people. and nobody seems to give a dam. and that is what the dreaded tragedy is of all of this. there was a time when mussolini invaded ethiopia and nobody cared. there was a time in the spanish civil war, thanks to hitler's and mussolini, they installed a fascist government and nobody cared. there was a time in czechoslovakia when chamberlain we are the famous words, not going to send our young men to a place where they speak a language we do not know. is going to have the greatest national security challenge in the last 70 years think you would agree and i will pass this on to
him, i am very pleased with the national security team that donald trump is assembling. [applause] gingrich: let me say first, i can't come to the kemp foundation without recognizing jo ann and the family. but also, i think that the appointment of the nomination of dr. ben carson may give us the greatest opportunity since jack kemp to really make a breakthrough in trying to help inner city americans. i can't imagine a better man for this foundation to be meeting and thinking about opportunities to provide unique help to millions of americans who really need to break out of the cultural and bureaucratic prisons that they're trapped in. i think the question is important and i'm probably to some extent a heretic on this
topic. first of all, even during world war ii when we were far and away we most powerful country in the world by the end of the world and we were about 50% of the world's gdp in 1956 because -- 1946 because everybody bombed each other. probably the only place that had not been bombed. even then we recognized very severe limitations of power. so we didn't try to take out franco in spain. we didn't try to deal with a wide -- we were very cautious about the soviets. not that they represented american values but that we were advocating a way of life, we were prepared to defend it, frankly, with far more sophistication than anything you could get away with today. i mean, if you tried today to
influence the french and italian elections the way we did in the late 1940's, it would be utterly hopeless. it would all be in the "washington post" and "new york times," in wikileaks. there would be congressional hearings and at least 600 lawyers would be pointing out it was illegal, unconstitutional, whatever. but we back then did a lot of things in a lot of ways but we also had a very real sense of our own limitations. there are parts of the world that are hard. i would suggest to you, for example, if you have 4,000 people shot and 700 people killed in southside chicago in the last year, that is a very hard problem. so before we get too certain about the things we are going to project, i think -- i come out of a very old-fashioned conservative view that you ought to be cautious about what you do. the thing that is infuriating about obama is that they are quite careful about disrupting everything without putting anything in its place. i think it's very important to understand that. if you are going to undertake a project, you need to make sure
you're capable of getting it done. there are whole notion and the middle east, for example, has led to a level of chaos. whether it is in libya, lebanon, syria, iraq, i mean, it is astonishing that the united states could have been as fe by barack obama and that he and his team can be as out of touch with reality as they are. so my first advice to the new president is going to be, be a little cautious about what you think you know. and, frankly, one of the reasons the senator was very generous in allowing me to work with him on some things and jim mattice was part of that. i can't imagine a more cautious, sophisticated professional than general mattis. i mean, he understands the region but he also understands the limitations of american power and you know, this is not
an area you engage in lightly. and i think you also understands our greatest enemy in the region is iran. you know, this is not an area you engage in lightly. i think he also understands the greatest enemy in the region is iran. if you go back to reagan, he had a clear sense of hierarchy. one of the reasons he did not get deeply involved in taking on the iranians even though they were behind the bombing of american marines in lebanon, is that wasn't his goal. he had one major foreign policy goal -- the defeat of the soviet union. and he stayed focused on that goal. and of course, in 1991, the world changed and the soviet union disappeared. we desperately need to really rethink our strategies in the world. and we underestimate how hard it is. let me just say very briefly, just run the list. north korea, china, russia, pakistan, iran, and islamic supremacists on a cross-border basis. those six problems, any one of them is hard. and the new president is going to face all six simultaneously.
and that is a very daunting challenge for us as a country. >> well mr. speaker, if i may pick up on something you said a moment ago. the soviet union fell 25 years ago this month. it is inspiring to me that we are sitting here in this hall because this hall is where the 12 original members of nato met invited by president truman and signed that accord which saw us through the cold war. and when the soviet union dissolved and all the states then declared their independence, we americans were of the view that, well, this is a time of change in history. it was extraordinary for all of us. and we had looked then at russia at being perhaps to longer counted among the list of our -- no longer counted among the list of our adversaries. but in a sense that did not last that long since we had president
putin to power, since we saw the invasion of georgia and the annexation of crimea and the invasions into ukraine and the current activities in syria. and i would add from my own background, an escalation and russian espionage both in europe and certainly here in the united states. so we have these reverberations that lead to u.s. leadership and where we stand as far as continuing russian expansionism. and there is a good part of the world from what i read and people i talk to that the incoming u.s. president plans to cut deals with vladimir putin to their detriment. now i do not believe that but perceptions are important and i am wondering what we should be doing to elevate those kinds of concerns and reaffirm our commitment to nato and to our
alliances. mr. gingrich: well, i will toss it up and then i will give it to john to clean up after my mass. look, i don't know what i want to do. i don't know that i want to go out and we assure anybody. i do not know what president-elect trump is going to do. i don't think president-elect trump knows what he is going to do. but i don't mean that in a shallow way. this is a very, very smart man. remember, after amassing somewhere between 4 and $10 billion he then defeated 16 people for the republican nomination. and john and i can both tell you this is not the easiest thing to do. he then defeated the elite news media and hillary clinton simultaneously. so to assume that this is some casual shell of a guy is totally wrong. but he hasn't been through the process of planning. i mean, the people planning and the people he is turning to surround himself with, i feel pretty good about. i think nikki haley will be a fantastic ambassador and is a
great choice. i think mattis will be as prepared as anybody else for secretary of defense. and he will be an extraordinarily knowledgeable person about the world and particularly about the middle east. it when you talk about vladimir putin, you know, i once had somebody come up to me and say trump is going to use the apprentice model and call vladimir putin and say, that is not trump. donald trump will call vladimir putin and say look, you are a mensch. i am a mensch. i would like to work something out. and remember, there is no way he can straighten out the chinese with just one more phone call. that listen, if you really want to play competitively, i have the bigger economy, bigger military, and the greater capability.
so if you want to tell general mattis, we have to called the russians for a while -- i can do that. the aircraft carrier will leave mediterranean. because you cannot sustain it and you will find your supply lines in real trouble because you could not possibly sustain a. now, i don't want to do it because we should work together. [laughter] ] pplause mr. gingrich: one thing about donald trump is he never plays from weakness. i think he would like to find a way to have a healthy relationship with putin. i would like to have a healthy relationship with p8. -- vladimir putin. you don't go to a kgb agent and say i am really weak and stupid, please take advantage of me and then be shocked that he takes advantage of you. then they take advantage of you
because you begged them to do it and they cannot resist. ] aughter [applause]] sen. mccain: a tough act to follow. i forgot those two of my role models have been this individual and jack kemp. we were out in the wilderness and in the minority. these two individuals were probably the prime reasons why to the astonishment of one at all, we became a majority in the united states house of representatives. jack kemp, when you get a bunch of egos in a room in a republican conference and people don't pay much attention, he stood up to speak and we all listened because we knew he had a vision for america that is thanks to this foundation. it is alive and well today. that is why i am honored to be here. [applause]
mccain: there is an old line about ignoring the lessons of history and then you are doomed to repeat them. the lessons of history when ronald reagan came to office were made clear, a statement of peace through strength. it was not an accident that the day he was inaugurated, the hostages came home from tehran. the message needs to be sent to vladimir putin his adventurism and aggression and attempt to divide up the ukraine which he is done, his attempt to overthrow the freely elected governments of the baltic states , frankly the media reports, his attempt to assassinate the prime minister of montenegro. vladimir putin is acting with wild abandon. my friends, russia is a gas station masquerading as a country. i want to of been that. a mafia-run gas station
masquerading as a country. he's playing his cards in the most adroit and incredibly fashion where he is now a major influence in the middle east which they have not been since and worse and not through them out of egypt and 1973 and there is no doubt what his ambitions are. i would not expected to follow all of these things but recently there was a poll in sweden. 73% of the swedish people believe they ought to consider joining nato because vladimir putin has scared the hell out of them in the arctic. everywhere i go, and all of these leaders -- i talked to a group of all ticket leaders today. guess what? they want to know if they can depend on the united states of america or did they have to accommodate each of these countries as part of their empire. these countries were part of the
soviet union for 50 years. what we need, and i believe that the people around president-elect trump, have that kind of inner strength. it is not just general mattis who is our hero, but if he takes general petraeus or met romney or john bolton. up thelton would shake state department in a way that is long overdue, my dear friends. so, general kelly, there is nobody that knows more about our own hemisphere then general kelly. and by the way, there is a scourge. manufactured mexican heroin that is an epidemic in the northwestern and northeastern parts of this country and i'm sorry to tell you the distribution point is phoenix, arizona. so he is assembling a team that should be listened to.
life is full of anecdotes. president-elect trump said he was going to do waterboarding and worse. said he askedhe general mattis and general mattis and i can do much better with a pack of cigarettes and eight six pack of beer. i hope you took general mattis's word for it and i think he might because it is obvious he respects general mattis. the message has got to be sent that the united states of america is not interested in conflict. ronald reagan was not interested in conflict but the lessons of history show you have to show a steadfast, strong position which then your potential adversary does not want to run the risk. if your adversary or adversaries, my best example lately and then i will stop with this. honestly, it wakes me up. vesselsto american manned by american sailors put
on their knees with their hands behind their next -- with their theircrossed behind necks. a most gross violation of international law by the iranians, and what does our secretary of state do? he waits until they return and then thanks the iranians. don't think it does not have an impact. if these people think we are weak, they will take advantage of it. i believe it is time that the united states return to the days of old and our role model, still my role model and hero, ronald reagan, who won the cold war without firing a shot. in the words of margaret bacher. -- margaret thatcher. [applause] >> mr. chairman, you mentioned
jack kemp, and i recalled hearing him say so often, freedom must be won a new by -- must be wanted new by every generation. be won anew by every generation. the current generation is no exception to that rule. my question is, are we postured to do that? we understand the biggest lesson of pearl harbor, to be prepared for surprise. where are we to say in being prepared for surprises, for the known unknowns that donald rumsfeld would call them, unknown unknowns. sen. mccain: it was a moment because a majority of the people of the united states did not want us involved are engaged in japan or germany. that event galvanized american
public opinion. that united america. we were not ready. all during the 30's, we did not build ships or airplanes. we did not train pilots. the pilots they did launch that day on december 7, 1941, they were meat on the table for the japanese zero. they were outmaneuvered, outgunned and out-piloted. i am sorry to tell you that because of this crazy thing called sequestration, we are now cutting into the most important part of our defense capabilities and that is readiness and training. whenever you cut defense budgets, the first thing that goes is the operations and training and maintenance because it is the easiest.
i can tell you that our service service chiefs testifying before the armed services committee have said the following, because of sequestration, we are putting the men and women in uniform at greater risk. is it our job as members of congress and leadership to put the finest of america at greater risk? of course not. i applaud president-elect trump because he told me personally over the phone and he said many times publicly, we have got to rebuild the military. he said it on many occasions, and i am encouraged by it. i can also tell you there are members of congress, both republican and democrat, who are simply not aware, nor do they realize the urgency and challenges that america faces. do you agree, newt? mr. gingrich: this is why we have to have a great national debate. there is no signal you can send to the chinese or the russians more powerful than rebuilding the american military.
you don't want anything close to parity. you want overwhelming capabilities so the other side knows they will lose. you are least likely to have a war at the other side understands they cannot win. you are most likely to have a war if they can think of some clever way they can offset you. i think that is why this all concept -- we will see how it works out in the next few months in the budget, we have to profoundly reinvest in virtually every aspect of the american defense system in order to be back in a position where we are relatively safe in a very dangerous world. host: one last question before we conclude. i wonder if you might have some advice you would like to offer to governor nikki haley as she prepares for her new job in new york. mr. mccain: i think she is going
to enjoy the russian ambassador. he is a really neat guy. spending time with him, not to mention the chinese. could i just mention one thing? newt and i have painted a pretty tough picture. not bet against the united states of america, my friends. i would not. i would just like to mention, we are now energy independent. there are some of us in this room remember waiting five hours at a gas line because the middle eastern nations had cut off the oil supply. that will never happen again. we will be an energy exporter, and if we can do that, we can get natural gas to the living rooms of the eastern ukraine so that they will not have to be dependent vladimir putin. be in china?e to some of us have been in china where you cannot see one block because of the smog. for 40 years, the chinese had a
one-child policy. they have a demographic challenge the likes of which are going to be gigantic. you see this device? -damnedto buy a new god one every six months. this is not invented or china -- or europe. this is a device that is changing the world. it is information and knowledge and knowledge is power. when i get a little depressed trying to do the lord's work in the city, i go and meet with men and women in uniform, their leaders. they are the best. there is nobody that can match up to them. and i think if you give them the equipment they need, and the training, american pilots are flying less hours per month than the chinese and russians. so if we can give them the right
things, what they need, there will be no one that can match up with them. i always appreciate newt's thinking, and his ideas. he is one of the people i've known him for a long time who not for just five words 10 years. time, he is the damn wrong, but i do have the greatest appreciation for his intellect, and he will go down in history as a leader who really changed the way that the republican party governs. gingrich: a very nice semi-endorsement from my friend who i admire so deeply, it has been the academy for our generation of public service at
every level. essentially, bureaucratic incompetent, corrupt, and stunningly hard to perform, i have seen you at work in columbia, and i know that you are a great, natural politician. you understand bringing people together and listening to them and getting things done. remember, cheerful persistence. you are going to a place that is not used to having an effective american ambassador. the normal, daily behavior, it is like sending donald trump to the new york times or msnbc. the natural bias is tough. as we emerged as the leading country of the world, there will be a lot of folks who want to talk to you. listen, learn, help and lead. your natural interest in people to connect with every single delegation and ambassador, you will have a remarkable reach into the u.n. and you will be able to serve your country and the president with remarkable effectiveness. i was thrilled when the president-elect was nominating you, and i cannot imagine anyone who would do a better job.
senator mccain: could i just mention one thing? arguably the most impact and efficient and most-admired ambassador of our time was jean cabut actor. way shelook at the conducted herself and the way she represented our nation and unitedted states -- nations. when it you agree? cleave: on that note and that wonderful tribute, thank you both for being here, and please join me in a round of
applause. [applause] announcer: that event with senator mccain and former speaker gingrich was this years kemp award jack dinner. was chosenkki haley to be the ambassador to the united nations. she spoke next. >> please take your seats. we are going to let the servers finish the coffee and get the desert down. but we want to respect everyone's time.
i want to agree with something that speaker gingrich said while he was up here. it is an incredible opportunity to focus on equality of opportunity, to have dr. ben carson as the incoming hud secretary. i am fortunate enough to be able to work on the transition team on hud issues. i am fortunate enough to able to be here over the past weeks were my dad -- some hud employees reminded me when you walk in the building, it feels like you are in 10 floors of basement. despite that fact, the people in there care deeply about poverty and fighting for equal opportunity for all.
and fighting poverty. up here with michelle van cleave, nude gingrich, and senator mccain, these are the type of kemp forum events we have been holding. one of the things that many of you remember my father saying is that people don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. economic, foreign policy. one of the things you remember my father saying is people do not care how much you know until they know how much you care. to introduce governor nikki haley, we're going to bring up someone who cares. at the kemp foundation, we have been fortunate to ask to -- we have been fortunate to have political leaders to reach out to us. the senator has called us and asked for us to help hand he has
invested his time not only in his arms rate of south carolina but also across the river in anacostia. i have been doing a lot of work with one. ron, are you out there somewhere? i would like you and all your young people to stand up real quick. [applause] >> thank you. those shown people are going through a program. you can take a seat. i won't make you stand for the rest of the night. but ron is working with those young people in a program that is training them for jobs and getting them ready to achieve all that they can be. bob woodson, who is here, bob, would you stand up? [applause]
>> many of you know, bob and my dad were good friends. bob took my dad around the hudntry when he was secretary. what we do at the foundation, a large part of it is encourage politicians to get in their communities, go to the places where people know the answers. bob talks about josephs, that there are a bunch of joseph's out there, and if we get out of our ivory towers and stop thinking about theory, and go to these places, that is where the solutions come from. so he is a joseph in d.c., a returned citizen, and he is investing in young people's lives. and he said, hey jimmy, i want to meet some young people in d.c. who are trying to overcome challenges. because i have overcome a lot of
challenges and i want to hear from them. this was in the last spring. jim has welcomed them to the capital. -- 12 senators and congressmen who sat around listening to them for an hour. tim cares. young people care what he knows. his constituents care what he knows. i am more than thrilled to be able to welcome to the stage one of our great young leaders to introduce governor nikki haley, senator tim scott. [applause] good evening. wow. it is a great day in washington, d.c. good evening. if you are from south carolina
you would realize that when governor haley stands up and says it is a great dan south carolina, everyone says " it's a great dan south carolina." no one really thinks it is a d.c., but i have the privilege of introducing my governor, one of the greatest leaders in america to you. i thought about some things that would be funny to say. but if you knew me you would realize it is best for me to not tell any jokes, i did think about the one joke i thought would be funny that you would not find funny. fan.a gamecock in here?ock fans i can tell by the silence that i am the only fan. at six and six, there is not much to celebrate. our governor went to clemson.
i think she is responsible for gamecock tigers going to the playoffs. we are not in south carolina at all. these jokes don't work outside of south carolina, got it. our governor is a native who started working at 13 years old, keeping the books in our family -- in her family business. she learned very quickly the importance of hard work. one of the reasons why i know that she is a person who deserves the award, tonight is because she embodies leadership. not only is she a clemson graduate, when you think about the success we have seen in south carolina, think about this, 46 counties and we have
had over 82,000 jobs created in all 46 counties in south carolina. [applause] senator tim scott: that is one of the reasons why it is always a great day in south carolina. they can about some of the jobs that have been created in expanded under her leadership. the bmws of the world, the michelins of the world, the mercedes-benz of the world. 1200 additional job. the boeings of the world. although -- volvo, the first plant in the country, south carolina. there is a reason why south carolina is the number two growing state in the country per capita, it is called good leadership. but many of us would focus on many of the positive things
under her leadership, but i think perhaps the most important form of leadership we see when times are hard. when everybody is running in the opposite direction. you see south carolina has hand , man-made and natural disasters. i think about less than two years ago, the flood. the 1000-year flood. flooding in south carolina, not on the coast, but in columbia, and the middle of the state. our governor rose to the occasion and lead our state through a very traumatic situation. just this year, hurricane matthew comes through the middle of our state. again, parts of the state most impacted were not the coastal parts.
she stood up, rolled her sleeves up and led the people who were disillusioned and did not know where to turn. we watched her positive, powerful leadership keep our state moving in the right direction. if those two were not enough, as governor, she led the charge to remove the confederate battle flag from the capital of south --. [applause] senator tim scott: i will tell you, when the decision was made to take on that fight, not that many people were clapping in south carolina. she had the vision to know that sometimes you do the right thing , even when it is not popular.