tv Interview with Representative-elect Tom Garrett R-VA CSPAN December 29, 2016 6:50am-7:01am EST
[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016] [applause] >> in a teleadvised speech, benjamin netanyahu criticized kerry's speech and the u.s. decision to abstain from a u.s. vote calling it unbalanced. there's more video on the peace
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cable companies and is brought to you today by your capable or satellite provider. >> the 115th copping gavels in tuesday. we've been talking to you some of the newly elected members who will be sworn in for the first time. here's our interview with representative elect tom garrett of virginia. >> representative elect tom garrett, republican representing virginia's fifth district. tell bus your background. >> i grew up in rural central virginia and paid for college using the military rotc scholarship and served for about six years in the army and then went to graduate school and spent my time following graduate school as a prosecutor and then had the opportunity to serve as my local elected prosecutor and then ultimately in the virginia senate and here we are. got two wonderful daughters and a great wife and just blessed to have the opportunity to serve. >> how many years in the virginia senate? >> five. >> what would you say you accomplished?
>> it's funny and think it's a good lesson to bring in here, and that is that we came in as a fiscal belt tightener, you know, sort of spending funds that are appropriated -- are appropriate for each level of government but we left and if i had to tag a leg as, i'd say k-12 reform and having to stand up in some areas where perhaps some conservatives might not have and serve a decent libertarian bent to repeal the crime laws in virginia where the state law told them of consenting age what they could or could not do in their bedrooms. with the k-1 reform things, sometimes you come with a passion and sometimes your passion finds you and something where we identified we thought shortcomings in the system, we have wonderful public schools in virginia but shouldn't compare them to the other 49 states but care them to the world. for the fifth best in the nation is great but not where
we want to be so you identify the problems as they present themselves and figure out a good way to tackle them within the appropriate role of government in whatever level you're working at. >> why did you decide to run for a house seat? >> ultimately the odds of being born in the united states 1-26 plus or minus and the odds of being born in the united states to a two-parent household with some discipline and encouragement, i've been very, very, very lucky. as a prosecutor, i stand across the dias usually from a young man no different from me but had different influences early in life so i feel like from whom much is given or to whom much given, much is expected sort of if i feel like i'm holding strong opinions and am right on issues and can do something to influence the issues to sort of hand that mantel to the quality of opportunity to the young people moving forward i probably would be remiss not for try. so there it is, and you're perpetually humbled in the fifth district of virginia because jefferson lived there,
there's the father of the declaration and then madison was the first congressman so there's the constitution and john marshall retired there, patrick henry, barbara johns started the movement in prince edward county in 1952. so great appreciation for the wonderful work done by people like that who preceded those who wanted to perpetuate that for the future. >> where did you grow up and what were your influencers? >> i grew up in loosea county virginia which ironically enough is in the seventh district. i loved history and studied history in college. my father, the decisions he made, my mom was diagnosed early on in my life with what was thought to be terminal cancer before the internet and my father would stay awake dialing phone number after phone number, the mayo clinic or johns hopkins wouldn't take her, u.v.a. wouldn't take her and my dad doggedly pursued finding a place to treat my
mother and she celebrated her 73rd birthday, ironically we lost my dad a few years back but that sort of determination and persistence and then when you decide something's right, that the right thing to do is , y, off z, then dam the torpedoes and full speed ahead in doing it. my first cousin ironically i think turned down baseball scholarships to go in the marine corps and people like like that had those opportunities and delayed the opportunities to serve something bigger than themselves, then when i sit in the military and looking around, again, with the women and men with whom i served, anybody who serves, you had brian mast on earlier, i agree really there's something in their lives bigger than them and worth sacrificing for and to be around men and women like that and then when you're having a bad day you think everything in perspective, it's not so bad, so those were things that sort of shaped who i am and who i want to be, right?
i tell my children it's not about who you are but who you want to be. you're not who you want to be yet but if you are, you're probably ready to go. so if you identify who you want to be and take steps to be that person, you should be able to look in the mirror and be happy. >> any piece of advice that stands out to you from your dad over the years that you sort of carry with you? >> just, you know, this may not be politically correct but i have no -- it's not that i inherited it from my father, i have no admiration or tolerance for somebody who quits. if what you're doing is right and doing it for the right reasons and you get knocked down, so what? the successful woman or man is the one who has gotten up one more time than they've been mocked -- knocked down and my dad was persistent and dogged and tenacious and those are the sorts of things -- if you think of dr. martin luther king and what he went through and the people whose names we don't know went through, you just keep coming back and legislatively in the statehouse of virginia, we did that with
some bills where i knew what was going to happen but we moved the ball further each time around and that's a good character straight. >> what will you be dogged about here in washington? >> we ran on a student security sort of proposal that would allow young people with student loan debt to choose to defer to receive social security benefits to exchange forgiveness of student loan debt and would make our social security promise to our seniors solvent for perpetuity and allow young people if they chose to and only if they chose to, to help erase some of that student loan debt. it's a winner all around because you've taken an entire generation out of the producing class, you don't start a small business if you've got student loan debt and you don't buy a car or get married to paraphrase mrs. clinton, you don't move out of mom's basement and don't mean it in a pejorative sense and that innovative thinking, i'm
looking forward to have the opportunity to fight people across party lines. it doesn't make anybody do anything, right? you choose to enter the program. it doesn't change the benefits my mother receives, which you don't break that promise you made yesterday, you change maybe the setup for tomorrow but that sort of thing, to know when it's over with we made a mark and moved the needle. nobody's going to remember me but they'll remember what we did while we were here and that's what matters. >> representative tom garrett, appreciate your time. >> thank so you much. great to meet you. >> today on c-span, washington journal is next, live, with your phone calls. tonight in memoriam 2016 where we look at americans who died his past year, nancy reagan, gwen ifill and antonin scalia. our guest jessica vaughn for the center of immigration
studies and tom jawetz for the center for american progress and tribune reporter julian aguilar on how immigration ♪olicy affects border states. host: good morning. it's thursday, december 29, 2016. the headline on today's "washington journal" focus on the war of words between john kerry and the israeli prime minister, benjamin netanyahu, over who's to blame for the dwindling prospects of a two state middle east peace deal. couldary kerry, in what be his last major address before leaving office, accuse the prime minister and other israeli officials of sabotaging peace efforts by refusing