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tv   Washington Journal 12162018  CSPAN  December 16, 2018 7:00am-10:02am EST

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the 15th anniversary of the apollo eight mission. as always, you can join the conversation on facebook and twitter. "washington journal" is next. >> look at politics in general. virtue thatip is a praised,auded, much but seldom rewarded. illinois democratic representative luis gutierrez leaving congress at the end of this month with lessons learned on the job. this is c-span's "washington sunday, december 16. congress reaching a spending agreement that the president
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will sign or face a partial government shutdown. we want to focus on the larger issue of congress as an institution. we had been sitting down with members who have been defeated or retired. would you change how it currently works? if so, how would you fix it? your ideas on changing congress. that is our first hour. our line for democrats (202) 748-8000. our line for republicans (202) 748-8001. send us a tweet, we will read it. or comment on facebook. good sunday morning. thank you for being with us. start of a busy week in washington. andant to take a step back look at congress. how to fix congress? change the rules. details at the decades, powerew
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has been taken away from committees and individual members and transferred to party toders for centralized power ensure all decisions reflect partisan and leadership interest. the result has been a more top-down congress that promotes partisanship and fails to serve the people. congress needs to fix this, and the most correct way of doing so is changing the house and sent rules by better sharing legislative power across the institution. congress can generate innovative thinking, promote greater debate of the issues, enhance the morale of the members, and reduce the hyper partisanship that has been emblematic of congress in recent years. congress, change the rules is the recommendation. what do you think? give us your ideas on how you think congress should be performed or changed if at all.
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we are sitting down with members of the house and senate, some who lost, others who retired. in who lost after two terms the senate, democratic senator claire mccaskill. [video clip] >> that is the irony of this whole thing. i don't know that i could have won, but i could have come a lot closer if this was the first race i had run. experience is now a negative in politics. imagine if they are wheeling you in the operating room, and the nurse says, i have really good news for you. this surgeon has never done this before. you go, back it up. in government now, that is exactly what people want. they want people running for office who have never been around government because they have become so cynical that anyone who has chosen this for a career is not looking after them. because i'mvery sad
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a much stronger senator because of the jobs i have held. my time in the courtroom as a prosecutor makes me better at hearings. i know have to go after a witness and make a point. my time as an auditor, i could never have done the work i did at the pentagon if i did not have that background. all the things i did in the public sector made me a stronger and better senator. when my opponent told people over and over again that i have been running for office for 36 years, he was saying that over and over again because he knew that was hurting me. people just want something different. they want something different because the people who are here now are not getting things done that they want done. the full interview with senator claire mccaskill and all the retiring members on our website. this is from bill king, ideas to fix congress, stop electing
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republicans. this is from edward perkins, campaign finance reform, we need public financing of elections. from david, term limitations. no secret that career politicians care more about self-preservation than the people. let's go to charles, new orleans. good morning. caller: good morning. you can hear me? host: we sure can. caller: i am not quite to pretend like i'm some expert on how to fix congress. i don't know. as a human being, it is just so screwed up. i turn on the mainstream media, and i see these people, these wealthy people, democrats and republicans going back and forth , fighting, selling people, anyone who gets their continues to get power.
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the power is so removed from the people and is put into corporations and the people who can buy politicians. i don't know what it can take. before me,comment stop electing republicans. it is the same story if you elect democrats. maybe we just need to reboot. everybody should have a chance to get in government to do something to clean up. host: thank you for the call. this is from jim, do away with the hassett rule in the house. just because the majority party cannot garner a majority does not mean the majority of congress cannot agree on a bill. this is from ipo, today's politicians are not up for the task of change in congress. hastjim, do away with the ert rule.
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that is a rule put in place in the house saying that it still can come to the floor if a majority of the majority approves it. this is a good question, good topic. i believe that we have to do is get back to some of the original ways congress was handled. we have gotten so far afield from that. hill,k the ideas that the we don't have to reinvent the wheel, we just have to go back to some of the things that made this country great. the constitution is one of them. i think the idea that they proposed on the hill is a great idea. i think that sounds admirable. i think it would do so much. the idea on term limits is also excellent. i think the republicans in the to fixedress did try
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some of the problems by making sure no chairman of a committee was kept in office for too long. they would rotate chairman of committee. host: they have that in the house of representatives right now among republicans. i think that is a great idea. the republicans rarely get credit for that. thing weink the other have gotten away from is when we directly elected senators. i remember the debate coming up. maybe i don't. i don't know. when they changed from senators been sponsored to states and the -- theat the states senate members would come from the state, representative from the state legislatures, and they
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would represent states rights, i think that would decentralize some of the power that is in washington. host: thank you for the call. this is from the atlantic magazine. democrat from washington, now retired, serving nearly 60 years in congress. i served in congress longer than anyone, here is how to fix it. americans will be living in just 15 states. 70% of americans will be living in just 15 states. senators,ill have 30 and the remaining 30% of the people will have 70 senators. how do we fix this? there is a solution that could immediately gain popular support, abolish the senate. movementake a national
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working at the grassroots level and require massive organizing and strategic leadership over the course of a generation. that recommendation from the former member of the house, his wife now serves in the house of representatives. caller: good morning. host: good morning. caller: i hope we're not talking about changing the congress this go around. i think we have fixed it. we've got the democrats. in regards to the future, the next time we lose it, i would be dingell said, getting rid of the senate and letting it only be congress. president andr the congress. i think that is what you read. not this go around. no. i think people should have a certain iq.
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i want people who have read and understand what they are voting theyd what legislation have said they want to incorporate. definitely, i want education. no, we cannotent, have anyone like this one there now. host: thank you for the call. front page of the near constant looking at the climate accords as the crisis bills. democrats warning of what they call a five-alarm fire over the health law, that federal judge decision reviving the battle over the affordable care act, putting republicans in a tough spot. experts say that ruling is unlikely to stand. back to your phone calls, phil joining us from florida, independent line. good morning. caller: thank you, c-span.
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the first thing i want to say is get rid of the electoral college. one person, one vote. the guy who has the most votes wins. congress, lay off half of the aids. each one is allowed 20 of these times how many congressmen. they can make up to $155,000 a year. they can also be lobbyists for other companies. them.get rid of half of they don't need that many aids. that is about it. you for the call. today's politicians are not up to the task for change in congress. send us a tweet. can is next. good morning. caller: good morning.
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how are you? host: fine, thank you. i agree with the gentleman who just called from florida. the bottom line is that -- hello? host: you are on the air. we are hearing you. caller: the term limit is at least six years for the senators and every two years for the house, but just like have a habit with the president or the governor, you go eight years, and they take a break. after that, if the people want to elect them after they take a break, let them go back. there is no way someone should have been in congress 36 years or 50 years. i served in the military. at 20 years, you were at the point of becoming a dinosaur, and they were looking for you to retire or get out of the way and let new blood takeover.
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the term limit thing should be in place. there is no way a person should be there for 36 years or 50 years. host: thank you for the call. if your listing on radio, this is carried live on the potus channel 124. ideas toking you your fix congress. lawmakers face a deadline this week to pass a number of spending bills or face the prospect of a partial government shutdown. we will be following that story this week. this tweet from robert saying the senate should operate the same as the house, majority rules. this is from steve, we should take away powers from the senate, no six years terms for the senate, get rid of the senate to illuminate small state tyranny.
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elected in 1976, the longest-serving republican senator ever is orrin hatch of utah. [video clip] >> i was here when legislation was debated in committee and members worked constructively with one another for the good of the country. says here when we could without any hint of irony that we were members of the world's greatest deliberative body. times of certainly changed. over the last several years, i have witnessed the subversion of senate rules, the abandonment of regular order, the full-scale deterioration of the judicial nomination process. our organization has ossified. roadblock is the new norm. partisanship permeates everything we do. on both the left and the right, the bar of decency has been set
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so low that jumping over it is no longer the objective. limbo is the new name of the game. how low can you go? theer it seems is always -- answer it seems is always lower. host: he will be replaced by mitt romney, the fourth oldest senator elected. one of only two people to be governor of one state and senator of another, the other being sam houston of texas. and tennessee. good morning, steve. i would like to respond to the lady from texas about the iq test. number one, almost anyone should be able to pass an iq test. tests have been proven to be racially biased for
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years due to the makeup of the test. know, that suggestion, i think, is appalling. why not bring back poll taxes? on the senate reform, i think reps issibly the house population-based, and perhaps we could do a regional senatorial mix where the senate is also population-based, but on a different grade. we don't need everything to be the same. host: thank you for the call. , somes from rockdots senators have lost a step, predatory retirement age. this is the final cover of the
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weekly standard, look at nikki haley leaving at the end of this year. nikki haley plotting her next move. downaily standard shutting operations with this final publication. it was originally started by bill kristol. from gaffney, alabama. how would you fix congress ? caller: start over. it is time for the american people to realize they have the right to do that. host: when you say start over, what does that mean? caller: that means start over. host: what would it include?? is there a legislative branch? we would all --
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host: we will go on to west virginia. good morning. caller: good morning. one suggestion i would have would be to bring in the house into the judicial nomination process. let the house judiciary committee replace the senate judiciary committee in screening federal judicial candidates and supreme court nominees. of jomment i had in terms thinkgle's article is i the abolition of the senate would undermine the principles set up in the federalist papers in terms of the separation of powers and checks and balances. host: from the new york times, the presidents pick for chief of staff called the president a terrible human being in 2016. he called then candidate trump a
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terrible human being in a video that resurfaced on friday, hours named himpresident as acting chief of staff. nye details available at let's go to larry from alabama, democrats line. .aller: good morning, steve how are you? host: i'm good. how are you? caller: i have not seen you in a while. i thought maybe you were sick. host: no. i did booktv. i traveled a little, and now i am back. caller: that's great. i wanted to talk about this lawsuit with health care. i have to agree with the callers from florida. i think we are to have a term congress andly in
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the senate, but in the supreme court. a lot of those in the supreme court have to slip on a banana peel to come out of there or die. it is ridiculous. , ithe health care lawsuit is a shame and disgrace that we are the richest country in this world. we have some of the poorest people in the u.s. folks want to take money and build a wall, $5 billion, but they don't want to help the poorest people in the states. you have 27 states suing these health care market people and the government because they don't want pre-existing insurance for those who are on opioids or who had cancer or other diseases before they were born. i think it is a disgrace.
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i believe it is america. those --to defend on depend on those working in bringing service to the people. you have people who are not working need insurance. i heard a doctor told another doctor, this patient coming in don't have no insurance, no way of paying. still the hospital want to put this patient on me? what should i do? the other doctor told him, you went to school to help the patient, so why not help that patient? when you go into these hospitals, businesses, they have to pay for the lights, water, employees. if you don't have insurance, what you think they are going to do? thank you for the opportunity. host: thank you for the call. one of the issues we will focus on this week following that court ruling on friday that the
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democratspraised and called a five-alarm fire. in case you missed it, time magazine named as personal beer jamal khashoggi and the ,uardians and the war on truth those on the front lines of journalism in this country and around the world. next is the senate. send us a tweet. we will read it. more from her interviews with retiring members of the house and senate. jeff flake after serving one he may the senate, challenge president trump in 2020. we asked him about his time in the senate. [video clip] >> i love the senate rules. i loved the house. i love serving their for 12 years. i wanted to come to the senate because of the filibuster rule, the requirement, the necessity
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,f forcing the parties together and the senate rules do that. unfortunately, we have made it still difficult, and we get by with the barest of majorities. i think those rules need to stay in the senate. some want to get out of them so we can be a majoritarian institution like the house. i think that would be a mistake. the big problems we have to solve in this country, fiscal issues, social security, medicare, getting this debt and deficit under control, those things can only be done if both parties buy in. no one party will ever take the risk politically to do it. we have to look at previous the 1970the 1980's for budget act, you see the parties
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at their fast when they come together. -- best when they come together. that when i first came to the senate. i joined a gang of eight. we all protected that bill through committee and on the senate floor. 100 times in committee and a dozen times on the senate floor. and then in the senate languished in the house. politics -- clear members areh why
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leaving congress. here's a portion of what they're writing. the main drivers, the constant pressure to raise money and political dysfunction. disturbingare a reality, congress repels rather than attracts public servants. caller: you the man, steve. i can only get through when you're hosting. host: glad to hear from you. caller: glad you're there. make no moreld than the average of the salary
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in the district they represent. senators should make no more than the average salary in the state they represent. representative, your immediate offspring cannot run, your grandchildren cannot. steve.the best, host: thanks for the call. merry christmas. problemest longterm spending.ment real clear policy, the report from two exports, issue one and
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andreet institute, rank file members feel left out of the debate. alliancesebate limits between republicans and democrats. rise andhip is on the not going anywhere. back to your phone calls. bob is joining us from michigan. what are your ideas? caller: three things, redistricting, gerrymandering is one problem. term limits is another problem. term limits seems to be the problem. in michigan, we have changed from being the most progressive state in the u.s. to one of the
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most regressive states. you have people that are elected to office that don't know what they are doing. they have not been there long enough to have any experience. they don't know any of the rules. laws.rites the legislatures don't know what they're doing. the other one is redistricting. we have to do some redistricting. the focus on gerrymandering has a minority party with majority power. the republicans are a small party. they could not get anybody elected telling the truth about what they do. those are the problems. gerrymandering and term limits. this notion of term limits answer the problem, it makes the problem worse. host: congressman joe crowley of to housewas on a path
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leadership only to lose in june in a democratic primary. i asked him how he would describe congress. [video clip] >> i think i have been here long enough to see when things actually work in the regular order, when things went through committee, when there was an honest up or down vote on that. even in the minority, we can affect the outcome and change a bill and work in a bipartisan way. that has changed. that doesn't exist anymore. we saw this tax bill, a devastating bill for new york city and new york state. how it went through the committee, how it passed on the floor without any democratic input whatsoever, that certainly did not happen when ronald reagan and tip o'neill worked together to pass conference of tax reform and comprehensive
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immigration reform. opportunities to work in a bipartisan way are no longer there. the president and how he has approached politics, how he is approached everything has made it much more divisive, much more difficult for republicans to work with democrats to find solutions. congressman joe crowley will be leaving at the end of this year. carolina onm south the republican line. caller: good morning. my idea is to limit the federal government to just have responsibility for justice and the defense department, and move all those other functions back to the states and let them manage it themselves. most of the states are big enough to be countries now.
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there is no reason you need as many states as we have. they could consolidate just the way corporate america has and run commerce, education, all these other departments the way they want to. host: thank you for the call. coming up later, we will turn our attention to the situation in great britain with the debate over brexit, the deadline looming over march and the vote of no-confidence theresa may survive. protest inllow vest france. if you remember the apollo eight mission, if you are 55 or older, you might remember the christmas mission that to place 50 years ago. we will focus on that. florida,oining us from good morning. caller: good morning.
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host: how are you doing? caller: i am doing well. inn we have gridlock congress between the house and senate, or we have bills that are trying to be passed, and it is democrat on one side and republican on the other, nobody is voting in between, then that and putuld be held up to the vote of the public. when they wrote the constitution, they had no clue we could communicate the way we can now. there is no reason the american people can't decide we want this, we want that. doe other things you could is get rid of polling. dictate of having polls our congress and tell us what the american people want. when you vote, you vote to have somebody put in office. the stuff they are doing now
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about limiting what somebody can come in as a governor or whatever, these things should be put on a ballot for the american people to decide whether they want it. if the american people vote for it, congress has to do it. that will change congress altogether. host: a lot of good ideas this morning. we appreciate it. keep it coming. we have another half hour on your ideas to fix congress. one viewer says, we need a moral renaissance. it is a lust for money and power that is destroying the country. has, toington monthly fix congress, make it bigger, much bigger. if keeping the house at 435 members was supposed to make it more effective and orderly, it has been a dismal failure. eight decades later, it is hard to imagine a more dysfunctional body. members spent half of their time
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fundraising and too often put the interests of donors and lobbyists ahead of their constituents, who many refuse to meet face-to-face. economic inequality continues to rise as faith in government continues to decline. host: what do you think? what are your ideas? mike is joining us from massachusetts, independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. i'm not sure you can fix congress. i'm not sure it is possible to get the things done that you will need to get that. i have three ways if you'll just give me the time to say what they are. thefirst is that since 1960's, it has become legal for unions to organize within the government. i think the reason why unions took hold in the first place is because they needed power to organize to fight against
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corporations that have power over them that were not being fair. that makes sense. peoplee government, the are the bosses of the government . that is how it is supposed to be. haveday's world, you unions that are organizing and giving political contributions to fight against the american people. the second way -- what you have to do this stop that. you have to make it illegal to have unions in the government. the second thing that needs to be addressed is the conglomerate ownership of media. the media needs to be a standalone entity. you cannot have conflicting interests where large corporations are trying to sway the american people so they can benefit from the power in washington that is being forced upon the people through
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misinformation. the third way is to stop the generatingfrom revenue in ways other than taxation. if they can generate revenue through competing with private enterprise, then they are not answerable to the people. host: thank you for the call. voteras this week, more registration. the nonvoting 60% could elect our leaders, but america gives their freedoms away. make voting editorially and get none of the above as a voting choice. john in north carolina, outlaw polls. how would you fix congress? that is what we are asking this morning as lawmakers prepare to avert a government shutdown. white house and agencies
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preparing for a shutdown. the white house and a number of federal agencies have started advanced preparations for a partial government shutdown as the president and congressional democrats appear unlikely to resolve their fight over a border wall before some government funding lapses at the end of the week. 21,deadline is december saturday. if that does happen, it would be a partial shutdown. fouress needs to pass spending bills. allen is joining us from atlanta, republican line. caller: good morning, steve. sometime ago, i wrote you a letter about how the public would fix different problems. i am pleased you are talking about how to fix congress this morning. every sunday to have a problem of the day and in. the public call
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here is how to fix the problem, and maybe they will pick up on it. let's get to the topic. the last time i looked, we all live in america, in the states of the united states. this country is all about money. it is all that really matters when it comes down to it, money. take the money out of congress. if the congress people on the house and senate want to stay eriod, theypresent p lose their pensions so that when the next election rolls around, once there very nice pension funds have accumulated, they lose them if they run again. i think you'll find a lot of congresspeople will decide to
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quit for the good of the country, in other words, the good of themselves. it is one way to get them out because of the moment there is no incentive to stop running for congress because of gerrymandering and how the system works. once your elected, you stay elected. host: thank you for the call. i remember the letter. i appreciate that. you can send us your recommendations. day inook at a cloudy our nation's capital, two days of rain, congress returns tomorrow. your ideas on how to fix congress. ethan is joining us from philadelphia. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. my comment is in response to the , 10ressman's minutes ago about how 70% of the senators will be elected by 30%
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of the country. maybe the founders did not cap urbanization in mind when they came up with the connecticut compromise, so it would probably have to be the year constitutional -- via constitutional amendment for my idea. it would be national election of senators. it would be a large list of senators. we could ensure all states have a voice that process. responding to earlier,mments from why would you want people who have no skin in the game to vote? that is not fair for anyone. the chair of the senate foreign relations committee, when we talked to him in august about a
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comment by former house speaker john boehner that the republican party is the art of donald trump. [video clip] >> i am not running for reelection. thateople that are tell me on the trail, no one cares about issues anymore on the republican side. they want to know one thing, do you support the president? i think you saw in mark sanford's race a guy who is very much of the ilk i laid out. he was defeated by someone who claimed total allegiance to the present. ofare going through a period time where the politics on the republican side is very personality-based. is this transitional? when this personality is no longer president, will be republican party migrate back to its standard foundations?
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we will see. host: senator bob corker from that interview, the chair of the senate foreign relations committee. ideas to fix congress, what do you think? debbie, independent line, new mexico. caller: listen, i have a simple solution. the country was formed by men. the rules they created got us to where we are today. maybe the next election, maybe just the women should do the voting. all women, no man. take away their right to vote for one election. to give theis going ideas. women look at the world a lot different from the way men do. host: do you think that is fair? men did it for 150 years, and they thought it was fair. their ideas got us to where we are today. everything that is going on is all men ideas.
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now they are opening the door and letting us in a bit. we are the majority of the population. we cannot do any worse than they did. that havelect people interests that go further than your front door. host: thank you. all ideas on the table. we appreciate that. matthew is next, texas. good sunday morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. america needs to believe congress can do good if they're going to fix our politics. take a look at france. this is the consequence of current problems. these problems are serious in the united states. we should be aware and don't let it happen in our country. we should change the politics that make life better for poor people, not just rich people.
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we should fix our congress in this way. host: thank you for the call. john is next from alabama, republican line. good morning. caller: hi. first, one of the problems there is k street. the way to fix that, if it is possible, and you all know what is going on with the lobbyists and those organizations. the legislation, when it is written, needs to actually show who wrote it so that when a bill comes forward, it needs to be written by the people in the congress, and not by outside organizations. i am using k street for that term. en leave, they should be required to stay away eriod ofgress for a p
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time so they cannot come back and lobby. it is with the lobbying that people are unhappy about because -- handlers in both parties the democrats are actually worse than the republicans about this. both parties take money from k street. there is a back-and-forth between the staff and the k street folks. somebody outside of congress is actually writing the legislation. host: it becomes a revolving door. caller: absolutely. the reason i am saying to you, you live up there. i used to work for a political appointee. i saw this process. i was also the chief operating officer of the firm in washington in that area. to come andsk me give money in the evenings.
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i would not do it. abhorrent, if you want the truth. we had people who came out of the government at that time i was there coming out of the clinton administration, you would get people, rhodes scholars who would come to work for a while and then go to work for one of these lobbying organizations. they would work for the companies that do the -- host: defense contractors. caller: i don't want to name any of them. auditing companies that do packages for the government. it is all done with the way the money flows. i am using k street as the example of that. there are other streets. host: we get your point. thank you very much. k street is in this town where many of the lobbyists work. members of congress who retire
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or are defeated often go into the lobbying business. looking at some of the recommendations, talking to members who have retired or are defeated. return to regular order with more mechanisms for legislation to be considered, restore the role of the committee's, change committee assignments, change the congressional calendar, and change the fundraising system. bob is next from philadelphia, independent line. caller: good morning. i just have to have two comments. one is about flight when he was in congress. he went to the senate because he wanted the filibuster rule. they said it did not work out that way. he should have gone further and said the reason it did not work out that way is because harry reid change the filibuster rule to simple majority.
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mr. flake, stopping fake news. the guy from new york, talking about the taxpayer, why should the rest of the taxpayers subsidize your property taxes in new york? you are limited now to only deduct $10,000. why deduct any of it? you should be electing responsible people from your state. make your state a little more affordable. do you know how many people are leaving new york and moving to florida? florida is worried now. they continue to vote for what they just ran away from. host: thank you for the call from philadelphia. ,e sat down with mark sanford the was governor of south carolina, and returned to the house to lose in the primary. one of the questions we asked
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him was if he could change anything about institution, what would it be? [video clip] >> i think the composition of some of the districts. many of them are now built on trying to get your incumbency rather than representation. i think that would be an important key because not in a year like this but in some election years, for the most smallou have a relatively batch of districts on the right and left that are in play. what that causes his people to audienceeme to either rather than this vital center that has been the hallmark of the american experiment. if you can change anything, it is certainly tied to the institution, the way these congressional districts are composed. host: that is for mark sanford, who lost his primary.
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good morning. thank you for taking my call. i just want to mention an idea that is not being talked about too much, ranked choice voting and instant runoff voting. we have seen this happen in maine already where none of the congressional districts won a majority, and then they illuminated the lowest performing candidates until one person did win a majority. that would stop a lot of problems like eliminating the spoiler effect that comes from third-party candidates and allowing candidates who win to actually win a majority of the vote rather than a plurality. hopefully that will lead to more moderate candidates. it is a relatively simple fix. we have all the technology to do it already. it is already being used in maine and san francisco in the municipal elections. host: thank you for the call.
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francis, georgia, republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you doing? they should have a limited time in congress. i believe in the voting in georgia, where the girl could still do a lot of stuff. i don't think that was fair at all. host: thank you. we'll go to parker in virginia, independent line. caller: hello. thank you so much for having me. host: thank you. good morning. caller: the last gentleman from new jersey talked about ranked choice voting. that is something we should talk about. i would like to have us consider the parallel voting system. it is used in eastern europe. the way it works is people who are voting actually get to cast two votes. they get to cast for their single-member district, and they
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also get to vote nationally where they can select one political party like the green party, the democratic party, republican party. seats are set aside. depending on the percentage of the national party vote, that party gets a proportion of that, and the individual votes are based on member majoritarian. host: you can get more details at we begin our conversation with luis gutierrez, democrat from illinois, retiring at the end of this year. more conversation about bipartisanship. [video clip] >> look at politics in general. bipartisanship is a virtue that much lauded, praised, but
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seldom rewarded in this place. people go, you are working with the other side? party'snot true to our principles. there are not a lot of rewards for working together. on the other hand, i have always tried from the very first day. in the beginning, it was senator ted kennedy and i working together on immigration. it was bicameral. then we went to jeff flake, my colleague in the house, john mccain. introduced bipartisan, bicameral conference of immigration reform endorsed by paul ryan. on the bill,ature a sponsor of the bill. that was bipartisanship. people working together, crossing the aisles. they just won't work with us. luis gutierrez, democrat
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from the chicago area. another story getting news over the weekend, interior secretary ryan zinke he is now the fourth member of the president's cabinet to be forced out under an ethics investigation. he is claiming false attacks on his resignation, adding he loves working for the president and his proud of the good work to have a compost. he says, i cannot justify spending thousands of dollars defending myself and my family against false allegations. how would you fix congress? john from ohio, democrats line. caller: thank you for taking my call. i don't believe congress can be fixed. i would like to see the congress work more than three days a week . since the year 2001, congress
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has averaged only 138 days of working a year. i would like to see them work five days a week. host: thank you. let's go to george from wyoming, republican line. go ahead. caller: thank you. i think it is not the politicians that need the term limits, it is the laws. if we have these laws that stay on the books forever and nobody can improve them because they don't have to, if they were forced to review these lost every 10 years and redo them, and make them work for the american people, then they would work for the country. --they term limit the laws tax onstill paying the our telephone to pay for the spanish-american war. hasendangered species law been out of the fact since 1986.
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lawsy ever reviews these to see if they are working right. host: thank you, looking at the budget process, how congress got so broken. tim is joining us. there he is. jim joining us from oregon, independent line. caller: good morning. my point of view on how to fix get angress is basically view of the independence from each state. get that through the secretary of each county and the report to the state. in oregon, there are as many independents as there are republicans. we have no representation basically. i think will probably do in order to correct congress from bes situation is -- it would
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fororted by a 2% income tax if you register as independent or republican or democrat, they would all get 2% from the price they are paying to the party so they can establish the independent party. then you would have three parties. you would not have a pendulum swinging back and forth every year or so. establish a national party, and that party must believe in the constitution as is written by our forefathers, the free it budget,system, put social security and medicare in its own pot. congress cannot borrow without the people's vote. host: thank you for the call. we appreciate it. is what it looks like at the chicago museum of science
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and industry. sits the apollo 8, which as a piece of history. it was 50 years ago this week that the three crew members orbited the moon, laying the groundwork for the first man to ofd on the moon in july 1969. saturday night live, it's a wonderful life parity with president trump. [video clip] >> americans love you. >> it is so great. it is like robert mueller doesn't exist. [cheers and applause] >> oh, really? hello, mr. trump.
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i have waited for this moment for a long time. >> mr. mueller, i've been meaning to come talk to you, but golf. >> i have something for you? >> is this a subpoena or your final report? >> report? no. it is a picture of my grandson. i've been spending such -- so much more time with them since i do not have to investigate some idiot for treason. >> it sounds like you know i used to be president. >> oh. i know everything. everything. [laughter] >> this is putting everything into perspective. i guess the world does need me to be president after all. >> yeah. that was not the lesson at all. [laughter] >> i want to be president again. i want to be president again. >> listen -- every time a bell rings, someone you know quits or goes to jail.
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>> so i am president again. it is a christmas miracle! >> no, not the lesson. host: from last night's "snl," the christmas edition. coming up, our sunday roundtable focusing on great britain and france. o'donoghuen and gary will be here, representing afp and bbc. later, we will look at 1968 and the apollo 8 mission. our "newsmakers" program follows "washington journal." our guest is brock long. here is a portion of our conversation. [video clip] be a firstgned to responder, nor should it be. it is my job to coordinate the ofwer power -- the firepower the federal government down to a state level and down to the local level. 2017, it wasat, in
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a big year. hurricane irma, hurricane maria, hurricane florence cost the government more than $250 billion in damages. especially with the california wildfires. what the federal government -- wanted fema learning and how can you improve how you respond to natural disasters? >> we learned a tremendous amount. before i took office, the country went years without a major event. packed 38sically years of our entire history into that 16 month time period. the amount of disaster assistance we will provide for the last two years is the equivalent of what the agency has done in its entire history.
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it is forcing us to rethink everything. i fully believe a bigger fema is not the answer. it is a whole community approach that has to be put into play to be able to properly prepare and recover. it starts with a prepared culture, citizens being initially resilient, properly insured, and neighbor helping neighbor come all the way up through a strong local emergency management program, and then putting fema in a position to support for the big events, not the run-of-the-mill, everyday disaster that we typically deal with. >> this week on "the communicators," federal communications commission chair ajit pai on what he sees for the future, including 5g and spectrum sales. this is facilitating america's superiority in 5g technology. there are three parts.
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one, getting more spectrum into the commercial marketplace. we are doing that now with a gigahertz auction now. to getting more spectrum, we talked about 6 gig band for the future. spectrum is one part. the second is wireless infrastructure. the networks of the future will 4gk very much like the networks we are accustomed to today. there will be relatively inconspicuous and operate at lower power. third, modernizing our rules for more fiber deployment. this is a conical part of 5g. getting the wire line infrastructure to carry internet traffic to the core of the networks. if we get those components right, america will win the race to 5g. >> watch "the communicators"
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monday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. "washington journal" continues. host: our sunday roundtable focusing on the situation in europe, rate britain and france in particular. joining us is elodie cuzin, u.s. politics correspondent with afp. o'donoghue, washington correspond with bbc. start with the brexit vote. the comments are an insult to the office he once held, she said. in london last week, mr. blair votemp's made back a new if not of the other options work. in a bid to make her deal more acceptable to mp's. could onlyid there be clarification, not renegotiation. what is happening? guest: if anyone knew that, they
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would be able to see a path through. you think you had turmoil here in d.c. there has been absolute chaos and turmoil in london and other european capitals. because there is no real majority for any particular outcome. theresa may's deal does not command a majority in british parliament. havinger options -- referendum does not command a majority. at the moment, there is no obvious way forward. what theresa may is trying to do is extract concessions from her colleagues in the e.u. to try to get some kind of guarantees on the so-called irish backstop, keeping the board open on the border of ireland. brussels is not moving on that. host: there are a number of reports that there are some in the conservative party looking for another brexit vote. abc and others reporting that this morning. guest: i think we are nearer to a second referendum then we were
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or have been, but we are still nowhere near it. there has been a great deal of reluctance among the political class in london to go for a second referendum, not least because the british people would punish any particular party to ask them again when they have already spoken. there are huge political risks for going down that route. run, it could have a consequent is. if they had a second e.u. referendum, for example, them people in scotland, who want to vote for independence for scotland, will say hold on, let's have another vote here. there are all sorts of pitfalls. no one is ready for a compromise. host: we are hearing the possibility of a hard break on march 29. explain what that means. the e.u.itain leaves
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on march 29. that is the one fact we know at this stage. that will happen, one way or another. if there is no agreement on the divorce deal, which is what we are talking about -- we are not even talking about an ongoing trading relationship. we are just talking about dividing the cds and who pays for this and that. if there is no deal, britain will leave without a deal. what will happen then is there will be this hard order in ireland, which everyone says they want to avoid. host: elodie cuzin, we will turn our attention to france in a moment, but from your vantage point, what is the frustration level by european union leaders when it comes to theresa may? guest: it seems quite high. when the british promised or went to brussels, after she survived her vote of no confidence, she went there to try to find support from european union leaders.
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she wenttion when back to london seemed quite cold -- freezing. it seems like it has been frustrating on the others. host: from the afp website, there is this -- france's yellow vest protests losing momentum on a divisive -- decisively gun. groups of fine yellow vest protesters faced off with tens of thousands of police around france saturday, but the protests appeared to have lost momentum on a fifth and decisive weekend. the french president announcing a series of concessions monday explosive yellow vest crisis, which swelled up from rural and small-town france last month. for minimum wage calmed appeared to have
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country. anger ofe demonstrators and the broader population seems to still be there. it all started against an increase of the fuel tax. become moret has broadly against macron himself. his personality seems to be divisive. people find him arrogant. so it has broadened. also, like we saw yesterday, there were less protesters, but the demands seem to be changing or switching a bit to a more direct democracy, with more referendums, maybe a change of the constitution. people want a more direct say in french democracy.
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so at this stage, it seems like support for the demonstrators have gone down. it is now 50-50. host: here is what the french president said monday. you will hear it through a translator, his speech to the french people. [video clip] >> we want a france where people can live in a dignified way from their earnings. we have gone too slowly. i want to intervene quickly and in practical terms. i asked the government and parliament to do what is necessary so that people can live in better conditions from their work. the salaries of workers will rise by 100 euros per month from 2019 forward, without causing anything more to taxpayers. extra work should generate extra revenue. overtime should be paid without taxes and without charges. improvement to the
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perfect. that is why i asked all employers to pay and end of year bonus to their employees. which will not be taxed and will not generate any social charges. retirees are a precious asset. those who paid less than 2000 canceler month, we will the tax increase that we had planned. host: from france this past monday. elodie cuzin, what was behind this tax increase initially? guest: the idea was to go to a green economy in a way that would lower carbon emissions. linked to thectly paris climate agreement, which president trump said afterwards, but it was an intent to get a green economy in france. gas is more expensive in france than in the u.s. this protest is mainly from
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middle class and lower middle class families who have to take their car to go to work. so it seemed like it triggered this massive response to the yellow vests, in france -- i do not think it is the case here -- is something every driver has to , in caseis or her car you have to pull over. so it was really a symbolic message. it really started with this fuel tax increase. host: 202 is area code. 748-8000 is our line for democrats. (202) 748-8001 is our line for republicans. you can send us a tweet on @cspanwj. in join our conversation on facebook, i want to go back to our conversation in great britain. this was wednesday, when the prime minister was facing a vote of no-confidence. she was being questioned by nurmi corbin, the head of the labour party -- by jeremy corbyn
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, the head of the labour party. [video clip] >> when she left on her journey, we were about to start a four of a five day debate on the deal. since the prime minister has not achieved any changes, either to withdraw an agreement or to future partnership, can she now confirm that we will have the concluding day to debate and dayswithin the next seven before the house rises for the christmas recess? i had discussions with a number of people yesterday, and i've made some progress, but there is -- of course, there is an e.u. counsel meeting after which the questions can be held. you asked about the meaningful vote. the meaningful vote is being deferred. the date will be announced in a normal way.
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i will tell numbers on the others, when we have had a meaningful vote, we had it on the referendum in 2016. wants a meaningful date, i will give him one. the 29th of march, 2019. >> totally and absolutely unacceptable. house agreed a programme motion. this has agreed to five days of debate. this house agreed when the vote was going to take place. the government tried to unilaterally pull that and then i this house -- and deny this house the chance of a vote on this crucial matter. the prime minister and the government have already found to be in contempt of parliament.
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her behavior today is just contemptuous of this parliament and this progress -- process. host: from the house of commons this wednesday. we tried to refrain from opinions here, but it is fascinating to watch the house of commons on a weekly basis. but can a majority of the parliament, labour and conservatives and others, have a vote of no confidence against the prime minister? can the full parliament do it? guest: there are two things -- what happened earlier was the conservative party inside parliament triggered a vote of no-confidence in theresa may as therefore, as prime minister. she won that. but over one third of her own mp's voted against her. that was after giving assurances she would not lead the party in the next elections in 2020 two. a vote of no-confidence generally can be called. the labour party is thinking about doing that, trying to pick the right moment to do that. if they did that and won that,
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there would be a period of uncertainty, and that could lead to a general election. bear in mind that because theresa may called a general election in 2017 and failed to win a majority, she is now dependent on a bunch of irish mp's from that democratic unionist party to maintain her slim majority in parliament. they are effectively holding a sword over her head and saying we will not agree to any of these arrangements for ireland because of the nature of the border there. host: gary o'donoghue has served as a washington correspondent for the for four years. before that, chief political reporter for the network in great britain. and elodie cuzin, u.s. politics correspondent with afp. on to your phone calls. thomas in south carolina. good morning. caller: good morning. i would like to ask the question -- is the british people a
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democratic society? guest: that is a big one. a really big one. i think they would like to think they are. certainly when they voted in the referendum, albeit narrowly, in 2016 to leave the e.u., they felt that was a decision made and should be honored by parliament. the difficulty is the nature of the way britain leaves is thing no one can agree on. that has caused enormous divisions in britain. not just in parliament. this runs through the party. it is not just the conservative party. voters,unks of labour opposition labour voters also supported brexit in the referendum in 2016. that is why there is such a reluctance to have another referendum vote, because they know they may be treated harshly
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by voters on all sides if they choose to go down that route. obviously, it is a democratic country. we elect members of parliament. we have something called representative democracy, which means the people in parliament really have the sovereignty. the executive is drawn from parliament in a way it is not here. and parliament has the final say. at the moment, it cannot make up its mind what it thinks. host: we welcome our viewers across europe. the number to call is (202) 748-8003. new jersey,s from republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. i do not really believe this political upheaval in france or britain. i think the people are finally waking up. they are seeing through a left-leaning media that totally bout everything.
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i think they see that climate change is mostly a moneymaking hoax. al gore is a perfect example of that. i think they are finally seeing that all of this left-leaning -- left-wing socialism has brought both countries down to its knees. illegal immigration has brought about all kinds of negative up people in both countries, to where you have terrorism, a violent crime rate that spiraled and rocketed. i think people are finally seeing through all of this. that is what is happening. i do not think it is up people. i think the people are waking up. host: thanks for the call. elodie cuzin, let's take illegal immigration in france. is that a factor in what we have been seeing the last four to five weeks? specific this demonstration, i would say no. for the yellow vests, it is
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incomea claim for better , a rise in minimum income. we have not seen this demonstration as something linked to criticizing illegal immigration. we have the far right came quite close at the last presidential a feelingso there is in france from people that are upset by immigration and illegal immigration. but the caller was talking about climate change and it being a hoax. i think the people who are there isg in france -- not this divide around climate change. they are not saying climate change is not real. but they are saying we do not have enough money to make ends meet. and maybe there are other ways
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to fight climate change. -- one of the things in france was the tweet by president trump, when he said people were upset about this climate change agreement in atnce, and afp has looked this claim. this image actually came from the u.k. a few months ago. chant in not usually english in france. although english is getting better. illegalld say immigration is not the main issue. but there is a broader movement we have seen in the u.k. and populationh a feeling they are not being listened to. so it may be more to this point. host: let me follow-up -- we have been seeing some of these images from paris. you are in the u.s., but do they
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capture what is happening, as we approach the holiday season with many americans heading to paris for christmas? guest: as you are saying, yesterday, there were new protests, but there was much less of violence. especially in the beginning of the month, the images in france, where we were used to crashes during demonstrations, these are particularly violent. but coming up to christmas, it seems the french population has seemed to want to calm down. there were more protests in the areas out of paris. yesterday, the shops were open, and some terrorists -- were happy they could go around and do their christmas shopping. it seems to be decreasing with christens coming up, although there was an attack a few days ago. the government called on the stretch they not to
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police forces too much. strasbourg,ttack in the christmas village, four confirmed deaths. it appears it was a lone gunman, correct? guest: he has the profile that is becoming common. experts say it was a 29-year-old, this young man who has a criminal record, a lot of criminal convictions, who was not publicly religious in his years and maybe became radicalized more recently. he was on the watchlist that exists in france, on people who are being watched because they may be radicalized. it is a very broad list. it seemed he slipped through the net. host: elodie cuzin, the u.s. politics will correspondent for afp, and gary o'donoghue, washington correspondent for bbc. carole is joining us from
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england. caller: good morning. i am calling from beck's hill. guest: hello. caller: can you hear me? guest: yes, we can hear you. carry-on. caller: i think my question is fairly simple. i do not understand why it would be undemocratic to have another vote. because the people who voted "no" will have the same opportunity to vote "no" again. the people who want to change their mind will have an opportunity to vote now that they know what is on offer. and the young people, who were excluded from the vote in 2016, will have a chance to have their say, which is important, because everything we do now will affect their lives in the future. host: before we get a response from gary o'donoghue, how did you vote? caller: i voted to remain. host: and if there was a
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re-vote, what do you think would happen in great britain? caller: i don't know. but i believe young people should have the opportunity to have their say, and i believe people who have changed their mind should have the opportunity, now they know what is on offer. and people who have not changed their mind and still say "no." host: thank you for the call. what about that idea? guest: there are clearly political risks to another referendum. tot is what i was alluding in particular. there is another reason, which is what questions do you put on the paper? do you put on the paper remain versus the deal that theresa may has got? of people do not like theresa may's deal. so they say there is nothing on the ballot paper we can support. so you have remain, no deal, and theresa may's deal. so how do you decide who wins?
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likely, no one will get about 50%. there are significant difficulties as to working out what question you would ask in those circumstances. but you are right when you said the chances of this have been -- the chances of this have increased. certainly, you are hearing that from members of the cabinet, who are starting to inch towards if we cannot decide anything else, that may be the only possible way of getting past this blockage at the moment and avoiding a no deal. the vast majority say no deal. some bacteria say no deal would be fine. we would manage it. but one thing that would happen with no deal immediately is an irish border. host: theresa may speaking to supporters that reporters after their surviving her vote of no confidence. how significant are the numbers?
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may -- yes, she has the support of her party, just about. they cannot challenge her for another year. but she also has a divided country. that is the real difficulty. we had one cabinet member saying supposing there was a second referendum and there was a 52-48 majority in favor of remaining, he said let's make it the best of three. you can see it is actually a divided country. there is not much appetite yet for compromise. here is what the british prime minister said wednesday evening. [video clip] >> this has been a long and challenging day. at the end of it, i seemed to have received the backing of my colleagues in tonight's ballot. while i am grateful for that support, a significant number of colleagues did cast a vote against me. i have listened what they have
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said. following that ballot, we now need to get on with the job with delivering brexit to the british people and building a better future for this country. host: we made a comment about the christmas tree, and there is something significant here. downing street has always gotten its trees from norway in the past. and there have been discussions about britain having a norway therearrangement, where is still a border and norway is not part of the e.u., and that is something that has been floated. but at the moment, that is not something at the table. lake steve joins us from elsinore, california, independent line. thank you for waiting. caller: good morning. i've been paying to attend -- i've been paying attention to what has been happening in britain and france. it is similar to what is happening here. a lot of what we are seeing is
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smoke and mirrors. because it is all corporate. being left out. i know here, i was working at a hardware store part-time -- i am retired now. but i was working and i saw young people having to work 2, 3 jobs to make ends meet. i understand why they are so upset over there. the issue is you need a higher salary, better benefits. peopleow, the working are really having a hard time. and this is coming firsthand. i was there with them. the amount of money is not going forn pay to compensate expenses. host: thanks for the call. is this the case in france? guest: it certainly is the case for a lot of demonstrators who
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were talking about this aspect of not being able to get through the end of the month and managing. speech lastin his monday at president macron announced a package of members taxes on pensioners. people yesterday seemed to be saying this is not enough. a lot of people have trouble finishing the month with their income. host: robin is next from alabama, independent line. good morning. caller: good morning. good morning to c-span and merry christmas to everybody. i would like to know what their opinion is about saudi arabian -- about the saudi arabian that got killed in turkey. thank you. host: thank you for the call. talking about jamal khashoggi,
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the person of the year, "time" magazine's cover story. guest: in britain, there is a --ar belief that this is there in mind, britain has already been subject to this russian poisoning, state sponsored murder. political spectrum, there is a view that saudi arabia -- this is completely outrageous. the state has to take some responsibility. some complex trade ties with the saudis, particularly in the defense area , on a smaller scale than you do here, but there has not been much equivocation on the part of british political figures in terms of response ability. host: elodie cuzin?
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buenosduring the g20 in aires, we could see there was quite a heated exchange between president macron and mohammad bin salman. quite heated. u.s. and other european countries, sells weapons to saudi arabia and other goods. there is this mixed up being outraged and being careful about some economic interests. it seems like the response has been stronger from the white it is also a bit balanced. host: if you could use one or two words to explain or describe the relationship between the french president and president trump, what word would you use? guest: "complex."
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we wanted to have a warm relationship. president macron was elected just a few months after donald trump. i do not know if your member the previous regime, where the invited fors bastille day, and they went for dinner in the eiffel tower. it seemed to be very warm, and the president seemed to like it so much he wanted a military parade here in washington. after that, there was the state visit, the first state visit that donald trump organized in the white house or macron. -- for macron. since then, trade discussions -- emmanuel macron recently wanted a european nominee, and
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donald trump did not like this idea and said it was insulting. the past few months have been much more tense. the tweets by the president of the united states, talking about french internal politics have not gone well with the french government. replies saying please stop commenting about our demonstrations. it is complex. host: in between the british promised and president trump? guest: the same word applies. theimage of her coming to white house, him holding her hand as they walked down the steps -- it is certainly not like that now. there have been a few flashpoints, not least recently where he made some comments just after she idolize the exit deal, and he said it would be a good deal for the e.u., which did not help her at all at home. but the key thing to remember
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about the british is, of all parties, left and right, since the second world war, they have seen the overriding british national interest, in terms of foreign relations, in maintaining a very close relationship with the united states of america. they believe that is central to britain's maintaining its role in the world and maintaining the influence it has in the world. there are very new british political leaders who would think the breaking of that is a good idea. host: gary o'donoghue with the london-based bbc, and elodie cuzin, with the paris-based afp, both here at a table as we talk about the u.k. and france. daniel joins us from england on the bbc parliament channel. go ahead. caller: hi. i had one question for the british correspondent and one for the french. let me ask about the british one. the rivers of blood and the
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conservative monday club, the conservative party distance itself from all of that. in -- distanced itself from all of that. in my opinion, and i want to know your opinion, the referendum was a vote on immigration, but it was the wrong vote. it was the only time we were asked we want this immigration? so people went against the recommendation of the government, because they want to change immigration. so the problem is people are disenfranchised, and that is why they voted for exit. and for the french, i wanted to ask, in 2005, the mathematical olympiad's were taking place for schoolchildren, and france, the laplacef descartes and came in 13th place. moneyent huge amount of
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on education, and you are now 35th place. some people are blaming that on immigration and the fact you are not integrated enough with your children. host: thank you. why not start with that question? guest: it was very precise. there is a broader question about education. as a candidate, one of his five forms was this agenda. lower income -- in areas, where it is tougher for kids to learn, they would divide classes into. it was something he was conscience -- conscious about. education is a big issue in france. we have two invest in more difficult areas. france is based on a
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meritocracy. we are still proud of our public school system. but it is true depending on where you are, your public school is very different. it is an issue, and it has not been resolved. host: and the first point daniel brought up? guest: i do not think there is any doubt whatsoever that immigration and a concern about immigration were a major part of got.ajority that exit i do not think there is any question about that. concerns about immigration in the e.u. and from outside the e.u. the pressure that put on book services, on housing, on jobs, all of that is absolutely true. a lot of people that voted to leave said on we first voted to join the e.u., it was a trading bloc. it was just about making sure there was frictionless trade. difficult see -- the
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difficulty of that is the world is a different place. it is a global, interconnected world. no one suggests completely shutting the borders, because governments know they need to attract talent from outside. high pay talent but also, at times, in certain industries in the u.k., a lot of people were brought in to fill gaps that simply couldn't be filled, whether it be seasonal work in agriculture or in the care industry, from eastern in particular. so there is a problem here that perhaps politicians were slow to grasp. of time whereriod concerns about immigration were dismissed, and politicians did -- realize that personally perfectly reasonable people could have concerns about immigration. host: with regards to brexit, what is the next step? that, iell, if i knew
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would be the prime minister. i think what theresa may will do is return to european capitals in brussels, probably this coming week. she will try to extract something more than she expected at the end of last week, which was precisely nothing. she will hold off this vote on her deal for as long as possible, possibly until the middle of january. perhaps that will change some votes in parliament. 170 members of, her own party are against her deal. making up that gap looks hopeless at the moment. host: and have things stabilized across france? guest: in terms of demonstrations, it seems to have stabilized. it is less true about president macron's standing. he has hit a very low point in popularity, less than 20% at the beginning of december. experts say no president has
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ever gone up from that point. we will see. but he tried, with this speech last week, that he has heard that discontent. host: we thank you both for your insights. elodie cuzin, the u.s. politics and garydent for afp, o'donoghue, washington correspondent for the bbc. we appreciate your time. we want to turn our attention to your calls and comments. open phones. the phone lines are open at (202) 748-8001 for republicans. democrats, (202) 748-8000. if you are an independent, (202) 748-8002. we are live in chicago at the museum of science and industry at the top of the hour. a look back at the historic mission of apollo 8 and what that meant for nasa, the space program, and ultimately putting a man on the moon in july of 1969. iss weekend, our cities tour
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traveling across the country, and we are in lawrence, kansas. american at 2:00 on history tv, we will look at the inside look at the life and career of former senator and his eventual end of it bob dole -- and presidential candidate bob dole. [video clip] >> this talks about his career in the 1980's. in 1984, he is elected republican majority leader -- or he is the majority -- the republican leader, and republicans are in majority of the time. a letter from his longtime friend, senator inoue from hawaii. they went back a long time. together patients after they were injured and wilbur two. there is a great story where to the bobuye says
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dole, why not get that thing cut off, like i did? so these men bonded together as soldiers and, at percy jones, discussed how they had great plans or themselves. we said we will see who gets to washington first. and sentt there first, him a telegram that said i am here, where are you? "theis week on communicators," federal communications chair ajit pai on what he sees for the future, including 5g and spectrum sales. >> to implement our 5g fast a plan i rolled out a couple of months ago. there are three parts. number one, getting more spectrum into the commercial marketplace. we are doing that with a 28 g igahertz auction now. addition, we talked about the
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6 gigahertz band for the next generation of wi-fi. the second part is wireless infrastructure. the networks of the future will look very much unlike the 4g networks we are accustomed to today. so we will see small cells that are relatively inconspicuous. we want more wireless for structure. and third, more deployment -- getting the wireline interceptor in place to carry all of this internet traffic into the core of the networks. if we get those three components right, america will win the race to 5g. communicators" monday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span [applause] . "washington journal" continues. host: our phone lines are open. tell us what is on your line. (202) 748-8001 -- that is our
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line for republicans. and (202) 748-8000, democrats. in a poll,ill," former vice president joe biden, at the age of 76, and senator bernie sanders leading the field in the race. only a handful of candidates, including julio castro, the former housing secretary in the obama white house. and the democrat from maryland six congressional district. the new york times -- democrats warning of what they call a five alarm fire. the story from cheryl -- the decision to strike down all of the photo care act has -- all --the affordable care act after --
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the promise to return them to the house majority they had loss in 2010, democrats moving swiftly to defend the law and safeguard its protections. tony is first up from georgia, republican line. yes, i cannot understand why all of these people from the mainstream media are giving the president such a hard time. i think the man is doing an excellent job. foruld like to see him go another term. i hope and prays he does. he has been put there for a purpose -- to in the country. host: the weekly standard -- nikki haley lot in her next move. the last addition of the weekly standard after 20 years, founded in part by bill kristol,
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announcing last friday they will be shutting down effective immediately. kathy joins us from oklahoma, democrat line. caller: good morning. i am a registered democrat and voted democrat all my life. but i do not agree with immigration. have up to 30 million illegal immigrants, what they have done has not worked, and their ideals are not right. so why not put up the wall? do they not think there should be some sort of improvement or change over what they are doing? i think their argument against the wall is totally invalid. host: the front page of the washington post, and the announcement by the president that ryan zinke, now the fourth member of the president's cabinet to the forced out under some sort of ethics investigation, telling reporters he is stepping down because he
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did not want to face thousands of dollars in legal bills to go after what he called false charges to him and his family. from maryland, al, republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. i am a first time caller. extremely nervous -- host: no need to be nervous. we are glad to hear from you. why has it taken so long for you to call? caller: i am a vietnam vet. i've been disillusioned. why is it that the best do not rise to the top? it voted, and it seems we are always voting for the lesser of two evils. it is discouraging. we have been lied to from the very beginning. i am just disappointed. but i know that, sooner or later, the way things are going, if there is no compromise, no getting along, this country will always get what it deserves. host: don't be a stranger.
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you did well. in florida,alice independent line. caller: good morning. host: go ahead. caller: i want to say something about the wall. i've been watching this for decades. the wall is a mess. if we had it under control, we would not have so many illegal aliens. i believe we have closer to 20 million people here. it is going to over populate our country. we cannot keep up with feeding these people, clothing them, educating them. i will tell you exactly how i feel about it. people have to stay home in their own country and fight their own government. stand up against the ark government and stop relying on us to take care of them. where are the men, to protect the women in those countries -- and they need to grow a pair of cannolis.
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we are the land of the home and the free because we fought for it. other countries need to fight for their rights and stay out of our pockets. i want a wall. thank you. host: thank you for the call. now we go to jan, joining us from portland, oregon. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. about the gentleman, the first time caller, i want to tell you thank you for your service. i was in high school and college during the vietnam war. i protested against it -- i was a registered republican when i was old enough to vote. because -- irty, changed my party, because i really do not want republicans messing around in women's health care. specifically on the abortion
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issue. we keep talking about these immigrants coming into our country and over populating the country. but i am sure that there are enough cultures here where the women just do not want to have that many children, and because they do not have reproductive rights in so many of these states, they are not allowed to get help. i think that is one solution to the problem. i know a lot of people disagree with me, but there has to be some way women have control over how many children they have. host: thank you for the call. another headline from politico. mick mulvaney calling donald trump a terrible human being but said he supported him over hillary clinton. thevideo surfaced after president named him the acting chief of staff on friday.
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there is also a related story in the new york times and the washington times. illinois,midlothian, good morning. caller: good morning. you are talking about the health care law. i recently went to the doctor. nothing has really changed or most of us. you go to the doctor, you do not no one -- what it is going to cost you. you want a high deductible plan law got sure how the struck down in texas when the supreme court already heard it. we can see democrats are running on health care again after they said they fixed it 10 years ago. it needs to be looked at again. host: thank you. from the washington post, we talked about brexit. wasain's brexit crisis entirely self inflicted. and the sunday section of the new york times, the most boring
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important story in the world. timothy, democrat line, good morning. caller: good morning. the reason i was calling is because all of these people are being sandbagged about mueller trump, trying to make it seem like it is a democrat hack job. but mueller and rosenberg are both republicans -- host: rosenstein. caller: i was saying how could they try to categorize that? that's all i have to say. host: thank you for the call. our good friend from ithaca, new york. the only have a moment or two, but please go ahead. are you with us? we will try one more time -- caller: hello -- host: we go on to howard in fort
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lauderdale. good morning. caller: how are you doing? host: fine, thank you. caller: merry christmas. there are so many topics. i do not know where to start. so i will start with this one. we have a lot of problems in this country. i think the problem started when we took god out of our hearts, our schools, to supply out of homes. this is where the problem started. because our morals diminished. we are no longer thinking about what we are supposed to do as human beings. understand, if i a woman is raped, she did not want that child, i understand that. but killing that baby is not the is sir -- not the answer. we are not the creators of human life. god is. god is only one who can take
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that choice away. never is or can be our choice to decide whether a baby lives or dies. the only way to stop that from happening is immaturely not that that happen. do not have premarital sex. if you do not want kids, do not have sex. host: from the washington post, the white house preparing for a shutdown as a public and lawmakers struggle for an alternative. the deadline is this saturday. congress passing a short-term continuing resolution to keep the government in operation. if the president does not sign what congress passes, we could have a partial government shutdown leading into the christmas holidays. we will have all of that for you on c-span and c-span 2. ron joins us from decatur, georgia. good morning. caller: good morning. the reason i am calling is about
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the wall. they talk about building this wall to stop people from coming over the wall. what is to stop them from building tunnels? they already have several tunnels. we build the wall, then they start building tunnels -- then what? they are trying to stop things, but it is an almost impossible task. leave well enough alone. we have more important issues. they will find other ways of coming in. host: below the fold in the washington post, mark fisher, the partisan warrior, looking at michael flynn, how he morphed from a storied officer to a purveyor of conspiracy theories. his sentencing set for tuesday. next to that, a washington post pole, few americans believe trump's claims. robin from oregon. caller: good morning.
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i am from oregon, too. we do not have to kill all of these babies. this is ridiculous. i am adopted. i was adopted in 1960. howme to sit here and hear the only control people have is to kill a baby -- you have lots of control. get the pill, the shot, do all sorts of things. please, do not kill all your children. host: thanks. a little feedback when you get through. we ask you to turn the volume down. times,he fold of the ryan zinke, the first cabinet member ever from the state of montana stepping down at the end of this year. joseph joins us from pennsylvania, republican line. caller: good morning. what i would like to talk about is the wall.
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i think the financing of it is secondary. muchall would save so money. it will be cost-effective almost immediately. penny in the drop of our fiscal expenditures. host: jeff, you get the last word, from just side -- just outside buffalo, new york. caller: good morning. i would like to mention "the by sherman. sea," host: how did he do that? caller: they settled the civil war. it was the march to the sea that did it. and i am very proud yankee, from new york. host: thanks for the call.
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in our first hour, we looked at how you would fix congress, and interviews we conducted with retiring members, available on our website, but tv live all weekend on c-span 2. and c-span 3's american history tv focusing on, including in a moment, nasa 50 years ago. >> ok, houston. >> christmas eve. the date of the mission is dictated by launch windows, which open and close in a long cycle. if you miss one, you wai. and our of the apollo 8 mission was really determined billions of years ago. it out to the christmas season.
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bob hope recorded the vietnam reaction. bob: all joy. the men i spent christmas with have a good time, but the apollo and robbed offn on god, and i remember months before we knew how much it meant to all of us and all the people around the world. >> it was christmas on earth and on the moon. ♪
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>> the moon means a different thing to each one of us. type expense of nothing. it certainly would not be a very inviting place to live or work. [inaudible] it makes you realize what you have back at home. host: joining us from chicago is robert kurson, the author of the book "rocket men."
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thank you for being with us on c-span's washington journal and c-span3's american history tv. i want to talk about the book in a moment, but let's talk about this mission, which is 50 years ago this week. how significant was it. ? guest: i think it was one of the most significant moments is used in human history, to tell you the truth, the first time human beings ever left home and the first time we arrived at a new world on this ancient companion, the moon. it truly was a space odyssey and a great exploration in human history. what but given sense of was involved. first, probably from planet earth to the moon, how many miles, and how long did it take? guest: the moon is about 240,000 miles from earth. until apollo 8 wet, the world altitude record with 853 miles.
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something about the magnitude that apollo 8 represented. a quarter million miles to get to the moon. and the three men, the three math the astronauts come all of whom are still alive. who were they come and what do they mean to the mission? guest: frank borman was the commander, and he flew on one mission before, gemini 7. jim lovell also flew with frank borman on gemini 7. he was also 48 years old, 11 days different in age between them and. they were joined by a third crew bill anders. borman was not interested in picking up rocks on the moon. he joined for one reason, to defeat the soviet union on the most important title field
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everywhere, space. jim lovell was the opposite. he loves rockets since high school. he was very romantic about the notion, even as a kid, of pushing into the cosmos and places people never been. anders was a beautiful combination of the two. he believed in defeating the spoke be at union in space, but he was also -- defeating the soviet union and space, but he was also dreaming of being on the moon one day. so the crew came together at just the right time and just the right place. host: how do we get from john f. kennedy's pledge in 1961 to the apollo 8 mission in december of 1968 and neil armstrong in july of 1969? guest: that is a very good question, because when president kennedy made that promise, it did not seem like an ambitious promise, it seems like i'm
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insane promised him especially to the higher-ups at nasa. one describes to me falling out of their chairs when the president made that thomas, because no one at nasa had any idea how to do such a thing on my and even if it did know how to do it, they did not have the infrastructure, technology, or the manpower to do it. president kennedy only gave them a .5 years to get this done, and nobody knew how to pull it off. the kennedy made that promise not for just love leslie reasons -- publicity reasons, but he did it for existential reasons. we were losing the battle to the soviet union, and the president needed something so spectacular, important, and profound that it went over take the soviets and really went the space race, but he needed time to do it, because we were so far behind in 1961, and landing a man on the moon by the end of the decade seemed like the perfect combination. nasa just have to learn how to get it done at that point. host: why were we behind the
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soviet union? what were they doing at that time that we were not? guest: that was a big question for the united states at that time. behind? we it really all started in 1957 when the soviets launch sputnik, the world's first artificial satellite. the soviets have made their own moon in 1957. in a matter of days, it dawned on the united states that the control space, put men in space, and they can control space militarily. it was a big shock to us. just a few years before, soviets seemed like a primitive country. they were doing things we were not doing, including putting the first man in space, the first orbit, the first woman in space, the first dog, everything was bigger and better than what the united states was doing. even earliermaybe
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than we did that the control of space was an existential proposition, and really it could control the universe and control the future. host: we saw the nasa footage a couple of moments ago, but can you explain how this became essentially a christmas mission? guest: yes, well, the mission had not even been achieved for months before it actually launched. it is almost impossible to think about now. most normally they take one year to year and a half to plan, train, and execute. this was just four months before it was scheduled to launch and was done so under duress. it had fallen behind in mid-1968 due to design and production problems, and that alone threatens the entire progress of the entire program, but it also puts president kennedy was the end of decade deadline
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in jeopardy, it allowed the soviets to get the first. a brilliant man named george lowe at nasa had an epiphany in the early summer of 1968, and that of his name was if nasa could send a mission to the moon without the lunar module, so leave it behind, go to the moon, they can learn everything there is to learn about a lunar for the landing itself, and they can keep the program moving. as he thought this through, he realized given the position of in earth and the moon and everything at nasa could somehow come together in a near miraculous way, they could go as early as late 1968. there was a call for them, believe it or not, christmas eve and christmas day of 1968. heehow low believed it, and convinced chris-craft, the
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,irector of operations at nasa to sign onto your it seemed impossible, but if they could do it, they could get the apollo program moving, they could keep kennedy's promise alive to the country, and maybe most importantly, h infinitely to the first man on the moon. the: of course assassination of dr. king, the riots, the escalating protests of the vietnam war and finally of richard nixon in november of 1968. i want to put on the screen and photograph that has now become iconic. it is the earthrise photograph that took is when the old auto a mission was taking place. explain this picture. guest: well, i believe this is the single most important, powerful, and profound photograph ever taken.
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it represents the first time human beings are looking back at themselves as they hold, a whole, a- as a single, self containing photograph. none of them expected to see this beautiful scene unfold before them. it happened on the fourth of the 10 revolutions that apollo 8 was planning to make around the moon. allthe training, which was prep for 16 weeks, no one had for anought to plan earthrise, so what happened was the astronauts were coming around the moon, and borman changed the organization of the desks so when, the astronauts look out, all they could see was that gray lunar landscape. ,t was all gray, no color craters, mountains, hills, and gray.
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and beyond the horizon was the pitch black infinity of space. out there, black is a different kind of sensation than we know here on earth, it is infinite black. when th pitch black infinity of space, over the horizon was a tiny flash of blue. it was a miracle, it was blue, expectingf them was it, and suddenly it rides a little bit, and there is a crest to the top, and all of a sudden what they realize they are looking at is the earth rising over the horizon, and it was magnificent for them to review should hear tapes and listen to their discussions. they are beside themselves, they are overcome with joy and wonder at the spectacle. frank borman actually gets the first picture of the earthrise, washe said the short lens
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really for the principal photographer on board and an artist at heart, and he takes pictures of the earth rising over the lunar landscape, and these men are overwhelmed at what they are seeing. anders gets this shot that becomes known as earthrise. we all know the photograph. i think it is the most important and powerful photo taken because it does show us all as one for the first time, especially at the end of this year, which is one of the most divisive years in american history. host: our guest is robert kurson, joining us from chicago. his book, "rocket men: the daring odyssey of the men of apollo 8 and man's first journey to the moon." viewersto bring in the and listeners. if you remember the apollo 8 mission, call (202) 748-8000. central and eastern time zones, (202) 748-8001. and for those out west, (202) 748-8002. you mentioned what
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the astronauts were seeing and hearing. here is part of it. [video clip] past hours, the astronauts around the dark side of the moon. 10 minutes later, they fired the thrust engine into the successful lunar orbit. by now, the spacemen were only 70 back their post miles away. >> the moon means a different thing to each one of us. i know my own impression is that for bid and, lonely type of existence, like nothing. it looks sort of like clouds and clouds of pumice stone.
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it certainly would not appear to be a very inviting place to live or work. >> during their 10 orbits of the moon, the astronauts photograph of the sea of tranquility and other potential landing sites for use for future explorers. host: courtesy of the lbd presidential library. robert kurson, when you hear that, what do you think? guest: it still stirs me. this is a moving thing. this is the first time we arrived at a new world, and they are describing it for us live. it is a miracle of technology. 50 years ago, almost to the day, these three men climbed aboard a rocket that had the power of a small atomic bomb, a rocket that, by the way, had only been flown twice before they went, the second time of which has failed catastrophically. these men were incredibly courageous, and here they are at the moon describing this body
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that since the dawn of humanity, since we began walking on the earth, has on our souls, and here they are delivering a first-hand report of it. i never get tired of hearing it or cease to wonder at what they did. at one pointder there would not be male armstrong on the moon in july of 1969 other not been an apollo eight, correct? guest: that is very true. one of the things that attracted me to the story in the very early days i found it is that when i listen to interviews with other astronauts and read interviews with other astronauts and nasa personnel, they seem to the apollo 8 in reverential tones, often in tones they did not even use for their own flight. it often came down to this -- by the time the apollo missions flew, so much of what needed to be known and done had already been done and proven, but when apollo 8 went, nobody knew that any of it could be done for sure. apollo 8 represents the first in
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so many ways, and nobody knew before they went that any of it never happened. they were the true pioneers and really took the highest risks, in my estimation, it is the most dangerous of all the missions. host: we will get your calls in just a moment, but first, robert kurson, you told the story of how the book came about. tell the story again, if you would. guest: the book really originated where i am standing at the museum of science and industry in chicago, which is one of my favorite places on earth. when you grow up in chicago as i here on field trips starting at nursery school, can you answer it one of the great miracles of the museum of science and industry, one of the great joys, is that it is almost impossible to find your way out. about a few years ago, i was showing friends of mine the u-boat, whichrman is similar to the u-boat i wrote about in my first book am a
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"shadow divers." i tried to get out and find my car, but as this happened to me since an kindergarten, i got lost. i found myself in his room, and in the center is a wonderful spacecraft, that you see behind me, which looks as comes from the past and the future all that once. i went and read the explanation for what this spacecraft was. i had no idea. it is said that this is apollo 8 , which made mankind's first journey to the moon, and that startled major and i love space at astronauts, i bought the local grocery store, but i knew almost nothing about it. this was really incredible, man's first journey away from home and the first arrival at the moon. when i did get and find my way
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out, i started doing research. even among all the other miracles that nasa had old off, out out tos stood everybody, it seems, and that is how it got started on the book. host: and the book is titled "rocket men." ted is joining us from fletcher, north carolina. good morning. ted, do you remember the apollo 8 and where you were christmas of 1968? caller: i do not remember where i was christmas of 194068. i was 14 at the time. i want to thank mr. kurson for the articulate explanation. looking at the space capsule on my television, it is amazing to imagine that those three men went to the moon in that and came back. i want to compare with where we are today with elon musk and i the blue orchid or blue
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space exploration with the reusable spacecraft. i think we are in another time when exploration is beginning to , you know, go beyond our expectations, and it is an amazing time, again. we are lucky enough to be witnessing new exploration into space. thank you for this program. it is very interesting. thanks. host: thank you. guest: thank you for the kind words. i agree with you about the excitement of the new space age, as we can call it. private enterprise is doing remarkable things. if you watched the launch of the falcon heavy a few months ago, it was like watching true science fiction coming to life, for the rocket to come back and land itself, better than anything hollywood has ever pulled off. in to think about the fact that
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they invest their own money and explore not just the moon but going back to mars and even further. it is a thrilling time to be alive, and i feel lucky to be able to appreciate it. i was five years old when apollo eight launched, but i sure can the insight of the craft on the surface of mars and taking high-resolution surface pictures. it is a irritable and i feel so lucky to witness it -- it is such a miracle, and i feel so lucky to witness it. host: walter cronkite was a space advocate, loves covering the space program in the 1960's and 1970's. i mentioned that because david has this tweet -- "as the bucket list, to witness a rocket on the scale of a saturn 5 launch of close."
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in our dnaink it is and politics, i think it is in our system, and we must do it. by the way, as we all sit here today at the very end of 2018, the saturn 5 remains the most powerful machine ever built. think about what that means, 50 years later, when technology is obsolete in a matter of months, 50 years later, the saturn five is still the most powerful machine ever built. the people who witnessed it, it is incredible, and walter cronkite himself when he announced the launch of apollo 4, as you can see on youtube and online, the normally staid and conservative walter cronkite is overwhelmed. he is shaking. he is trying to hold the glass panel together, and he is miles away. the power almost cannot be described. 13 miles away in a howard johnson hotel, windows were
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rattling and threatening to collapse on hotels there. to get anywhere close to a rocket launch is on a bucket list item. if they ever launch something like a saturn 5 again, stop at nothing to see it. "the another tweet, excitement whenever reappear about space travel. we let it all slip away, and we will never get it back." guest: i hope that is not true. certain things will never happen again for the first time, and that is when things -- one of the things that's really me about the apollo eight story, nobody will arrive at the moon for the first time. that was apollo 8. that is what remains so exciting to me. i hope that we have that sense again as we someday land on mars and go beyond. host: let's go to ron next in philadelphia. good morning. caller: good morning, sir.
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i remember 1968 was such a bad year for this country. we had the tet offensive, the war was unavoidable, two assassinations. i think they picked up the spirits of the country on christmas eve. the mission, his motto was "bring us together, and i think this launch basically brought our country together. onas sitting with my family christmas eve, ready to go out to midnight mass and watch this on tv, and it was amazing. it was just amazing. i cannot believe it has been 50 years. it seems like yesterday. guest: yes, thank you. people were really worried about it, because apollo 8 was so convinced and compressed as far as flight plan and training. people were very worried about this. major newspapers editorialized against it. d nasa astronomers begge
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not to do it. one thing i found in my research with a letter written a schoolteacher to nasa them not time, in hisstmas point was this, it has been such a terrible year with the tet offensive, as he mentioned, 15,000 dead in vietnam, violence in the streets all over the country every week, including right here in chicago at the democratic national convention. you had a president who had decided not to run for reelection. everything seemed torn and divided against itself, and the teacher made that point, this is the worst year, 1968 that any of and christmas is the one day that we can all exhale and relax for just a few hours. it is the only thing we really have in this terrible year. can you please not risk the lives of these men, men who have children at home if men,ing happens to these
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nobody will ever think of the same way of christmas again. but they were committed to go, and go they did. host: and there was one telegram best at what about 1968? "time" magazine had already named its manned of the year. by the time apollo 8 made its turn, time magazine changed its mind and name the crew of apollo man of the year, that is what apollo 8 menace to the year and the world in 1968. the astrazeneca they came back home were inundated with tickertape parades come all of the country, millions of people
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came up, tens of thousands of calls, letters arrived, it was the astronauts could not read all of them. one of them stayed with them and remains with them 15 years later today, since by an anonymous is in the midwest, and it set simply "thanks, you saved 1968," and indeed i they had. host: from a layman's perspective, it is really remarkable how simple this rocket was. guest: yes, it is that once incredibly simple and also incomprehensibly complicated. you know, to get to the moon, and not just get to the moon, remember come of soviets, -- remember, the soviets, they just wanted to fly. chris kraft wanted to
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fly around the moon. bill anders once pulled out his iphone and showed it to me and is more computing power in this iphone and mission control had combined. had a little casio calculator watch and said it had more power than the spacecraft behind me, so in a way, it was very, very simple, but the calculations they made an the technology they put together -- in comprehensible. they were scheduled to arrive at the moon at a certain time that was predicted by trajectory specialists. when frank borman heard the projections, he started to do his own calculations, and he figured the average age was 24 years, the average age of the people plotting the course to the moon. when apollo 8 arrived to the moon and slipped behind the far side, causing communication with mission control to go to, the
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astronauts checked the plot, and mission control in the trajectory specialists had gotten the predicted cutoff right to the absolute second. that is what they were doing 50 years ago, sometimes with flight rules. it is incredible to think about how complex and how simple it was at the same time. host: you can get more information by logging onto the museum of science and industry in chicago, a website that includes celebrating the moon and the apollo 8 mission. stan is joining us from staten island, new york. good morning. caller: good morning. first off, thanks for c-span, because there is something about the way you guys do things always brings joy and happiness to people, especially when things are going all screwed up around here. in the meantime, what i remember back in 1968 was the fact that everyone was saying "why are we wasting all of this money going to the moon, we have poverty," and whatever it is.
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people did not get how important this was, because with everything that went on in 19 68, it provided an opportunity to bring a great amount of peace and joy to the nation, and what those three guys did, which is a question that i have for the author, which is -- how do you find three individuals to go into a space like that, go someplace where no one ever went before, during that those three individuals can work together? because i can imagine, you know, taking outend up three individuals that have the personality to do something like this? i would really be curious as to how these individuals were picked. host: stan, thank you for the call. guest: you know, it is a very good question, and i agree with you about what they brought to the country in 1968. i am still not sure how they
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picked these men or the men for hasother missions, but nasa something deeply, fundamentally correct about how they picked these fit club, how they screened them, and how they bring them to the astronaut corps. these men truly had the right stuff. in terms of apollo 8, there was a pretty good idea that this would go well, because borman and lovell headphone together on gemini seven-day. -- on gemini 7. it was a capsule much smaller than the one behind me, no larger than the front half of a volkswagen beetle, and to be together for 14 days. if you can do that together, you can probably go to the moon together. when lovell and borman came together, they said i would like to announce our engagement. host: [laughs] guest: even though there were
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different men, they got along perfectly, and anders was an unlikely but perfect combination to the two. nasa knows how to find the right stuff. it was really miraculous how they picked them. the end of 1968, it really was something special. it seems like when apollo 8 launched, nobody could agree on anything, the fabric of society have really been torn apart. by the time they splashed down, it did not seem like there was anyone in the country or maybe all the world that could disagree that something beautiful have happened. host: we should point out that the backup proves the apollo 8 -- backup crew for the apollo 8 mission, who were they. buzz: the backup crew were aldrin and neil armstrong. the backup for apollo 8 became primary for apollo 11, and when you hear the armstrong and
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buzz aldrin talk about it, they knew something very special was happening. host: just as a side note, why was the armstrong designated to be the first man to walk on the moon? guest: i am not an expert completely in that, i think it just happens to be the way the rotation fell at nasa, but i cannot say that for certain. all i know is they were very confident in armstrong and aldrin and mike collins. by the way, fred hayes was the third backup astronaut on apollo 8. they were considering sending the crew of apollo 8 as the crew of apollo 11, but that did not rule out to be true as i tracked down that information. tot: this tweet, going back your earlier point, mr. kurson, "considering every one of us is tweeting on a computer device that is more powerful than the computers on the apollo mission." eah, it is beyond
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belief. they had to wired, the amount of memory that they had at their disposal, jim lovell told me such a good story that when they were training for apollo 8, when they use the navigator, he would go to boston and work at m.i.t., and he would use a bright light on top of the building looking out from over the charles river. that is how primitive and rush things were at the time. today, the at them computer models, and they looked like objects that were designed by jazz musicians, cubist painters, and poets. it is wild. they brought it together and made it work, almost without a hitch. host: and when they return, commander frank borman speaking about the apollo 8 crew at the white house. here is what he said. [video clip]
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borman: mr. president, i thought we had experience every motion known to man in the 20 hours we spent in lunar orbit, but i must confess i believe that this passes it. i can speak for jim and bill when i say we are three grateful americans, grateful for you personally, we are grateful for your contributions to , and we are grateful for your service to the country. they have supported us in every way, and although we are symbolic of the country's greatness, we certainly feel very inadequate, and we are just very, very grateful. and sir, we didn't want to give you two things. we carry with us a space treaty on the moon, and bill anderson would like to present that to you, sir. [applause] borman: and mr. president, jim lovell have a picture of the ranch i think he
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would like to share. [applause] [laughter] [applause] from 1968, and all three crew members, as you pointed out, still alive. this is a more recent photograph, william anders, james lovell, and frank borman. don is calling from alexandria, virginia. good morning. caller: good morning. andnt to thank mr. kurson command c-span for bringing or what mr. kurson set was one of the most tremendous events in human history. i know people will be thinking quite a bit about the first man on the moon, to walk on the moon, but this event, which was the first time is, inwent to the moon, my mind, just as substantial as
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the apollo 11 . july.nk you -- 11 next so thank you for bringing that to the nation's attention. media will pick up on this event. the three humans, thank god they are still alive, that first went to the moon. i was 8 years old at the time. if you had told me when i was eight years old that in 50 years we would not be capable of putting man not just back to the moon but not even putting him in earth's orbit -- i know we are trying the last few years, there have been some attempts to get back, a manned be capable of itting a man and lower orbit, would have said, even as an eight-year-old, are you kidding me? are you crazy.
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anyway, thank you, c-span, and thank you, mr. kurson. thank you very there is a photograph in your book, ,r. kurson, of valerie anders and we are told they said "please be informed, there is a santa claus." what does this picture represent? guest: the picture is very deep. suffering bywas the time apollo 8 launched. one of them, and white, was -- ,d white, was one of susan's and the impact on her, the children, susan became convinced with 100% certainty that frank was going to die in the line of duty, and when the apollo 8
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mission was given, then she was sure it was going to happen on apollo 8. she had been drinking a little bit when ed white lost his life, and a little bit more, nothingk borman knew about that. susan it was important to spare him from what was going on in her life or in the life of her home, so frank was oblivious to the suffering that susan was enduring. susan was so convinced my friend was going to perish that while he was in lunar orbit, she began composing his eulogy at the kitchen table, because she wanted to be in charge when the inevitable happened. perhaps the most dangerous part of the mission came when the astronauts had to leave lunar orbit, they had to rely either single engine, they had no redundancy, unlike future apollo flights, they had a single engine, they had to rely, and lighthad to re correctly in order to return to
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orbit during they had to return to transmission from spacecraft in order to confirm that the astronauts were in fact on their way home. when that finally happened -- it was a heart stopping event -- it happens much later in the process than anyone thought was safely viable, when radio communication was finally established, jim lovell came on and confirmed that there is a santa claus, and that moment, that very moment when apollo 8 confirmed it was on his way home, was snapped by a "lies" magazine -- "life" magazine photographer. it is an incredible photograph, and the history behind it and the suffering of susan borman was immense, and that is part of what you need to know to really appreciate that photograph. host: let's go to melvin in chicago. the country, including president lyndon johnson, watched this late in 1968. good morning, melvin. said they wereu
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the recovery shift of apollo 8. there was a very important experiment we were using for that mission. was sent to addition in order to bring back pictures from the moon, and i never found out whether that mission or that experiment went over or not. i was wondering, did mr. kurson have any information about that particular thing with the apollo 8 mission? host: melvin, thank you. guest: i don't. i am sorry to say that i don't. that sounds fascinating. i do not know about that experiment at all. host: what was going through their minds? guest: boy, it is hard to say.
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you know, when you ask them, i think what they felt most when i got on the recovery ship was grateful to be americans. they felt very proud of their country, for what it represented, for what it had done, and for what it has risked and dared to dupe your you must remember that we were still in the cold war, and this was a battle of ideals, a battle of freedom and communism. it really was thought that the five that would win the space race was going to win the cold war. so i think they really appreciated the sense of where they come from and where they returned to most. that and the ability to breathe fresh air after six and a half days in a spacecraft. host: and the fact that all three crew members are still alive, and in putting together this book, you have firsthand oral accounts to chronicle. guest: yes, it was the luckiest thing in the world for me. that all three were not only living but they welcomed me into their homes and really gave me unlimited access to the. they were happy to see me when
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the i needed to pick up phone. they could not have been nicer people, but one thing i discovered early on in the research in working with them is just how important the wives w ere in the story. i am ashamed to admit that i did not reallyy contemplate that in this story. woman,ealize that each valerie anders, marilyn lovell, and susan borman, were just as courageous, important to the success of the mission of apollo 8 as their husbands were, and what they did, and when they made possible with so moving to me and so deep that it became a major part of the story and about my book. the astronauts themselves could not have been nicer, more regular guys. up, watchingowing the space mission, they would push in the old little black-and-white tv on a big giant metal coaster, the kids
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would gather around and watch, i thought of astronauts a sort of demigods -- they were sort of half human and have godly, almost like a different species, this other creature that was so spectacular, there were many levels beyond rock stars are superstar athletes. them,were just a few of and it did not seem like anyone had ever done or attempted to do before. when i finally met frank borman, jim lovell, and bill anders, i have to get used to the fact that these are just three of the nicest, most ordinary, wonderful, warm, regular guys. and i had to remind myself sometimes after days with them that they had actually done something unprecedented and spectacular, and just appreciate that, save for one or two strands of dna that are crossed a different way, or wired a little different than the rest of us, they are very much like us, but there is something a little different about them. they have the right stuff that separates them from the rest. ot-tallb a 350-fo
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rocket and lost to a place to hundred 40,000 miles away. it was a real privilege to get to know them and their wives and their families. host: before we get to the next call, i want to go back to the point that you just made, no backup engine. had the mission failed, what would have happened? guest: i will get you a good idea of what would have happened, because remember, the trouble that caused this whole plan to be rushed into existence executed, so the lunar module needs to be left behind. they can learn everything there is practically to learn about making a lunar landing safe for the landing itself. the lunar module survey very critical secondary function, and that was as a backup engine. that meant when the apollo 8 when to orbit around the moon and needed to come home, it had to relight the engine, the only engine they had on board capable of getting them out of orbit.
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if the engine failed, misfired, hired to hard or too gently, they can be trapped into orbit, they could crash right into the surface, or they could be flown off into eternal orbit. they did not have the backup engine that the lunar module represents. now on apollo 13, which is flown by jim lovell, the secondary function of the backup engine of that lunar module proves critical to saving the after this explosion in the oxygen tank near the moon. that is what they used to get home. if an accident had happened aboard apollo 8, apollo 8 would still be out in space. host: joining us from pottsville, pennsylvania, good morning. thank you for waiting. caller: good morning. i am so excited about the program. i watch this, and the year after
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in 1969, windmill armstrong went on the moon, a woman came on the flight, she went into the control room, and all of the people in the control room have a recording of neil armstrong and she got that recording of neil armstrong for and everhat time, since then, i have kept all of his clippings, everything from the newspapers, and now it turns c-span on, and i'm hearing this, and i am all excited. i have my face right in the tv. i love it. thank you so much for everything you are telling us. this really brings back memories. host: rosslyn, thank you. robert kurson, your reaction. guest: well, i am as excited as she is, i have to tell you. it has that effect. again, i think this goes to something the inside our dna,
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this hunger we have to explore and to go beyond, it is something that space to all of us, especially, as we said, at the end of 1968, they did it, and i think we could use another apollo 8 for our time today. host: i want to go back to some more film. this is the white house dinner honoring the apollo 8 astronauts. keeping in mind charles lindbergh was in attendance. you can see how far we came in 1968 from when charles lindbergh made his story flight. [video clip] >> a few days before the apollo 8 countdown, at the first white house dinner honoring america's entire space seem, president praised the leader of nasa's outgoing director james .ebb on hand was charles lindbergh, famed for his solo flight 41 years ago, and the astronauts of inllo 7 and apollo 8, who
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1968 earned their place in history. theyute to the dinner, autographed a document which will hang for those who visit the mansion. >> and now before the countdown before apollo 8 begins, i want to say this to the men and its crew, criminal or meant, and eljor andrews, -- colonol borman, captain lovell, and major andrews, we wish you godspeed, we wish you a safe return, and the only people in the world who will be more concerned about you and i am is the girl who will wait for your return. 11, 10, 9 13, 12, -- we have a ignition
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sequence sart. the engines are on. 4, 3, 2, 1, 0. we have liftoff. liftoff at 7:51 a.m. eastern standard time. we have cleared it. >> roger. >> i hear you, houston. >> loud and clear. afteryears to the month the wright brothers flew the first airplane, the powerful saturn rocket launched apollo 8 's crew on man's first trip to the moon. host: robert kurson, that is a remarkable point, just how far we came from oracle and wilbur lindbergh torles apollo 8. guest: yes, and charles burke actually visited and asked about
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the fuel that it would expand. he made the calculations and told them that in the first second of the apollo 8 flight, it would burn 10 times more fuel than lindbergh himself had burned in 1947. host: charles in new york, good morning. caller: good morning, gentlemen. thank you to you all. robert, i was just six years old when it right became the first american to walk in space. the missions were exciting, because there was a launch every few weeks, but apollo 8 what's important, because it was the first mission to leave earth's orbit. apollo 8, 12, and 11 are the most famous accomplishments, in my opinion. guest: i could not agree more.
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matter how much you look into it, in fact, the more you look into it, the more astonishing it becomes and it happened 50 years ago. it does not seem old, it does not seem ancient, it is perpetual what these flights created. i do not know that we had the kind of existential threat that would cause us to push into the unknown like that, but i do have hope that we will do it soon, because we could really use that kind of wonder again. host: i want to show you on mission, howollo 8 the lender and the module really does look like the number 8. guest: right. that logo was designed by jim lovell just after the new assignment for apollo 8 came in. he and borman were sharing a jet to tell their wives about their new mission, and lovell sketched the figure eight around the moon.
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it was the first of many perfect confluences, where that logo really represents everything there is to know about the flight. host: and here is the lunar orbital plan from nasa, december, 1968. john, florida, good morning. caller: good morning. i was 20 years old when apollo 8 happened, and yes, it seems like it was only yesterday that it happened. i remember me, my mom, and my dad watching this him as saying "is this real? does this mean we get to go to the moon soon?" and sure enough, in july, neil armstrong set foot on the moon. and it is a shame that america has lost its will to conceive the apollo missions, specificall apollo 18, 19, and 20. i think america needs to be lifted out of its doldrums that it currently finds itself in. have a nice holiday season. host: john, thank you.
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kurson, i showed it earlier, but i want to show it again, president johnson at the white house, watching the coverage. explain what we had from the three broadcast networks during this time period. what was happening? guest: right. more people are watching these events that have ever turned into an event in history. three television screens represent the three networks. he is watching the splashdown, which is coming, another risky part of the mission. hits the waterit are people going to actually believe that this really happened. they may believe it, but it will not really dawn on them that it came true until they are back to earth, so that is the moment they are looking at there. it is one of the greatest moments ever, but you have to remember about the world tuning into this. before apollo 8 left, frank was told of the
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broadcast they would make would be listened to by more people than it ever turned into a human voice in history. nearly 1/3 of the world population would be tuned in by radio or television. they said "say something appropriate." he said "can you imagine being given that direction on something so important today? it would go through committees, the white house, marketing agencies." they left it to borman and his grimace. -- his crewmates. they thought about changing the lyrics to a christmas carol, but that seemed to her list for such , so hetous occasion tossed a literary friend if he had any ideas, and that man cannot think of anything. he tasked another man, and that men also struggled. he explained his frustration to his wife, and he said i know what they should say.
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and he was taken aback when she explained with the men should say on christmas eve as they orbit the moon, and he knew immediately that it was right. he told bormann, and borman and his crewmates knew immediately, they put in their flight plan, and forgot about it. did not tell anyone at nasa, they did not otherwise her children, they were too busy. and they went back to training. on christmas eve, here is like television broadcast, and nearly 1/3 of the world's population is tuned in, it is spectacular to see the screen flickered life. and you can watch all of this online. it is amazing. the astronauts give you a tour of the moon. the moon is beneath that. it is amazing. here is what we have experienced, and then with a a haveor a minute and to go, before the signal goes dead, bill anders begins to speak, and everybody at nasaare wives'sing, and's the
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hearts are floundering, they do not know what is coming, with a few minutes ago, he had a few minutes to speak, and he says to the world "in the beginning, god and immediately, men and women began to sob. bill anderson is reading from genesis in the bible, a story that speaks to millions of us of -- at once, a of story of creation that is not have to do with tribes or takescts, then lovell over and read a few lines, and then borman reads a few lines. and he says with "happy holidays, merry christmas, and merry christmas to everyone on the good earth," and with that,
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the signal goes dead, and around fromorld, people stream their homes, out of tavern, under bridges, everywhere, hoping to catch a glimpse of this spacecraft that spoke to all of us at once, knowing full well that they cannot catch a glimpse of anything, but looking all the same. that is what it meant to all of us. host: robert kurson, you have perfectly that piece of film. [video clip] , and are now approaching for all the people back on as a, the crew of apollo 8 message that we would like to .end to you "in the beginning, god created the heaven and the earth. and the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. and the spirit of god moved upon
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the face of the waters. and god said, 'let there be light,' and there was light. and god saw the light, that it was good: and god divided the light from the darkness." call the light day, and the darkness he called light, and god said let there be germent against the waters, and he divided the waters, and it was so. heavens,alled upon the and the evening and the morning was the second day." god said, let the waters
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of the heavens in her be together, and let them try land appear, and it was so. and god called the dry land earth, and the gathering together of the water is called thegod saw that it was good. and from the crew of apollo eight, we close with good night, good luck, and god bless all of you. all of you on the good earth. host: that from 50 years ago. in our final minute, what is the message. what are the lessons learned? guest: the lesson learned is countrypeople in this in america have the will and they believe in something strong enough, they can do anything. it is possible with enough heart and enough commitment. especially with our backs against the wall.
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the united states is capable of anything. things that benefit the whole world and not just our country. host: the book is titled rocket man, the daring odyssey. joining us from chicago, thank you very much for your time. guest: i am grateful. thank you for having me. host: more works available on our website at up next, an oral history with frank borman as he talks about the historic mission of the apollo eight launch. it was recorded back in 1989. it took place at johnson's space center. that is coming up next on c-span3 american history tv. c-span's wasn't a journal is live tomorrow -- c-span's washington journal is live tomorrow.


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