tv Tonight From Washington CSPAN April 14, 2010 8:00pm-11:00pm EDT
as well as others in this saturday's tragic plane crash. thank you. we welcome you all to today's oversight hearing. regrettably, german leahy is not able to attend because he had the funeral of a good friend back home in vermont. we will proceed without him and without objection senator leahy's statement will be placed in the record. attorney general holder, it has been well over a year since you were confirmed and this will be your third oversight hearing before this committee. we welcome you and thank you for
making yourself accessible so we can engage in one of our most important responsibilities. oversight of the justice department. it is a duty that we take seriously, regardless of the party in the white house. oversight should not be conducted for the sake of political gain but it should be meaningful discussion about the challenges facing the justice department and provide a check on exactions and the use of taxpayer dollars. over the past year the justice department has done many good things and should be applauded. the department has renewed its commitment to local law enforcement which has put more officers on the beat and meet our neighborhood safer, helping local communities attract business and economic development. and a stepped-up enforcement on the southwest border be turned the tide on the mexican drug cartels and continue to funnel drugs and crime to cities throughout the country. for the criminal division is increased efforts to root out fraud operations that cost the federal government and americans
billions of dollars. from a financial and mortgage fraud they help -- to health care and medical fraud. as the economy rebounds, the antitrust division revitalized enforcement has fostered a competitive marketplace that encourages innovation and economic development while ensuring consumers have access to high-quality goods at the best prices. the justice department's tireless fight against terrorism has yielded numerous intricate plots and arrests, valuable intelligence information and a successful prosecutions. we reminded of our struggle against those who wish to do us harm on christmas day when brief passengers stopped the would-be terrorist of taking on an airplane with a homemade bomb and when the fbi interests of a sophisticated plan to attack the new york subway system. yet there have been what should and that concerns raised by democrats and republicans alike about this administration's approach to terrorist
investigations, detention and prosecution. among the many issues he will need to address today include long overdue need to close the prison at guantanamo bay, where to hold trials for the five 9/11 plotters, and the process we used to detain and interrogate foreign terrorists such as the christmas the bombers that are captured in the united states. reasonable minds can differ on these issues but we can all agree that the decisions you make will have a long-lasting and far reaching impact on our fight against terrorism and ability to keep americans save. the justice department is charged with import duties and many areas of the law. we thank you and the thousands of employees who dedicate themselves each and every day to the independent and in parts of enforcement of the law. we look for which reproductive hearing enter now to the distinguished ranking member senator jeff sessions for his opening statement. >> thank you, chairman. it's good to be with you, and i
am sorry that our chairman lee he couldn't be with us today. attorney general holder, thank you for being here. it is an important oversight hearing and it comes with an important time and we have a number of issues to discuss with you. after 9/11, subornation fundamentally re-evaluated its approach to terrorism. we recognize that we are at war and that our normal criminal justice procedures were not designed for and not appropriate for the new threat. within began to establish a military commission from work consistent with history while the detention interrogation and trial of captured al qaeda terrorists. we passed bipartisan legislation to put the system in place and we built a multimillion-dollar court house at guantanamo bay. much effort including the 9/11 commission led to this decision. but the president and the u.s. attorney general have worked on these policies and games. it is in peril i think a lot of
hard work and progress over the years. as you know, i supported your nomination, but your actions have shaken my confidence in your leadership of the department of justice. immediately after taking office, president obama's the executive order stopped these military commissions. then on july 20, less than six months after you took office, the detention policy task force, which you co-chair reached a conclusion captured enemy combatants including the 9/11 terrorist and others held at guantanamo bay would not be tried by military commissions but would be given the presumption of civilian criminal trial. since that time, not one military tribunal has been held. they have been stopped. on november 13th, you announced that even khalid sheikh mohammed, the alleged mastermind of 9/11 and the other 9/11 plotters would be taken from gitmo and brought to new york
city for trial. five days later you detained before this committee that this was in the best interest of the american people in terms of safety. you cited as support for your views of the new york mayor. debt since that time the mayor and the governor have both opposed this decision. you said that, quote, we know we can prosecute terrorist safely and securely because there are more than 300 convicted international and domestic terrorists currently in the bureau of prisons. but that was surely an exaggeration when on march 22nd he finally provided a list of those individuals after much fighting. it was i think an inflated list of many hundreds of lesser offenses. many of those cases were only prosecuted before the military commissions became of optimal. in the november testimony you claimed that civilian courts
were just as effective as protecting classified material as military courts. yet in those same march 22nd responses come in your department of justice contradicted your statements and conceded that military commissions to provide better safeguards and find the response is listed seven ways military court procedures are superior. based to the to december 25th, umar farouk abdumutallab, the christmas day bar, was captured, but he was questioned less than an hour before he was given a murder and of warnings and offered a free lawyer. sometime later decide this for renter the stoppard of carrying an al qaeda bomber would be detained and prosecuted in a civilian system. after the warnings, abdumutallab clammed up and did not resume cooperation for weeks. on january 20 of the heads of america's intelligence agencies testified they were not consulted on this decision, you
don't agree third he wrote a letter to the congress stating that abdumutallab was mirandized with no objection to all other departments of government. in that same letter you wrote, quote, i am confident that the decision to address mr. abdumutallab's factions through our criminal justice system has not and will not compromise our ability to obtain information needed to detect and prevent future attacks. there can be no doubt that treating terrorists as regular criminals will reduce ability to obtain intelligence. six years ago you acknowledged that fact in a supreme court briefing you failed to disclose during your confirmation process. you candidly admitted that the civilian criminal system possesses inherent limitations that, quote, might impede the investigation of a terrorist
offensive under some circumstances, close quote including portability, quote, to detain a dangerous terrorist or to interrogate him or her effectively, *close quote . most recently on march 6th you curiously suggested to some bin ladens should free same delete to receive the same treatment as charles manson. in light of the rescue described as inherent in the criminal justice system do you really believe that if we capture bin laden or any al qaeda leaders the first question that we should ask is to do what a lawyer? civilian trials, terrorist combatants are not required by law, policy, history, treaty or plain justice, yet to this policy, it appears, still remains in effect for at least unsettled. there are, however, some important areas which we do agree. the department of justice rightly has its privileges inappropriate cases. you have testified to the
legality of military commissions and i appreciate that. even though they have not been used under your tenure, and you have supported a crack cocaine sentencing bill we passed in this committee and i appreciate working with you on that. but the course that he shows some of the national security is schering us into a head-on collision with reality. american people are not interested in terrorists being brought from guantanamo to their own communities. the reality is a stubborn pretending that terrorists can safely be treated as common criminals will not make it so so i hope you are willing to reconsider the sources. i hope that the answers that you provide today will help restore my confidence in the leadership of the department, and i look forward to working with you toward that end. thank you. >> thank you, senator sessions. mr. attorney general, we will take your testimony. >> well that morning, mr. chairman, senator sessions
and distinguished members of the committee. i'm pleased to be here to discuss the importance of the work of the united states the purpose of justice. one of the things i pledged during my confirmation hearing was that i would be here regularly, and last year i had the privilege of appearing before this committee three times, not including my confirmation hearing. and over the past 14 months since i became the attorney general, i have had the pleasure of working closely with many of you. i want to thank you all for your partnership and you're own support for the thousands of men and women who served the department and tirelessly worked to protect our country and in force our walls and defend our interest in court and insure the integrity of our justice system. today i've been asked to report on the justice department's progress, its priorities and its goals. i am proud to tell you what we have accomplished and also what we plan to achieve. even before i took the oath of office last february, a pledge
to every member of this committee. i promised that under my leadership, the justice department would vigorously pursue several critical objectives, combat and terrorism, fighting crime, in forcing our laws in a non-partisan manner, and reinvigorating the department's commitment to integrity, to transparency and to results. i also promised that in our most important work the work that protecting the american people the justice department would lead with strength and by example and that we would use every tool available to keep the american people say to. now i never expected that fulfilling these promises would be easy. after all, ours is a time of growing demand and limited resources. and as we have confronted unprecedented threats, new responsibilities and tough choices, the justice department i believe has made historic progress. over the last year in addition
to working tirelessly to protect the nation from terrorism and from other threats, we indicated the other traditional legends of the department. we've strengthened efforts to protect our environment as well as our most vulnerable communities. we have reinforced our mission to safeguard civil rights in the work places, the housing markets, building booths and border areas. we have made a stride in ensuring that our prisons are secure and aimed at a rehabilitation which is not merely a humane policy. it is a smart policy because we do see recidivism blix all of us safer. and as part of our focus on securing our economy and combat in mortgage fraud and financial fraud the department has launched and is now leading the financial fraud enforcement task force that president obama called for last year using legal tools provided by this committee. at the same time the justice department is working to make the criminal always fair.
last year we launched one of the most comprehensive reviews and history of the federal sentencing policy. our guiding objective of ensuring that sentencing practices are smart, they are tough, predictable and that they are fair is one that i know that every member of this committee shares. i want to thank this committee and the full senate floor the critical step that it took last month in unanimously approving a dramatic reduction in the disparity from powder cocaine sentences. it was enormously heartening to me personally. i mean this in a personal sense to see the committee come together in a bipartisan fashion to address this long standing injustice the 100-1 disburden undermined trust in the criminal justice system and of the resources away from the prosecution at large-scale drug organizations. these reforms will serve the goals of all enforcement while
ensuring fairness in sentencing. looking ahead i hope the judiciary committee will hold the department achieve its goals and meet its responsibilities by confirming the presidents law enforcement nominee more expeditiously. there are currently 19 united states attorney nominees and 17 united states marshalled nominees awaiting committee action. a backlog of this magnitude is unusual. i've spoken to the chairman, then the ranking member about this concern and i am hopeful that it will be addressed without further delay. every day the dedicated professionals of the department of justice help to fight our ongoing war against an enemy that continues to attack us at home and abroad. over the past year i am proud to say that the department is working closely with our partners in the intelligence and national security committee. the extraordinarily successful disrupting plots, obtaining
intelligence and incapacitating terrorists. we detected and disrupted a plot to attack the subways in manhattan with explosive bombs that could have killed many americans at would have been the most -- would have been one of the most of not of the most deadly attacks since september 11th, 2001. he has already pleaded guilty to the terrorism charges in this case when we have also tried several of his associates with participating in the past and related crimes. we secured a guilty plea from david headley for assisting the deadly attacks in the mumbai of november 2008 and plotting another attack in the markets as part of his plea is often provided valuable intelligence to the government about terrorist activities abroad. we have obtained the cooperation of umar farouk abdumutallab, who tried to bomb an airliner landed in detroit last christmas. although i cannot discuss the
intelligence that he has provided, i can tell you that it is not just in valuable, it has been actionable. we convicted him of attempting to murder military and law enforcement agents in afghanistan she is a pakistani captured in afghanistan with explosives and information about nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and the descriptions of the united states landmarks. she later opened fire on united states personnel. the justice department under the bush administration invited her in federal court in 2008 and she was convicted several weeks ago in new york. most of the work was done by career professionals driven by ideology accepting loyalty to the nation and a commitment to keeping our people safe most importantly they get results. since september 11, 2001 congress has perfected the
justice department authorities have significant resources to fight terrorism. the department has used these resources i believe effectively training 160 convictions for terrorism offenses and to under 40 convictions for terrorism related crimes. at a time questions have been raised about the will of the courts it is important to note that most of these convictions can during the last administration which made the criminal justice system and interpol component of this counterterrorism strategy. the bush administration used the criminal justice system to interrogate, prosecute and incarcerate terrorists for the same reason the obama administration has. it is an extremely effective tool to ensure justice to protect the security of the american people. let me be clear. this administration will use every tool available to fight terrorism. every tool. this includes both civilian
courts and military commissions. indeed, we have already referred six cases the prosecution and to commission. we will no doubt prefer other cases as well. we have deployed the full extent of our intelligence military and law enforcement resources to defeat terrorists and we achieved i believe significant results. it would jeopardize those results to prohibited the use of the criminal-justice system to prosecute terrorists if some in congress have proposed and would seriously weaken our national security. instead of pursuing a narrow approach to fighting terrorism we have to be flexible. we have to be pragmatic and we have to be aggressive. and in every circumstance we must choose the weapon that will be the most effective. with that said, i know you all have questions about the prosecution of the charge with plotting the 9/11 attacks. no final decision has been made
about the form in which khalid sheikh mohammed and his co-defendants will be tried. on the outset this is a close call. it should be clear to everyone by now there are many illegal, national security and practical factors that have to be considered here. as a consequence there are many perspectives on what the most appropriate and effective for is. in making this decision i have to insure you this administration is only one pair of goals to ensure justice is done in this case and in the pursuit of justice we will enforce the law and protect the american people. today it will work to uphold the trust of this committee has placed the really also to reassert the pledge so long as i have the privilege of serving attorney general the department justice will be an instrument of the constitution and a servant of the american people. of any party and not of any political ideology. we will continue working to
protect the nation's security to advance the best interest of the american people and to strengthen the values that have made the country a model to the world. thank you again for this opportunity to discuss the justice department's a central work, and i had to answer any questions you might have to read thank you. >> thank you mr. holder to be we will now in march on questions and rounds of seven minutes the guantanamo task force recently completed its review. the to hundred 40 detainee's to determine whether each would be prosecuted transfer to another country or held indefinitely. i'm pleased to hear you review each case. however in your testimony today you did not mention if or when you plan to pos guantanamo bay. are you still determined to close that prison? if so, can you give an update on the timeline for doing so and what you intend to do with a detainee is dangerous to release or for whom you lack sufficient
evidence to prosecute? >> it is the intention of this administration to close the facility at guantanamo. there was and i think still is maybe that is the degree that it once existed bipartisan support for the notion that the guantanamo facility should be closed. it serves as a recruiting tool for those who have sworn to parma this nation. both of the men who've and for president last year supported the closing of guantanamo and has stayed president obama's predecessor. we will close guantanamo as quickly as we can as soon as we can. the work has been done with regard to the disposition of the 240 people who were there to to go for the facility. about where these people should go. one of the things we have in the budget for next year is funds in order to come up with another
facility to which these people might be transferring those who cannot be repatriated and we would like to move on that plan but we need congressional support. >> you say you had no time line. does that mean that might be this year, next year, the following year, the year after that? >> one of the things we need is an alternative site. we've identified a place, the thompsons will become and we have as i said in our budget the request for funds to open thompson and to place in thompson those who would be tried in the military commissions or in civilian courts those to be held under the ball and those who might be temporarily held until they can be repatriated to some other country. >> are you saying you cannot close guantanamo bay until you have this other side under your control? >> yes, we have to have an option and that will require congressional support for the funding requests that we have
made. >> mr. attorney general, in the house appropriations hearing last month he said that osama bin laden would, quote, never appear in an american courtroom. to further stated, quote, there really is will be reading more than the rights to court. in contrast, general mcchrystal said that the goal is to capture him alive and bring him to justice. cia director panetta said that should bin laden being caught he would be taken to a military base and interrogated by u.s. agents. mr. holder, would you like to explain that comment and clarify and when we all hope bin laden is captured? >> with regard to osama bin laden, it is part of the target for the united states. our plan is to capture him or to kill him. our hope would be to capture him and interrogate him to get useful intelligence from him about the structure of al qaeda,
about al qaeda's plans. what i said in that hearing was an assessment of the likelihood that we are going to be able to capture him alive. what i said was that with regard to that possibility both in our attempt to capture him and from what we know about instructions that he was given to the people who surrounded him, his security forces, i think it is highly unlikely that he will be taken alive. but our goal is to either capture osama bin laden or to kill him. >> mr. attorney general the last time you can do for this committee strongly defended your decision to try the 9/11 plotters and criminal court in new york rather than in the military tribunals. since then, the president has said he will review your decision. do you still believe criminal court is the right place for the trial? if they are moved to a military tribunals how would you address the concerns that critics have about such tribunals?
one month ago due said that the administration was, quote, weeks away. when can we expect this decision to be made, mr. attorney general? >> the administration is in the process of reviewing a decision as to where khalid sheikh mohammed and his co-defendants should actually be tried. new york is not off the table as a place where they might be tried but we have taken to consideration the concerns that have been raised by local officials and by the community in new york city. we expect we will be in a position to make a determination i think in a number of weeks. >> thank you. finally, mr. attorney general, throughout my own state of wisconsin, and i assure all across the country, local law enforcement agencies speak about how vital the progress to their ability to keep our communities safe. it is a highly effective program that is proven to be one of the most cost-effective ways to
fight crime. last year i joined the senators feinstein commonly he and others in introducing legislation to reauthorize the cops program and improvements to the administration of the program. can we count, mr. attorney general, on your support for this legislation? will you continue to fight for increased funding to the cops program? >> absolutely. the cops program has historically proven to be one of the most effective ways in which the federal government can assist its state and local partners. i think that the historic drops we've seen in crime over the last ten years, 15 years or so is a direct result of the fact that we have employed, put more police officers on the street. state and local authorities don't always this is really have the financial capacity to do that in the cops program there has been a plot and allowing the state and local partners to deploy more people. it would be my hope that even in these budgetary times that we will find a way to make sure
that the cops program remains a viable one. >> thank you very much mr. attorney general. i turn now to senator sessions. >> thank you, senator. mr. attorney general, if there is a problem with u.s. attorney's to help keep us posted on that. i think it is pretty clear that the administration then slowly be making those nominations. i'd also believe there are any objections on our side to moving the good nominees and i don't believe a word chairman lee he has delayed that. i think if you look where the delays are they are a nominations. with regard to the khalid sheikh mohammed decision you made that decision. you declared in this committee directly that there was going to be tried in new york and he defended that as a appropriate way because quite a bit of controversy at the time.
i a understand now that the white house is suggesting it would not be tried in new york, and i guess it it makes me a bit uneasy having served in the department that has politicians discussing where the cases of to be tried. normally the default and objective professional prosecutors. so what is your position about where this khalid sheikh mohammed trial should take place and are you uneasy that the white house is leaking statements about where a criminal case should be taken for trial? >> i have said myself the national security team is in the process of reviewing where the case might best be held. we have to take into consideration -- >> were on the national security team. >> the national security and includes a qtr defense, secretary of state, people from the intelligence community, the people who meet with the president a free tuesday
afternoon to review where we stand around the world with regard to our terrorist efforts. this is a trial that is unique in the sense that it does involve real national security concerns and i think the involvement of the white house and the national -- the national security component of the white house as well as the national security team in helping make that determination makes sense. i am very jealous and regarding the prerogatives of the united states department. >> you should be. and i was a little -- up expect normally for some could reconsideration the attorney-general should announce that it's under reconsideration and not politicians would make the announcement. but there is a new problem. is it not if it is the case tried in civilian court the constitution limits the venue in the criminal cases, but if it is tried by military commissions
you're not limited in that way. so to try ayaan elbe malae, wouldn't that raise continue questions for example? >> you're obviously a former united states attorney and the question that you ask is one that i ask. if there were the possibility that we moved this trial but what of the possible means be and i've received from people ask that question a list of places in which the case could be tried. what i will say is the southern district of new york for instance is a much larger place than simply manhattan. there's also the possibility of trying the case and other venues beyond new york. >> i just think that the simpler and more logical decision would be to reconsider fundamentally and try this case where it should be i think and military commissions. isn't it true that the
protecting unclassified information that can be revealed in a criminal trial is a priority of the were government in other words, we don't want to have a trial developed in such a way that was a free information is revealed to the public's and on march 20 if this year, your department answered questions i submit it to them about the danger of the dealing with classified information and the relevancy of that to the criminal or not that your commissions. you testified there was not much difference but the large tecum or 20 of responses from your department really tell a different story. citing, quote, key differences in classified evidence protection and military commissions trials that are not similarly present and federal criminal law.
were you aware of this information when you testified before us in november? >> i don't necessarily agree there are fundamental differences between the protections that are available in civilian courts and those that might be available in commissions commissions' modifications made to the secrecy provisions really codify what the judges do as a matter of routine in civilian courts with one exception that has to do with the possibility of the interlocutory appeals and which frankly i think is a good idea and perhaps ought to be incorporated into what we do on the civilian side. most of the other enhancements that you see with regard to military commissions reflect what judges do on the civilian side. >> that's not what your response is say. they list seven different examples on how the military commissions are more effective and protecting intelligence sources and methods that a
criminal trial. do you dispute that? >> i think that those seven instances -- the instance is listed as i said reflect the kind of things the judges do, not because they are obligated to do than by roel or by statute but because they do them in the way which they interpret the statute. as i said, i do think that the one modification enhancement that exists with regard to the military commission about the possibility of an interlocutory appeal is something i think we ought to consider and we should always be looking at the cepa statute to see how we can make it more effective. >> i agree with that but i would say to you, mr. holder, when you try a person in civilian court you have to give them a land of warnings upon taking that into custody. you have to tell them they are entitled to a lawyer, entitled
to a speedy trial and entitled to file the discovery of the government case all immediately basically. and when you try a them in military custody you don't have to charge them at all because they are a prisoner of war until the war is over but if it violated the law we of the war and committed criminal acts they may be tried if you choose to try them in military commissions. it just makes perfect sense to me that these cases would be tried. that is the result of a national consensus after the 9/11 commission issued their reports, congress passed legislation to that effect and the president in one of the first acts was to set aside and stop these commissions and they've blocked progress since then it seems to me. so i think you need to reevaluate this. i don't think the people of new york want this trial anywhere in their state or their city or the
district's and there are many legal questions that will arise. i just hope that you would reevaluate this. the white house is, i hope that you will and that we will soon have clarity about what the policy of the department of justice is. >> the decisions that are made and the decisions that i will make with regard to the placement of any of the trials depends on what is best for the trial. doing this on a case by case basis with regard to the evidence we would seek to add that concerns about some of the evidence that might be admitted depending on the form we would be using, the impact of the use of certain intelligence on the intelligence -- evidence on the community and what it might do for our ability to interact with our allies, there is a whole variety of contacts and things that have to be taken into consideration and what i have tried to do and what we will try to do is make these decisions on a case by case basis with the
aim of being the most effective and in particular trial at protecting the american people. >> thank you, said intercessions. senator feinstein. >> general, i think your last sentence was very important, and i think that the degree to which this dialogue has escalated is really a very unhealthy. democrats did not do or did president bush following 9/11 what is being done to this administration with the decision making, and i regret it and i really find eight reprehensible and i believe the best interest of the people of this nation are served by the administration, you, mr. attorney general and the president has a maximum flexibility as to which then you these defendants should be tried. i have served now on the
intelligence committee for some 18 years on this committee for over 17 years and i have never seen anything quite like this. their record is ignored. it doesn't matter that the bush administration 200 terrorist justice and under article 3 courts. it doesn't matter the military commissions which have been fraught with controversy have convicted three, two of whom are out. it doesn't matter that isasi plug guilty. there was a threat. that was a real threat to the city of new york. the fbi did magnificent work. he pled guilty to read david had li is a serious terrorist. he pled guilty and the fact of the matter is arbuckle three courts has other charges that they can use if they do not have an evidence to sustain a
terrorist charge. you should have that option. you shall also have the option of the military commission. and i've come to the conclusion that a lot of the attacks are just to diminish you and i don't think that you should buy into that at all. i think that you should remain strong. now i've had concerns about new york city. i've been a former mayor. i was the mayor in the wake of an assassination, major rob yet. i know what happens inside a city with a lot of scar tissue, and that is why unless you've been there, done that and understand it. so i understand why new yorkers feel the way they do. i also understand why the best interest of our country are served if you have remain strong and make the decisions based on the legal facts and to where we best get a conviction. and i've just want to urge you to remain strong in that
respect. the record to article 3 court and the conviction of terrorists in this country is unparalleled and that is absolute fact. i wanted to ask you a question on indefinite detention if i might. the integration and nationality act and the patriot act both allow different types of indefinite detention under narrow circumstances. i think it's important that the executive branch strike the right balance between preserving the ruble fall into releasing individuals who we know are determined to harm our nation. and this is a difficult area. i would like mr. holder, to ask your opinion and what narrow circumstances can the executive branch told the detainee's to continue to pose a security
threat that cannot be prosecuted for past crimes. >> we have to look at the cases individually and make the determinations on a case by case basis. people who we decided should be held under the law have the right to a habeas proceeding so a judge has the ability to look and make the determination as to whether or not the detention that we seek is in fact appropriate. we have won some cases in that regard and we have not been successful with others. some are under appeal for some of the people who have been ordered released by judges have been released. we use that power again with the fact that what we want to do is keep the american people safe and that will release people who would pose a threat to the united states or not release people we do not think can be placed in other countries and where we did some measures can
be put in place to insure that they would not pose a threat to our people. so, we use that power only where we think it can be appropriately used and i think if you looked at the number of people we had at guantanamo, the number of people who we would seek to detain in that way is relatively small. >> thank you. next question here. i wanted to ask -- about a year ago we passed legislation with respect to the detention of children that are brought to this country not at their request but similar to the alley and gonzalez case and then some time ago that they have about 5,000 children who at that time
were subject to serious detention in jail facilities some of them very young. we passed a bill a year ago asking you to do certain things and we have no response to that. would you take a look at that and see if we can to get that show on the road so to speak? >> i will look at that. the concern that you have is one that i have as well. >> regulations that have to be implemented. >> and we will look at that. the concern about children and their detention and what that means for their development and separation from parents, these are things there are legitimate in terms of looking at the regulations. >> can you give any kind of a time line? fifer to figure and if you could give a time line, a lot of children out there, this has to do it in the fenech detention
and with guardianship and with ability to return them to the country if there is a place for them. >> when i get back this afternoon to the department i will look to see what the state of plea is and then if i can i will promise to get you a letter by the end of the week to give you a sense when it is we can start to do something in a substantive way. >> thank you. >> thank you, senator feinstein to read senator hatch. specs before mr. chairman. mr. attorney general, do have a tough job and i respect how difficult it is. my time is limited so i will only be able to pursue a handful of subjects than i really want to take up with you but i will be submitting several questions for the record. one of the questions i will be submitting is why you felt the need to issue a memorandum to revise prosecutorial guidelines for marijuana prosecution's to read the comics resected the controlled substances act the
csa, with making dangerous drugs and illegal. i want to make sure that you as the highest legal will enforcement office of the land are the congress' intention was with respect to the csa. now the white house's vision of how the substances act should be enforced. so i will be looking for a timely response to that question. but briefly i am sure you are aware of the deadlines complete with precisions of the adam walsh act should not to be great interest in the act. my good friend john walsh on america's most wanted discussed getting states to comply with the adam walsh act. right now i would like to get your pledge to work with me of getting states on the same page before the july deadline without weakening or watering down the adam walsh act. is that okay? >> i will pledge to do that but
one thing i would say, senator, is we have to work with state attorneys general who want to comply with this act, and when i met with of them expressed concerns about their ability to do so and so i think we have to make them a part of the conversation as well. i share your concern to read that is an act we have to have fully implemented as quickly as we can and certainly within the deadline but i also think that part of that conversation of to be -- >> but that act is very important. it was a tough slog to get that done and i think it's very important to have it done. before i move to the attempted terrorist attack that transpired aboard the military flight to 53, let me briefly ask you about obscenity enforcement. how is this administration and forcing the federal law prohibiting sexually explicit material that makes the spring courts definition of obscenity? >> there is a section within the
justice department of exploitation that handles these matters. the people who are there are traer employees who worked under the public and democratic attorneys general and i think that we do a good job -- >> i asked you this question -- i asked this of your republican predecessors because in my judgment they took a misguided and narrow approach to law enforcement in this area so i'm concerned. sorry to interrupt you. >> was just singing of the responsibility for the enforcement law is in that area, and i think they are quite aggressive in the prosecution detection of these materials with a particular focus on i think child obscenity which does not exclude other forms of obscenity that -- >> but there's a pattern that the board of justice to prosecute only the most extreme and obscene materials. this particular type of material may guarantee a conviction but
it's not the most widely produced concern there for it may have a very low impact on the obscenity industries of that is what i am concerned about. this approach moving across the line to the french signals that material that is just as obscene as though less extreme is let off the hook and i believe that approach is misguided and countries to the proliferation of obscenity that harms individuals, families and communities, so i am very concerned about it and i hope that he will take a real look at it because currently there is an obscenity prosecution task force at the department of justice. will you allow the director of the task force to enforce federal obscenity law is without restricting them to the most extreme obscene material? >> we will certainly enforce the law using the limited resources that we have and go after those cases i think as we always do
and have the potential for the greatest harm. there are first amendment considerations that have to be taken into account but it does not mean we will not be serious about the enforcement of the law. >> with the transition to the christmas bombing attempt to the northwest flight 253. generate 26i sent a letter to you regarding the decision to charge umar farouk abdumutallab in federal court in your response letter back to me dated february 3rd, 2010 he laid out an explanation defending your decision to charge this terrorist and federal criminal court and further explained that you alone made this decision to read you referenced previous administration to judge richard reid and noted the similarity of the two cases. i would point out that in the reed case that occurred in december of 2001 the military detention system did not give access to the attorney general
ashcroft didn't have the option of military detention. because the military commissions act. the military commissions act of 2000 negative section 950 testifies crimes that can be prosecuted under the commission. one of those crimes listed under 950 t as hijacking a vessel or aircraft. part of the action of this and jeopardized the lives of passengers and hazard the aircraft. they pursued the capability of prosecuting abdumutallab's under a military commission based on section 950 with the military commissions act. >> one thing i would say is although the military commissions were not in existence the time that richard reid was apprehended the detention of already certainly did exist at that point with regard to the decision it was a
decision i made after consultation on december 25th and there were a couple of conversations that occurred in the intelligence committee and then on january 5th in a meeting we held in the situation room i laid out for members of the intelligence community intelligence community as well as the defense community was the decision and the thought that i had about pursuing this in the criminal sphere and there were no objections raised to that. the decision that was made with regard to mr. abdumutallab was replacing -- to replace him in a four men of reach we could most effectively tried the case. i think the decision that was made and has been shown to be the right one given the fact that we had the ability to get information from him in that one of our interaction immediately after he was apprehended and then the information he had a sense provided as a result of his decision to cooperate with
the federal government. >> mr. chairman my time is up. i appreciate your service and your answers and i will submit a number of questions for you. >> thank you. >> thank you, senator hatch. >> senatorngold. >> thank you. my committee is aware of the federal support trials and let me simply ago with senator feinstein said so well on the continued strength on your courageous actions in this regard. i d the issue and i would ask that it be placed in the record so i have time to discuss other topics. let me also take a moment to compliment you and the assistant general for christine varney. under your and her leadership the antitrust division of the department has made it clear after many years of neglect and enforcement of antitrust law as a priority for the department and i am especially grateful for the department is focus on agriculture issues and partnership with the usda and i was pleased to hear the
department will be holding a workshop in wisconsin. it means a great deal to the producers and others in the state of wisconsin senator kohl asked to about the cops program. as you know, strongly support that pergamon and other federal law enforcement assistance grant programs. i hear repeatedly from the law enforcement of wisconsin just how important a grant programs are particularly during tough economic times. the copps hiring agreed and recovery act allowed my stick to how your and rehire 58 police officers and these are certainly needed in the jurisdictions where they were provided but i do think it's important that these dollars are distributed fairly different cities and counties and in meetings and had recently with wisconsin law enforcement it was brought to my attention the wisconsin sheriffs received zero grants to the recovery act. will enforce that everywhere are forced to do more with less these days but this struck me as an unfair for those of my stick. landers and the department is looking at possible changes for
the grand methodology just on the status of that review how quickly can we expect it to be modified and it just sort of an update on that effort. >> quickly before i get to that, the -- you are right there is a focus on the antitrust division for the whole question of agricultural concerns. i will be attending with secretary of agriculture vilsack number of forms and around the country it think it is flight schedules. we've done one already in iowa with senator grassley. with regard to the question of the allocation of the copps funds i think the sheriff's -- i think my numbers are correct, 17% of the money that was aborted last year. we are in the process of looking at the allocation formula that we use and was based on, generally based on the economic condition and a particular jurisdiction with the crime
rates are in that same to destruction. i've talked to representatives of the sheriff's communities and they raise very legitimate concerns and so as we construct the methodology that we are going to be using next year we will take into consideration and i would expect we probably have a determination made over the next few weeks as to what exactly the formula is going to be. >> thank you. prosecutors and public defenders and wisconsin have been telling me they're having a harder time attracting and detaining qualified attorneys in their offices. many of the public servants have had to resort of taking a second job to pay off their law school debt and i am told that local prosecutors and public defender offices typically have attrition rates between 30-50%. this is obviously a serious problem in the criminal-justice system and of the many reasons i was a supporter of the john justice prosecutors and defenders senate act which created a much needed student loan repayment program for prosecutors and public defenders.
rejected in 2008 thanks in large part to the leadership and hard work of senator durbin. but the doj to it has to issue guidelines to enable the states to solicit applications for loan assistance. can you tell me a bit about updating the understanding of the efforts to launch this and when you expected, prosecutors and public defenders to be about to start applying for assistance >> given the difficult economic times, i think that the rest of the -- wisdom of the act is relatively obvious. i have been concerned about this state of indigent defense and we talked about on a great many occasions. i am also concerned about what i hear from people who work on the other side from prosecutors in the state and local levels. in the sense that we can come up with ways in which we can be of financial assistance i think we need to do so, so let me get back to the department with regard to the loan assistance programs and regulations and i
will assure you this is something that for me defend the travels i have had a chance to do over the past 14 months. this is a priority. i am really concerned about the state of our local criminal justice system and the ability to hold on to good people who only want to serve their commitment fees. there are economic considerations that are driving good people out of the system. >> thank you for the statement. i will have a continued interest in this. law enforcement corrections that have long known people with mental illness are significantly overrepresented in the prisons and jails and our jails and prisons were never intended or not equipped to the treatment facilities for the mentally ill but unfortunately that is what they often become. wisconsin started looking at this issue and recently convened a task force of law enforcement for officers correction stuff, district attorney's caustic legislators, social service providers with a goal of developing a strategic plan to increase wisconsin's response to
people with mental illness in the criminal justice system. this initiative wouldn't have been possible without the leadership of our chief justice and wisconsin, shirley abramson and able to obtain funding for the council for the state government to organize this task force. a joint the council received the funding for this and other mental health initiatives as a result of the mental illness offender treatment [crying] and while i was pleased wisconsin received some assistance for this initiative there was one of just four states that received the eight out of more than 30 states that applied for assistance. we have historically allocated few resources to deal with this complicated problem, get funding for mental illness programs is one of the most competitive grant programs in the department. despite the high demand the president's budget proposes consolidating this important project with the drug courts program, and i am concerned that will and not enough resources for either program. why was that recommendation made? >> i think that what we have tried to do is again in these very difficult economic times to come up with ways in which we
can be most effective effective. the concerns you raised are indeed very legitimate ones and i am very concerned about the way in which we d institutionalized or facilities and so many people who i think what do much better in the institutions that were while funded and well run and instead we put them in the criminal justice system. i saw that as a judge in washington, d.c.. but we tried to do and are trying to continue to try to do is come up with ways in which we can help our state and local partners and help or allows citizens deal with issues they have to confront putting those two together it seemed to us to identify ways in which we could consolidate those people who have drug problems and come up with alternatives to simply try them and incarcerate them and to also deal with people who have
mental issues and come up with ways which we can help them other than by incarcerating them. we will do the best we can with the resources that we have. but the concern that you raised i think is a very legitimate one and one that i think as a society we need to focus more attention on. i have witnessed this as i said as a judge and i am very, very concerned about the way in which we treat the mentally ill and the desire to put them in the criminal justice system. >> thank you very much. ..
your staff has provided the information and the justice department managed to verify or provide names to fox news. you said said this inquiry has called into question the integrity of political appointees at the department so i want to make clear that i am not here to call into question the integrity of any employee of the department. in fact i agree with the departments view that personal attacks on the department employees are inappropriate or comb my inquiry though seeks to understand who is advising you on these decisions giving a serious impact decisions have on our national security. these questions are about
transparency, about openness and about accountability. the platform for president obama ran on in 2008 and what has culminated in a presidential memorandum on openness and transparency in government that he signed january of last year. so a very simple yes or no question. would you provide the names of political appointees who had previously represented detainees or abdicated on the detainee issues? >> with all due respect senator and i know you are a request comes from a good place. yours was inaudible request in the hesitance i had has been borne out by what i have seen. there has been an attempt to take the names of the people who represented guantánamo detainees and to drag their reputations through the mud. there were reprehensible ads
used to question, in essence to question their patriotism. i am not going to allow these kids-- i am not going to be a part of that ever did so with all due respect their names are out there now. the positions that they pulled, that has all been in place in the public record. i am simply not going to be a part of that effort. i will not allow good, decent lawyers who have followed the greatest traditions of american jurisprudence done whether chief justice has said is appropriate. i will not allow their reputations to be disbursed. i will not be a part of that. >> well, remember that this is a request from this committee and i think all the people in it for very sincere about it, so i will move on. you recently said the attorneys representing unpopular clients
are patriots. i want to comment so that i doubt you would share the same feeling for lawyers who represent the mafia and i doubt that you would hire them in the justice department. the department's response said that the department of justice did does not keep a centralized database of refusals and it is the honor of the employees to recuse themselves. you know that large law firms like once you've served and have conflict committees and procedures in place to assure that rules are followed. why shouldn't the department of justice not just on the earlier shift but under leaderships before you have some centralized system of complex system as private firms have? >> i think that is actually a legitimate concern that the race and that is something i think is worthy of consideration because you are right, that there is within certain law firms, i was
a member of such a database and that i think is something we can consider at the department. >> a freedom of information question and discussion with you. on january 21, 2009 president obama issued presidential memorandum to heads of all executive departments and agencies regarding freedom of information. that memorandum stated quote all agency should adopt a presumption in favor of disclosure and directed you to issue guidelines which you issued march 19 last year. your guidelines stated that quote and agencies should not withhold information simply because it may do so legally. they also limited when the justice department would defend the denial of foia requests. i believe the guidelines were a good step in opening up government and honoring president obama's pledge.
however, when the department posted the annual foia report back in march, the effects i think painted a very different picture. an analysis by the "associated press" found that in fiscal year 2009, government agencies cited foia exemptions, 468,000 times compared to 312,000 times in fiscal year 2008. one exemption, i-5 was used almost 71,000 times in fiscal year 2009 compared to 47,000 times in fiscal year 2008 and all of this occurred despite a total decrease, total decrease in foia requests fiscal year 2009. these numbers i think ought to be shocking to anybody that talks about transparency, so what is the reason-- i'm going to us to questions.
what is the reason for substantial increase in the use of foia exemptions by this administration and if the use of exemptions continue to increase in fiscal year 2010, what will you do to personally ensure that agencies are more transparent and responsive to the public's right to know no end to what the president says he wants us, his executive branch of government to do? >> the president has been clear and i think in the regulations i issued, i was clear that foia and the release of information, the desire for transparency is something that is critical to this administration and the statistics you have cited are indeed troubling. i am not exact way sure what the reason is but i think you require some further examination to ensure that those people who are responsible for making foia decisions are doing so in a way that is consistent with the desire for the president and the directions that i have issued. we will review that and see what
has happened. i can assure you though that the president is sincere and i am sincere in trying to make sure that we are responsive or are more responsive foia requests. >> i hope you will send your message to all the agencies and the president. >> thank you senator grassley. senator durbin. >> mr. attorney general, thank you. in response to senator grassley's remark, i want to thank you. i think it was a courageous position you have taken and they ripen. history tells us it was a supreme court that ruled that guantánamo detainees have a right to file petition under habeas corpus. is the bush administration that said they had the right to counsel and the argument being made from the other side of the aisle and their inspiration and fox news is if anybody decides to represent a guantánamo detainee they disqualify themselves from future government service because they can't be trusted. you know if that is the premise
of our system of justice, that legal representation or possible inclinations toward one party over another disqualify you,, where does the event? does it end with prosecutors who fail to prosecute? does it end with judges who may rule in favor of a defendant? i think you are standing up for a very fundamental principle and rule of law here that does go back to john adams in the early days of this nation and i thank you for doing this. the men and women who have the courage to stand up as professionals who have taken an oath to represent not only their clients but defend our constitution and laws have the right to that kind of defense and i thank you for the courage to do so in the hope the record where we reflect it was the bush administration that the guantánamo detainees have the right to counsel. this is not a decision made by the obama administration. it was the right decision by the bush administration. let me add that to me. on miranda warnings, i think you
are well aware and we should say on the record that a lot of question here about using article trained courts for fear of giving a miranda warning to a person. what was the policy and the bush administration when it came to miranda warnings were suspected terrorists arrested in the united states? >> it was fundamentally different from the policies we now have in place and one thing i think people left understand is giving a miranda warning is not necessarily mean the flow of information stops. in fact i think a good case can be made that once people get miranda warnings the information flow continues or if it stops temporarily, once a lawyer is introduced, a defense lawyer is introduced into the mix, that lawyer then counseled his client especially in terrorism cases and given the lengthy sentences somebody faces in an article iii proceedings that lawyer works to convince the client to cooperate with the government. so miranda warnings are not necessarily ones that have a negative impact on our ability to gain intelligence.
>> let's go back to a well-known case that has resulted in all of us taking our shoes off in airports, richard reid, the unibomber, the shoe bomber. how long after he was detained by the bush administration's department of justice was it before he was given a miranda warning? >> i think it was within a few minutes. >> five minutes is what the record reflects. under the bush administration the shoe bomber within five minutes was given his miranda warnings. that was the standard announced argue the miranda warning is somehow unwise, unsafe for americans to ignore the obvious and what about the intelligence? the second argument made about article iii courts that you can successfully prosecute a terrorist in court without running the risk if not in fact disclosing intelligence, what was the record under the bush administration? >> the administration i think did quite well in trying cases in article iii courts to prevent the dissemination of information or secret information from any
of those proceedings. >> one of the leading prosecutors in america, the u.s. attorney for the northern district of illinois, patrick fitzgerald who was in charge of the prosecution in the southern district of new york of the african terrorist who said afterwards that he could do this without disclosing intelligence information following the law backed up by others who had been through the same experience. if you had complaints from your attorneys when he considered article iii prosecutions that somehow that may jeopardize and disclose intelligence information? >> no. i've not have the complaint and i think our history shows article iii courts are capable of trying cases without putting at risk the intelligence sources and methods of the same is true of the military commissions. >> that would be an option you would protect if you could make the choice. let me ask you this, for the record has been said by others if you look at the scorecard since 9/11 how many successful prosecutions and convictions of
terrorists have taken place in article iii courts under the bush administration and obama administration and how many have taken place in military commissions? >> i think we have a successful prosecutions close to 400 over the article iii side in three in the military commissions side. >> those who are arguing we should shift all of these prosecutions to the military side would have to stop and explain why this dramatic record of success in article iii courts should be rejected at this point. let me ask you about the sensitivity of the people in new york with ksm. tell me what is going to the minds of the administration in your mind when you think about that prosecution in that city after all it has been through. 's the one thing i think we have to remember is i guess somebody said there was an initial negative reaction to that position. quite the contrary. i think if one looks at the initial reaction from people in new york, the reaction actually was a positive one.
that ding said, as we are making this determination we have to take into consideration what we heard from the mayor what we have heard from elected officials in new york city. what we glean from the people of the city as evidence in a number of ways and try to come up with a way in which we can come up with a forum that will be most effective with regard to that case whether it is a military commission or an article iii trial in new york city or some other place. >> i want to make it clear that i'm not trying to cast in a kind of negative impression about military commissions. i know senator graham have worked closely and i do believe as a viable alternative you should have at your disposal. is it not true though that under the procedural rules of military commissions there are some limitations compared to article iii courts. for example when it comes to capital offenses? >> yes common article iii courts you can certainly, a person can
plead guilty to a capital offense that is allowed in the military commissions. >> there would have to be in fact some trial if they wanted to plead guilty under the circumstances. let ask one last question. i suppose i've run out of time but let me thank you and let me try to reiterate what senator feingold added. i don't believe our system of justice should be driven by fear and anger and that appears to be a driving force among some political camps in this country. if we are going to be strong as a nation we won't be quivering in fear and acting irrationally in anger. we are going to stand by the rule of law in the principles that guided us for a long time in a thank you for your leadership. >> thank you senator durbin. senator graham. >> thank you mr. chairman. thank you mr. attorney general for coming. this has been a good discussion about some difficult issues but one thing i would like to reiterate is president obama said the nation was at war with al qaeda. do you agree with that? >> yes.
>> i would urge you to remain strong in that process because some people we don't-- don't believe we are at war. some people believe we should be using the law enforcement model exclusively and i think that is a formula for disaster and there are some people who say you can never use article iii courts and i disagree with them. quite frankly there could be times when the article iii courts would be a superior forum echo in my view a financier of al qaeda you might want to take them to an article iii trial because you have more charging possibilities. every al qaeda operative is not the same level as the next, so i agree with the idea of flexible, pragmatic and aggressive. that is your standard so i am one senator on the republican side who has not objected to article iii courts being used in a flexible, pragmatic, aggressive fashion. now, when one is at war we have to realize the rules are different than fighting crime. do you agree with that?
the law of war is different than normal criminal law. stay in certain aspects, yes. >> when we capture someone on the battlefield under the law of war we have no obligation to read them their miranda rights, is that correct? >> that is correct. that is not typically done but even in the bush administration a small. >> i totally agree. if you are going to charge someone under domestic criminal laws you should read them their rights. i would urge my colleagues to understand when you are fighting a war and to capture people on the battlefield and the whole world is the battlefield in my view, the primary goal is to find out what they know about enemy operations, get them off the battlefield and reserve prosecution decisions later. so i hope we do not criminalize the war and we remain flexible, pragmatic and aggressive. there were 48 people at guantánamo bay. i believe this administration has identified they are going to be held under the law of war on
an indefinite basis because they present a national security threats but the evidence as such it would not take them to criminal proceedings with the military commission or article iii court. is that correct? >> i am just checking numbers here. there are 48 detainees who we have determined too dangerous to transfer and not feasible for prosecution. >> i want to one, stand by you in that decision. i think it is a rational, logical decision not generated out of fear or revenge but out of necessity. we are not fighting crime. we are not fighting the mafia. we are fighting an international, sometimes an unorganized side organization called al qaeda who has been in our distraction and some of these people need to be held under our values, under the law of war with due process but we should not use what they did as a common crime but a military threat. is my understanding that every detainee whether held under love for not will have their day in
article iii court. it is a habeas corpus eating available to every detainee at once wanton amo bay. is that correct? >> that is correct. >> one of the judges recently granted a habeas corpus and to an alleged member of al qaeda who confessed to being a member of al qaeda who swore allegiance to al qaeda in the '90s but the judge decided to grant the hideous petition because the government could not prove on the day of capture in 2001 they were still a member of al qaeda. it is my view mr. attorney general that we need to reform our hideous procedures and if the presumption should follow detainee, once you are a member of al qaeda, proven that on the day of capture there would be a presumption you are still a member of al qaeda and the court could hear evidence otherwise. this is just an example of why congress in my view ladies and gentlemen needs to get her involved. hang firm, stand strong, be fair, be aggressive, be
pragmatic but do not lose sight that we are at war. when it comes to confinement facilities, i share the presidents president's concern that guantánamo bay has become an iconic image used against our troops and in the field and it would be preferable in my view to have the new facility that starts over and not tainted by the passive guantánamo bay even though it is a well-run facility now and i would like to work with you in that regard. i am losing the audience apparently, but that is okay. now, when it comes to future captures, where would we put someone that was captured in yemen that we believed to have been a member of al qaeda? where would they be detained? >> that is one of the issues i think we have to wrestle with. it depends on what we ultimately want is--. >> since my time is short, we
are basically a nation without a viable jail. this person is probably not going to send their people to guantánamo bay. is that a fairly accurate statement? >> that is certainly something we try to avoid. >> if you send these people to bagram airbase you are going to bring the afghan government down so to my colleagues who think we can close guantánamo bay and send them to afghanistan and the afghan government becomes the american jailer, i think you are making a serious mistake in the war on terror. >> i think we have to come up with options and i think we need to work with the congress to try to develop what those options might be. >> this is music to my ears because i think we do also. we are fighting a war and we don't have a viable jail. some people say use guantánamo bay. it is safe and secure. i would argue, listen to the commanders and see see if we can find a better jail that would meet the needs of this unique war on terror. at the end of the day i think the decision to prosecute ksm and civilian court was a mistake
or could affect you are being flexible pragmatic and aggressive is the right trend to take and i would urge you to work with the congress to see if we can fashion detention policy that allows us to use article iii courts when appropriate but never lose sight of the fact that if you are a member of al qaeda you have violated our immigration laws. you are a continuing threat to the world and the idea of holding someone with due process as a member of al qaeda until they die in jail is okay with me. because we have done it in every other war but this is a war without end so i'm willing to do more than we have done in past wars as long as we don't lose sight of the fact we are at war. or your service and i look forward to working with u.s. resolve this very difficult problem. >> thank you mr. graham. senator schumer. >> thank you mr. chairman and thank you attorney general for your service. i just want to go over a little,
i knew new york came up and senator durbin and senator feinstein said something and i agree with what she said from her experience as a mayor how difficult it would be handling a trial in a densely populated area. i know you said you haven't yet ruled it out. i hope you will. the overwhelming consensus in new york as you know is that it shouldn't be there and i just strongly urge you to make sure that doesn't happen. >> if i can enter a. what i said it has not been ruled out but we would take into consideration obviously the expressions of the political leadership there as well as what we are to glean from the population making that determination so i just want to make sure that is applied to. >> i appreciate that. i'm going to move on here to other areas in new york which are having other kinds of problems. what we have found throughout the country i think, the gang intelligence centers, 2009 gang
threat assessment found gangs are increasingly migrating from urban areas to suburban and even rural communities. unfortunately there are two communities in new york that are all too familiar with this problem. bret wood county in long island. the situation neubert has become shocking over the past year. there were reports of shootouts in the town streets, strings of robberies and gang assaults with machetes, homicides are up, grape syrup and attic total evidence suggests things in the area have started to target the schools which is what gangs often due to recruit new members. newberg could very much benefit from increased federal help and resources. my question is, would you agree to go to newberg yourself or hand-- send a high-level official with expertise in this area to meet with local law enforcement and community leaders to work on decreasing
this increasing gang presence? >> yes, i would agree to have somebody, if not myself, go to newberg for the purpose as you indicated but i also want to make clear that the united states attorney for the southern district of new york has been focusing attention on the problem in newberg and has been working with the local officials they are as well. and i think we will see shortly some of the results of that. >> i think at all levels, u.s. attorney obviously. our office has been in touch with his but we need some washington presents as well so i appreciate your agreement to either you or a high official expert in this to come and help us. the second question related, a local newspaper in the hudson valley the times herald record reported the fbi has brought newberg's violent gang situation to the attention of the white house as a serious example of what is happening with gangs.
will you commit to having the appropriate agencies in your department examined the violence in newberg to determine whether increased federal resources are warranted? >> yes. we are committed to that. i think you'll see that we have in fact been doing that. the problem that you note in these two communities i think is as you say acute and worthy of federal attention and federal assistance to the local authorities who i think are trying to do the job but i think they need some help. >> i am not being critical. i am just saying they need additional help. let me go to brentwood, similar problems. 60 arrests of gang members in december, nine violent killings last years in a small committee. that is a heck of a lot or go five killings since this january in brentwood and surrounding areas. via pie recently debriefed my stuff on gang activity in brentwood. i was pleased to hear the fbi and other fellow partners are
working with law enforcement. they have met with the committee leaders. they are increasing resources significantly to fight gangs in the area. so, could you please elaborate on the work and involvement in the department in brentwood? could you speak what you are learning from those efforts and finally, given the gang threat assessment area of increasing gang migration to non-urban areas, would you work on or elaborate on what the department can do to increase resources to fight gangs in these nontraditional areas? >> i think the gang problem is a very serious one. we have seen gangs that were centered in one city become national in their scope, national and their reach. we have seen as you indicated a migration of gang activity from cities to rural and to suburban areas and we in law enforcement have to adapt to that and break old models, old ways of thinking.
gangs are not simply an urban phenomenon anymore. with regard to brentwood i know the fbi has given attention to that problem, as you have indicated. our hope is that there are cooperation with local authorities there if we can have a meaningful impact on the problem that has unfortunately afflicted the brentwood area. newberg and brentwood-- i am a new yorker-- are two wonderful communities and i think what we have seen their is unfortunately too typical of what we are seeing in increasing numbers. >> if you can let us know about brentwood. >> there are operational concerns i have with regard to revealing too much other than to say the fbi is involved and i was a meaningful way with a brentwood problematic and i think this is something that will be our-- bear fruit. >> i would like to get a briefing on some of those.
that would be very helpful. i don't have anymore questions so i yield back my time. >> thank you very much senator. senator kyl. >> i too am going to persevere on local issues mr. attorney general. i'm very disappointed the administration put a low priority on security in the southern border. violence there is escalating exponentially. thousands of people have been killed just south of the border by drug cartels. arizona last week, arizona buried a very fine citizen, a rancher in kochi county. at the violence is spreading and yet, action that i have requested from you and from the secretary of homeland security is lacking. let me back up. i'm talking about operation streamline for which both the department of justice and the department of homeland security have the responsibility. last friday i visited the human
sector of the border and heard the tremendous success that operation streamline has brought to that sector of the border. similar to the dell rio, texas sector. there is virtually no illegal immigration occurring there now. part of it is because of a dublin in some cases triple friends with adequate border patrol agents. part of it is a deterrent effect of operation shame on which puts even first offenders in jail for it least a couple of weeks and can be up to a month or even longer depending on how many times people across the border. this take some resources from the department of justice and i have asked you when i met with you before your nomination hearing in 2009 about the funding for that. i discussed it with the hearing on january 15, 2009. we discussed this because the department of justice needs to provide the funding for certain
elements of it. i ask you what resources were necessary for the marshals service, the courthouse renovations that may or may not be necessary, certain assertive cause, criminal clerks and those kinds of things, potentially additional judges, additional places and there appeared to be plenty of opportunities to rent detention places. places. all of us would fall under the department of justice jurisdiction. finally, i attach an amendment to the fiscal 2010 department of homeland security appropriation bill that requires collaborative, the department of justice and department of homeland security to provide a report to a somewhat these costs are. that report was due from u.n. secretary napolitano on december 27 of last year. in a response to me in march and questions i submitted on december 9 of last year,
secretary napolitano wrote the reporter is in the following stages of the review process and we get is that congress will receive it in the near future. still have not received a report. it is my understanding, and i would love for you to be able to verify that this isn't a trend, the department justice has not been fully cooperative in providing the information necessary to complete the report. the department of justice says the chief law enforcement agency in the country responsible for seeing that the laws are obeyed and that would assume also it self complying with laws which has not been done here. when can we expect to get the report number one. secondly, do you support operation streamline or not? will you support funding and will you identify the things that would need to be done and we support that funding including by making requests for the next budget of the administration to provide for funding necessary to both expand operation streamline to other
sectors including the tucson sector of the border or half of all the illegal immigration is now coming through the southern border? >> first i would express my condolences for the citizen in arizona. that happened while i was in arizona for u.s. attorneys conference. it is in fact a priority for this administration to ensure that our borders are secure and especially the border we are talking about, the southwest border. we have tried to work with her partner said dhs to be effective in that regard or go i will check and see what the status is of that report. it is certainly not anything that has been brought to my attention either dhs or the department of justice that we have been dragging our feet in the creation of that report. there are a variety of mechanisms i think that we need to use in order to be effective at reducing the flow of illegal immigration and all that that
implies for the collateral problem that it tends to breed and operation streamline the something you are correct, you and i have certainly discussed in the past. we will look at all of the possibilities. i will look at all of the possibilities and i will be supportive of, within the interagency process in dealing with the folks at omb, supportive of those things that i think have proven to be effective so that we can use our money efficiently and so that we can be responsive to the citizens along the southwest border. but i think we too often think of that that is a local problem and it is not. it is a national problem. what happens along the southwest border has an impact in chicago at. >> could i just interrupt? i have got seven minutes, as you know. would you ask your staff to respond to my staff to set up
even a telephone call to further discuss this especially after you have been able to verify the information provided, please? a totally different subject. once every 26 the house passed the intelligence authorization act. just before that is strip a provision that would criminal lies cruel and inhuman and degrading interrogations which was a staggering provision and ambiguity. a cia agent could've been punishable with a prison sentence for up to 15 years at the court concluded the agent blasphemed an individual's religious belief during the course of interrogation. does the administration support any such provision of the criminal code? >> i'm not familiar with that provision. torture is certainly a violation of our law when it comes to cruel and inhumane and degrading treatment. i would want to look at that statute and see what the intention was in trying to criminalize that. >> would you respond to me in
writing as to what the department's position on that would be because i suspect the issue will rise again. >> i will do that. >> i thank you very much. >> thank you very much senator kyl. senator cardin. >> thank you madam chair in general holder it is always a pleasure to have you before the committee. i want to follow-up on the points that many of my colleagues have raised with regard to guantánamo bay and the handling of the detainees that are they are. i recently was in guantánamo bay. i had a chance to visit there two weeks ago and this is my second visit in the type of facility there is certainly one that is world class from the of view of how it treats detainees and the type of physical facilities, etc.. it was constructed in order to be able to obtain intelligence information from detainees.
its purpose was also to detain individuals and third for pretrial purposes. the actionable intelligence information is no longer as relevant as it was when it was first constructed. the number of detainees is far below its capacity, and it has been used, has not been used very much for pretrial or trial basis. so, as a practical matter, as a budget issue and certainly from a symbol, guantánamo bay has to close. we talked a little bit today about what do we do about the people that are there, how do we try them? do we use article iii courts? do we use the military commissions? i support what some of my colleagues that said and i want to give you maximum choice. i don't want to restrict the way to get the most effective results. i don't want to give detainees more rights than they should have and that is-- but i want to
deal with those that we cannot release now. and we cannot try. you inherited this problem but it is an issue we have to deal with. on previous occasions he said there will be a process for review to make sure basic rights are afforded. how far along are we in making that type of review process public in order to get international recognition and hopefully support for how we are dealing with those that will continue to be detained without trial? >> that is something we are still working on. i think there certainly needs to be a process by which an initial determination is made and that has irony occurred with the task force and the principles committee that voted on making the decision to detain the 48 people. obviously there is a right for them to challenge that determination in federal court, but as i have talked about with
senator graham, there has to be i think, and the administration agrees with it, that there has to be some kind of ongoing review mechanism to put in place to be shulman-- continues to be a danger. it is something we are still working through an interagency and frankly working with senator graham as well. my hope would be that we would have something that we will be able to share and put in place more importantly in a relatively short period of time but this is something that has been focused on. >> let me just repeat the 9/11 commission's recommendation that the united states engage its friends and develop a common coalition approach to detention and the capture of terrorist. i guess my point is to internally developed a review process. we don't put some light on it. we don't engage in international community and if we don't engage
the international community how we are going to deal with detainees in the future? this is not going to end anytime soon and we are apprehending people today and we still yet have a real international accord as to how these detainees should be handled, should we have another geneva type convention to deal with this. i think we are looking forward to some broader recommendations rather than trying to deal with this in this country. >> i agree with you. i don't think that review mechanism can be done entirely. it must be to-- done is a transparent away as we can. there is a symbolic significance to this review process in the same way there is a symbolic significance to the continued existence of wanton amo. we have to deal with is not only on a substantive level but a symbolic level, and it would seem to me again, taking into account a variety of things that we want to make sure this review
process, the existence of this process is something that is widely known. >> when should we expect some specifics as to how these procedures are being handled? i have heard you say frequently as soon as possible but it is getting late. >> it is a priority. we have now gotten to the point where we have made the determination that very able task force made its recommendation and unanimously agreed to by the principle that 48 people should be held in this way. before we are talking about something that was theoretical and now it is real. now it is incumbent upon us to develop as quickly as we can what review mechanism is going to be and how transparent we can make that. >> sometime this year? >> i would certainly-- i would certainly think we could do that
>> sometime this month? >> i am not sure we can do that. >> this is an issue that is difficult for us to defend when we don't have anything to defend. we don't have a policy to defend so i urge you to get that to us as quickly as possible. let me turn to a separate subject dealing with our juvenile justice system. there've there have been recent reports released showing that many of the individuals and are juvenile justice system have been victimized. i would hope that you are acting on that report and the department of justice has a significant responsibility in regards to how juveniles are handled in this country not only from the federal point of view but in our states and i would think they should be a very high priority and i know our committee is looking at legislation here but we certainly welcome your thoughts as to what we should be doing in regards to improving our juvenile justice system. >> we would like to work with you in that regard. the reports that i've seen from
a variety of contexts i think are very disturbing about how juveniles are treated, how they are victimized too often in facilities where frankly they should not he held. i think the purpose of the juvenile system is rehabilitation and if that is to occur we have to have the juvenile system that is capable of doing that so i look forward to working with you and trying to make our juvenile system what it can be an too frequently is. >> thank you. thank you madam chair. >> thank you senator cornyn. i would like to take this opportunity to put in the record national security division statistics on unsealed international terrorism related convictions and also a letter dated february 18 from the department. senator cornyn. >> thank you madam chairman. good morning general and in the short time we have together i
want to ask you a little bit about the financial crisis and what the department is doing to investigate, prosecute criminal activity they are. the violence in mexico and the work of the administration is doing to deal with that. and also what the administration is doing, what the department is doing with regard to health care fraud and i have some specific questions there. i suspect you will agree with me that criminal prosecution can be an effective deterrent to those who might be tempted to commit future crimes. >> it is the most effective deterrent to. >> i agree and that is why we have seen the investigation of the financial collapse that reached with lehman brothers and aig and this massive infusion of taxpayer money to help prop up our financial system and to get the economy going again.
and looking at financial regulatory reform coming out of the banking committee and the like. but one thing i have noticed that has been missing is show trials. we simply haven't had the people who were guilty of criminal conduct brought to justice and tried in public and punished for committing crimes that the american people are paying for. can you sort of summarize for me what is happening so the american people can have some confidence that this ultimate deterrent will be utilized where appropriate? >> the president has created the financial fraud enforcement task force and that task force is looking at a variety of matters and a variety of matters that are under investigation. these are difficult cases to put together. they are complex by their nature. they are paper driven. they are not easy to put
together. having said that, i think over time we will see more of these trials and i hope that they will have the deterrent effect that i think they are capable of having. having said that, there had been some successes. there have been indictments brought against stanford, obviously they made off case and some other high-profile matters, but i think the work i would focus on the work of the financial fraud is pretty comprehensive in its scope and involves not only federal prosecutors but state and local prosecutors as well, regulatory agencies. i would think you would see coming out of the work of that task force the deterrent kinds of things that i think you and i both agree ultimately needs to be emphasized. >> who is coordinating for the executive branch, the investigations and prosecutions of those guilty for bringing our
financial system into crisis 18 months ago? because of course you have all these, an alphabet soup of all these different federal agencies, the fdic, sec, obviously the fed and treasury. who was coordinating all that? is that the financial fraud enforcement task force or is it a higher level more specific to the financial crisis? >> it is coordinated by the justice department coordinated by me as the head of the financial brought enforcement task force. it is an unprecedented effort to take as you put it be agencies, federal prosecutors together so we can be efficient in the investigation of these matters and ring to bear various expertise that exists in these different institutions and then bring to justice as quickly as possible the people who are responsible for the fraud that was perpetrated.
>> general holder, turning now to health care fraud, some experts have estimated that as much a $60 billion in stolen from the medicare program each year and that is out of a 425 billion-dollar annual program. the health and human services, secretary sebelius, has told me in a letter in a response to an inquiry i made that there is much as a 10% wrongful payment rate for medicaid payments. 10 cents out of the dollar that could be applied to helping provide health care for low income individuals. i know that we have talked about this before, but my experience is a state attorney general, and i would be surprised if yours is different, is that the pay and chase way of addressing medicare and medicaid fraud doesn't seem to work very well because you have limited resources. and the they detect and prevent
approach has a lot to be commended in terms of a superior approach and i would just as for your comments on that and ask hopefully for your commitment to work with us to sort of change the paradigm to make it a fairer fight between the good guys and the bad guys. >> i would agree. we have worked i think in an unprecedented way. the justice department with hhs and trying to get at this problem. the amount of money that are essentially stolen from the american people are astronomical. we looked at last fiscal year, we had $1.9 billion in criminal and civil settlement collections during fiscal year 2009. that is just a huge amount of money. we have put together this effort, health care fraud prevention and we have placed in seven cities and we are going to try to expand that to 13 this year that has been particularly
useful in identifying places where you see this health care fraud. and i think we certainly need to detect it and hold people accountable where it occurs but i think you are right, that we have to come up with mechanisms that probably means auditors and people like that to prevent this from happening in the first place. the fraudsters, once they are detected what we have found is that they move from one city to another, so what we have to do is make it impossible for them to make money off these kinds of fraud. we have even seen instances where we are now a hearing drug dealers art getting out of dealing drugs. into health care fraud because it is less dangerous and more lucrative than that cannot be allowed to stand. >> general holder i commend the efforts you've made and have described although we have to i'll admit it is just a tiny fraction of the money lost in health care fraud so i look forward to working with you to try to get into this detect and
prevent mode rather than the pay and chase mode. let me just close on a question about the merida initiative and the violence in mexico. the chair and senator kyl and i represent border state and as you appropriately stated earlier , what is happening in mexico along the border affects our entire country. as we know there is a war basically going on now between the drug cartels and the mexican government. president calderon has been broadly taken on this challenge. we don't know how it is going to come out yet and that worries me a lot. we put a lot of money and a lot of effort into the merida initiative and i know, i believe u.n. secretary clinton, secretary napolitano the director of national intelligence and others traveled to mexico city recently to visit with the mexican government. why is what we are doing now does not appear to be working in our u.s. concerned sim that this
violence will not result in a peace treaty between the mexican government and the cartels. one is going to win and the other is going to lose and we don't know what that outcome will be right now. speeches for the record i did not accompany him the trip to mexico. i was before this committee to testify but it got postponed, so the deputy attorney general actually whetted my place. the work of our mexican counterparts has been courageous. they have put literally their lives on the line and one looks at the number of law enforcement officers, soldiers, civilians who have, who have lost their lives in connection with this battle. it is indeed alarming. i spent over two hours in phoenix when i was there for u.s. attorney conference, speaking with my mexican
counterparts, mexican attorney general about the progress we are making and i think progress has been made in mexico. it would be my hope that they will continue this effort. they need the help of the united states. the merida initiative is certainly one of the ways in which we can do that. i think we also need to focus on what they call the iron river and the flow of illegal weapons that go from the united states to mexico that i have been trained on. soldiers, innocent mexican citizens. we have used their dea, our fbi to find help in that regard. i think the battle is very much in the balance and without continued american attention and continued american support i think we decrease the chances of the mexican government ultimately being successful. i'm confident president calderon is committed to this fight but i think we have to show ourselves to be good allies in that regard. >> i appreciate your efforts and
look forward to continuing to work with you. i have other questions but i have to say that those in writing. i would know that the latest testament i saw it said 18,000 people have lost their lives as a result of this violence since 2006. i'm not sure the american people have digested that and comprehended the scope and the severity of the threat occurring right on our southern border, so we have a lot of work to do. thank you. >> thank you very much. i have on my list in the following order, senator klobuchar, senator coburn, senator kaufman, senator franken you are on. >> thank you madam chairwoman. and general holder. i am very concerned about the potential merger of comcast and nbc, universal. i know that you are not allowed to discuss the specifics of the
merger, but i want to delve into this a little bit with you today. i am concerned because they see the potential here for consolidation of media in a way that is to me very frightening. i worked at nbc of longtime. i want the best for nbc. [inaudible] he says this is good for nbc. i said i know this is good for nbc. this is not the issue. the question is, is a it good for the american people? and to me, what we have is a situation where, if this goes through, are we going to have a
situation like with verizon and at&t sees the need to buy networks and studios and are we going to get all our information because comcast is the largest cable provider in the large-- third largest internet provider. are we going to be seeing a situation where the five companies are giving all the information that we get and i think that is a very dangerous situation. are you familiar with what happened with the financial syndication laws in the early '90s? >> somewhat, yeah. >> you remember that a sickly the networks were prohibited from owning their own programs, and that was reversed and during the testimony that all the different networks-- sorry for the sound here.
the different networks said why would we buy our own, favor our own programs. we are in the business-- we are in the business of getting ratings and we just buy the best programs. obviously what is turned out to be the case is that hasn't happened at all. they favor their own programs and that set the scene for disney buying abc and for paramount and viacom buying cbs and nbc urging with universal and fox of course owns fox, so right now we have this incredible concentration and most of the shows are owned by whoever owns it. it has reduced competition for independent producers. now, what we are seeing with comcast is that comcast is yes,
it is a vertical integration but it is also horizontal because they both have sports programming that anybody is carrying, the cable network has to carry, it would be really in bad shape if they don't. my question is, how does the department of justice determine whether a merger is horizontal or vertical orb does and how does that impact the department analysis of this merger? >> well, i am somewhat restricted in what i can say about the investigation that is underway with regard to the comcast nbc merger, but i can assure you that the department is conducting a thorough investigation of that proposed transaction. and, if a determination were made that comcast acquisition of
nbc would substantially impact competition in violation of the antitrust laws, we are committed to taking very serious enforcement action. i am not really at liberty to talk about much, because it is an ongoing investigation but one that i think in antitrust division that has shown itself to be aggressive appropriately aggressive headed by christine varney, they are looking at this transaction. ..
and have enough life that they would really compose real conditions to prevent the very thing of fearing. >> well again, maybe i can take myself away from a the nbc comcast situation and simply say that when we look at these matters we have a wide range of things that can be done from borrowing, stopping the merger,
putting into place a variety of conditions the parties have to agree to in order to allow the of merger to proceed. again that is nbc contests. but more generally i think we can make those conditions ones that are enforceable and have a degree of transparency. obviously it involves having on the staff or access to people like experts in the field not simply go to trust will years of antitrust division but people who understand the particular field that we are trying to regulate and i am confident that we do have that capacity. >> i would hope that my office and the folks over at the vha working at this can have an exchange of ideas because this is something that affects people
in ways they don't understand and this is including just the cable bill so i want some kind of assurance i will be able to do that. >> i am a comcast subscriber and as you point out the fact it can have an impact on my cable bill is awakening -- >> i knew i could reach you somehow. [laughter] >> that's right more interested in my was going to this, but no, seriously, we will be glad -- >> being the riss culbert it is a pocket book i know that. >> we would be glad to listen to the concerns that you have and the observations that you have given in the experience you have in the industry. >> thank you. madame chair. >> i see that senator klobuchar has returned. you are up next. >> thank you very much, madame chair and attorney general holder. for still want to commend the department of justice and specifically u.s. attorney's office in minnesota for the fine job they did on the case that is
second to bernie madoff in terms of loss. and it really affected a lot of people in our state and a lot of nonprofit groups. he just received a 50 year sentence and so i wanted to come and tom jones, and all of the great experienced line attorneys that worked on that case. thank you. >> thanks for sending tight our way. >> the second thing i want to focus on is just what i consider the elephant in the room when it comes to crime affecting people's lives and that is crime on the internet, that is seiters security issues that go beyond individual people that are going to i think at some point there will be a major problem for a country if we don't get on the front end of this and become a sophisticated or terrorist group that are trying to hurt our country or a bus off. and i was concerned on the microlevel for what affects people's mean individuals, the recent report from the inspector general suggested the doj should
be doing more to combat identity theft the report stated doj needs to insure efforts to combat identity theft are coordinated and give sufficient priority. and it talked about the fact that there's not a person assigned with the responsibility to coordinate these efforts, and by some estimates identity theft is the fastest growing crime in america, 2010 estimate dictums of 25% from 8 million victims in 2005. we said the fbi stopped collecting data on identity theft. that was in this report. can you comment on the report and what your remedies will be. >> i think you identified not only a problem that exists now but 1i think that if unchecked is potentially the crime of the future as many benefits of the internet brings to us we see criminals migrating to the internet and using the basis to do a whole variety of cybercrime
is, everything from identity theft to retail prada. the department takes this very seriously. i think we would have a good section within the criminal division that i think is effective of these people are experts at this. i think we could use more resources. but it is something they certainly have the attention of the general who runs the division certainly of this attorney general. i think this is a area of crime we have to get ahead of. there are ways in which we can do that and we are committed to doing it. >> the fbi staff collecting the data? >> i'm not familiar. sprick i just interviewed a piece on pure to pure marketing
and the what is happening where people innocently go on a computer and maybe their kid has demoted a peer-to-peer program and all of their stuff is stolen and we had a landscape company in minnesota an employee goes home and does their work at home and the whole employees of all of their companies on the markets, everybody is getting identity theft problems. individuals who just happened to access. it's unbelievable to me. the 2,009 internet crime report by the complaint center which released in march, plans of internet fraud were up 25% over a year ago and the 200-dollar loss of more than doubled from 2008. where do you think we should go with this local law enforcement doesn't have the resources to get this out. a lot of is it is international. i think we should be dealing with other countries in the law enforcement. how to get a handle on this? >> i think you hit on something and this is not something that can be done on a local basis or national basis.
one thing the internet allows is criminal and fall off places to almost be in your living room, bedroom, wherever you have your computer into the problem of identity theft and cybercrime required the cooperation not only like a concentrated effort here but also like-minded countries. i was in madrid last week talking to the justice minister's there and the whole question of cybercrime and how the internet is used. one of the focus is we have on child pornography and other things as well as something that we are committed to working together to do. it means we have to reach out not only to our allies but also the other countries that have been frankly somewhat reluctant to be cooperative. we have to use i think diplomatic pressure to make them
be partners in this effort. >> okay. i was on the sponsors on the act the president signed in to the law and you talked about the forming of the task force. can you talk about what has happened, what are the priorities and talk about how they have a place of the table. >> i think that it's been a good effort so far and i think that as time passes and not too long if it period of time the results will be manifest. but i think is important about this is that it involves -- this is in a federal effort this is one that involves state and local counterparts and they are involved in various subcommittees and the of leadership roles throughout the task force and the needs that the identifier we try to deal with. the ideas that they have far i think excellent ones we tried to
incorporate into the enforcement strategy. i really think this is a model for the way in which we can work with our state and local partners. they are not a junior partners they are equal partners in this effort. >> last, and i know senator cornyn brought this up the health care fraud issue and you and secretary sebelius announced we had discussions. i want to think i've been more shocked by that areas that have more disorganized of a system's like miami florida also tend to have more fraud because not only are there issues of the government launching the 60 billion-dollar loss a year but also that no one else is watching over each other like we might have in minnesota where we have a more systems and you can set up a storefront and the money isn't going somewhere else. could you talk about the progress i know you have the top spots including the one in florida that we just can't afford to have the money
bleeding off into this medicare fraud any more and people always talk about it is a proper thing to talk about but if we don't get something done we will not help the american people. >> think the use of these task forces are getting something done. i think we have measurable results. we tried to identify places where we have the greatest instances of health care for what and these are the places where we put the task force. we have seven now i think we are going to 13 or 14 next year. but you're right there are certain localities that have certain ways in which they conduct themselves certain ways to organize themselves and make them more susceptible and the fraud understand that and move from one city to another identified in the cities that are most vulnerable but i think that senator cornyn's point is a good one that we can't simply be chasing these people. we have to come up in ways we
prevent the fraud from occurring in the first place. a think it has to be able eckert. >> i'm not going to repeat any of my comments because i am over what i can talk about this separately but senator durbin and i have a bill when organized retell crime costing retailers approximately $30 billion per year and again its computer-related because it is ending sold on ebay and other places and so i think there is some good ideas how we can work to track and have a marketer stop selling goods that they believe are still to the coastal land so i'm going to talk to you about that later with read estimate that think the point you raise is a good one. it's one thing for an individual to shoplifting to take something out of the store, but when you have a whole bunch of people doing that and then using the internet for means by which you face this material, you kind of
will supply the possibilities for these people and you have what could be in the old days seen as a local problem become a truly national one with consequences for the economy, not the local economy that the national economy. >> we would love the department to help on this bill and get it done. >> thank you, senator klobuchar. senator whitehouse. >> thank you, chairman specter. first of all, welcome attorney general holder. i would like to begin by saying that i am very proud of and would like to associate myself with the remarks that senator feinstein made and to observe that the inland's of american justice which is something that is admired and revered around the world and its and national
asset which we justify they take great pride for the bounce, not to the torch and the pitch fork, and i want to applaud your steadfast defense on the principal of american justice has attorney general. there's been discussion about health care as to what my colleagues know senator lemieux and i were working on a piece of bipartisan legislation to look at productive capabilities and health care fraud and we will end with senter cornyn klobuchar at the beginnings of a good strong piece of long controversial anti-crime bipartisan legislation and i hope that your office, attorney general, will work with us on reviewing that legislation. i think we have been making good progress. i wanted to go back to the
question of military commissions. you and i worked in a different hearing you said that one of the values about the courts is the experiential base they provided that prosecutors go again can know what the answers are going to be do a whole array of questions the it therefore can model how the case is going to play out and can produce it more effectively. we've already noted that there have been hundreds of article 3 tour prosecution's versus three military tribunal constitutions and it is my understanding that of the three military tribunal persecutions' a number of them were actually plea agreement and therefore did not contribute to the experiential base of the military commissions; is that correct? >> i think that's correct. i am not sure what the number is but i think that there might have been too pleased i am not sure of that. >> that's my understanding as well. and that leads me to hear is a
statement by jack goldsmith who was the head of the office of legal counsel during the bush administration and he said the legal and political risks of using the bet military commissions system the legal issues remain unresolved including the validity of the non-traditional criminal charges that will be central to the commission's success and the role of the geneva convention sorting out these and dozens of other issues rate by commissions will take years and might render them in a factual. such foundational uncertainty makes commissions a less than ideal forum for trying in this case khalid sheikh mohammed. so they seem to have good support from the bush administration in your view and it's one that i share from my time in the prosecution that that experiential base is very important. i would note that john bollinger who was a top legal adviser to the national security council and the state department under president george w. bush said
publicly their rush to the military commissions is based on premises that are not true and kenneth winston we've had before the committee regularly with assistant attorney general for national security under the bush at the fenestration has said that the nine years of access to one-fifth in the favor of the ever can be counterproductive. i see the benefit having both of the systems available. that is the obama administration when they decided to retain the metric commission. now you made the decision to go with both article 3 courts and military tribunals as the circumstances justified. i wanted to ask you what role you think the legislature should have in that exercise of prosecutorial discretion. again, for years as attorney general united states attorney my view on this is that the legislature has no proper
business in the exercise of prosecutorial discretion. it's one of those areas it's not in my interest now the senators say so but i believe on principle it is one of those serious that the constitution commands exclusively to one branch of government and that is yours, the executive branch. >> as i indicated in a letter i sent i think to this committee signed by me and the secretary of defense body gates that is the position that we took. this is we believe an inherently executive branch function to make the determinations as to which of those two forms should be used. we are in possession of the greatest amount of information. it is the way which the constitution i think has set up our system of government and the letter that we sent indicated that attempts by congress well-meaning as they might be to inject congress into that role
is inappropriate. >> i agree with you on that and i want to associate myself with senator gramm's remarks. i think that his standard that we should be flexible, pragmatic and aggressive in making those decisions are good ones and i have confidence and of leaving that decision to issue and to the people that surround you and the national security establishment three on the question of interrogation and the use of miranda mornings it is my -- with an on this committee a couple of years and fined exposure to the problem with interrogation is if you're doing this effectively you have to begin in a tradition with a strategy and that street she's developed by trained professionals who are experts in this specific area and the information i have is a bad strategy can include and on numerous occasions actually has
included a provision not miranda warnings to the subject of the interrogation of a part of the experts best practice of a tradition in that particular case. is that not true? >> that is right. one of the ways which we took to the fbi interrogators we talk about the need to establish the bond, a level of trust and a couple has talked about with me if i'm getting of these warnings indicates to that person you are going to be fair they've become more trusting and perhaps more desire and of sharing information that the giving of miranda warnings does not necessarily mean that the information flow stops. part of what we've seen this past year with regard to abdul -- abdumutallab, all of whom were given money and awareness, the information flow was
substantial -- >> the miranda warning something that should be this to the professional mentor getters to part of that interrogation strategy case by case. >> one of the things people on the ground had to determine and the fleet when he tried to blow up a better plan they to make an instantaneous decision. how are we going to deal with this person and they decided initially they did not need to and should not give miranda warnings to him so under the public safety exception they could determine whether or not there were other people on the plane who need to be concerned about and other people not for plans needed to be concerned about and then afterwards they decided after consulting with people back here on washington that it was appropriate to try to give miranda mornings it ultimately proved successful in getting more information out of
them to estimate my time is expired. i have a number of questions i will be asking questions for the record. they relate to the cybersecurity issue and i would like to ask if i may incorporation of the attorney general in ensuring rapid responses to those questions i am the question of a task force on the intelligence committee that is performing a report for the committee on cybersecurity and i promised my colleagues and i will have the report done by the end of june, and i would like to have your input soon and i know that questions for the record can sometimes take weeks, months, it can christoff into eternity and to mark these for quick response the would be great. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, senator whitehouse tebeau we will go to our to after i finish the first round.
mr. attorney general, there will be another opportunity to test the constitutionality of the warrantless wiretaps process and a plea to the supreme court of the united states and from the decision made by the chief judge walker recently in the san francisco case holding that the warrantless wiretaps were unconstitutional saying that the requirements of the foreign intelligence surveillance act preclude the warrantless wiretaps that there had to be probable cause. there was an opportunity review by the supreme court of the united states and the case arising out of detroit were declared the warrant was lawyer talks on constitutional the
sixth circuit side or there was no standing [inaudible] views as a way of avoiding the citing of questions and the supreme court in the united states did not observe. at this point after a lot of your speculation and a lot of discussion, we do not know whether the president's power in commander of chief under article article 2 justifies warrantless wiretapping or the provisions of foreign intelligence surveillance acts. what you press to have the case coming out of the san francisco federal court go to the green deacons pinker fer decisions? >> we have not decided what we
are going to do at this point with the decision that was made by the judge the focus there had been not necessarily as much on the legality of the tfp as protection of sources and methods and a determination as to what we are going to do to the adverse ruling we got from the chief judge has not been made. we are considering our options. >> what do you think? >> i think i haven't made up my mind yet. we have to see the impact will be. this program i guess ended in 2007, 2006. mauney view is that to the extent that -- i can't get into too many operational things but the support of congress, the authorization of congress to conduct these kinds of programs
is the way in which the knicks ticket of branch should operate. it is when the executive branch is at its strongest when we have the foundation is when we work with members of congress to set up these kind of programs and especially when one looks at as you've pointed out, you know, the requirements under fisa so i think we will have to consider what our options are and try to understand what the ramifications are in the judge's ruling in the case >> i would urge you to make up your mind to get a decision. i filed a bill to compel the supreme court warrantless wiretaps congress obviously can't tell the supreme court how to decide a case that we can deal with the jurisdictional issue and as we look to the next round of nominations i think one
of the big areas of failing by the court is in this refusal to take up cases and make decisions. they do not serve in the case involving the questions or immunity where the victims of survivors of victims of 9/11 were suing with strong evidence going very high up into the government of saudi arabia and the congressional determination will immunity would not apply in that kind of a situation and the court by deciding not to decide is a very differential which the executive power. i think that when we are looking for new nominees went to the court we are looking to the chief justice roberts not to
hold the system, to follow the presence and we haven't gotten that notwithstanding the assurances want to jolt the system. the system has been jolted very roughly the citizens case involving corporations that have political campaigns is illustrative of. i want to pick up one of the questions which senator whitehouse and i asked about the miranda warning some. the impact of not getting the miranda warning as is widely misunderstood. if there and the warnings are not given all that it means is that the statements made by the subject of interrogation can't be admitted into evidence against him in an article 3 court. but when you dealt with somebody like the christmas day donner
you didn't really need admissions or confession the evidence was overwhelming and when we talk about the subtleties of interrogations i find it hard to accept that the assistance of establishing reports bond by the interrogator with the subject would be sufficiently enhanced to pour into giving the mayor mandel warnings as a disc richard for making statements that by the time you get through singing you have the right to remain silent anything you say -- there are five of them and you get this waivers. but that is a big discouraging factor. so it would be my hope that the
warnings would not be given. the most important thing in dealing with a terrorist is to get information to prevent future not contacting the individual. if you had to make, in my view, if you have to make a truce between convicting and getting information which might preclude his subsequent terrorist attack with all of the information. but is what you're saying to the policy of the department to make a judgment on the specific case as to whether to give more in the warnings or not that you leave it up to the interrogator and his judgment is that this report will be established but to not to determine all cases are miranda mornings? ..
and they don't know exactly what is going on at that point but even so, they did not give miranda warnings and that initial interaction with them. so i am looking for flexibility but with the thought that, when it comes to terrorism the gathering of intelligence is of critical importance. >> i am glad to hear that, that
you are not doing it automatically and the gathering of intelligence is the more important factor. >> thank you mr. chairman. it is good to see you in that chair, even though from a different side of the aisle then i am familiar with. it is in the middle, isn't it? i think your comments about miranda are right, except i would have to little cautionary comments. one is, senator graham asked you what was going to happen if somebody arrested bin laden, would they give miranda rights he did not give a clear answer but that person is not likely to be able to check with you at that moment. we need a policy, number one. number 2, according to the
miranda rule, as soon as a person is taken into custody, they are supposed to be advised of their rights before questions are asked. via ei the i policy is in the manual and that is what they are going to do unless somebody explicitly tells them otherwise and number three, there is no doubt in my mind and as senator specter has suggested that when you tell an individual their right to have a lawyer, they have a right to remain silent and you will bring them one but you are going to get less actionable intelligence than if you didn't do so. in fact, the first thing a good lawyer is going to say is don't talk. you may have to make a plea bargain later and other things may happen in the fact that some people do cooperate ultimately does not affect the rules, the basic fact. realistically you are going to get less information from that procedure, and that is why that is a big part of the reason that
many of these cases need to be handled through military commissions and military custody. i will let you respond to that. >> senator, maybe i was not clear. with regard to bin laden there would be no need to give bin laden a rather warnings and if i was not clear there, i meant to be. if he were captured i cannot foresee any reason. >> mr. holder, your presumption is and you are on report that they would be tried in civilian court, and why wouldn't you give miranda warnings? >> unless you are going to try him in military commission? >> the concern with miranda warnings is whether or not the information might be excluded. we have sufficient statements from bin laden so there is no reason to mirandized; you can still bring his case -- not.
>> i acknowledge that that is possible but for abdulmutallab on christmas day, like you said one of the agents know about the strength of the case and there is a doctrine that says if the improperly obtained information as a result of not getting miranda warnings can poison the entire prosecution and raise questions and create many defenses that would not otherwise exist. so i think in the rule, to me simply would be that you expect these terrorist individuals to be tried and taken into military custody and is in the true and isn't it appropriate that after they have been taken into military custody, if you chose to try them in civilian court, you could still do so? >> i suppose that is true but i think there is. >> we have another member--
number of times, have we not? being we have done it a couple of times. >> what about collegiate ahamed? you declared him ready to go to trial and court. that is a fact. military custody and then you can try them at your auction in civilian court. >> what i've been trying to say is that. >> why wouldn't that be the right way to start the case and have a policy for every fbi, every police officer in every tsa airport official to again, to not give miranda warnings and not provide free attorneys to people who are attacking the united states of america? >> lets look at what happened with regard to the detroit bomber, abdulmutallab. the fbi agents who have a polity that when people are taken into custody give miranda warnings. they had the presence of mind given their experience and given
the concern they have been given the knowledge of the law to understand in that initial interaction they did not have to give him his miranda warnings in the information they got from him can be used in the a trial against him under the corals exception, the public safety exception. >> well, i don't know if the public safety exception goes to 50 minutes. have you had any in a case that has ever gone that long? where you say to somebody, do you have a gun? after a while, that exception as. >> i'm going to say is a former judge, given my experience and given a set of facts i would think that the government has acted appropriately here and the statements from the gentlemen would be admissible in a trial. >> i'm just saying a defense lawyer would make that point i am sure. >> i am sure they would but they would lose in court. >> this is really significant. let me just say about how we got
to this point. my friend, senator durbin, the democratic whip, is so eloquent but president bush, the first case they came up was medea and that was before military commissions had been established. he established military commissions and the supreme court found him lacking and the defense department stopped and had to rewrite the rules and during that period of time up to 2006, the congress passed legislation to effectuate military commissions in late 2006 and then it took some time for the rules to all be written and moving forward. but the plan was to try to several hundred people at guantánamo that were going to be tried. all of them didn't have to be tried. but they would be tried by a military commission and khalid shake ahamed's case was already
proceeding as a military commission, was it not, tell president obama his first act was to stop that. >> the case had been proceeding in a military commission and a halting fashion and the decision the obama administration made was to put a hault to those things so that the commission procedures could be amended and congress passed those in 2009. >> you had a to a commission and you cochaired the commission to decide what to do when you concluded that even though they had already been arrested and already detained at guantánamo, there would be a presumption that they would be tried in civilian court and not by military commission. has that been change? >> no, that has not been change. the presumption we used, that i use along with secretary of defense and all the people who work with us, the protocol we were given did have a presumption in it. >> i would just say it is not
exactly a clean slate and you decide each case based on the facts of that case, you have got a presumption in favor of civilian trials. speak it is a rebuttable presumption and there are a variety of other factors we take into account is not the least of which is at the end of the day, in which form can reap the most effective and i think the test is what we have done which is to say with regard to a think it is five or six cases that the military commissions are the best places for them to be tried. >> we have a letter that came in on march 16, a few weeks ago, from the department of defense, the deputy director that there were no military commissions in 2009. pursuant to an air-- order, a change in policy by president obama as soon as he took office
and prosecutors then sought continuances in each case that were already referred to a military commission. and the convening authority seeks referring to charges to military commissions. to my knowledge that has not been changed, has its? >> know i believe but i believe we are going to be making the determination as to where the case up to go. it is our intention to use military commissions as well as article iii courts again with the whole notion of being flexible, pragmatic and aggressive. >> i think that is fair to say you have made some individual determinations on cases and some of these are record cases, financing of terrorism and supported terrorism and pieces that could be easily handled in these boards but it is clear to me made a firm decision to go the other way to civilian court or virtually all of these cases and it is an error. i hope that you will review that and i hope the new york case
will be the beginning of a reevaluation of that policy. >> i actually think in terms of the decisions that are made back in october, november, then in terms of the number of individual cases opposed to the number of defendants that we actually sent more cases to the military commission then i did to the article iii courts. >> thank you senator sessions. senator graham. >> thank you mr. chairman and i think exchange between the two senators has been a pretty good fleshing out of the complexities of the situation we find ourselves in. but i want to try, if i can, to use some scenarios here to reassure people that the system needs to be improved but not completely by any means broken. if a military member stumbles on osama bin laden or some high target in afghanistan, pakistan or you just named the location, no one is arguing at that moment
in time that they are going to read him his rights. what they would do as i understand it is if they would capture him pursuant to military operations which is not require mirandizing the enemy prisoner. obviously turn them over to intelligence organizations. that would be the case right? >> we have the high-value interrogation group designed especially for high-value. >> this goes to senator sessions.. i think he is right on point here. i want to compliment you. i think it is a great organization to have. as i understand it is a collaborative group of people who will be the primary interrogation team on a high-value target is captured within the united states or outside the united states. >> that is correct. 's been their primary purpose is intelligence gathering? and they will be able to assess what the individual knows about any operation? then they will decide if and when to mirandized, which is
absolutely fine with me. >> part of the process. >> his lungs was there with the idea that the initial purpose is to gather intelligence and i think that is your college he with the hague that they will assist the detainee in terms of what they know about the war. is that correct? >> the high-value detainees are people who we think their primary value to us is to learn about targeting structure, a whole variety of them is. >> under the love for it is lawful to interrogate somebody. we are obviously not torturing people but we have the authority to do that. i think that is quite frankly-- i don't want to micromanage congress to tell an age and what to do and when to do it, as long as we are reviewing the suspects not as a normal criminal threat that a part of a military threat trying to find out what they know. what additional rights would a detainee have if any, if they
were transferred from guantánamo bay cuba to say illinois? with the transfer of a location create more rights for the detainee than if they were left at guantánamo bay? >> that is a question that i think is has not really been answered yet. it is one we are not sure about. i think certainly as an advocate i would argue that there are not other rights that would necessarily ascertain but it is not clear how the courts are going to rule. >> i think that is a very good point in this is a situation where congress could help give the courts clarity. is that correct? >> i think that is correct. >> as a matter fact judge lambert at hogan has been in their habeas corpus and in that asking for congressional help and even reading those opinions. i have never seen a judge so open about congress because of if they detainee has ordered release by the judge tejeda be
as petition is granted, what happens next? do we have to release the united states if we can't find a third country, what do we do with them? >> there is no requirement they be released into the united states invents those instances where we have decided not to appeal in that release has occurred they have typically been taken to a third country. >> what if you can't find a third country that will take one of these people? what do we do? >> they do not have to be released and they would remain in custody while efforts to try to find the location. >> let's play this out. habeas corpus and is meaningless if they cannot eventually result in release. is that true? >> i would not say that. it gives the possibility to a detainee, a possibility he can be relocated and that would not be admissible before the judge made that decision.
[inaudible] >> you would hope that you would be able to come up with. >> would you agree it would be helpful if congress spoke about a case like this to give some guidance to the judge's? >> i think it could be helpful although i think i have, on a cautionary note, congress can provide guidance except in those areas where a judge to make the determination that what the judge is doing is unconstitutional. >> i totally agree and we are in a dilemma as a nation here and i do worry about the international community. i wanted to be more open to the idea of what we were doing to make sense but great richness change their criminal laws to allow people to be held for up to a year without trial. is that correct? >> i think the courts of kind of pushed back a little bit. >> i totally agree and i think we have the right theory here that if you are an enemy combatant in the wild boar ticks over because there is no provision interest-- domestic criminal law to hold anybody
without trial? >> held incommunicado, even-- the courts have not really--. >> if you are going to be charged with a crime i think you need to have have your day in court but if you join the enemy force, i am willing to give you your day in court and you should not have joined al qaeda. as i understand that every member of al qaeda that you hold as an enemy combatant will appear before a federal judge in the habeas corpus eating's. >> if they see kb's review. >> it is up to them but if they want their day in court the judge has to agree with the government that the evidence is compelling, reliable and legally obtained to hold them as an enemy combatant. both of us are trying to work with a system that has an ongoing review because the enemy combatant determination could he a de facto life sentence. >> well,.
>> at the judge rules for the government, we believe that he should have an ongoing review process, an annual review process and i want to complement the administration. i think what you all are doing their make sense of there is an annual review of this person status because the enemy combatant determination could be a de facto life sentence because this war is not going going to end anytime soon. there will never be a formal surrender so it it is an accommodation we are trying to make in sort of a hybrid system. what i would like to do is try to get this committee to work with you to deal with what happens when a habeas corpus and is granted, institutionalized an ongoing review process so we can look at anybody in the world in in the eye and say no one in american military prison and has held arbitrarily. they have independent judicial review and if every military commissions verdict is appealable to be system.
is that correct under the military laws we have? >> i believe that is correct. >> it is so there is article iii review of our military commissions. there is article iii review of our enemy combatant determinations and obviously if you go into an article precourt you have article iii ownership there so what i'm trying to establish with your help is that there will be an independent check and balance throughout every lane no matter what lane you used. but when it comes to closing guantánamo bay, 50 pine% of the mecca people object to it. there has been a 20.shifted i know i'm over my time but this is important. why do you think that is up and? >> i think there has been a lot of misinformation out there and without casting aspersions on anybody in this room i think there has been been unnecessary politicalization in with regard to.
>> can i give you an alternative theory? there is probably some truth to that than i am not saying you are all wrong. i think there a lot of people in this country worried about we don't have a coherent policy in this i have tried to discuss with you, this is hard. the christmas day bomber highlighted the people was a bit unnerving because they saw this guy is a common criminal and miranda warnings. we all watch tv is associated with dragnet in all this other stuff so i think the helpful not only to focus on our allies but also the american people and assure them that as we go forward in this war on terror that we are going to live within our value system that we are going to have a legal system that will protect you and your family against people who are committed to our destruction. it will not include torture. it will be transparent. it will be open but it will be based on the principle as senator specter said. this is not a normal criminal
operation. i think if we could do that as their attorney general not only would you serve the moment well here in america, you would serve the future well and i look forward to helping make that happen. we have got to assure the american people, not just our allies, that we have a good system that will protect us against what i think is an enduring threat. we will be fighting this war long after you and i have left the political arena. i wish it were not so but i believe it to be so so let's part some of the rhetoric and see what we can find a solution. thank you for your service. i really buy or what are trying to do for the country. >> the point you made is a good one and it is incumbent upon people like myself to be more forthcoming, perhaps more clear with the american people about what our intentions are and to explain to them in ways that are half as we have not done and i have not done effectively to
date so that there is a degree of insurance that-- you are probably right, the factors you mention are also probably a factor in why that approval or that approval notion of closing guantánamo drug. >> congress could be a good partner for you and if the congress and executive branch were working together i think it would help us and it would help the american people be reassured. thank you. >> thank you senator graham. before yielding to senator grassley for a second round, i intend to turn the gavel over to senator harkin in a few moments and we will have a couple of comments on the pending nomination to the supreme court. i may be consulted on the subject. i am sure you will be. just a word or two of my.
i believe the president ought to be concerned about a filibuster but ought to face squarely the fact that the supreme court is an ideological battleground and the lines are drawn. chief justice roberts have defied extensively in his confirmation hearings that he was going to try to draw consensus and narrow the issues. well, that certainly has not happened. chief justice roberts was very forceful in saying that he would not jolts the system. well, the citizens united is one hell of a jolt. hard to figure a jolt harder than that one on 100 years of precedent and a theory which has been at danced about finding a
judge who will be a consensus judge to be the fifth vote and not the fourth boat and some specific comments about bringing justice kennedy over into the fifth vote with the new appointee plus three others from the court. i think it is highly unlikely that president which is decided on the rasul case where justice stevens wrote an opinion identifying habeas corpus as a constitutional right going back to carter and then and explicitly eliminate the court of appeals said it was decided on statutory grounds or statutory habeas corpus. constitutional habeas corpus and that is as far-fetched as interpretation gambia. when the petition for cert was filed, kirby was surprised
justice stevens invoked-- but as was speculated and apparently with real foundation, justice stevens didn't want for justices to grant cert but waited until there were disclosures about major failings in the commissions for reconsideration that takes five justices, not for and then there were five and justice kennedy wrote the opinion. but i think it is fanciful thinking, looking for that kind of collegiality so i would hope that the ideological battleground would be recognized, and president obama is about halfway through his second year he may have the opportunity for other supreme court picks which would line up
with breyer and ginsburg and sotomayor so if you have an opportunity-- [inaudible] >> i am sure mr. chairman you are going to have that opportunity you are so but i will pass along what you said. >> well, that concludes the hearing. thank you very much. let me join senator graham for doing a very good job. >> thank you sir. [inaudible conversations]