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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  December 20, 2013 9:00pm-11:01pm EST

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the relationship that function well. the reason i talked about the long diplomacy is because this is the challenge of diplomacy. and this is a larger challenge we will face with brazil. ...
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>> thank you. nelson. in my 20 years of daily and weekly engagement with brie bsh brazil, which, by the way, in this room i know is a flash in the pan. than our moderator. so i don't know if the rules permit this, but given we've heard tom shannon side of the u.s. side of this. could i ask our moderator. what will it take from the brazilian side for us to put this disclosure issue behind us? >> i think it's a recognition in brazil of the importance of the relationship. you can see it coming from the business community that feels that brazil has, in a sense, somewhat isolated itself in the trade arena, for instance. this is daily --
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[inaudible] part of the national conversation. you had -- the recent speech in againer have addressing this directly significantly is very close to the president. he's very close to -- who is likely to run for the governor of the -- [inaudible] he's now the minister of development industry of commerce in brazil. so you have this and the signal from society that society is more and more engagement with the united states. this will appear in a debate in brazil.
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especially i think in a presidential election year in brazil next year. it would be interesting. i personally would love if the candidates all have the capacity to engage in this debate in terms of brazil's presence in the world. one thing that i thought ambassador was going to mention and he didn't and i will. you have an increasing number of brazilian companies, global companies there are about 30 of them. some are important they become new connectors. [inaudible] and are here because, well, this is a big market. this is also placed to --
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[inaudible] she was asked about the business of the fiscal cliff at the time. that the united states was going down. ghoarchls. no. he i don't believe the united states is losing importance in the world. the united states is a country with extraordinary flexible economy with a great capacity to reinvent itself. the united states is willing to revolution in energy and has something has something she said i value very much and we have to repeat four times.
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why -- what will happen. i just want to say briefly it takes leadership. it takes leadership here. it takes leadership there to make those interests. this is completely out of order. i'm not supposed to be saying any of this. [laughter] >> thank you. tori. ambassador, it's a pleasure to have you with us. and it's a pleasure to hear you talk. you give such a coherent presentation. i know, you choose your words very carefully. and so i want to address some the phrase of the disclosure problem, which you referred to repeatedly. i think probably being one of the only people in the room that
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sued the government for warrantless wiretapping. had the suit been rejected on the supreme court on the ground we couldn't prove standing two months been the snowden disclosure which we wonder we could have two months later. i think it makes it seem less serious. it's not on a human rights level and the right privacy. it's on a commercial and political level. it has to do with trust. there is, and i understand it's corporate as well as domestic. i would like that hear you respond. i think it discounts the seriousness of what is happening. and the second is, with respect to education and the number of brazilian students coming to the united states. which is enormous. somehow it going from the tows brazil? because i have a sense it's much
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less and i don't know the numbers. could you talk about that? and what you see the future of that? >> just the last one first. it is last. i don't have the exact figures. but i think it's going change over time. to begin with, historically, when americans have done overseas university incidents it's been focused on europe. largely the u.k., spain, and italy. some of france thrown in. but that's starting to change. we're seeing more americans going mexico. we see more go to argentina. and it's our hope, and especially as we build out our component of education in the americas, 100,000 strong. we will be able to begin to build a larger u.s. presence in brazilian universities. but in order to do that
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scufflely. we need the help of brazilian universities. many are not equipped to take international students easily. they don't have dormitories. they don't have international student programs. and it tend to fall to the student to find a place to live, networks of support networks, et. cetera, et. cetera. and some young students are okay with that. but others aren't. others a more packaged deal. there are a few universities beginning to understand this and beginning to try to fashion mechanisms that will allow them to attract foreign students more easily. not just from the united but elsewhere. and one of the things with e hope to be over time with the program is use what is article student exchange program to build --
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eventually to break down the closed shop nature of universities. especially when it comes to things like credits and degrees so they can be shared easily. had this is a long-term vision. but it is really our hope over time to take a program, which is really just about exchanging students and use it to build relationships between our educational system and or laboratory and research institutes that are going to be providing more productive relationship for both companies inspect terms of programs, challenges, crisis, outrage. you pick the word. you're right, i choose my words carefully. because, again, you can call
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trayson. i agree. but again what i -- what i want to be able to do here is recognize the seriousness of the issue. recognize the impact that it's had on the relationship. especially on brazil's understanding of that relationship. by putting in to a context in which it doesn't overwhelm that relationship. because i don't think it should. i mean, obviously it raises issues. imagery is different. when i -- it casts a dark shad go on the relationship. others have used words like trust and respect. and obviously we're going to have to address all that have in some fashion. but at the same time, i believe that this has been exaggerated for political purposes. not by brazilians themselves but
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snowden's handlers. i believe that much has been taken out of context. and i believe that ultimately we're in a position with the brazilians because of this first of all, to rethink our intelligence liaison relationships. that's something brazil does very poorly right now. largely because of the large internal history and the relative smallness of the intelligence services. but a recognition that brazil does not have an intelligence service that matches global ambition. in order do that, it really needs to build liaison relationships with global intelligence services that are capable of helping it dot kinds of things and provide the kinds of services to it own government that ultimately going need. brazil is in a privileged place right now.
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it has adversary and people -- happening inside brazil. and it's our hope that they recognize they have a useful partner us and need to see beyond their own immediate concerns caused by snow ton wild out the partnership. especially looking toward the world cup and limericks. -- olympics. the kind flowing through the information hubs. and it's going require a
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response that is at least a thought process. larger than the one we have going right now. >> okay. >> alec from the hillson company. thank you very much. indications in brazil, the brazilians are starting to feel a little bit isolated in trade issues and the formation of the pacific alliance. the ttp negotiations. the negotiations and others. and comments by the president in denver reflect on the other hand the brazilians seem to be hog tied by the participation. and by certain kinds of barriers within their own still
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protectionist society to be able to make breakthrough on trade issues. we've been talking with the e.u. for many years and haven't gotten very far. ic it's one of the points most important for strengthening the overall bilateral relationship between us. i wonder if you could say a few words about that. we want more trade. we want more investment. that's why brazil is one of the focuses of the president's national export initiative. it's why it's one of the focuses of the select u.s.a. initiative designed to bring investment from overseas to the united states. we are prepared to go to great lengths to achieve that. and what's hartening is as tony mentioned the very strong push from large industrial federations like cnn a on the bilateral trade relationship and trying to find ways to overcome
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aspects of brazilian trade and commerce. especially in the market reserve policies that have limited our ability to penetrate certain markets. and i think in this regard, the negotiations that are ongoing between brazil and the european union are an interesting bellwether. i think it's increasingly clear to brazilians they have large opportunities in europe. but being held back far variety of reasons. some domestic and some related to the relationships. and obviously, you know, we're not calling on anybody to abandon the alliance or trading infrastructure. it's up to each country to make the decisions. but a relationship between brazil and the european union put someone in a position as the united states bilged its transatlantic partnership triankle braceletlating to the south america or in to the south
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america or in to the agreements one might fashion with brazil would be an interesting possibility. but, you know, brazil has come a long way in a fairly short period of time. when i was there, the first time around, from 1989 to 1992, you know, the thought that brazil would be the home of major global companies. that it would be a growing investor in the united states and that a company like that would have numerous subsidiaries and -- in the united states. a major supplier didn't cross many peoples' minds. in a short period of time, they
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have covered a lot of ground. but they have more ground cover. >> just information. the council on foreign relations conference in new york where the minister -- [inaudible] was speaking. he said something very meaningful to me. i think i will repeat it here. it helps with the context. brazil, over the past 30 years or so, faced and basically built a consensus turning over three major changes. the first was democracy follow by the challenge around economic -- [inaudible]
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the challenge of competitiveness -- the other name of it is the challenge of making the brazilian economy an more open economy. you cannot do competitive as you cannot resolve innovation issues become more invast because the -- i wanted to add this. because i think it's relative to the conversation. my question is related to what he was talking about. which is, how does the recent decrease in gdp and the increase in economic concerns in brazil affect this relationship you have come to talk to us about and help us understand?
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if yoi look at what brazil has been able to accomplish. it's a lot of this on a consumer-driive growth model. and that model has kind of run its course. and brazil now needs to build growth model that is based on productivity and competitiveness as he noted. and as you look out over brat still began landscape, what is striking at least to me, is that the challenges faces are several. the biggest and most pressing is infrastructure. the highway, the railway and the telecommunication system you need to move u goods and services. and how do you coit in a timely
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fashion. it can't it to the foreign destinations that happy my buy it. it has huge infrastructure needs that have to be addressed. it has significant human resource needs that has to be addressed as it binged out the core and the core it needs to fashion a 21st century economy. and of course it has the drag on it. the labor regime, the tax structure, or the other regulations and rules that determine how you start businesses and more importantly how you close businesses. they have an advances dialogue on how to address them.
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in many ways the human resource issues are the easiest to resolve. they involve investment. where as the regulatory drag is the hardest because it's political. and it involves taking on significant entrenched interest within brazilian society. in some ways the president has inherited the toughest mart -- part of the economic transformation. it's clear fiscally and monetarily for a long-term positive growth path. and president was able to, through his social program, was able to inject the capital to the system so brazilians can take advantage of the long-term growth path and profit from it and drive growth rates that were quite high. but the president took over the model. just as it was hitting a wall.
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it's really up to her to find to the challenges in the brazilian economy. in many ways it's probably the toughest of the three. but the good thing is, it has worked through the different part of the economic development, it has globalized and become, you know, very aware of what is happening elsewhere in the world. and so i do think that brazil up to the challenges. the question is how fast. in this regard, in a brazil in a unique position. there are few countries in the world whose economic well being is entirely in their own hands. i think that's true for brazil. in other words the decision it makes on infrastructure development and education and human resources. and regulatory reform will determine how fast it grows. it it makes the right decision quickly it grows faster.
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and stronger. if it makes them more slowly or haphazard fashion it grows more closely. the thing it doesn't stop growing. it doesn't stop being -- it's don't attract toif american investors and businesses. [inaudible] >> my name is -- [inaudible] i'm a former representative of [inaudible] to the organization of american states now an independence scholar. ambassador, they mentioned a couple of times that u.n. solution of a [inaudible] general assembly taken yesterday presented by brazil and germany and also sponsored by many other countries. on the right of privacy and receipted to human rights. how do you see the implementation of that resolution? it's something that has fought a lot for. we can have an direct impact in this action state of the relationship. [inaudible]
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as noted the join consensus on that. the reason we were to be join consensus the original text proposed be by the initial conveners or those who offered it which included brazil have to change some aspect of that text to broadly address our concerns. recognize the importance of privacy and the importance of an internet which is seen as a global public good. and one that needs to be protected. like some of the u.n. resolutions. these are designed to capture a sense of the u.n. and to help provide direction
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-- was important and i think it showed that whenever brazil's intention might have been when it started the process. it recognized early on it wasn't going achieve erg it wanted to in the process. it had to make concessions that actually created a better environment for the kind of dialogue that we're having. thank you. my question has to do with brazil's relationship with other countries in the himself fear or
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more broadly. i think and we have worked on some of this together. there's broad respect for the strength of the brazilian economy what brazil has accomplished in term of democracy. to use it as a base for global projection. and you see any number of example. mexico, you know, opposition to having brazil have a permanent seat on the u.n. security council. you see it in the reaction in the himself fear -- hemisphere vis-a-vis human rights system. i was wondering in your time as ambassador if you could comment on how you perceived brazil's leadership being perceived in other part of the region.
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it's bigger ambition which are expressed through this and to a certain extent but -- [inaudible] larger south american ambition has to be changed with respect and understanding for the concern of other countries. and it consistently tries to present itself as a force. but as a force in the it's not easy when you are as big as brazil. they like to point out they border on france.
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and the trade qhaijs brazil faces with argentina because they tend to overload some of the circuit in the relationship and the structure they have. but the brazilians work very hard at this. in many ways, you know, -- first of all, i mean, the efforts to fashion regional integration units are -- from our point of view are positive. whether it's central america, the caribbean community, these are all efforts that faa facilitate dialogue and for the well-being of the sub region and the broader hemisphere. but actually the biggest i want -- impediment that dominates south america is largely the inability to open the market. .
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. because it has put mexico into south america in a way that i think many never anticipated and created the possibility of a connected series of free markets on the pacific coast all facing asia with without a u.s.
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presence or driving purpose. i think ultimately challenge is the wrong word because brazil tends to address problems by embracing them and so i don't think this is a challenge to brazil so much as it is something that it has to understand and address in a way that reflects the interesting concerns of the members of the alliance. >> yes. i will get to you. >> my name is steve and i'm here on behalf of u.s. travel association. i want to thank you for your opening remarks about the booming demand in both directions for both business travel and leisure travel. and in that context i think it should be mentioned how commendable it is the enormous effort the embassy has made over the last year or two to bring
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down really alarming delays in wait times for brazilian applicants for u.s. visas. remarkable progress has been made as you know. those wait times are down over 90% and it makes a big difference. that demand we all hope and expect will continue to rise and in that context i wanted to bring up the question of the visa waiver program. as you are i am sure away or this spring the first south american country chile will be admitted to the program. a year and a half ago after president obama was in brazil working groups between the two state departments were established to set up so-called roadmaps, pre-discussions knowing that the conditions aren't yet in place for an actual agreement but to lay the
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groundwork for that. it's not clear to many of us wear that all stands particularly after october and i wonder if you can in the spirit of looking forward in the way you have described here, described with the path forward may be. >> sure, i'm happy to do that. you know, as we try to understand the demographics in brazil and try to understand better what's been driving this tremendous surge in visas obviously the growth of the middle class was seen immediately as one of the reasons why we were seeing such a sharp rise. as we looked at the issue more closely we realized it wasn't true because many of the new middle class entrants were not traveling to the united states. they were still trembling inside are still in what we were seeing was increased travel by
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upper-middle-class and because they had more disposable income. and they had developed an interest in travel. even though we had to run really hard as you mentioned in order to fashion a piece of processes that reduced wait times from 120 days to two days in accommodating the brazilians traveling to the united states we recognized that there is a whole new group of entrance into the middle class that have yet to attempt to travel to united states but that they are coming. it's kind of like a roadway about there. we know it's somewhere in the middle of the ocean and we know it's not stopping and we have through our new consulates through expanding our consular sections in the number of options we have in the interviewing windows we have we are building a capacity to
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produce 1.8 to 2 million visas a year. right now we are doing about 1.3 million visas a year but i personally don't think that's enough. if this roadways keeps coming at us and we could find ourselves back in a near crisis situation in the next couple of years especially if the brazilian economy picks up in terms of growth. and if this new entrants into the middle class were able to consolidate themselves in the middle class. that is where the visa waiver program becomes important and that's one of the reasons why both countries have to keep working at it. there was a real hesitancy on the part of the resilient governmengovernmen t to address the visa waiver program. first of all because they are experiencing. >> and portugal haven't been a happy one and they have had people turn around at the ports of entry and it's better to have equal denied a visa and to be told in miami or los angeles or new york that they have to turn around and go back.
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so the brazilians were looking for assurances that they wouldn't repeat the experiences they had in lisbon and madrid. but also the visa waiver program's like the entry programs and other measures designed to facilitate travel, i had the security compliment to them. it's not that we ask people for information on travels, we don't. but we do want them to give us a thumbs-up or thumbs down whether there are risks are not the based on information available to national governments. and this is very hard because it requires them to first of all to dig through databases that are not easily connected right now but secondly to share risk assessments that they doubt they are legally allowed to do.
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we think there was a way forward on this. we think we can solve these problems but it's going to take some hard work on both sides. we think there is some urgency to it. >> in the center here. >> thanks. i work with many multinationals operating in brazil and for them the cost of business is quite high. it can be a lot higher than for silly and firms largely due to a lot of the cheap credit available due to this and other measures and the local tax regimes and where to set up local production. and facilitating the process of doing business in brazil so the investment is not a five or seven year timeframe or 10 years plus. >> the famous are still cause affects everybody. it's not just people coming in
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from the outside. one of the striking things about it is they will lend to american companies if you are based in brazil. but without a doubt as i mentioned there is an overhang in the economy that needs to be addressed to promote not just brazilian companies from helping generate increased growth but also the growing presence of global companies and global investors and some of this of course has to do with the regulatorregulator y costs in the legal costs and to the extent possible we have god a very large by our standards foreign commercial presence in brazil and a very skilled one that operates out of all of our consulates and embassies now and is prepared to help all american companies if they are interested many of the multinationals come down with their own resources and can manage their way through a lot of this but many companies are coming in fresh.
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what we are especially seeing with companies that come down say with state delegations like governors, there's a great interest in selling in the market of being present but with little understanding of how to do it and that is where we can plan them port and roll. we can facilitate contacts and try to look for for silly and partners because ultimately brazil is a country where the extent to which you have partners working with you it's going to make it a lot easier. the advice we give to american companies when they come down is first and foremost in the famous dictum that brazil is not to be be -- that is a complex and complicated country and many ways is like an archaeological dig in the sense that its laws and regulations and codes never seem to go away. there just builds one on top of the other and navigating that can be challenging for some businesses. but also and this is not from
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tom joe bean but from tom shannon, brazil is not for short timers. it's not for people who are going to come in and come out. it's for people who are prepared to make a long-term commitment simply because it does take a long time to establish yourself and then to find a way forward. we believe that given the direction that brazil is going and given the size of its domestic market and given a platform that could be for exports into the region and beyond it is attractive to american industries but again you know, we have very clear instructions from the president and from the secretary of state and the secretary of commerce that our number one priority is commercial diplomacy. this was my priority and i'm sure it is dilma rouseff's priority as the ambassador. although i'm not there now i
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recommend you work closely with the embassy in their consulates because we will provide all the help we can. >> paul johnson. thank you so much pablo and ambassador shannon it's always good to hear you talk. we have heard over the years about opportunities for trilateral cooperation between the united states and brazil and africa in sub-saharan africa. what are the prospects for some meat on the bones in terms of. investment, financing, industries like agriculture, infrastructure, health clinics i just wanted to hear your thoughts on that. >> thank you. it's great seeing you. there are lots of possibilities. in fact on the foreign assistance side we began our trilateral cooperation in an
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effort to eradicate malaria but i have extended that to mozambique where we are doing some important work on the public health side and also agricultural productivity side. but we are also working with the brazilians in honduras and in haiti on agricultural productivity and some other projects and this is brand-new for us and it's brand-new for brazilians. working through brazilian cooperation agency abc has really been an interesting and fruitful experience. it's a small agency. it's staffed largely -- are still doesn't have the cadres of development professional that one would imagine in that kind of an agency but it's building them over time and we have created an interesting relationship between the usaid and abc where we have exchange officers as we tried to
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get a better feel for how both sides work and where there might be synergies and connections. and we are quite interested and excited about extending that possibility because we think that brazil especially on the agricultural side and the public health care site has interesting things to offer countries in africa and elsewhere. or still does have some legal restraints or con strains on how far it goes in this kind of cooperation especially related to how monies flow back and forth between the federal government and abc and also how it does its development assistance abroad so in some instances it's a.i.d. that is paying for brazilians services and some of these countries but we think over time as are so builds out its development assistance programs it's going to begin removing these barriers
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or streamlining them in a way in which abc and the brazilian government can do more. and on the trilateral assistance around businesses tax and bank has been in discussions about joint financing of projects especially where there's a u.s. and brazilian partner. although again it's complicated to a certain extent a legal structures and rules and regulations we continue to find a way forward on that exist the potential is huge. >> i might just add that outside the private sector the gates foundation has engaged with the brazilian agriculture, abc in a program initiative program to send retired, distinguished agricultural scientists, economists to help the small farms in africa, developing's
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small farms farm practices in africa, a very promising effort. >> thank you. margaret. >> thank you very much. i margaret hayes and i was one of those brazilians that were brought up a long time ago. when i first went to brazil in the 1970s, one of the points of attrition between the united states and brazil was the nuclear question. more recently you mentioned the kerfye for with iran and the mullah administration itself worth. my question is, have we gotten over that previous, that last irritation and is the treaty, the south american countries, possibly a model for the kind of
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weapons and nonproliferation regime that we are looking at in the middle east and other areas? is this an area where we might see more cooperation? >> yeah. i mean we are way over. we got over that one pretty quickly actually an i think that brazil has been a very useful partner although brazil is never happy with the sanction regimes but it complies with them faithfully. but more importantly, i think especially under president rouseff the brazilians have made clear that iran had a lot of explaining to do and that if it wanted to have normal relationships it was going to have to be respectful of u.n.
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security council resolutions and the desire expressed repeatedly by the security council and elsewhere that iran address the concerns related to its nuclear program, and brazil has also been supported publicly most recently of the agreement that the p5+5 was able to fashion with iran and it's seen as a very positive development so that's helpful. i think in that regard we are in a very good place right now. with regard to talk loko the latin american experience around nuclear proliferation in the agreement between brazil and argentina to end their weaponization programs into create a mutual verification capabilities was an innovative and important agreement and one that could be useful as we look at how we manage verification
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regimes elsewhere. ultimately the challenge whether it's in iran or north korea or you name it is really, it's going to really be about verification and in that regard oddly enough this is where intelligence is going to play a very important role the coast what we have seen over time is especially in the nonproliferation side intelligence is central to how we do our verification work because while most of it can be done publicly and much of it can be done by an spec year's, not all of it can be. so as we think about the issues raised by mr. snowden we need to understand that not all of it is about spying on countries for immediate benefit. much of it has to do with
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supporting large international agreements. >> right there the lady -- yes. >> christina with georgetown university law center. thank you for your top but even more so for taking so many questions. i have two questions. one is if you could shed some light on why president obama apologized to america but not dilma rouseff for spying and secondly unexpected counterintuitive magnanimous gestures have worked extremely well for the pope for example and president putin has reportedly considered a pardon for the riot in the art vixen rice crew. would you consider recommending to the government a pardon for
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snowden given that it's such a horn in our relations with so many relations particularly brazil and america? >> thank you for raising those questions. you know when these issues first appeared and especially when the allegations of the head of government surveillance appearee brazilians in the same way we treated the germans which is quite remarkable given what other allegations were out thers understood this and i think appreciated it in their own way because it was indicative of the importance of the relationship. although our intelligence relations with those countries are quite different.
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germany has much more equity in our intelligence community than brazil does and especially with troops participating in isaf because much of the force protection intelligence comes from u.s. sources. but again i don't want to get into characterizing the conversation that president obama had with the chancellor. i will leave that to the white house. the germans have characterized it in one fashion and i'm not sure the white house would agree that what is important is that there has been communication several times between president obama and president rouseff about this and there will be communication in this future that addresses that specific issue. and so i think given the
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circumstances we are probably in as good a position as we could possibly be in terms of how we do our engagement in our leader to leader and country country engagement. this was raised briefly in a 60 minutes mouthpiece on the nsa and i think it's clear both from what the white house has said but especially from what our department of justice has said that we should not expect an a gesture. >> let me collect a few questions as we are coming to them and now. we had to end and we have these here and then that's it. >> mr. ambassador i have served twice in brazil with usaid and you have talked a bit about a lateral cooperation and opportunities and talk more
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about trilateral. you mentioned the opportunities in education and of course we have had major successes in the early 70's with the institution building projects with brazil linking american and brazilian university sending dozens of brazilians to masters and ph.d. training and they are coming back and running those institutions. you alluded to agriculture. wondering about energy, environment both infectious endemic diseases. what opportunities for bilateral cooperation do you see? >> let's move to the next question. >> welby lehman from the house ways & means committee. in bali we saw a great success at the wto lead by brazilian director general. up until right before that success was cinched it looked as
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though some of the wto players with which brazil has most aligned itself over the years would be the reason for this failure of the bali discussions. to what degree coming out of bali do you think that in fact brazil's view of its own geoeconomic and specifically. in leadership is changing from one in which it's a leader of the developing world to one in which it's a broker of some sort between the developing world? >> yes, let's come here. let's start with this area. >> thank you very much ambassador for your remarks. you mentioned that you hoped to build up constructive relationship with brazil promoting common values like
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democracy and human rights. what makes you feel hopeful say optimistic that kind of partnership could be developed and could be effectively developed in the our region and specifically south america where there are a group of countries particularly the outer countries that i don't think they share the same views and the same values of promotion of democracy and human rights. it's critical that purcell plays a more effective role and how do you see that role developing in terms of dealing constructively with the u.s. government? >> last question please. >> bob kaplan from the inter-america foundation. i don't think you'll have time to answer my question so i'll just post it as a comment. it's been wonderful to hear your
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remarks on a whole range of subjects and the breadth of brazil issues but are still as you said is a continental country. i've just wanted to ask if you could comment a bit on the tensions within the country and some that come along with improvements in social inclusion and growth and improvements across the country, within the country instead of treating brazil as a single country that is doing remarkable things and things that are affected different chile and have different opportunities? >> okay, well thank you. all good questions. with regard to usaid we have done something remarkable with the aid mission in brazil because it was on the chopping block as it has been several times in the history. but we were able to convince our colleagues at usaid and wishing 10 and elsewhere that now was the time to move from the aid
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mission which was effectively a development mission which was a policy engagement mission. the idea being as brazil's economy expands and builds its own foreign assistance programs that we need to be there working and engaging with them on a daily basis with the hope of helping to influence and shape how they did assistants work so that it was more compatible with what we are trying to accomplish, recognizing that other major economies out there particularly the chinese economy have very different understanding of what foreign assistance is. so far, the dialogue has been really positive and as i have noted we have been able to fashion third country assistance programs where we are able to share expertise and funding in order to accomplish common goals i think that if we are able to do this right it could create a new kind of development assistance diplomacy that we
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could deploy in other countries that have emerging or strong economies that play increasingly an important role in subregions. but as we have done this of course we have had to pull back on some of our historic development rules in brazil and largely are a.i.d. program is focused on bond issues and climate change issues. we still do some small issues. we have a few alternative energy programs but this does not represent the future of our development assistance program. however it does represent the future of our commercial engagements and our investment engagement. what is striking for me especially in the area of public health is the degree to which american pharmaceutical companies are prepared to come to brazil and prepared to do agreements with brazilian companies to transfer significant technologies and build out of capacity for brazilian pharmaceutical
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companies. this is largely driven by the emerging middle class and the demand for high-quality health care in brazil. so i do think that the synergies are there. it's just moving from the development world into the commercial and investment world. in regard to the wto in ali first of all congratulations. you did a wonderful job in managing what could have been a disastrous event for the wto. i think it was in everybody's interest to make sure that the bali event was successful to the extent possible because having a failed wto at this point in time would not have been in anyone's best interest and especially the brazilians felt a special need to play as much of a role as progress they could. historic brazil has approached these negotiations with two mentalities. one is to try to get the best deal possible but if that's not
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going to work to try leadership in some fashion and use the event as a way to assert leadership. but i think in this regard they recognize that they could do both. they could act as a leader of a particular group of countries while at the same time broker it so i think they found a way to bridge that divide and with any luck they will be able to maintain that over overtime. in terms of human rights, it's a great question. it's so many struggles brazil faces as it finds a way to find what it means to be a democracy in the region in and the world because historically brazil has been inherent to principles of nonintervention and noninterference and self-determination of peoples and have been very reluctant to criticize countries. no matter what they are doing, because at one level it doesn't
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believe a sure bet at another level it realizes it's quite vulnerable to criticism and doesn't want to open the door for reciprocal attacks of to build a certain protection especially inside institutional and regional organizations. i don't think that is a stance it will be able to maintain in the long term simply because this brazil globalize us and as society globalize his resilience themselves are going to wonder what it means to be a democracy in the world and how this brazil expressed that democracy. the fact that internally you've got such a strong commitment to an open society and such a strong commitment to the end ritual rights is a very positive thing to work from. this is going to be an evolutionary process over time and it's one we can give up on. with regards to the tensions within the country brazil is a huge country but of all of the
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colonial entities that were established in the region it's the only one that is held together of that size. i'm sure there are all kinds of linguistic and cultural reasons for that and demographic reasons for it but although it is a big country, and a diverse country in terms of its linguistics and its accents and its traditions and the ethnicity of its immigrants at the same time there is some commitment by brazilians. that in many ways is what's remarkable about her so and although even today people in the southern part of her still will be dismissive of the northern part of brazil and people in the northeastern part of brazil will be -- one can find the same thing in
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the united states. i think what's remarkable about her still is that like the united states it is able for its diversity to present an image of itself that everybody seems to understand. everybody knows what a brazilian has and i just think that's a tremendous accomplishment. >> ambassador thank you. i would like before we close to remind you of something that will -- the last event of our program this year and i'm grateful to ambassador shannon for being here and participating in this. this marks the 25th anniversary of the assassination of -- he was not known in brazil when he was killed. today he is honored in brazil at
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the national institute for studies. he is one of the 26 national heroes of brazil and by the brazilian congress. we have associated ourselves to a group of institutions that we will host a memorial service this sunday at war:00 at the holy name catholic church and also on our web site. i hope that those that are interested can join us there. with that, i would like to thank ambassador shannon very much for being here with us and i would like to thank you for having been with us.
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we are very grateful to you. i want to recognize especially to people that have been working with me. michael and guerrero has also worked with us. thank you very much. happy new year and please i would like to recognize with gratitude the presence of ambassador thomas shannon here today. thank you very much. [applause] [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] >> as a moderate in the privacy debate and in the privacy world i have calmed to a troubling conclusion. the data broker industry as it is today does not have constraints and does not have shame. it will sell any information about any person, regardless of sensitivity for 7.9 cents a name which is the price of a list of rape sufferers which was recently sold. lists of rape sufferers, victims of domestic violence, police
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officers, home addresses, people who suffer from genetic illnesses, complete with names, home addresses, ethnicity, gender and many other factors. this is what is being sold and circulated today. it's a far cry from visiting a web site and seeing an ad. what it is is the sale of the personally identifiable information and highly sensitive information of americans.
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see i was a donor to martha's table like so many of your viewers. i would do -- michael and i would do the annual consideration of the things we cared about because they were important to us as we grew up and the issues they cared about because they match our broader beliefs but also the players in our community that we saw doing good work every day. martha's table delivered hot meals to the little part outside the bill and melinda gates foundation d.c. offices mcpherson square. i would see that every night and see the lines of people there every night and i knew that it was being volunteer driven,
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10,000 volunteers, a.d. hard-working staff and they have enormous influence in the community that they were serving it was a great brand and i thought why wouldn't i joined that organization and see if i can put my skills to work but also see if i can understand better why do they have this issue persistent child poverty? why do we have so many children that aren't graduating high school, going on to college and being able to attach to careers the way i was able to? 's been next a year in review look at congress and its approval ratings. from "washington journal" this is an hour. >> host: we want to welcome back to the table thomas mann who is the co-author of it's even worse than it looks along with his co-author of that book
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norm ornstein resident scholar at american enterprise institute and thomas mann with brookings institution. we are halfway through the 113th congress gentleman and they didn't pass a lot of legislation but they were it looks like going to have a two-year budget deal on the table. the senate will take that up today for final passage. thomas mann what do you think? >> guest: we should give thanks that in almost the final act of this congress they have followed our dice of first do more harm that has been really quite distraught if year in congress. but in the end they agreed to disagree on the big differences between the parties do not threaten another showdown and to reach an agreement that replaces a good heart of the sequester over the next two years and pays for it over time.
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so it makes more economic sense and certainly has made a lot of political sense, which stands in great contrast to what the whole year has done about. >> guest: i agree. this is a smaller deal of course and it still leaves us with a lot of dilemmas i had. we have to keep in mind that they're now have to go back and do a dozen appropriations bills based on this budget and even though a significant share, roughly two-thirds of the sequester cuts which in the second round would be truly destructive in areas from food safety to medical research to diplomacy, to order security, there are still cuts that remain and they will be difficult for them to come up with. it's nice to end the year on an up beat note. however i would say anybody who thinks that this has roque in the eyes lanced that boil and now we are back to bipartisan cooperation is living in a place
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where they have a lot of medical marijuana. >> host: mr. mann, do you agree? >> guest: it's going to be difficult year but i do want to point out one other positive thing before we get too depressed here which is that speaker boehner has finally opened the battle within his own political party. most of our dysfunctional politics in recent years has been a consequence of the republican party just becoming a radical party in both policy and process. it's the so-called establishment has a much followed the lead of the extremists and the tea party and become march -- much like them. finally we are beginning to see signs in washington and maybe in some primary elections of politicians who believe in
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compromise albeit with clear differences among them, actually come together and get something done. >> host: are you sure about that given that the minority leader in the senate said yesterday. republican of kentucky up for re-election in 2014, not so fast on this debt ceiling. here's the headline in "usa today." democrats say they are done negotiating over the debt limit and republicans don't think so. >> guest: i would have noted before that paul ryan who of course led the way in creating this deal with patty murray, the senator from washington and chairman of the senate budget committee soon afterwards also said now we are starting to discuss what demands we will have for raising the debt ceiling, not well let's let this happen but what will the demands be? it appears that one of them is
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going to be approval of the keystone pipeline but i expect we will see a laundry list and that is the depressindepressin g part that follows from what tom is saying that while john boehner was very vocal twice or even three times about outside groups like heritage action in particular and the club for growth and others ,-com,-com ma the pattern here has been that they take on these outside groups and some members of your own caucus inside you follow that with a gesture that is warm towards them. that may be the debt ceiling. we also know that mitch mcconnell and john cornyn the two republican senate leaders face primaries even if cornyn's riemer is not a serious one given ted cruz sounded and in fact trounce the most powerful figure in the state the last time, he is nervous. mcconnell is not just nervous about the primary bit nervous about a general election campaign where he is worried that conservatives will sit on their hands.
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it's not likely to be something we will see from the leadership. >> host: the two of you recently recently wrote an political mega-zine that the new weapons of mass destruction in the partisan wars, government shutdowns, threats of default and sequesters sp disabled and quickly. weapons of mass destruction, strong words to describe those fights. >> they are strong words but they really are justified. the three together have done more harm to the economy than anything else i can think of for imagine. people are talking, we are spending too much. the problem is the world and the business community looks on washington and the congress and sees nothing but uncertainty and dysfunction. if that debt ceiling threat now returns, what life we see in the economy could be snatched away from us. the president hasn't reacted yet
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i think he's waiting for the senate to add the budget deal but i think no negotiations over the debt ceiling statement from him. it would be insanity to put us back into that situation. >> host: before we get to our first phonecall norm ornstein what do you think -- say to people who say gridlock is a good thing and that's aware founders wanted at? >> guest: our founders did not want us to flounder in the face of challenges of home and abroad. they want to make it difficult to enact significant policy but not impossible. what they did was to set up a system where you would encourage debate and deliberation and ultimately brought leadership consensus. the problem we have, which is what we identify as a central part in our book is we have parties, especially the republican party but both, that are behaving like elementary parties.
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that could work in a parliamentary system designed to act. in our political system that doesn't work and gridlock of this sort while we are not dealing with problems as tom said of a sluggish economy high unemployment, substantial poverty and great inequality challenges abroad and infrastructure needs among other things at home, that's not the way it's supposed to work. the fact that we have so few hills and so few of any consequence really i think underscores that. >> host: we are talking with the two co-authors of this book, it's even worse than it looks. how the american constitutional system collided with the new politics of extremism. thomas mann of brookings institution in norman ornstein of aei are here. mike you are up next, independent caller. good morning. >> caller: good morning. i have a little quiz that will test the commitment of the two
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sellers to the terrible unemployment problem. we do have a terrible unemployment problem. there were two, two year year utes in american history where we had a dramatic increase in the number of jobs. one case the incoming president faced an 11.7% unemployment rate and a fundamental change in policy. within two years the unemployment rate sank to 2.4% and another case where about 10 million new jobs were created within two or three years. could i have used scholars identify that period and what lessons can be learned and if you cannot identify the period what does that say about your commitment to unemployment? >> guest: i mean i don't know the particular ones you are talking about but i would be wary of making a judgment about
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the particular policies adopted being responsible for the increase in the number of jobs and the decline in unemployment. there's something called the business cycle and we have for sessions and we have recovery. i'm assuming these came after recessions so one of them would probably be the reagan years. there were the first two years that were tough on the economy but after that it began to grow and we produce actually a lot of jobs. >> host: norm ornstein? >> guest: i think tom is spot on. looking at cause and effect especially with government policies and the immediate aftermath of jobs changing is usually a very tricky business. you have changes in employment and unemployment because of the larger forces in the economy
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which doesn't mean you can't affected by government policy and we need to do more things now. one of the great tragedies i think is we have not done the kind of infrastructure program that would help us along. you know it's interesting paul london and economist had a piece in "the huffington post" about how this is really hurting blue-collar men, electricians plumbers, construction workers who have been sitting on the sidelines and you have some skills. we could do things with government policy but i don't look much for cause and effect in short periods of time. >> host: since we are going down history lane here let me show our viewers some statistics about this congress. congressional approval ratings in 2013, you can see where gallup puts them from december to january 7 through the tenth, pretty low. this is the time spent in session for the house of representatives. in 2013, 940 hours compared to
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1200 hours and 2011 and 1,702,007 and in 2005 they spend a little over 1300 hours in washington. "the new york times" also noting that this congress has passed around 57 bills so far and we are halfway through the 113th congress. they are tripled digits so how does it compare? >> guest: there was not a lot of heavy lifting in this first session of the 113th congress. if you add to that the list of issues that needed tending and how many of those were dealt with in some way you get an even more devastating indicator of the lack of productivity of this congress. you are right, some of the bills are just symbolic and we don't want to make too much of that but the reality is, the serious steps congress took this year were for the most part kind of
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harmful. it was the absence of action avoiding the shut down, doing something about the immediate problems that are most noteworthy about this congress. the numbers all in all reflect a really bad year. >> guest: you know the numbers alone don't give you the picture. the quality matters as much as the quantity. we have done this book for 30 plus years called vital statistics on congress and we have put it up on the web site. you can look at the decline in the number of the bills passed but if you look at those in the 40s, 50's and 60's many of them were very tiny ones. now we have packaged them into broader ones. if you look at quality, the famous do-nothing congress harry truman ran against past the marshall plan. you can do the marshall plan into tapping out fewer historic
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congress. this budget deal comes close to the marshall plan and it's like a pygmy compared to a great giant. congress especially in the house but never set out to amend the laws and john boehner the speaker says don't judge us by the number of bills we have passed, judges by the number of bills we have appealed appeal. that's zero so if you can't win coming or going you can look at it that way and what strikes me as having voted for more than 40 times two repeal obamacare the strategy that we see from congressional republicans is let's not do much of anything and watch obamacare fail on its own. that's not a very good strategy for grappling with these problems. on the jobs front the fact we haven't done anything to extend unemployment insurance when we have people who can't find jobs. here in the district we opened two walmart's recently. 25,000 people showed up for 200 jobs. it's not the people are sitting back saying $300 a week i can live high on that and not have
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to look for a job. these are things that congress should be doing whether you want to repeal laws are not. >> host: efforts made in d.c. to raise the minimum wage as walmart opens up its stores. >> guest: greta historic way congress has managed to get important things done during periods of divided government when the parties differ between the congress, one or both houses and the presidency but that no longer works. the extreme partisan polarization and the vehement oppositional stance of the republican party together have ensured that if the public produces in the election a divided party government they are voting for gridlock and inaction and they ought to be aware of that. >> host: as a want to mention the gallup recently did a poll on honesty and ethics in different professions. congress rated only above
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obvious in this poll and below car salespeople, state officeholders, lawyers and tv reporters. constitution provided for the minority but did not anticipate abuse of prerogative nor minority rule. norm ornstein? >> guest: i think if you look at our history of the filibuster and of course it did make cysts in the beginning and the framers had no intention of having a filibuster in the senate. it came about by an accident. the rules change in 1805. it was used extraordinarily rarely throughout most of american history for a handful of issues where the minority felt so intensely that they would go to any length to blog something from happening. the system created a nice balance. in the last 10 to 15 years it has changed and it's been a brampton up very significantly in the last five.
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i can tell you that harry reid did not want to change the rules in the middle of the stream. he's a veteran that has worked it out before. this time when you saw an agreement at the beginning of the congress, a very modest change in the rules that both parties agree to but in the return -- and that turned the minority made it clear they would filibuster judicial nominations under what we call extraordinary circumstances individuals outside of the mainstream or had other problems and then we saw that breached along the way. the last time we have this threat in 2005 and 2006 when the republicans took umbrage at democratic filibusters and the filibusters at that point of judges were pretty much unprecedented, we had 14 senators seven from each party get together to avert that. this time there were seven democrats ready to compromise and to republicans susan collins
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and john mccain. so we don't know sadly what the consequences will be in this point it seems like it's mostly just delays but it reflects exactly what the tweet suggests that the minority takes the powers and pushes them to the max to provoke a reaction. >> host: one-man senate majority leader harry reid is driving the senate into the ground. >> guest: talk about hyperbole. if there was to be one man, and there isn't, this is a party, it would be mitch mcconnell who turned a filibuster, which as norm said was used under rare circumstances that gradually came to be more a part of the system in the 80s and 90s but mitch mcconnemcconne ll really carried it to an extreme point of absolute opposition to
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everything, that everything had to pass the 60 vote hurdle. that cannot he sustained in our political system. a filibuster works only if there are norms of restrained from those who would use it. mcconnell sort of let the battle to show no restraint. reid finally was as much as taking the action himself pushed by his own members including some veteran democratic senators who never wanted to change the filibuster rule to take this step. i think it was the correct one. >> host: william and check for pennsylvania, independent caller. >> caller: good morning. thank you for c-span. my comment is to mr. mann. mr. mann, my question is to mr. mann. i would like to know why you called the tea party extremist.
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give me some examples of how the tea party is extreme. >> guest: i think the tea party has been extreme in its policy prescriptions. it's been extreme and its characterization of those on the other side of the aisle and in saying who is a real american and who is not? one of the arguments that the tea party has been making is that we need direct, direct and immediate cuts in spending, that is the only way reining in government that we can get the economy running. there is simply no serious economic knowledge or evidence behind that. it's preposterous. it would say whenever we have a
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recession, government should sit back and let it play out on its own. the people living at the time of franklin roosevelt, recession would not have thought much of that argument. so it's partly cultural. it's the demonizing of other -- others with different views and a belief that compromise is not the basic currency of american politics. >> host: back to william. the two of you wrote in your look, "it's even worse than it looks", one of the two major parties the republican party has become an insurgent outlier ideologically extreme contemptuous of the inherited social and economic policy regime, scornful of compromise, unpersuaded by conventional understanding of facts evidence and science and dismissive of the legitimacy of its political opposition. william? >> caller: yes, he mentioned franklin roosevelt. franklin roosevelt didn't get us
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out of an economic recession. the economic recession, we didn't get out of bed until the second world war actually. the united states was a power that made things instead of the service economy. when we started exporting all these jobs overseas that is when the middle class started to dissolve. >> host: okay. >> guest: actually if you look back at the 30s and into the 40s, what roosevelt did was to stabilize the economy kept the crisis from careening even more out of control. we were really coming out of it in 1937 and 1938 and then getting back to tom's point roosevelt the advice of his treasury secretary and put the brakes on prematurely. it sent us back towards a recession and william is right rate than the second world war pulled us out of the rut it was
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that set of policies. i want to add to something that tom said. i think it's a mistake to talk about the tea party is it that some organized entity or you have lots of people who march in lockstep. what you have got is a broader characterization i think of a wing not just of the party but as a movement. to me, the extreme parts especially are the tactical ones. their policies to blow up government, not that you want to have a leaner and meaner government that that all government is distracted that is using the threat of default and saying as ted yoho for example who is a pretty good representative here at the movement, that will be good. markets will love it if we do fall. it's shutting down the government and the consequences of which were very destructive. it's eagerly supporting across-the-board cuts that almost everybody else would view as mindless and distract this, the food safety, homeland
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security, port security, border security and defense. it's those kinds of moves but i think it's too easy to characterize this as a tea party as if it were an organized effort. >> host: . >> host: juon twitters his baby boomers are incapable of governing. it's the boom generation that has caused this mess without providing any solutions to our troubles. >> guest: oh come on. you are going to demonize a whole generation? a little too easy an explanation. our problems are tough. every other country around the world, most democracies are facing a tough time coming out of this extraordinary financial collapse and economic recession. it's tough. governing is tough. the problems are difficult. we are struggling here. we camped lehman on a single individual or a generation.
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>> host: do you think there will be another government shutdown? >> guest: i doubt that there will be another government shutdown but i think even the leaders don't want to see a shutdown, they can't control things. one of the characteristics we have seen in this congress is that leaders tend not to be followers of their own masses. we averted this budget deal a complete shutdown but when we started the program i mentioned that we still got a dozen appropriations bills to do and it may well be given there will still be some cutbacks in important programs at the house and senate can't agree on one or more of those of you may see partial shutdowns. >> host: on that note when it comes to the appropriations the headline in "the washington times", a group of senators are vowing to undo what they did in this budget deal and undo the military retirement pay cuts. let's go to frank in houston
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texas, republican caller. hi frank. >> caller: hi, good morning. what i would like to ask the two gentlemen, what impacts are the illegal immigrants having on the economy and what impacts are they having as far as paying taxes? i live in a red state and i'm proud to be a republican but i live in a county that offers amnesty. we have over 6 million legal residents in the county and probably have that number of illegals. they are paying taxes when they buy products and food and merchandise and things like that however they are not paying anything towards any income tax and they are taking jobs away from legal residents and i'd like to have you comment on that. thank you. >> guest: it's a good question. the answer depends on what goods
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you are talking about. if you're talking about the whole country, it turns out the research suggests the illegal or undocumented immigrants have been a net plus to the economy because of the work activities they have done and because of the taxes of various kinds that they have actually caved but some areas in some counties that have special verdon's on the educational systems and their safety net systems that has made that more problematic. i think in general, the conclusion of the experts working in this area is that if they could become normalized,
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legalized, their presence here that alone would prove to be quite positive for the economy. >> host: we will go to alan in rochester, minnesota. republican caller. >> caller: i want to talk to the last gentleman who talked about manufacturing and the loss of jobs. i look at this two party system. none of them bring manufacturing to the picture. service jobs will never declare the middle class we had in the late 50's and the 60s, you know. i think you talk about the congress that is always fighting against each other but i'll tell you what, neither party is doing what will really help the middle
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class in america. without bringing manufacturing back to the shores of the united states i don't see any way we can continue on the path we are on. all the ideology and infighting that our industrial base to china mexico and other countries is a sin as far as i'm concerned. >> host: okay, thank you caller. >> guest: two points to make. we have seen manufacturing resurgence is the economy is ticked up. one major part of it of course was a lot of the automobile industry which has now stabilized in the doing extraordiextraordi narily well. at the same time, the fact is in a global economy with robotics, with the way in which technology is moving, with the e.u. said moving jobs to other places with lower wage basis, it's going to
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be very very hard to do much more than we have. we can do a little bit more and the fact is if you have centers with education and you have easy transportation, where you have got skilled workers firms can have incentives to keep those manufacturing jobs here instead of moving them to places that have lower wages but in the future that's a major challenge. we are going to have to find other ways of creating high-quality jobs. >> host: at tweet says you guys don't like sequester, they make government work. no pain, no gain. i want to get your thoughts on the headlines out of the house. three lawmakers retiring, longtime members of the house, to moderates retiring. the headline of "the new york times" three retirements complicate the outlook for midterms. tom latham out of iowa, jim
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matheson out of utah. >> guest: different reasons for all of them. jim matheson represents the reddest of red states and the district he barely held onto in 2012. it's a tough go for him and frankly given life in the minority and the house not you're a rewarding. he will find his roles elsewhere in utah. i think latham is sick of extremists capture of the republican party and is looking for something else. frank wolf, it's a combination of things. it's really a very serious legislator who cares deeply about human rights and issues. he has managed to ward off democratic challengers in what is clearly a marginal district
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in northern virginia. he has served 17 terms. he's going to do good work and find more opportunities for doing it outside of the congress. >> guest: i do think what we are seeing is those members of congress who are serious legislators who want to solve problems are really unhappy. , eu are in a competitive district. the idea that you spend all of your spare time raising money, called time, that you have a vicious campaign and for what? to come back and see nothing happened. i guess is these are not the last retirements we will see. the two republican seats, will be highly competitive. i would say there is a 90% chance that jim matheson seco's
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republican. republican.on's i think it is possible we will see the first african-american woman in congress in 2014. host: she is running for that seat again. has already announced. there she is on the screen. could be the first african- american female republican in congress. i wanted to show viewers about the competitive race in iowa. obama one 51% -- won 51% in 2012. that gives you an idea of the competitiveness. democratic collar up next. caller up next. caller: hello, everybody.
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best of the holiday season. this, themention issue on everyone's lips in new haven and in the state of connecticut, and in nashville where i have family and friends is the price of milk. milk in nashville is now going .ast four dollars a gallon of the houseaker we have the speaker of the house, mr. and we have the house that are currently on recess. this is a scandal. it's a national scandal. the farm bill, as i understand
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it and i should be corrected if i'm wrong, mr. never presented the farm bill. the immigration bill has to be worked on. there is so much work that has to be done, and you know these people go home on a recess. i don't know how many resource resource -- recesses they have had but i know they are numerous. probably for me and my friends within the yale community, the biggest scandal that could, on the horizon. >> host: norm ornstein? >> guest: the farm bill has been under consideration shall we say for more than three years now with an inability to make it work. we had a conference is says it's getting close but it's not fair. they have kicked it a forward a month into january. if they can't reach a deal,
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actually the law says we referred back to the 1949 farm bill. if muriel thinks that no price -- milk prices are a scandal now they will double or more, seven, eight, $10 a gallon. that is a major impetus for reaching a deal. the problem i see given the level of dysfunction is this conference could reach a deal and maybe it would pass the house. there would be democrats that believe the cuts in the food stamp program the supplemental nutrition assistance plan s.n.a.p. are too deep especially given we have william dollars and there's a serious problem of hunger in america. if you go to almost any food bank in this holiday season and asked the people that work there they will tell you they have lots of people waiting in line for food to use to contribute to them. republicans in the house and this is the main reason we haven't had a farm bill for three and a half years, have demanded $40 billion in cuts in the program over 10 years and
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they will have a lot of conservatives who won't vote for any plan that has less than 40 alien in cuts. we may see this fandango over the farm bill going on for a lot longer. i wrote a piece of with dysfunction in the house. >> host: sticking with the theme functionality in congress would you think the impact is of paul ryan to seek the ways & means post. he wants to go there next and 2015 when the current chairman dave camp when his tenure is up. >> guest: i think it's a good sign. most republicans who have ambitions and some real ability think about getting into the presidential sweepstakes. he has been in courage to do so. i think he is experience running as vice president and now his
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work on this budget compromise has led him to think that his future is a bubbly in congressional politics. we just have to hope that he has the capacity to engage in real negotiations and compromise, but he also has very strong views and ideologically defined that can make him not inclined to do that. i think it's a good sign that a serious member of congress with ambitions is eyeing betsy. >> host: mr. ornstein do you have any thoughts? >> guest: you know ryan is quite a major figure in his party in the house. i think if you look at the budget deal he has worked out that got such broad support among republicans in the house and if you think would have that same deal have been negotiated by john boehner with harry reid,
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would it have gotten 200 republicans, 100 republicans? i suspect not. i think the ryan imprimatur made a real difference. he has many options. he could run for president had he been the vice presidential nominee and a lot of people have questioned to do that. he is the potential speaker of the house. the current leadership across-the-board cannot be the top contenders. he could do something he would much prefer which is to focus on policy. the real question that flows from that is what happens to tax or one. it's one of the major issues lurking out there. dave camp and max baucus retiring at the end of this -- they both want to make it part of their legacy. the problem is if you do a tax reform plan that is revenue-neutral you are not getting a lot of democratic support. the whole idea was that we could do a grand bargain is tax reform
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as a way and for changes in entitlement programs. paul ryan showed with his dealmaking capability with maybe as ways & means chairman he could do a little bit better and if additional revenues are at the table you have have to be able to step in. >> host: catherine in new mexico, republican caller. >> caller: i'm so people blaming the republicans for everything. you know they have brought -- the congress brought in a bunch of -- and we have said no. they are not going to pass anything. pelosi didn't do anything when in power. these lady saying about the congress doing so much time. why does and she talked to a resident? all he does is get on the airplane and go -- accept the
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job that he is supposed to be doing. also these two men are the ones that are making our country fighting with each other instead of coming to tell the people that need the help that what they are doing is making the people fighting all the time. >> host: we got your point. thomas mann. >> guest: i wish catherine were you said were true that republicans are pushing their members of congress to compromise. but just the opposite is the case. most of what speaker boehner has put forward have been symbolic issues, certain to be defeated in be defeated and the senators vetoed by the president. there has not been a willingness to compromise and interestingly when the democrats gain control of the house when george bush was president in the 2006
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election the newly-elected speaker, nancy pelosi, put forward an agenda items that she knew would garner this up port of president bush. she wanted to legislate. a good number of the bills that the house passed became law not to simply engage in symbolic politics and a good number of bills at the house passed in 2007 became law. but the republicans, because they couldn't track republican support in the senate and in the white house. that is not in the posture of today's republican party. i wish it were different. there is a long history of constructive republican engagement in the policymaking process. >> host: what does that mean
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for 2014 norm ornstein and healthcare.gov? >> guest: i did say one of the points we make in the book, there are no angels here. it's not as if we have one noble party that always wants to work positively and another one that doesn't. as tom suggested it's really a change in the last few years. what we see now is many of the bills catherine that passed the house of that have gone nowhere or simply to appeal obamacare. 40 of those we have seen which is not a compromise or a way to improve the program. right now that plan a and plan b for republicans in congress is to keep the focus on obamacare is watch it fail. if it doesn't fail i don't know what he it comes plan b were planned c. a major conservative rider wrote a piece saying i don't know what happened is if this doesn't fail because republicans don't have
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an alternative and at this point how do they come up with a plan to make it work? affair criticizing all the parts of the plants are working in democrats say okay let sticks those are they going to say yes we will join with you to fix those or no, let's keep the screws on and let these people suffer? that's going to be one of the major elements for next year. we are not likely to know if it's going to be a mixed picture picture. there will be losers in the health care plan but if you look at the history of health health care in massachusetts and a look at the history of medicare part d. that had a rocky going for six months or more, if you look at what's happening now as the healthcare.gov web site is starting to work a little bit better by march or april we may find a whole lot of winners out there and we are going to see a lot of dislocation. that's going to be the punch point for both parties but particularly for republicans in congress who have to develop some kind of a plan b to deal with the possibility that this doesn't just disintegrate
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entirely. >> host: the white house yesterday announcing that curt delfini is going to take up the oversight of healthcare.gov the technical aspects of the white house. he is the former president of the microsoft office division and he will replace jeff zients who had taken that up because of the insistence of democrats who said we need to get somebody who's qualified into this position. just so our viewers are aware curt delfini is the husband of suzanne delfini a democratic lawmaker from washington state. jim, franklin tennessee, republican caller. hi, jim. >> caller: good morning. this is very interesting. i have a quick comment and a serious question. my quick comment is this sound like a lot of democratic party spin and an attack on republicans but my serious question is this. is the national debt a problem
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and if the answer is yes, then what needs to be done about it and if the answer is no then why is that a problem? >> guest: the answer is yes it's a long-term problem. experience in europe and the experience we have had in the country in the last few years is that you growth. it's a little bit like the process of leaving a patient in medieval times. you keep doing it in the patient doesn't get better and you do it even more. so you want to actually have more spending now, things that will stimulate and then you have to stabilize over the long run. what do you do to stabilize? we know the drivers of growth in the national debt are going to be especially health care cost that flow from the fact that we are as a country growing older and living longer. now there are some measures out there including some in the affordable care act and others that have been proposed that have already made a significant
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difference but can do more. the fact is we are going to have to make some changes in programs like medicare and social security, pretty modest changes over the long run but what we also know is that we are going to need to have some more revenues. the fact is because we are going older and living longer the size of the federal government is probably going to be 22, 23% of gdp up from its recent historical norm of about 20%. if you have revenues of at 16, 17% you had to the debt. you have to get them up to 21, 22%, at 20% anyhow i do have to stabilize the growth of those programs which are going to grow particularly because of both health care costs in the demographics. that is what we need to do and we have got to do it in a balanced way. it's what simpson-bowles suggested although there better ways of doing it then as they themselves would acknowledge and when he don't have the ability to put revenues on the table you're not going to have the ability to make those changes that are going to require broad
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consensus then medicare social security and medicaid. guess why think norman spoke to the substance very well. i would like to address the first part of the point here of jim's point. it sounds like the democratic spin. jim, it may sound like it but i want you to know norm and i have spent 40 years in this town earning a reputation for the very antithesis of partisan or ideologicideologic al spin. our job has been to try to understand congress within the american constitutional system to write about it, to speak about it and to reform it. we have worked with democrats and republicans. we have always called it as we see it. in this recent time with the developments we saw, we felt a lie just to speak out as too few
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people were about a reality that was happening in our politics, which is that one of our parties was really very sharply to the right and engaging in procedures and tap pics that at the very antithesis of what the framers had in mind when they designed their system. so yes, it's hard on republicans but do you know something? republicans are coming to acknowledge that. certainly many have written to us and now speaker boehner and others are finally speaking out about what has been happening within their own party. >> host: we will go to ralph and battle creek michigan, democratic caller. hi ralph. >> guest: oh, yes. i just wanted to report about the war in the gop in the republican party and i made district that you could say might be ground zero for the war
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in the gop. we have an incumbent republican named justin amash but in reality he calls himself everything but a republican. he calls himself a constitutional conservative, and the libertarians think of him as a libertarian and they love him and they give him money and then there is the tea party that likes him. so, it's odd, his rhetoric is he bashes the republican party regularly. he criticizes the leadership. he criticizes the leadership and in his last budget deal. it's like he doesn't want to call himself a republican party member. but, he is on the republican ticket. you should know this is the third congressional -- michigan and a primary challenger named brian ellis to
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a amash and i think the business community doesn't like this constant chaos of government shutdown and you know extremist policies coming out of it. a mosh did support the government shutdown with ted cruz over the summer over obama and so i think we are going to have a little test case to see if the more old-line republicans are the tea party radical libertarian group well how do you say it, blend in these districts? >> guest: there a couple of interesting elements in this case. there are a lot of people inside and outside and a good part of the anger that john boehner felt towards the outside was that they weren't concerned with winning elections. .. establishment
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republicans against some of the more radical members. this is the first case. it was actually driven locally. may happen at a national level. we have seen the challenge from incumbents coming to the right. you will see challenges coming from the center-right. the outcome will be a particularly pivotal one in whether we begin to see a counterpart to corporate growth of hoping that takes on more radical members and begins to support problem solvers who get challenged by those who do not like the actions that are compromises. the next debate, raising the debt ceiling. sandy lovevin has this

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