tv U.S. Senate CSPAN October 5, 2015 6:00pm-8:01pm EDT
immediately notified of the senate's action. the senate will resume legislative session. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from south carolina. mr. graham: i ask unanimous consent the senate be in a period of morning business with senators permitted to speak therein for up to ten minutes each. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. graham: thank you. thank you, mr. president. i just returned from south carolina. i'm sure many members of the body are watching this drama unfold on television. i've never seen anything like it. i was in the charleston area over the weekend. 18 inches in about 24 hours. columbia, south carolina, is really under siege as a 1,000-year historic rain. i'm not a meet yorlings, but -- meteorologist but it seems everything bad that could happen did happen. all 46 counties received federal emergency declaration. there's been a verbal request
for a major disaster declaration for 11 counties, 1,300 national guardsmen deployed, 7,000 more on stand-by. the state troopers, the entire trooper force is on the road. 1,250 south carolina d.o.t. maintenance employees working, 550 road closures, 150 bridge closures, 26,000 and climbing without power. 40,000 and climbing without water. nine deaths and the economic damage we don't know yet. there will be an insurance component and there will be a disaster relief component. as we get through this and look at the damages, that comes later, and we will ask only that is what is responsible. we're not going to ask the federal government to do anything that's beyond the p responsibility of the government and not turn this thing into a pile-on party.
the bottom line is i really appreciate my colleagues coming up and offering their assistance and their prayers for the people of south carolina, our governor, the entire infrastructure, the emergency management system in south carolina has done a very good job. more is coming. the rain is about to depart the area, but we'll have runoff from the upstate of south carolina that will flow down to the coast and run right through the communities that have been hit the hardest, so there's a second wave of water coming. my sister lives in the columbia area, and i can just tell you there are very few families in south carolina not affected by this. manning, south carolina, is virtually under water. so, we're thinking about the people of south carolina. it's what i've heard from all of my colleagues. senator schumer called, the vice president called. and i just appreciate all of your concern and your prayers.
we will hopefully get this behind us soon in terms of the rainfall and start building up some levies and dams that are -- levees and dams about to break. i worry about the bridges, damage to our bridges. i don't think we appreciate how extensive it is. this is sort of worst of nature coming our way but i think we met it with the best of human nature. from what i can tell, people at home have really been working together trying to slug there this. i would echo what the governor said. stay in your homes. it is so dangerous out there. anybody who has to be rescued because they're out looking around or taking photos are draining resources from people under siege. on behalf of tim scott and myself, we're going to do whatever we can with our house delegation to make sure that our state is taken care of in an appropriate fashion. and hopefully by the end of this
week we will p begin to survey the damage. but unfortunately, there is more coming as the runoff from the upstate makes its way to the coast. and this was a, literally a perfect storm of things coming together to take water from a hurricane and create a river of rain. i've never seen anything like it and i've lived in the state all my life. to the people without power whose houses are under water, whose cars have been devastated, those who've lost loved ones, we're definitely thinking about you. we're pulling together in our state. 2015 has been a miserable year for the state of south carolina. some of the worst things have happened, and we're still hanging in there. everybody is clinging to each other in a very heartwarming way. i'm sure there will be some exceptions to that rule. curfews are in place but the vast majority of south carolina
south carolinians are rising to the occasion. i was talking to the governor and we cannot wait to get this incident behind us. i cannot tell you from the charleston shooting to this how tough it's been for our state. when it's all said and done we're going to be together and come out stronger and for the families who are thinking their world has come to an end, god willing, it will get better. the water will pass and we'll start surveying the damage, and we'll help those who need help. we're not going to ask for a penny more than we need. this is not about fixing problems unrelated to this event. this is about appropriately dealing with this event and nothing more. so i want to thank the president and the members of the body who have offered your prayers and wishes for the people of south carolina. to the people of my state, to the first responders, to all who have been involved in trying to take care of your fellow citizens, god bless you. the governor and her team, i know you're working so hard.
i would just like to end this with a request for prayers. any money that people can send will be much appreciated because there are people today that have lost everything they worked for all of their life. and it's days like this that makes you appreciate one another and there is a role for the government to play here. but at the end of the day it's going to be people helping people with the government providing some resources. but we'll have to help each other. there's no substitute for neighbor taking care of neighbor here. mr. president, i appreciate the floor time and i'll keep the body informed as this disaster unfolds. i notice the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: will the senator withhold his suggestion. mr. graham: i yield. a senator: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from ohio. mr. brown: mr. president, we've seen this movie before. it was four years ago that a drug company -- that a drug
company in st. louis raised the price dramatically on a drug that would have -- a drug that was used -- that was administered to prig women, a -- to pregnant women, a shot they took once a month for -- once a week for 20 weeks that significantly reduced the incidents of low birth weight babies. now we see a headline in the front page of the "new york times" which says a drug company's ensures consumers. two weeks ago, another headline read drug goes from $13 a tablet to $750 overnight. in april, "the wall street journal" ran an article entitled -- "pharmaceutical companies buy rivals' drugs, then jack up the price." the reporters who investigated these articles all found the same thing -- pharmaceutical companies buy up the rights of older existing drugs where all
the costs have been recouped from research, buy up the older existing drugs and raise prices dramatically overnight. the most recent article, valiant pharmaceuticals, a company that recently raised the cost of the life-saving drug cupramine more than fivefold. the "times" interviewed bruce mannis, a 68-year-old retired carpenter in michigan who has relied on cupra. ramine for 55 years to treat his wilson's disease. in may, he was paying $366 a month for cupramine. today he is forced to pay $1,800 a month just to stay alive. same drug, same dosage. $366 a month not too long ago. today $1,800 a month just to stay alive. it's not just mr. mannis who is left on the hook to pay for his medicine which has more than quadrupled in costs.
taxpayer funded medicare program will now be spending $35,000 a month to cover its portion of his pills because current law prohibits medicare because of the power of the drug companies in this institution, present law prohibits medicare from negotiating more favorable drug prices. cupramine is not a cure for wilson's disease. mr. mannis must take this drug for the rest of his life. it doesn't cure him, but it keeps him alive. valiant did nothing to improve this doing. it's been around for decades. they have done nothing to invest in a cure. instead, the company bought the rights to an existing medicine and raised its price. remember i said in may, mr. mannis was paying $360 a month. today he is paying $1,800 a month. this story unfortunately is outrageous as it is is not an isolated story. the "times" reports that this year alone, valiant has raised the prices of its drugs by an
average of 66%. when valiant acquired salex pharmaceuticals earlier this year, it raised the price of its diabetic drug glumetsa by 800%. again, these are drugs that have been out there, they don't need to recoup their costs of research and development. these are drugs that have been used for many years, significantly lower price. they buy these companies, the drugs and jack the price up. after valiant acquired the drug izuprel which treats slow or irregular heart rate, it raised the price by more than $30,000. valiant's investors and its billionaire c.e.o. are, of course, getting rich, but always on the backs of america's seniors and american taxpayers who pay the price. seniors on medicare face skyrocketing bills for life-saving drugs they cannot afford. insurance companies sometimes stop covering drugs all
together. janice from lower salem in washington county, ohio, wrote to me about the drug glumetsa. she writes my husband has gotten the drug glumetsa for $10 each refill of 180 pills. when he reordered this prescription this morning, the pharmacy called him to say that glumetsa now costs $3,000 for a 15-day supply. the insurance has a limit of $3,000. the pharmaceutical company, she writes, are beginning to look like a mexico drug cartel. the insurance companies, she writes, are being forced to cut benefits to increase their costs to consumers who have -- or increase their costs to consumers who have worked hard all their lives and earned their health care benefits. he and i can't afford to pay these out-of-pocket expenses on a fixed income. we know that janice in washington county, ohio, isn't alone. we also know that all americans face higher health care premiums when insurance companies and hospitals are forced to absorb the costs of this price gouging.
jeffrey rosner of the cleveland clinic told the "times" that the nine drugs with the worst price increases costs that hospital alone, the cleveland clinic alone, a huge hospital, to be sure, but one hospital, costs them $11 million a year. and that valiant's products made up 80% of that, yet their billionaire c.e.o. is doing very well, thank you. valiant is not the only company that profits from its business of buying up old drugs and jacking up the price. just last month, we remember the coverage around turin pharmaceuticals which raised the price of a drug called dareprim used to treat a life-threatening parasitic infection from $13.50 to $750 a tablet. from $13.50 to $750 a tablet overnight. the company rodelis therapeutics recently raised the price of a drug to treat multidrug resistant tuberculosis from $500
to over $10,000 for the same number of pills. these aren't status quos of pharmaceutical companies charging higher prices to finance the costs -- the development costs of new drugs. take valiant, for example. valiant spends 3% of its sales on research and development. traditional drug companies tell us they spend 15% to 20%. in fact, traditional drug companies, as you know, mr. president, traditional drug companies will tell you they spend 15% to 20% of their revenues on research and development as why they need to charge high prices at the beginning, at least during their patent protection period to recoup the, they will say $500 millions, $600 million, whatever it costs in research and development. valiant is buying drugs where that research and development has already been recouped, and they spend only 3% of their sales in research and development. where does rally ypsilanti's
money go? one might hope it would support american pharmaceutical manufacturing jobs or pay back into our tax system to support life-saving biopharmaceutical research at the national institutes of health. but no, what actually is happening is infuriating. valiant, which shifted its profits overseas in 2010 to avoid its u.s. tax obligation buys up the rights to existing pharmaceutical companies, lays off workers, hikes prices by eight, nine, 10-fold, then expects patients and hospitals and taxpayers to pick up the tab. it's not right. as i've said at the outset, we've seen this before. valiant, turin, rodelis are not the first companies to try this shady -- shady is too kind of a word -- business model and they won't be the last. in 2011, k.b. pharmaceuticals created an overnight monopoly on the life-saving drug 17-t, a preterm labor prevention drug, a progesterone, a preterm labor
prevention drug for pregnant women. k.b. pharmaceuticals didn't invent the drug, it spent no money on r&d, it spent no money on clinical trials which are also expensive, but not for them. the drug had been around for decades. it was normally compounded at pharmacies and in hospitals to treat pregnant women. what did it do? it simply applied to the f.d.a. for seven years of exclusive coverage under the orphan drug act and changed the name from 17-p. to mckeena. that's it. overnight they proposed raising the price by almost 15,000 percent. it was a $10 drug initially, $10 taken 20 times so it cost about $200 for the regiment, and they raised the price to $30,000. imagine that. so we have thousands of pregnant women who have had a history of of -- of births, preterm births,
and their doctor says to these women you should take this compound, this progesterone, this p-17, and the cost is only about $200. you'll get a shot 20 weeks in a row, a shot every week for 20 weeks, and then all of a sudden the price of $200 is raised to $30,000. that's what happens. some places medicaid wouldn't pay. other places private insurance wouldn't pay. in many, many cases, women simply wouldn't take this project he iser own -- project esther own and the problem of low birth wight babies increases. this already has a potentially devastating impact on our country's too high preterm birth rate, fewer women are able to afford the drug. when that happened four years ago, i wrote to the company's c.e.o., asking them to consider the price increase. my colleague from minnesota, the senior senator from minnesota, senator klobuchar and i sent a letter to the f.t.c. urging investigation. at a hearing, i asked the f.d.a. commissioner to investigate the
outrageous increase. together we kept the pressure on the company. frankly, we embarrassed them, as they deserved, and so far the drug has stayed more affordable. we need to do the same thing today. valiant and companies like it must not be allowed to get away with fleecing consumers and taxpayers. i'm calling on my colleagues on the help committee to hold hearings on this price gouging. we must work together, congress, the media, the public to expose this kind of behavior. maybe a little shame. i don't normally like to do that, but when a c.e.o. makes this kind of money by fleecing so many people, especially when it came to low birth weight babies, but in other things when people need to stay alive by these moderately priced drugs and then do this, i think it's time to -- to -- to out them, if you will, and put pressure on these companies. one thing we could do also here, if my colleagues would wean themselves off of drug company
contributions, is give medicare the authority to negotiate drug prices. if any of these drugs with massive price increases are taken by large numbers of seniors on medicare. we know that the veterans' affairs uses the -- that the veterans administration uses the buying power of millions of american veterans to negotiate directly with drug prices to get significantly less -- to bring down significantly the cost of these drugs. for too long, pharmaceutical companies profit off their ability to charge more vulnerable medicare beneficiaries higher prices for their drugs. current will you expressly bans medicare from negotiating with pharmaceutical companies. again, showing the power of drug companies lobbying my colleagues in this body, even though the government can negotiate bigger discounts than private insurance companies. this summer i helped introduce the medicare prescription drug savings and choice act which would allow seniors to enroll in medicare part d plan
administered directly by medicare instead of a private insurance company. this legislation would require the secretary of health and human services to negotiate directly with drug companies to get the best prices for our seniors. seniors should be able to get drug -- to be able to get drug coverage directly through medicare, not be forced to buy from a middleman. the purpose of life-saving drugs is that -- to save lives. not to line the pockets of pharma executives and investors. we owe it to the people who we serve, the people who elect us to put a stop to the price gouging that is bankrupting patients and overcharging medicare and strange hospitals and fleecing taxpayers. mr. president, i note the absence of a quorum. the presiding officer: the clerk will call the roll. quorum call:
senate proceed to s. res. 277 introduced earlier today. the presiding officer: the clerk will report. the clerk: senate resolution 27, recognizing the month of october 2015 as national principals month. the presiding officer: is there objection to proceeding to the measure? without objection. mr. mcconnell: i ask unanimous consent that the resolution be agreed to, the preamble be agreed to, and the motions to reconsider be considered made and laid on the table, with no intervening action or debate. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: now, mr. president as in executive session, i ask unanimous consent that the injunction of secrecy be removed from the following treaty transmitted to the senate on october 5, 2015 by the president of the united states: treaty with algeria on neutral legal assistance in criminal matters. i further ask that the treaty be considered as having been read the first time, that it be referred with accompanying papers to the committee on foreign relations in order to be printed, that the president's message be printed in the record. the presiding officer: without
objection. mr. mcconnell: i now ask unanimous consent that the appointment at the desk appear separately in the record as if made by the chair. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: i understand there are four bills at the desk and i ask for their reading en bloc. the presiding officer: the clerk will read the titles of the amendments -- of the bills for the first time en bloc. the clerk: s. 2129, a bill making appropriations for agriculture, rural development, food and drug administration, energy and water development, and so forth and for other purposes. s. 2130, a bill making appropriations for the department of defense, energy and water development, department of homeland security, military construction, and so forth and for other purposes. s. 2131, a bill making appropriations for departments of commerce, justice and science and related agencies, and so forth and for other purposes.
s. 2132, a bill making appropriations for financial services and general government, and so forth and for other purposes. mr. mcconnell: i now ask for a second reading and i object to my own request all en bloc. the presiding officer: objection having been heard, the bills will receive their second reading on the next legislative day. mr. mcconnell: now, mr. president, i ask unanimous consent that when the senate completes its business today it adjourn until 12:00 p.m., tuesday, october 6. following the prayer and pledge, the morning hour deemed expired, the journal of proceedings be approved to date and the time for the two leaders be reserved for their use later in the day. following leader remarks the senate resume consideration of the conference report to accompany h.r. 1735 with the time until 1:00 p.m. equally divided between the two leaders or their designees. finally, that the mandatory quorum under rule 22 be waived with respect to the cloture vote on the conference report to accompany h.r. 1735. the presiding officer: without objection. mr. mcconnell: if there is no further business to come before
>> is the legacy telephone companies transition from copper to annul technology, subject to new technology and networks had we make sure our public safety to 911 how do we make sure the competition that has taken root in the marketplace continues and dries and how do we make sure that our critical institutions, our schools are libraries, our hospitals and first responders, the services that they depend on those networks, how did they go into connections technology this transition with everything being sustained and improved because i.t. is what we all want. it's more efficient and gives better service. it lowers the prices. as the supreme supreme court
starts the new terms c-span debuts new series landmark cases historic supreme court decisions on the series premiere we take a look at the real story behind the famous marbury versus madison case delving into the heated webb battles between outgoing president john adams company president thomas jefferson and the newly appointed chief justice john marshall. >> john marshall established the court as the interpreter of the constitution and in the famous decision he wrote marbury versus madison. >> marbury madison is probably the most famous cases court edgar decided.
house speaker john boehner has announced he will resign at the end of october after serving almost 25 years as a congressman and four to half years as speaker. republicans have announced their bid to replace him. oversight and government committee chair performed -- the house republican conference will select a new speaker in a closed-door meeting thursday at 8:00 a.m. eastern and on thursday october 29, 0 house members will vote on the floor in open session to officially replace speaker boehner and elect someone who become the 54th person to hold the position. after setting the election for october 29 earlier today speaker boehner released a statement saying in part on october 8
members of the republican caucus will need to elect their nominees for speaker or after the new speaker is elected on october 29 members will select the low rest of their leadership team including majority leader majority whip and republican conference chair. why did speaker boehner decide to postpone those of their leadership elections? >> guest: because they know it's under some pressure from members of the conference to delay down ballot elections until after the speaker has been good. the favorite is majority leader kevin mccarthy. they will nominate him in a closed-door meeting this thursday, october 8 and exactly three weeks from that date october 29 all 435 members of congress will come to the floor
of the house and hold a live roll call vote for their next speaker. if leader mccarthy is chosen as speaker of the house he will have the majority leader at such time members can vote for a new majority leader assuming its maturity with steve scalise his position will be open from web triggering another election so members were concerned that there would be elections for members of leadership, not accounting for the fact that the nomination for mr. mccarthy isn't the same as actually electing him on the floor and there's also concern about whether he can get the 218 votes necessary on the floor to even become the speaker in the first place. if that makes sense. a lot of moving parts. >> host: you talk about kevin
mccarthy being the presumptive favorite and their couple of other candidates for house speaker. tell us about them and to speak before a pub -- a couple of republican caucuses. why that process? >> guest: we know that mccarthy is the presumptive favorite for speaker of the house. he is being challenged by a rank-and-file florida republican named daniel webster said many of the conservatives like because he talks a lot about process and corroboration and he's new to washington more or less. he's a member of the 2010 class so people like that he is a fresher face in knots oiled by capitol hill if you want to call it that but the new wrinkle in this is the candidacy of oversight and government reform committee chairman jason chaffetz a utah republican has taken on a high-profile role since the start of congress and now "fox news" sunday he
announced he would be challenging mccarthy's as well. chaffetz, his argument is that a party can't get the necessary 218 votes on the house floor. there are too many conservatives who don't want to vote for him and all the democrats are going to vote for their leader including nancy pelosi said he's trying to put himself forward as an alternative, if somebody can bridge divides and be a conservative alternative to mr. mccarthy and that's kind of the case he's going to be making in the days ahead. >> host: in the process of the conference meeting this thursday to make their selection, tell us about the house election for speaker. what would that look like wax. >> guest: similar to what we see, almost exactly what we see at the start of every new congress. it's something we see in january. all of the members gather on the floor. the clerk calls everyone's name
individually and they stand in the announced their pics for speaker. traditionally the majority party will speak in favor or vote rather in favor of that the nominee who comes out of the conference committee so in this case they nominated boehner inside the conference so that was who you are expected to vote for if you are republican. a minority party votes want their minority leader to be speaker and in their case that would be nancy pelosi. not everybody votes for the nominee inside the conference. we saw that in january. there were about two dozen republicans who voted for someone other than speaker boehner and some of them were punished for it. some of them are facing retribution for not playing with the king so you are going to see some of that and if mr. mccarthy has enough for
his nomination on the floor and doesn't get the necessary winning threshold winning 218 votes the house will vote again and keep voting on the second ballot in the third ballot all on roll call vote until somebody gets 218 votes to become speaker of the house. >> host: all of that happening the day before how speaker boehner begins his time in congress on october 30 and leadership election october 29 in following it all is emma dumain who is a reporter for roll call. roll call.com and follow her on emma -- >> guest: thank you.
>> adam liptak of "the new york times" joins us on the opening day of the new term the supreme court in want to ask you how much his one term influence by the other? do you 2015 wrap-up of the lassar me the supreme court you wrote a disciplined liberal wing in the last terms of can we expect some sort of pendulum swing the other way? >> guest: icon to do. it's artificial. they decide one case at a time and they decide 70 or so each term. it's artificial where you draw the line but it did seem like in the last term the court's did a lot and a lot of people surprise. the term this year has cases and at this adjust the pendulum will swing the other way, that the rights of the court might have a better year. >> host: the headline on adam
licktieg politically charged cases await supreme court has a new session opens and i just want to say your lead on this to set the scene for today the supreme court to the last supreme court term ended with liberal victory. conservatives disarray and bruise relations among the justices ended may 1 which opens on monday marks the start of chief justice john roberts second decade on the court and will reveal whether the last acrimony anomalies or something more lasting. if you want to continue to reading that in "the new york times" that adam licktieg with us as we preview this term. i want to -- >> guest: i like having my pros read. >> host: want to talk about what you mentioned there the justices ideology. there was a chart that one with one of your last stories on that it talks about martin quinn scores on ideology to try to get a visual of this. explain what that is we show this chart.
>> guest: to date analysis of voting parties and have a bug in relation to each other and what you see on that chart is the liberals are ideologically very close and there is much more of a gap in some of the conservatives and they often approach cases from a different point of view are and one thing that chart shows is that george w. bush appointees for alito and roberts started essentially identically the same place and toledo trip slightly to the right. robert slightly to the left that that's not to make him a liberal. he's still a very conservatives is the probably because he's the chief because he's a chief justice p. is also influenced by his responsibilities to the institution and that may cause him in some cases to make a more moderate stance. >> host: of course we will see that in some of the cases coming up. in terms of watt buster cases very divisive cases either going to be more this term than last term and how do they compare?
>> guest: is a little hard to predict. usually there are about 20 cases decided by 5-4 votes. of the 70 or so, maybe 15 or 20 are that closely divided and of those 5-4's they are not always the same court but mostly they are which is to save for liberals, for conservatives and justice kennedy in the middle swinging one way or the other. >> host: imagine one of those closed cases would be if the supreme court takes up the issue of abortion certainly could be a high-profile issue this term. what are the central cases here? >> guest: really the leading case comes out of texas on the one i would expect them to pay, they'll pick it yet, they haven't had an abortion case since 2007 but this is a case where texas enacted law that says was meant to protect women's health but has the effect of closing 30 of the
states 40 abortion clinics because it can comply with some fairly rigorous requirements and whether that law imposes what the supreme court has called an undue burden on the constitutional right to abortion it's a live question and one that as you suggest will closely divide the justices. >> host: is their chance at the justices could dodge the issue that's term? what is the process by which they pick pick the case cases? >> guest: that 7000 times a year people ask the court to take a case. 7000 time they asked the court to take the case. the court takes maybe 1% of those cases, 70 of them and that happens most fridays during the term. the justices sit down and private and whenever case gets for votes he goes on the docket. their nine justices. the four boats to take a case, five votes to win a case and that makes for some strategic page are among the justices because you can imagine there's a case you might be interested in but you may not want to put
it on the docket unless you are sure you are going to win. so the court at these conferences decides which cases it's going to take. the texas case, they're all kinds of reasons they will take it in part because they have already intervened after an appeals court allowed these clinics to close to the court stepped down temporarily provisionally on an emergency basis and by a 5-4 vote late kennedy joined the liberals. it said let's put a freeze on it for now. let's let the clinics they open until we decide the case but having taken an interim step it makes it that much more likely that corporal ticket. >> host: what is the name of that case for viewers? >> guest: viewers? >> guest: list if i can remember. i think it's called full women's health versus --. >> host: we preview this term of the supreme court with adam liptak from the ark times supreme court correspondent. john is up great falls montana
our line for indepedents. john, good morning. >> caller: good morning guys. hey my question is in the supreme court's actions it seems like it's getting closer to legislation from the bench. what is the counter to it? is there any kind of judicial review or should we just make them political and elect them every four years or is there some kind of counter where we -- the people feel like legislation is coming from the bench? i would like your comments please. >> the constitution does make the supreme court independent. doesn't make it politically accountable. it's not a political branch. gives justices like tenure and is meant to be a countermajoritarian institution which enforces the bill of rights even when the majority of the people might want to do something different. bear in mind there are two kinds of cases. their constitutional cases where the court has the last word and our there are statutory cases
where it's interpreting what congress meant so in the affordable care at case the court said they believe the congress meant to have nationwide tax subsidies for health insurance but if congress has a different view congress is free to pass in to pass in a loss of half of the answer to the viewer's question is in statutory cases where it's just analyzing with the words of the congressional statute means if it gets it wrong in and the congress congress can pass another low law. >> host: . >> host: several colors and are for segment talked about term limits as a way to stop the politicization of the supreme court. what is the argument for and against that? >> guest: first of all let's make clear it's an academic argument because you need a constitutional amendment and that's not likely to happen that most supreme court's around the world do have term limits. they often have a single 18 year term. i don't know but that makes courts any less political and i'm not sure that's the right word in the sense that the
viewers at talking about but there is something to be said for giving people time limits if only because in the modern era people stay on the court for very long time. justice stevens was 90 when he retired. in the current court three of them are pushing 80 and one of them 78. >> host: al is waiting in chicago illinois line for democrats. al, good morning. >> caller: good morning. you hit on a lot of what i would like to say that i wonder why is the private sector a lot of times you have to retired a certain age and he still might be effective, you possibly could be that seems you are making decisions that they are making i would think that you would want a change in terms of age. some of these guys are just out of step with the american public and i don't know why we are not to the point now where we decide that there should reassert in time that you are on the supreme court and i would like you to comment on that if you would.
>> guest: you make a good point. the policy matter that may be a good idea and as i say it may require a constitutional amendment but think about it. it does allow the dead hand of a president long gone like ronald reagan who are still to some extent reflecting his views and you may ask the question in the obama era why do we have the influence of justices from another cultural and political entirety making decisions about the fate of the nation. >> host: scalia's kennedy appointed by reagan and clarence thomas appointed by bush 41, ginsburg and breyer appointed by bill clinton, roberts and alito appointed by george w. bush and of course center -- mayor and -- appointed by president obama. i want to get back to where preview of this term.
fischer v. university of texas at austin race-based affirmative action. >> guest: it asked the questions whether public universities can take account of race in deciding who to admit and this is an issue or the roberts court has been making gains. it's generally hostile to any kind of racial classification by the government and public universities are of course the government. this case is on his second trip to the supreme court and there some reason to think affirmative action will emerge from this case bruised and damaged. maybe not destroyed but cut back on. >> host: you mention on the second term of the supreme court. what happened the first time? >> guest: the first time around the court kind of punted. the university of texas has a weird hybrid plan partly race-neutral and partly race conscious and about the appeals court hadn't done a good job taking a close look of whether it was constitutional. when it goes back to the appeals
court the appeals court says no it's okay as constitutional in the court decides to hear it again and that is an ominous sign for supporters of affirmative action. i don't think if it was adequate it would have come back to the court. >> host: brad is up next from louisville ohio. >> caller: this is just like any subject today, the media, there are five states the control of our media. florida texas and georgia, that's the south and there are two states on the east coast, new york does "the new york times" and connecticut. that's where your five media outlets are headquartered so when you look at all the daily at two goodies today you see see the southcom i've said this before on the radio show for the tv show the last five have been started by texans. >> host: stick to the supreme court. >> caller: i am come if you
would let me finish. because the supreme court is nothing but a slave to the south. it's a slave for war. it's a slave for the manipulation of the oil. it's a slave or illegal immigration and when you get to new york and connecticut and this is where you people always hang up on me in the media to protect the billionaires and the jewish from new york and connecticut. >> host: wreck i want to ask you about the candidate's background on where they go to school. i'm sorry the justices backgrounds. yale, harvard and columbia being the three schools from which the nine justices come from. has there have been any movement in the circle that watches the supreme court to try to get that extended beyond just. >> i think a lot of people in the justices themselves are little wary of what a narrow band of american legal culture they represent and in the last go-round it seemed one of the candidates would die diane wood
who had gone to the university of texas and that seemed to count in her favor not enough to get her to nomination but i would think the next time around the presence of a lot -- with broadly and not just to go to these few elite schools because it does send a message to the mac in public and the american legal culture into law students in particular that unless you happen to go to one of those law schools you are not going to make it. >> host: what are the law schools that have a chance next time around? >> guest: there lots and lots of good law schools. columbia by the way barely squeaks and because every single one of the justices went to harvard or yale. justice ginsburg followed her husband to new york city and ended up graduating from columbia but she has a serious harvard component too and then of course the great public universities berkeley virginia and michigan and i'm sure i'm leaving things out and i don't want to offend anybody. there are many good law schools
in united states. >> host: and is up next and germantown maryland on the line for democrats. good morning. >> caller: good morning, how are you doing? i wanted to make two comments. one i find it very funny that people complained about the supreme court often seem to fall into the right's definition of who the supreme court is, that they are not elected and interpreting the constitution which is exactly what the constitution says that they should do but i think one of the things that people often don't realize is the number of justices on the supreme court is not actually set in the constitution and that can change i was wondering if he could talk a little bit about the process and if you think it would be likely at all for that to change in the future? >> that's a very good question and the number in fact has bounced around quite a bit but ever since fdr tried to pack the court it seems to have fallen off the political agenda and i would find it very hard to believe that we are going to
have anything but nine justices for a long time to come. >> host: how does the process work if presidents and congress in the future wanted to do that? >> guest: at present can depose and congress can pass a law increasing or decreasing the number of justices. it's been done quite a few times in our history. >> host: you mentioned the pack the court effort by fdr. for those less to me with that history can you briefly touch on that? >> guest: he was unhappy with some of the decisions the court was making in the new deal. he said controversial that the court was overworked and he was going to help out and i may not have the details exactly right every time a justice reaches a certain age he would put additional justice on the court and therefore in short order we would would have the court not not of mind but of 13 or something like that. >> host: we are talking with adam liptak of "new york times" supreme court correspondent there. it's officially the 2016 term
that starts today, correct? >> guest: well ill and in june of 2016. >> host: ruth is up next arlington virginia line for democrats. good morning. >> caller: good morning. thank you for c-span. you do have a wonderful program but i don't know how you sit there and listen to some of the callers. i am glad you are discussing this and i'm glad he is there giving some of the history of the supreme court because i don't think people understand why it's not elected and what the danger could be if i were elected by the people. i think the federalists called popular elections mob rule which they were concerned about allowing. i think you can see, and the congress what you get sometimes when you have a popular election. event though it might disagree with some of the things the supreme court has then i think people will look at it, the
narrow focus of that decision and they concede would they result in the way they do and i would appreciate your comments on that. >> we have a way of thinking about this question because many state supreme courts are elected and when political scientists look at those courts, they find they are more politically accountable but i'm not sure you want clinical accountability so you see justices running for re-election, more likely to impose death sentences. .. h that is a good question about whether that is a good idea. host: going back to some of the cases going before the court this term. case about union fees for nonunion members. guest: it is a big case that
could deal a blow to organized labor. the question in the case is whether people who our members of the public unions whether they can opt out a participating in the union. if the court says yes you can opt out and you don't have to be a member of the teachers union but you have to pay the equivalent of dues for collective bargaining. the court has said that is true. collective bargaining you have to pay for. but if the same union is engaged in political activities like putting up as to somds for that to support a candidate, then you don't have to pay for that. this challenge is that. it violates amendment rights to be paid to force for collective bargaining because it itself is political. collective bargaining involves
things like seniority and class-size and public spending on education. those are political issues. do not make me pay for that. that is an interesting first amendment argument. should the court agree with it, it will mean a lot of people might stop paying the union due equivalents. it might spend with the economic power of unions and change the landscape organized labor. -- for organized labor. the court has twice indicated that it is very unhappy with this old arrangement they came up with in 1977. there are four or maybe five votes to overturn the arrangement. unions have some good reason to be nervous. host: if you have questions about this case or any cases that may come before the court this term, adam liptak is a great man to ask the questions to.
we will go to our lines for republicans, where francis is waiting in tennessee. good morning. caller: good morning. the people clearly lead the constitution and wholesome power. article one says all legislative powers should be rested in congress. article six says the constitution laws and treaty, not court rulings or decisions, are the supreme law of the land. particular part of the constitution did marshall give himself and the court judicial review? guest: that is a smart question. the question of judicial review is now widely accepted throughout american society legal culture, but it was a creation of the marshall court. judicial review is not in the constitution in so many words. it is not very hard to find it
implied that if the court does have the job of protecting the rights of americans, particularly in the bill of rights, it has to do that by striking down laws that it finds unconstitutional. the caller is right. no particular provision of the constitution calls for judicial review. host: marbury versus madison case, a key case in the concept. guest: i understand c-span will be focusing on that tonight. host: i appreciate that. will be focusing on that in our new series, a 12 part series focusing on the historic supreme decisions starting tonight at 9:00 p.m. on c-span. let us go to leanne in beverly hills, florida, on the line for democrats. caller: good morning. i call all of the district attorney and u.s. senate and u.s. congress. nobody has an answer. how do we remove the statute of limitations on rape and insist in this country and making a national? catch somebody and
seven years later you catch them again, the other one is moved and we cannot secure them for it.it is hard to prosecute on these things. it would make it feel better having been raped myself and letting the guy go to court and not let him rape somebody else. guest: i am very sorry to hear about your experience. statute of limitations can be changed. it is controversial about whether they can revive a case that has already gone under the statute of limitations. host: covington, georgia, the line for democrats. good morning. caller: morning. i want to thank you for taking my call, c-span. i want to thank the person is speaking today. my comment is on the supreme court. the supreme court is the highest court in the land. i love their values. values are the interpretation of the constitution, but what i is
the supreme court is they do not have extremists. in the country today, congress is doing an excellent job. but the congress has gone from republicans and democrats to now tea parties and other parties and the liberals and the conservatives. that will make an opportunity for there to be so much explanation that you are not getting your job done. the supreme court has stayed pure. i think it is good they have nine people that basically are doing what they are supposed to be doing, interpreting the constitution, which is a good thing. i believe anything that they say and i think it is great that they are taking selected cases. i have no problem with the supreme court. i know that they will evaluate it and see whether you or
whoever is posing the question is disputing the laws of the land because the laws of the land is what will keep things at a normal pace and be for the good of the law. i thank you very much for taking my question. if you could give some comments on that, i would appreciate it. host: we show the martin quinn scores again of the various justices on the supreme court. that is the voting patterns from more conservative at the top to more liberal at the bottom. guest: first of all, it is nice to hear from a satisfied customer of these in court. --of the supreme court. of ideology one the court. the most conservative justice, justice clarence thomas is one of the most if not the most conservative justices to serve
on the court since the 1930's. there is a good array of ideological and judicial philosophy on the court. host: back to some of the cases that may come up. a case about legislative redistricting. andt: back in the 1960's, the constitution said one person one vote meeting districts have to be the same size. you cannot have one with many people and another with 10 people and give them the same power. the court ever decided who we count in those districts. the recount every single person including children and unauthorized immigrants and people who cannot vote because of felony convictions or do we only count eligible voters? this makes a big difference in some border states with lots of immigrants. the court will decide whether we count every single person or only those people eligible to vote. the consequences of this are very important mostly for republicans.
if the court were to say will only cap eligible voters, it would shift political power from areas mostly blue to rural areas mostly red. this is a case that has an interesting constitutional conceptual puzzle of who do you count and real consequences. concept, states or districts that have prisons in them become a key voting block if it is decided one way. currently, everybody counts everybody in the district, which means there are areas of upstate new york thinly populated but with a big prison that get all of a sudden a lot of voting power. that would change that. that might be an area where it would help democrats. all the other categories would help republicans. host: on the line for republicans, all good morning -- paul, good morning.
caller: good morning and a pleasant day to you. i was calling you about the upcoming supreme court that is supposed to be taking hold. my question is, the law of the against been standing agesexuality for many since the start of this country, although it has always existed. it has been on the qt. all of a sudden, we have it completely legalized for marriage in all of the states and the unions. i just don't think that if you were to ask 10 people on any given street in any given state, i do not think you would find the six of them that are going
to agree with what the supreme court voted. wonder if this new supreme because there is a lot of ramifications in that overturning, military and over wife. courts new supreme overturns the marriage law. guest: constitutional rights are not a popularity contest. we do not decide them by polling people on the street. when the court decided the bands bans on interracial marriage were unconstitutional, most of those a good idea. that is the same thing it said in june in deciding that is a nationwide constitutional right to same-sex marriage. i do not see that ruling being overturned. host: in terms of revisiting a
doesg, generally how soon that happen when a court does decide to do so. -- so? guest: there are examples of a --term or twohere where a court decided they have done something wrong but this is not one of those cases. host: john, good morning. caller: good morning. i was wondering if the supreme court will eventually help kathleen came in pennsylvania. she was put in office with over 3 million votes to get to the bottom of the penn state situation. it seems like in pennsylvania they took the incident and made it a culture and we had an archdiocese trial run the same three weeks if you look it up with over 1500 charges. they took the incident and reversed in. joined forcesed
with red to get her out. she has gotten into the old boy network in pennsylvania. will just wondering if it end up here eventually because she needs support out of our state. i will hang up and listen to your comments. host: the legal issue on the supreme court's radar? guest: i am not an expert on the ins and outs of the case. they only decide issues of federal law so it is conceivable that this case will turn entirely on issues of state law and therefore there would be no route to the supreme court. host: a comment on twitter. perhaps if congress could write laws more clearly, there would be less for judicial interpretation. guest: that is a nice point. host: and a follow-up. guest: that is one way to put
it. the cases that reaches the supreme court are the hard cases. they are the cases were good judges in the court below them disagreed. the reason you have divided decisions is not only because there is a political component but because they are authentically hard legal questions. host: 10 or 15 minutes left with adam liptak. if you want to join in on the conversation and have a question about one of the cases before democrats,his term, 748-8002.ndependent noel in florida. caller: good morning. in a recent decision on same-sex marriage, two of the judges officiated at same-sex marriages. i understand they should recuse themselves if they have shown any indication of any bias in a
decision that might be coming before the court. i wish you would comment on that please. thank you. guest: sure. i think that if a justice officiated in a jurisdiction where those perfectly lawful, that is no different from doing all kinds of things that are lawful in one part of the nation and unlawful in a different the nation. host: back to our preview of cases. a case the supreme court justice center last week to take up. guest: this is a case that arises out of terrible terror attacks, including one on the marine barracks in thlebanon in 1983. families of those victims sue and get an enormous judgment against iran. now they have a court judgment that they want to enforce. they take that judgment, and they are trying to get money held by iran's central bank to
pay up. congress, thinking this is a great idea, passes a law making it easier for them to collect. the bank says wait a second. congress can pass general laws. it cannot pass a law that specifically is made to determine the outcome of a particular pending case. the question for the supreme court here is can congress pass it? is this such a law and can congress pass one or does not violate separation of hours when there is a pending case in congress passes a law that seems to be directed at the disposition of the particular case? host: how much is this case expected to be watched by the international community, perhaps more so than a generally watch the cases? international community watches a lot. it is funny because one justice just wrote a book about how the to become more
involved in the world. there is a case about the with a company conspiracy in europe and asia. the very first case of the term arises from a train accident in austria this morning. you have a looking at events that take place abroad. host: how can they get involved in a train accident in austria? guest: a california woman bought a pass on the internet from a company in massachusetts. goese austria, gets hurt -- to austria and gets hurt. the question is is that enough to sue the austrian state railway company in the u.s.? host: steve is waiting on our line for republicans. good morning. caller: good morning.
i am kind of tired of people comparing the mixed marriage situation with the gay marriage situation when it comes to supreme court rulings. then, thell, back mixed marriage ruling did not change the law that marriage is between a man and a woman.the latest ruling did change it . the other thing is, they are not supposed to make law. all they are supposed to do is rule that something is not right, which redirected to the legislature. there were laws, state laws, that stated what it was, marriage between a man and a woman. it reaffirmed a natural law that has been in existence for thousands of years. it was a huge mistake and justice roberts and others pointed out the problems they will have resulted from it. our verdict there will be tons
of problems that will result from this ruling simply because i think they created law. they should have just said you will take a look at this instead of the way they did it. host: how much did that ruling on interracial marriage factor into the court arguments around the gay marriage case? figure strongly but so did other cases the court has decided about gay rights. it is hardly the first case to establish gay-rights. i am not sure i have a lot more to say except back when the interracial marriage case was being argued and decided, you heard many similar arguments that the very nature of marriage require people of the same race to get married to each other. this argument that there is something intrinsic to the nature of marriage was argued in both cases. host: let's go to another steve. this one on the line for democrats. good morning. caller: good morning. i have a question. one of the problems it seems
that is not really on the surface is that there are only one or two law firms or lawyers that argues before the supreme court to bring a case to the court. doesn't this make it difficult for an average person or someone other than a vested interest with lots of money to pay these high-end lawyers to get their case heard by the court? guest: that is an excellent question. reuters did a study couple of months ago that looked at how the established supreme court really captured on the business. in business cases, that seems to give business groups a leg up because they get very good lawyers to bring cases to the court. at the same time, there are logical clinics at places like stanford and yale that balance
this out a bit. in any case where the lower courts have divided on a significant legal issue, every good lawyers volunteer -- very good lawyers volunteer those thes for free because chance to argue before a supreme court is a prestigious thing for any lawyer. host: i want to ask you about several cases that can come before the court issue of the death penalty. guest: on the very last day of the term in a case about lethal injections, two members of the more or less announced they want to get out of the business of deciding death cases. they think it is almost certainly unconstitutional and they would like to hear in big major challenge. that has not arrived yet although i think people are afraid of something like that. prosecutorse about
in a capital case that excludes all that jurors from a case or whether that amounts to is discrimination. on the death penalty case, who else might join them in allowing a case to be heard? you mentioned the two justices. who oppose the death penalty are hopefully might also pick up the votes of the other two liberals. then the question mark is justice anthony kennedy, who was in the middle. i do not know he is ready to go that far. host: marie is waiting in oregon on the line for independents. good morning. caller: hi. my question is, why don't we have a common court for the supreme court like the other caller said about being 9-0. if there is a common core and
you never hear about it, we are all able to cannot take my life just like i cannot take your life. like't understand how anyone is talking about the constitution when the cost efficient did not say women had a right to vote. host: what is your question? is what isquestion the common core? the educational issue? caller: common core rights of everyone. guest: the constitution does try to set out those rights we all enjoy and it is the supreme court's job to try and enforce those. host: adam liptak is supreme court correspondent with the new york times. where will you be? guest: i will be in the courtroom. host: how many hours is that going to be? guest: they hear two hours of
permitted to speech. >> without objection. >> i just returned from south carolina. i am sure many members of the body are watching as this drama unfold on television. i have never seen anything like it. i was in the charleston area over the weekend, 18 inches and 24 hours. columbia is under siege as a thousand year historic rain, but it seems like everything bad that could happen did happen. all 46 counties have received federal emergency declaration. there has been a verbal request for a major disaster declaration for 11 counties. 1300 national guardsmen deployed, 7,000 more on standby. .. 1,250 south carolina d.o.t. maintenance employees working, 550 road closures, 150 bridge
closures, 26,000 and climbing without power. 40,000 and climbing without water. nine deaths and the economic damage we don't know yet. there will be an insurance component and there will be a disaster relief component. as we get through this and look at the damages, that comes later, and we will ask only that is what is responsible. we're not going to ask the federal government to do anything that's beyond the p responsibility of the government and not turn this thing into a pile-on party. the bottom line is i really appreciate my colleagues coming up and offering their assistance and their prayers for the people of south carolina, our governor, the entire >> the governor, our entire infrastructure and the emergency
management system in south carolina has done a good job. more is coming. the rain is about to depart the area but we will have run off from the upstate of south carolina that will flow down to the coast and run through the communities that have been hit the hardest. so there is a second lake of water coming. my sister lives in the columbia area and i can tell you they are bracing families in south carolina who are dealing with this which is most of the state. thinking about the people of south carolina. this is what i heard from all of my colleagues. the vice president called. i appreciate all of your concern and prayers. we will hopefully get this behind us. i worry about the bridges and
the damages. on behalf of tim scott and myself, we are going to do whatever we can with our house delegation to make sure our stage is taken care of in an -- state -- appropriate fashion and hopefully by the end of this week we will begin to survey the damage. but unfortunately there is more coming as the run off makes its way to the coast and this is literally a perfect storm of things coming together to take water from a hurricane and create a river of rain.
i have never seen anything like it and i lived in the state all of the my life. to the people without power and whose houses are underwater and cars are ruined and those who lost loved ones we are thinking about you and pulling together in the state. 2015 has been a miserable year for the state of south carolina. some of the worst things have happened. and we are still hanging in there. everybody is clinging to each other in a heartwarming way. i am sure there will be exceptions to that rule. curfews are in place. the vast majority of south carolinans are rising to their occasion.
god willing it will get better. the water will pass, and we will start surveying the damage and we will have those who need help. we will not ask for a penny more than we need. this is not about fixing problems unrelated to this event. this is about dealing with this event and nothing more. so i want to thank the president and the members of the body who have offered your prayers and wishes for the people of south carolina to the people of my state, to the first responders, to all who have been involved in trying to take care of your fellow citizens, god bless you. to our governor and her team, i know you are working so hard. so i would like to end this with a request for prayers. any money people can send helps.