tv Truman National Security Project Conference CSPAN June 1, 2018 9:08am-2:00pm EDT
-- [applause] >> good morning. please stand for the pledge. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible with liberty and justice for all. please welcome to the stage managing director of programs, jen mellon. [applause] >> good morning, everyone. thank you all for travelling from near and far to spend the next three days with us. on behalf of the staff and board of truman center for
national policy and national security projects, welcome to trucon 18. [applause]. i would like to take a brief moment before we get started to say some things to those who helped this event and work possible. join me in extending a chair john driscoll and the chair of truman center for national policy, greg craig and the members who support and could not be here, robert abernathy, sally, peter, connie, mark and lindsey. i'd like to acknowledge our wonderful institutional possible to make things all truman possible. thank you for the sandler foundation, 0 open owe site, mccarthur foundation, david rockefeller fund, caldara foundation and for once again
becoming our transportation, lyft, thank you. [applause] truman is a community, united in its belief that america is strongest when we stand with our allies to lead, support and defend a growing global community of free people and just societies. we have more than 1800 members in 47 states, we share a common vision of u.s. leadership, grounded in progressive values at home and abroad and we believe that america is at its best when we use all the tools in our toolbox, diplomacy, defense, development and a commitment to democracy. since gathering in this very room last year, we have faced challenges to our vision and values that three years most of us would never have anticipated. regardless, we persevered. we stepped forth time and again to defend and uphold our values on which our community was first built. during these times we must fight for our values at almost
every turn, it's essential that we do so as a community. it's when our voices come together for the american leadership on the world wage we have the greatest chance to see those come into being. trucon has a slate of speakers who are experts in foreign policy and national security fields, all women. this is how the national security is stronger, the privilege few are fighting on its behalf. we'll hear and learn from women who have led through change and challenge and i can't think of a better expert than to start us off with dr. hicks. a henry kissinger chair and director of the national security program for international studies. previously served in the obama administration as principal deputy undersecretary of defense for policy and deputy
undersecretary of defense for strategies, plans and forces. dr. hicks was a development of 2012 defense strategic guidance, the 2010 review and theater campaign planning. she is a longstanding and highly respected leader in the national security community, a mentor to many a truman, and truly inspiring sample of what selfless service and commitment to our country can achieve. joining us to moderate is tamara, a senior fellow at brookings institution. before her time at brock brookings, secretary of state for middle eastern affairs and deputy special coordinator for middle east transitions. anyone who worked on or work touched on middle east policy, especially in the post 9/11 years knows and greatly respects tamara. a proven thoughtful, and from
truman. please join me in welcoming to the stage, dr. kathleen hicks and dr. tamara. [applaus [applause]. >> well, thank you for at that lovely introduction and good morning, truman. welcome to your trade war. [laughter] >> don't worry, they're easy to win. i am really, really delighted to be here with you this morning and especially delighted to be here with my friend and colleague and neighbor around the corner of brookings institute, csis are mere steps away from one another and we're just going to have a conversation up here for about the range of issues facing the united states in the world and the range of issues facing us as we discuss and
debate u.s. foreign policy here at home. i know that a number of you have been kind enough to submit some questions for her, and we will get to those as well. so thank you for that. let me just start with a big broad question as we wake up to news of european and canadian retaliation for our new steel and aluminum tariffs. this is a moment-- well, it's not been a moment now, it's been about a year and a half that we have been watching america's relationships with some of of our closest international partners become fraught, even as we face major challenges that traditionally we would seek to face together, like north korean nukes, the challenge of iran, the rise of china, interference from russia. so when you look across that
panoply, what worries you most about the present moment? and is there an opportunity that you think we might be missing? >> well, first, good morning to all of you, and a special thanks to tamara for doing this with me and i was thrilled to hear that we get to sit up on stage together, which is always lovely to get to do that with a friend. yeah, i mean, i think the big question, before i get to the meat of your question, the big question is how durable those years of capital that we've built up at least since the end of the second world war, there was certainly some capital before that, with allies, with partners, with institutions and domestically, how durable is that ability to come together. i think it's going to be very tested. i think it's proven pretty durable so far, and i'm quite
hopeful, but i will not take for granted that it will be able to endure. so, what you see in the responses, whether it's the french and the germans previously with regard to creati creating-- having initiative on european security, whether it's the japanese moving forward on tpp 11 along with ten others without the united states, whether it's paris going forward with macron in the lead take thing the mantle, we are going to move forward in this area and the rest of the participants are stepping up in ways that help, i think, create that he endurance and there's a lot of tension in there and i think that 20-- our friend julie smith, that might have worked for 2017. here we are 2018, how long can we count on that and you certainly see the freying and
how it doesn't stay in its lanes. fraying goes into nato and et cetera. plenty of of opportunities therefor missed and we can move in the global economy and look at a rule set for the international system in both security and economics, that accounts for the fact that power differentials are shifting, but, you know, doesn't flow over the system or throw open the system at these seem to do in terms of going outside the wt rule set which we ourselves created, right, in order to have a system we thought would be rules-based, but for our own national security interest because we thought the u.s. companies, the u.s. industry would perform exceptionally well in such a rules system. good news, i guess, is that the others-- the way in which they're retaliating at first glance for
me, appear to adhere to the rules, even where our approach does not. so, again, a reenforcement of that rules-based order. good news, where they are trying to grow, if you will, to use the president's kind of language burden, they're trying to share more, largely beneficial to us. tpp is an example we need a positive economic strategy in asia and in the case of europe, where the europeans are looking to bill: the european defense, that's a good thing, but we should not anticipate back to the threat side that those step-ins will, first of all, always be from allies and partners. that the void is filled simply by those of goodwill from a u.s. perspective. or that the outcome is something that we would like. so, here where you see, for instance, north korea you raised it, you see the chinese, the russians coming in to sort
of fill the void where the u.s. does not seem to have a real strategy. i'm very concerned about the opportunities that they're looking for out of primarily among which is the removal of u.s. forces from south korea, and might try to move the president's strong desire for the summit and potentially for a nobel peace prize into things that really hurt us in the long-term. so, i think that that's my overall, you know, i try to be very rational and pragmatic as you can tell, it's extremely worrisome, but we've got to get up every day and you know, perform policy for the united states and you know, it's the-- it gets harder every day to feel that the capital is going to be there to build off of, but i hope we can -- i hope we can be in a position where when we come back to ourselves to lead the international system and be a part of the leadership, the international system in a way that accords with our values and our interests, that the system is
there to work with us. >> okay. so, it sounds to me as though you're saying that you see traditional american partners stepping up to try and preserve this rules-based order that we once led and with luck, we can sort of rejoin it when we're ready, it will still be there, the same rules more or less governing it. >> yes. >> those rules we designed because, gosh, they were to our benefit, right? i guess, i have to come back to the fact that power transitions in international affairs are dangerous moments. >> yes. >> right? and we know, even in american power is still dominant, other rising powers mean that relatively speaking, our power is facing new challenges. and inevitably that's going to be a risky moment because there are questions how you respond. but as i look at
which china's rising power is being exercised, or when i look at the way in which russia, which is perhaps a declining power, but still has a lot of resources at its disposal, the way in which it is challenging america around the world, i worry that we might not be as well-prepared to respond as we could be and i wanted to ask you about this specifically because a lot of the challenges we're facing are asymmetric, right? and in the national security policy space for decades, we have sought in traditional power terms, we've worked to build up capabilities in cyber and ai and so on, but, you know, russia and china have economies that governments-- their governments can drive, right? they are willing to use information operations in ways that we are not.
and that means that they can manipulate the environment and deploy tools in ways that we can't. so, i guess a subsidiary question is how do we meet that asymmetric challenge? >> yeah, really, your thoughts on this as well, what i would say is that everything you said is true, but the u.s. has, and i'll call it gray zone, it doesn't matter what we call it, but he'll use the term gray zone. we've been pretty good gray zone fighter before, and if we -- if we harness and leverage the assets that we have, we can be pretty good at this. we're not good at harnessing them. so what do i mean by that? well, the ways in which the russians would just take information, russians manipulate information, not only we can't do it, if you will, we shouldn't do it, right? because that's not who we are.
and that is not how our-- allow the term soft power really works to our advantage. the soft power works to our advantage because we have this incredible vision that we put forward, right, of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in our own, you know, foundational documents that help others in the world see a way for the world to move, that it's more peaceful and liberty inducing and economically free and we also operate on a premise that if you have free and open debates, you're going to get a better outcome. >> you're going to get a better outcome. >> that's right, exactly. so that we displayed, for example, not the only example, during the cold war, we had an entire agency, you know, of the u.s. government that no longer exists. the u.s. information agency stood down in the 1990's over some pretty very politicized circumstances. but you also have, putting aside the u.s. government piece
which i think we have to do much better, we have the global engagement center, the rough approximation of the u.s. schoolset under usia. if you could harness what you have inside government, that's good. but you also have this informationalized environment, and the russians were very good at exploiting. and you have to look at the consumer and what is it that they value, what is it they want out of information? if you can get at that problem, which is far afield as mine in security. then you can value truth, value fact checking and all of those things that all of us in washington have taken for granted because we have largely over the years used resources of that kind, whether in the intelligence community or in media, those are the kinds of
things that we have to start thinking about much more strategically than we are. public-private. how we think about information in the public sector, yes, offensive cyber information, which we can be very good, so, but within our rules and the way we think of our values and our old constitutional systems, those things are important. so, i think back to the issue of the harnessing, the other area that you pointed out where russia and china have, if you will, an advantage, if you think about they're in a tactical means, they have a much unitary action system and they can control much more of their tool kit and they have therefore, greater speed of moving things around. and in addition-- >> and they have integration. >> exactly. and so, that's where we have-- we've known we've had a problem, for years. well above this administration,
well before the prior administration. as a matter of fact, the 9/11 commission, i think, in the intelligence field was pretty good at pointing out we have a problem on integrating intelligence ands our problems go beyond that in terms of integration. this is solvable. we have the skillset. we have the people, we have gdp, et cetera, but we don't do it. so i think it's about integrating the tools inside government much better, strengthening the tools that are nonmilitary to your point, so they can really contribute where we need them to. i think there's a regrowth in economic state craft which is really promising. i see more of that in junior scholars, and i think it's about harnessing that with the private sector and allies and partners. >> what do you think? [laughter] >> so, i basically agree with you. i think part of the challenge is that when your bedrock principles are rooted in open
competition, open societies, open markets, it's-- you are assuming a domestic cost to a certain extent. to the degree that you are willing to use government to shape those market forces, right? and one way to mitigate that cost is to do it in a larger group with other open societies and opens markets and that's precisely what the current administration is making more difficult. so, i-- you know, i guess my worry is that not only are we not well-positioned to address these issues, but we're actually getting less well-positioned over time. >> i think that's true, yes, i think that's true. again, i think on some we're getting strongly collectively, so, for instance, the finns have set up a hybrid center of excellence and they have people from all allies, that's a great initiative for a small country trying to do its part and they have a lot of lessons learned
to impart itself with regard to living next to russia. but i think you're right. this is more in the opportunity costs. there's so much more we could be doing and we are losing ground and others are gaining ground and it's a big relative loss. >> okay. so i think another component of what i see as a vulnerability, to be frank, in framing it that way, is something that you described in an article you wrote for texas national security review last fall, about our domestic foreign policy debate, we used to have concensus on these values, and on this approach to foreign policy, and on american leadership of that approach to foreign policy. and that concensus seems increasingly to have broken down. i mean, my own framing of it would be more that we're having a crisis of confidence. >> yes.
>> particularly on open markets. and look, there is a wide scope for open societies and open markets to still have strong welfare systems and social support networks and stuff. s so, but we've traditionally been more on one end of that spectrum compared to, for example, some western european countries. but there seems to be a more fundamental questioning amongst the american public today about how open we want to be to the world and about how much we want to lead a world that's defined by openness. you made the argument in that piece last fall that actually, upping there is still a concensus in the american public. >> i do. >> on behalf of an open, engaged america. do you want to make that case for folks? >> sure. i mean, i think there is more
endurance -- first of all, whenever you look at polling, right, you're already in trouble. so, my piece in that case, and in general, as i try to integrate tools of our craft. i do look at a pretty broad range of tools and polling is one of them, not the only one. if you look at polling over time, both gallup and pew have those on u.s. leadership, by and large the majority of americans responding to those questions are saying they want the u.s. to lead in the world. they seem to fundamentally get that it's to our advantage to be engaged in the world. to our economic advantage and to our security advantage, if nothing else. that said, it is in part how you frame the question and then there's a lot less below that level and i do make that point in the piece and i talk about this a lot, which is, you know, we tend to then not focus on
that, we tend to think about what's the iran politics, jcpoa. there are issues that come below that high level, that's nice, how do we do that. and then we're getting much more polarized and it's not necessarily politically polarized, but it's polarized and all of you know too well from 2016, urban, suburban, education levels. i think the highest educate levels. regardless where you live or anything else, growth of income. it's about demographics, veteran non-veteran, your religious background, et cetera, et cetera, your ethnic background, women, men. tons of ways which we're divided, but i think what we have lost is the ability, of course, to come back and realize that fundamental truth of the things that unite us and i, you know, it is my nature to
bring these things in a hopeful way and i hope not to be polly anna-ish about it, i wake up terrified pretty much every day, but this is our job, right? which is to find those bridges, to find the ways to bring people together. i'm finishing up a study now with some colleagues looking at congress and how international is congress. and it's completely different sets of data. that's actually quite promising, that you find areas and how about this for a weird area, foreign aid. it's drawn bipartisan support across different demographic, why they're looking at it, whether they believe in the international order or whether they have humanitarian interests, maybe those are strong religious views. but that's one of the issues that endures, you know, as a bridge that we could start to
build other policies on. the administration doesn't play that game. they're not in that, period. so, i think what you have to do is look at individual players inside the administration and look to congress and to the american people to really start to bring those bridges together and turns out our allies, too. >> so in a way, what you're suggesting is that rather than a bully pulpit approach to making the case to the american people on behalf of american leadership, which is, you know, that's traditionally-- >> that's not going to happen. >> right, and in fact, for a long time we've-- we scholars and analysts said that's indispensable having the president out there to make the case to the american people, but you're suggesting there's a way from outside the beltway in. >> right. >> to make this case, whether it's religious movements or humanitarian movements, community, you know, communities that benefit from
international engagement, that members of congress can see that and leverage that and we can create a new concensus. of course, the question of the morning given the tariffs, where is congress, the president can only set the tariffs if congress authorizes him to set. i know in my bowork in brooking, i've spent time with members of congress and happy to testify in brief, but it was never the major audience for our think tank work and i feel it's changed, that there's actually a lot more interest amongst members of congress to play a role in foreign policy precisely because the executive is leaving a lot of stuff either uncertain or simply unaddressed. do you-- >> i do, i think that's true. i similarly have a long history of working closely with staff,
in particular, but also members, chambers are routinely pulled over to be briefed and to testify and things of that sort. but i think -- i sense a very strong and have heard directly, a very strong sense of mission, i guess i would say, that they get that they, you know, article one-- it's now time to prove out article one of the constitution. it's built in the system and we have been able to operate without them having to-- this is overstated, but pull their weight in some of those areas, they could take passes on issues, they still wouldn't for political livelihood, it's always better to take a pass on many of the issues if you can, particularly in foreign policy because of voters, but i get a genuine sense of mission that they get that they need to step up and figure out what it is they think is right and how to
make that work. i think what you've seen from members trying to do work behind the scenes with the white house and i don't think that's been worked-- who knows? you don't know, you can't prove the facts, but i suspect you will see more people trying to work in the open and by people, i mean republicans who have been trying to work behind the scenes. so, of course, you have a number of members who are leaving and they're much more vocal. we'll see if that, after the midterm in particular, how that shifts that dynamic. >> right, how that balance shifts. >> i have to ask you, too, because your first long stint in the pentagon spanned the immediate post-cold war era all the way through the early ugly years of war in iraq. >> yes. >> and that was also a period in which american public opinion swung pretty wildly on american leadership and, you know, i remember d.c. in those
years of the early '90s, where people really affected a peace dividend. there were debates about removing our forces from europe. there was a big debate over whether we had any interest in the yugoslav wars and the ethnic cleansing and genocide in bosnia. ultimately, partly as a result of some of those post-cold war engagements or nonengagements, bosnia, somalia, rwanda and so on, a lot of questioning about america's role and specifically with respect to the use of force. then we had 9/11, a big swing in the other direction. and now we sit here after 15 years of war in iraq and afghanist afghanistan. where do you see the present moment in terms of public opinion and public support for, especially american military engagement abroad as compared
to that, that earlier swing? >> i definitely think there's a much lower appetite, the threshold has to be a lot higher for u.s. interest in use of force. use of force is the most polarizing, not politically, but where americans divide the most on foreign policy issues, and rightly so. that's the big egest lives question and we have now lived through that, as you point out. not only the civil war era of the '90s and humanitarian issues when they go awry and much more salient of american's opinion, the 17 years and counting of conflict in afghan, iraq in particular. americans have little appetite for it. if you look at afghanistan on the troop decision, the
president came to, and he agreed to the pentagon's secretary mattis' preferred outcome, but he did in a very grudging way, people may recall. what was interesting to me in that is because of the time we didn't have a functioning state department. it seemed that the president actually was the only one representing in the debate that viewpoint, which is just a curious moment of where you have a guy who on the one hand is saying fire and fury one second. he's actually manifesting in some ways, a much widely held view of skepticism. right or wrong, i'm not making any judgment, but skepticism about the use of force. >> okay, i'm going to stop you here because i think on the one hand, yes, he's manifesting something that exists in the public. >> yeah. >> that we see and feel. on the other hand, his attitude, his hostility to troop deployments abroad, to
american alliance commitments is longstanding. he's an extremely inconsistent man, but this is one of the few consistencies in his views over the decade. is he being a man of the people there or just being donald trump? >> i think he's always just being donald trump. be clear about that. yeah, but it's -- i guess it's a coincidence that's of interest that that was the viewpoint put forward because we didn't have the tools and we didn't have the right people in the room to have a broader conversation around that, but i think use of force is one where you can see even in that decision, i guess what i'm saying, in all decisions going forward, even when we make decisions to deploy forces and i, you know, that's my world, he so, i very much believe that there is utility in having american forces deployed abroad, but to include in environments where we're doing
assistance and some cases in combat roles. i do think it's fair to say that the burden is on my community, the defense community, as it should be, to show the value of those deployments and the american public is going to be rightfully a bit skeptical about it. >> so, what do you say when you're talking to americans who say, look, we-- we've been out there doing counterterrorism, counter insurgency, you know, using the military as part of a broader tool kit to help build stable states in iraq and afghanistan, when we've been at this for a decade and a half and we just stuck at it-- suck at it. at what point do we admit that this is not something we know how to do well and stop trying? what do you say to that? >> i think the first thing i say is what is that alternative? i guess, again, i am just as
frustrated as anybody when i get up in the morning. i try to put my rational hat on and what are the costs of the alternative and that's where i can see outcomes and again, afghanistan is one where you have devised an approach that puts the u.s. behind, if you will, rather than at the front line. that doesn't mean there are going to be no casualties. i'm not a fool and i hope it's never sold that way. anytime we have a diplomate or american citizens or certainly forces in these complex environments, things are going to happen that cost lives. and certainly cost treasure, but i think you can look at the application of the modest, if you will, level of force and see that-- see a value in it. that said, the problem with afghanistan and iraq, is the one you pointed out, which is it's not really that, it's about how do you--
what do you do with the advantages you're trying to build on the military side, right? and so, this is where construction, however you want to talk about it, reconstruction and the u.s., back to the failure to integrate. we have the talent, we have the people, we have the money, but we seem to not ever be able to get this right. and i guess, good news, no one else does either. it's not unique to the united states. you know, in the early 2000's, you know, from that period, there was this passing, absolute fad on lawrence of arabia which, yes, you know. >> so, everyone wanted to be lawrence of arabia, once they figured out, even lawrence of arabia-- >> it was not lawrence of arabia. >> a good movie, but in reality it was not the same. in that space we have a lot less to learn, but the fact that we haven't been able to do it doesn't mean it makes sense to stop trying because what is
the alternative? are we trying to allow safe havens to grow again? iraq was a searing experience in that when there was an ability to isis to roll right across the syria-irk ooh -- iraq border. i don't want to do that again, it ended us sending troops back, i'd rather have a sustained and long-term approach. >> i think the one thing about the lawrence of arabia movie that rings true to me is the sense of that guy, that mid level guy out in the field who has been working stuff on the ground for years, who at the end of the movie feels utterly betrayed by capital and then goes off and writes a book that says, if only they had listened to me this would have worked out fine. >> yeah, which is a bit kennen-like as well, if you
think about george kennen's angst, if people just listened to me. >> as i think about iraq, and i write about this in a piece for the atlantic, it strikes me if there was an error, a decision-point that he think went wrong, it was not necessarily the withdrawal of all of our combat forces in 2011, it was the other things we withdrew simultaneously. >> right. >> so with the surge had a military victory that completed a political opportunity, but because of our domestically-driven, among other things, desire to withdraw, we -- and i was in government then, you were in government then, right? we were so eager to have an iraqi government after their elections in 2010 that we were happy with any government they could put together and of course, it was a torturous process to form that
government, but it was a moment where because our military withdrawal was in sight, because we were already signaling that we were also going to put our economic assistance and we were also going to cut our diplomatic presence, our leverage to shape the environment that we would leave behind was declining precipitously and in many ways, it was the withdrawal of nonmilitary resources that i think-- >> the death knell, if you will. >> i don't know, but we can't play out that what-if, but we certainly want exercising maximum leverage to create a situation that would stabilize and that, of course, after we had removed our forces and had cut our aid, and maliki started to destroy the iraqi military that we had worked so hard to build. >> right.
>> we didn't have a lot left to work with to try and-- >> we didn't have strong channels on the diplomatic side, the to your point to the other levers that you need to have in place. >> and that's one key integrated, last week we hosted the special inspector general for afghan reconstruction, releasing their lessons-learned report on stablization, which was very interesting because it was a portrait of the mismatch in organizational culture between the civilians state and usaid and military agencies that were working together quite closely on the ground, but whether it was in kabul or in washington, had competing imperatives. right? and so, as a result, the selection of areas in which to invest, how quickly to invest,
how quickly to leave, all of those decisions ended up being made in a way that disintegrated the tool kit rather than integrated it. i do want to ask you, too, because you-- when you raised the question on use of force and kind of gave, i think, a really good history, the piece that came to mind as you were talking to was the generational aspects. i'm interested in your thoughts on, we have a generation that had grown up with world war ii very much in the aftermath. >> right. >> you know, the causes in the aftermath, very much in mind. but we're very distant from that now generationally and i'm wondering on your thoughts if that's also part of it, what do you call it the world weariness or just the generations grow up with a different construct. >> yeah, so, i don't know that it's wore weariness, i do think it's skepticism. this, and you and i are just about the same age, so we
remember the cold war years. >> the last of the cold war years. >> right, to a certain extent, for us that was 1989 was right when we were at the cusp of adulthood, it was a defining moment, you know, sitting in our college dorms watching the wall fall. >> yeah. >> and the peaceful reunification of europe and the expansion of nato, that was the beginning of our foreign policy careers. >> i think there's an extent the younger generation didn't live through the big values and questions were at stake, didn't see the way in which decades of investment of american and allies cultural, economic, diplomatic, and military investment paid off, right, with the collapse of the block and europe whole and free,
which was not a given, right? so, yes, i feel very much that that experience shaped me in a sense of what america can do when we do it right. but i have to keep in mind, as well, that even for my generation and earlier generations, there are examples of what america couldn't do right or did wrong. mainly vietnam. i don't know that, at least in my perception and you all are much better place to comment on this than either of us, it's not my perception that the current generation or the rising generation believes that the united states is a maligned force in the world, in the way that many anti-vietnam activists believe that the u.s. was acting as an imperialist power, using its military to impose. >> right. >> and i think that iraq and afghanistan experience is more
about, god, we just, we don't seem capable of this. it's a lack of confidence. >> yeah. >> and maybe that's what-- if there's a generation l divil-- generational divide, that's what divides us. i have to ask you a question about your tours at dod. >> sure. >> you spent over a decade. >> yeah, 13 years. >> in osd, you know, during that post-cold war and then post-9/11 period. left, went to think tank, academia, go the your ph.d. and came back in the obama administration as deputy undersecretary and ultimately principal deputy undersecretary, and it was during those years that this shift in public opinion happened, right? which was attendant with the
worst years of the iraqi civil war and the 2008 campaign. >> right. >> when you came back to dod, did dod feel the difference in america? >> no. i don't think so. i think because it is such a mission-focused organization, it's a bit heads down on these kinds of cross-cutting winds of public viewpoint in general, right? that's why you put in political civilians and others who are there to kind of connect it to the interagency, a part of our role, yeah. michelle use today say we were the ballbearings, we were there to keep everybody and functions
that you're doing from the military to civilian. that's a big piece of how you have to think of that kind of job. what i would say is that there was a -- they felt the same frustration with the seeming inability to achieve outcomes, mixed with that orientation of let's just go push harder, you know, do more, and that was similar to when i left in 2006. the biggest change was the political change because when i left in 2006 i left just before rumsfeld left. so, you know, we were still, you know, the politics were very different. it was right before bush had kind of swung over to picking gates, to doing the surge, to, you know, acknowledge, i think i would say, the need for a very robust whole government approach, to the extent that
they ever express themselves that way. that was already ingrained by the time we got there and i would say what i found was more very typical, expected fear of the democrats coming in and what they might do it with that, what they thought was sort of a newfound-- we might actually have an approach here, and are you guys going to throw it out the window, because the president had campaigned on getting out of iraq. so, i felt in the first term of obama, you know, i was extremely biased that we did a good job of navigating that ba ballbearing issue and made progress where many thought we would not, and being thoughtful and nonexpansionist on the issues of iraq. syria, however, entered the scene and i think there, i think we can take a lot of blame in the obama administration. it wasn't the cause that had in
my view-- syria, many mothers and fathers and assad is the center of that and u.s. is much further down the list. i don't think that we handled that situation well and we lost a lot of ground with the military as democrats, to be blunt, over syria and you saw a lot of that play out, i think, in the first year of the trump administration with some of the aft after-- military around president trump. hring mcmaster and now dunford. >> saying we need to be there? >> i think they're indecisive, they don't believe force can be us used, you know, it's all or nothing. it's all risk, no reward and so, you saw a number of instances where they were attempting to reestablish for themselves that it's better to have a strock-- stronger deterrent and in the case of syria we've had two times, although chemical
weapons used multiple sometimes times, and used strikes, juxtaposition to the obama administration. >> and we have the president saying, are we done beating isis yet? i'm out, and enforcing red lines. the trump administration, actually you can date it from tillerson's-- this is january of this year tillerson gave a speech at stanford laying out the trump administration syrian policy saying they were going to keep troops there as leverage against iran and russia and we're six months later and we have a very different approach. >> even on the first use of the moab, if you will, the first u.s. strike, which i believe was spring of 2017, if i have my timing correct in my own head, the right before that, nikki haley had given a speech at the u.n. or generally given
a press comment, i can't remember which, she essentially said, we're not so interested in syria and then they used chemical weapons and then-- and again, this time around, you see sort of this testing, i think, where there's something said by the administration, assad, you know, pushes on, we see plenty of others who to this kind of thing, but in this case assad with chemical weapons and then they push back to some extent in those cases. so, you know, this is also the problem with having really mixed signals is that assad is one thing. if we experience this same kind of green lights, red lines with china or russia, as examples, or north korea, it could end, you know, much less benignly. so, that-- somebody like me worries a lot about you know, fine if we want to believe, people want to believe that a madman theory,
which i also have started to think of as the madmen theory, it's a marketing theory. as opposed to madman theory, it's a marketing madmen approach to foreign policy may have some upsides and you will hear this a lot, right, from republicans, even in congress, well, the president strategy is getting us further than we would have gotten otherwise. i think the question, at what cost and this gets all the way back, again, to allies, so we have more people getting towards 2%. i am a huge fan of that. what was the cost. was that worth of the cost. how recently into the system to that kind of content, poking, whether it's with allies and their willingness to stick with us or with adverse saris who are not going to respond to those that are predictable and planned and strategic. >> and there's anoth
on the rise of isis which was a major effect on the united states but the immense human displacement, the effect that had on region as a whole, on turkey and european politics and -- so the ripples go way out. we have the mistake trump is repeating more of obama's iraq mistake, which is, i'm going to withdraw our forces but i'm also with holding $200 million reconstruction assistance and cutting off civilian assistance to areas not controlled by assad. which is basically, okay, who is left on the ground? assad, iran, russia and sunni extremist. >> that's right. >> and what is going to grow there? is isis 3.0, right? so, that i think my biggest worry. >> let me, i know we want to actually get to some of the
questions that you submitted but i do, we had cooked up earlier that we wanted to just talk a little bit about dod and state because of her career in the pentagon. you split your time evenly between think tank world and government world. i spent most of my career at think tanks. i'm a state baby in the sense i'm a foreign service brat. so i'm going to give you a chance to tell me the most dysfunctional thing about the defense department. >> oh, sure. >> and your favorite thing about the state department, right? and then i will return the favor. >> so i will go the other way around. >> okay. >> my favorite thing about the state department is the patriotism and sense of mission. in all my interaction with state department folks from my junior year if you will, to the most senior people at state, never found a person who i didn't
think was in it for the united states of america and that is under republican, democratic administrations. not all political appointees are fun to work for. so i found that regardless who they were working for at the time. that sticks with me. i will cheat and add a corollary, they have an incredible wealth of knowledge and skills that are unique to diplomacy. going to raise that because the one dysfunctional thing right now for dod is balance. i testified in favor of now secretary mattis', getting a waiver from the seven-year delay, from retirement in the military, general officer retirement in the military to serving as secretary of defense. when i did that i said, you know, i think, i think a president has the right to put forward, doesn't mean the senate has to vote in favor of the
person, has the right to put forward someone from private life they think they can do this job. i think statutory requirements of seven years is right for a lot of reasons for. i think a waiver is appropriate once in a generation. here we have that. i think a lot of secretary mattis. but that said i also said if you're going to appoint someone out of military life or very soon out of military life they have to go above and beyond and they have to be very obvious, about the degree to which they're going outside of their network to bring civilians inside the system. and i think that, by that measure the department's not doing well. all indicators are that it is, it's relying very little on those career people. also patriots. also people who will do capable with a skillset and, that's very worrisome to me and i think what
happened in niger, what has happened in terms of we have had, naval vessel issue in the south pacific, i think there are cases you can point to see real effects of when you do not have a functioning process, that brings in fully those viewpoints that the military rightfully is not trained. they have a specialty too. i am hopeful that with the state department potentially kind of raising its voice, not getting into the policy, not approving of policy viewpoints from secretary pompeo but i do think secretary mattis has always been respectful of the state department itself, even if his own civilians, if you will they can't get the balance right in the, in the pentagon, i'm hoping his respect for diplomatic skills and patriot system from folks in the state department and mutual respect for pompeo means they can at least right some of that balance more
broadly. institutionally in dod. a lot of broken china. it started before this administration and will take a long time to fix. what's your answer? >> oh, okay. i think one of the things i admire most about the military is how much time and care it takes to learn lessons from its own experience. to study its successes and failures and apply those lessons forward. i'm sure you can tell me lots of instances when that wasn't done well or properly but i, i think it's built into the system so that learning is a conscious and deliberate activity and i think that's actually very rare in government overall. and it is an incredible asset, maybe a model for other agencies. when i think about my own home
agency if you will, i have to say, one of the best books i have ever read on what's great about the state department and what's broken about the state department is cory shockey's book, state of disrepair i think it's called and one of the points she makes there is about how, how little the state department invests in training leaders. >> right. >> training people on leadership. now there is some amazing leaders in the state department but they are people who managed to figure it out for themselves rather than went through any formal process and it's a bit of a joke in the department that when of course, as you ascend the levels and you get to a management position you're required to do management training, which is good. i believe that, at least when i was there, the required
management training was a three-day seminar at ssi. because nobody wanted to take three days out of the office, people worked really hard of getting out having to do it. so there is a lot of dysfunctional management and leadership at the state department and the people who do it well, as cory put it in the book so evocatively like people who learned to swim dumped in the deepened of the pool and surviving and therefore they don't see the value of swimming lessons because they didn't need them. >> they did it just fine. >> they did it just fine. so that's -- why am i particularly worried about that of all things right now? because the state department has been running on fumes in terms of personnel and resources for years. you know, dating back to jesse helms and end of the cold war. and despite efforts by democratic and republican administrations to address the
imbalance in resourcing for this civilian agencies versus the military, and, over the past year of this administration the debra -- depradations of a white house and clueless secretary of state who magnified the ma left lens of that white house towards the state department. almost like a body that has been starting so long, it feeds itself with its own muscle. that is where the state department is today. >> yeah. >> so the best people there are the ones of course with the most opportunities outside and they are the ones leaving the fastest. >> right. >> everybody else there who was already so stretched and so exhausted is simply overwhelmed. and so, you know, you said there is broken china dod and it will take years. i worry it will take a
generation to rebuild the state department. >> i agree with you. all right. let's go to a few of your questions. the first one on issue of leadership. the truman project focuses on developing the next generation of security leaders. you have worked for many of our senior officials in government so what would you say are the most essential qualities of great leaders? >> i have had the privilege to work for incredible leaders. it is hard to distill just one or two things but i think i will start with this because i say it all the time. the great leaders never forget they're leaders. there is a cost to pay, if you will, to being a leader, so you have to withhold, you know, maybe some of the things you think or want and you have to remember your leader. people are looking to you for
guidance. they're looking to you for direction. the best leaders that i have ever had never forget they were leaders, in front of their teams, with their people and in engaging with the counterparts. so that is to me is really helpful frame how you conduct yourself professionally. with which in our field is everything. competent at this is very important. conduct is incredibly important because we're all here in a relatively small community for a very long period of time. >> can i drill down on that a little bit though? >> sure, yeah. >> i think that some might term what you said to say that a leader must always seem confident. a leader must always seem like they know what they're doing and -- we've had a lot of discussions about leadership styles. >> yeah. >> and also about gender and leadership style. >> yeah. >> and whether that, that vision of a leader as always confident
is something, a, maybe isn't good leadership. >> yeah. >> but, b, may have a gender component that keeps women out of leadership roles. >> so let me use a different term because i think competent can, it is not to believe, it is not to project you know the right direction that everyone should go. i guess i would say it's principles. so, that is important, that people see their boss has a guiding set of principles that help them operate. and to remember that. and that manifests in lots of different ways for lots of different people. i think, i don't think there is a perfect style of leadership. i often tell people, having been a subordinate many times and a boss many times, not everyone's ideal boss is someone else's ideal boss. everyone wants something different from their boss. you want people with a lot of freedom. you want people with a lot of direction.
you want people that want to be close to the boss. people never to bother them. whatever it is, you know, i think we really create problems for ourselves when they think is an ideal type. for me a big piece of it, does a leader think about -- is it a conscious call to be a leader and how do they interpret, can you see, can you track how they do that? the other piece is listening, absolutely, postively is listening. the biggest trap for all leaders is the one you, starting to walk to which is the idea that you have to be confident and know everything and be smartest person in the room and oh, my lord, no. much better to be good about hiring smart staff, be a good listener, and pick winners and losers sometimes in terms of ideas but be willing to get back on the horse, go from there. that is all about listening. what is the mood of the organization. what are the good idea that are bubbling from the bottom.
where are you off? you're just off because we all are at some point. so those would be my two if i were just to keep it limited. >> yeah. i think in many ways the best leaders are aware of not just what they're good at but also what they're not good at. surround themselves with people that can help build them up in areas where they are weaker. self-knowledge. mike says we have five minutes. okay from your perspective in five minutes, how is climate change affecting the security of our forces? >> so in very real ways we have installations, assets, but mostly installations that are in real danger from climate change implications. so they're in areas more prone to flooding or they're in areas that will get submerged, that happens more generally speaking with naval facilities because they're closest to the water but
it is not only naval facilities. that is the kind of the most direct implication issue for dod. and dod has not waivered for many years on the need to have mitigations in place for climate and it's worked hard to stay below the political elements of climate which should not be political, for purposes of this. it is just a fact that we have encroachments, issues that are happening due to climate. that is the very direct piece. the second order piece in terms of effect on dod is the implications that are, come from disaster to which the u.s. military is likely to be called upon to respond. those can be domestic. you saw the huge call-up of forces for houston. saw much use of call-up of forces for puerto rico. you can think about how as climate changes. i think most people know is happening significantly in urban
areas, often urban areas littoral, manhattan, these more mass disasters are more severe disasters are climate amplify are going to create demand for u.s. military. that is domestic. if you look at places overseas, like lagos, tokyo, a lot of places around the world where united states might have interests. you get to tertiary, the biggest set of issues, tied to forces, shifting reboerse -- resource basins and creates conflagration and resource demands creates forces. third category in the pacific in particular, you have countries that will be at existential risk and or very significant risk where we need to be thinking
ahead about the geopolitical implications for that and the direct military complications. >> lightning final question. >> all right. >> this administration is providing, let's say, inconsistent leadership in policy guidance to folks in the national security world. what is your advice to national security professionals about how to bring coherence to policy when they get such inconsistent leadership and guidance? >> you know, know your briefs. so i think it depends what you're working on. first start what your goal is and issues that are in your portfolio that you're focused on and when you're, you know, a term we sometimes use at dod, maybe others use it, bureaucrat ic ninja. i think people that are bureaucratic ninjas hopefully in principled ways because it can
be used for ill, for sure. take the landscape, find the avenues, find the slip streams and avenues of success. you do that ethically. you don't run, for instance, around your boss to the hill if you're inside of a department or agency. if you have good friend with staffer, going out for drinks any way, something might come up but always be ethical about it, but need to be thinking very, very thought fully about the tools. focus hard, very hard in this environment but focus on the tools you do have. focus on what you can do. i was civil servant a long time. i've been as political appointee in particular political sets there was not advantage pushing forward. know when that comes. know when it makes sense to go to ground. it is probably analogy most people don't like to associate themselves with, but cockroaches survive nuclear winters, right?
sometimes you have to be cockroach. you will be there at the end. that is the reality. you have to understand bureaucratically how to advance your issue at the right time and in the right context. >> okay, ladies and gentlemen. kat hicks. >> thank you very much. [applause] >> we'll now take a brief break. [inaudible] [inaudible conversations]
>> this is live coverage of trucon 18, a national security conference in washington d.c. earlier today there was discussion about u.s. imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. while the conference takes a break until 10:45. we'll show you yesterday's news conference with canadian prime minister trudeau response to those tariffs. >> good afternoon, everyone. thank you for joining us. today we find ourselves the target of punitive tariffs on canadian aluminum and steel under pretext of a 232 national security provision. let me be clear. these tariffs totally unacceptable. for 150 years canada has been
the united states' most steadfast ally. [speaking french] >> translator: let us be clear. these tariffs are unacceptable. over the past 150 years canada has been the united states' most steadfast partner. canadians and americans fought alongside each other during both world wars and in korea. the beaches of normandy, from the beaches of normandy to the mountains of afghanistan we fought together and we mourned the loss of our fallen comrades together. we've always been, partners within norad, nato and everywhere across the world. we defended the united states after september 11th, just as the americans defended us in the past. and we still fight together against daesh in northern iraq.
>> alongside americans in two world wars and in korea. from the beaches of normandy, to the mountains of afghanistan, we have fought and died together. canadian personnel are serving alongside americans at this very moment. we're partners in norad, nato and around the world. we came to america's aid after 9/11, as americans have come to our aid in the past and we're fighting together against daesh in northern iraq. the numbers are clear. the united states has a 2 billion u.s. dollar surplus in steel trade with canada, and canada buys more american steel than any other country in the world. indeed we account for half of u.s. exports, u.s. steel exports. canada is a secure supplier of aluminum and steel to the u.s. defense industry, putting
aluminum in american planes and steel in american tanks. but canada could be considered a national security threat to the united states is inconceivable. those tariffs will harm industry and workers on both sides of the canada-u.s. border, disrupting linked supply chains that have made north american steel and aluminum more competitive all around the world. [speaking french] >> translator: these tariffs will harm industries and workers on both sides of the canada-u.s. border and will disrupt supply chains that have made steel and aluminum from north america more competitive across the whole world. >> these tariffs are an affront to the long-standing security partnership between canada and the united states and in particular an affront to the thousands of canadians who have
fought and died alongside their american brothers in arms. comrades in arms. the ties of commerce, friendship around in many cases with family between americans and canadians are undiminished. indeed, they have never been stronger. the government of canada is confident that shared values, geography, and common interests will ultimately overcome protectionism. as we have constantly said, we will always protect canadian workers and canadian interests. minister freeland is here to outline our retaliatory measures. this morning, i called the opposition leaders to inform them of our response. >> translator: as we have always
said, we will always protect the interests of canadian workers and canada's interests. minister freeland is here to outline our retaliatory measures. this morning i called the leaders of the opposition to let them know what our response would be. in closing i want to be very clear on one point. americans remain our partners, our allies, and our friends. the american people is not the target of at that's announcement. we hope eventually common sense will triumph. unfortunately the actions taken today by the american government do not seem to be headed in that direction. >> i want to be very clear about one thing.
americans remain our partners, our allies, and our friends. this is not about the american people. we have to believe that at some point common sense will prevail. but we see no sign of that in this action today by the u.s. administration. >> thank you, prime minister. as the prime minister has said these tariffs are totally unacceptable. [speaking french] >> translator: in response to these measures, canada plans to impose surtaxes or other similar measures in order to limit trade on steel imports, aluminum imports, and other products from the u.s. in the amount up to
$6.6 billion. that amount represents the total canadian exports in 2017 of steel and aluminum to the u.s. those exports that are now being targeted by the american tariffs. today we are publishing two lists of products that are subject to these measures. on the first list products will be subjected to a 25%, 25% surtax whereas similar measure to limit trade the products on the second list will be subject to a 10% surtax. a similar measure, a similar trade limiting measure. these countermeasures will only apply to u.s. products. these countermeasures will take effect on july 1st, 2018. and will remain in force until
the united states eliminates their own tariffs on canadian steel and aluminum products. our steel and aluminum workers have our support. which is why we have included american steel and aluminum products on our lists. as for the other products enumerated today we insure they can easily be obtained by american companies, and are non-american trade partners to avoid costs being affecting canadian families and consumers. today we will begin a consultation period that will last 15 days. we will be consulting canadians so they can express their support or their concerns about the proposed countermeasures as
well as the list of products. the list of products will be made public immediately and it will be posted online for all canadians to see. these unilateral measures, by the u.s., are also in breach of nafta rules, as well as wto rules. canada will be launching a conflict resolution -- district resolution, and under, according to wto rules. the, canada is going to collaborate with the wto and our other partners including the european union to challenge these illegal and counterproductive american measures. before the wto. it is completely inappropriate to consider any trade with canada as a threat to the united
states national security. i want canadians to know that their government will always defend canadian workers and canadian businesses. thank you. >> i will say it in english now. we are a bilingual country. in response to these measures canada intends to impose tariffs against imports of steel, aluminum, and other products from the united states. representing the total value of 2017 canadian exports affected by the u.s. measures. that is 16.$6 billion. we are imposing dollar for dollar tariffs for every dollar levied against canadians by the u.s. 25% and 10% are the tariff rates today imposed by the united states on canada. we are today publishing two lists of goods. one list which will be subject to a 25% tariff. the second list will be subject to a 10% tariff.
these countermeasures will only apply to goods originating from the united states. these countermeasures will take effect on july 1st, 2018. they will remain in place until the united states eliminates its trade restrictive measures against canada. our steel and aluminum workers have our government's full support. that is why we have included american steel and aluminum products in our lists. after the other products listed today, we have insured that these can be easily sourced from canadian companies or non-u.s. trade partners in an effort to avoid any costs, passed along to canadian families and consumers. we're today beginning a 15-day consultation period with canadians, so they can express their support or concerns about the proposed counter measures and the list of goods. these list of goods will be made available publicly including online for all canadians.
the unilateral trade restrictions by the united states are also in violation of nafta and wto trade rules. canada there for will launch dispute settlement proceedings under nafta chapter 20 and wto dispute settlement. canada will closely collaborate with like-minded wto members including the european union to challenge these illegal and counterproductive. u.s. measures at the wto. it is entirely to view any trade with canada as a national security threat to the united states as the prime minister has explained. i want canadians to know that our government will always stand up for canadian workers and canadian businesses. thank you very much. >> thank you. first question? [speaking french. >> translator: good afternoon, mr. trudeau. the strategy that has been in place for the last few months
seems to be failing. are you starting a trade war with the u.s.? first of tall we've been saying for a long time we're ready for anything. we have always worked in a constructive way with the americans but we always emphasized we had thoughts on how we would defend canada and canadians and canadian workers interests if the need arose. so, although woe continue to work and negotiate and try to convince the americans to withdraw those unacceptable restrictions, we must also respond firmly to these threats. but with respect to the trade war, has a trade war begun? do you still have, do you still have faith in mr. trump? do you still believe he is a man
of his word as you previously said? well obviously we have long engaged with the americans in many different ways, whether it be me directly with mr. trump or commissioner freeland or other ministers engaged in their counterparts. whether we're talking about provincial premiers who engaged or opposition leaders, canada's business leaders, we are continually engaging in order to put pressure on the americans as well as explain to them, it would be a bad idea to create trade restrictions or any other obstacles to trade with canada. today's decision, belongs entirely to the american administration. that was their choice. it was their choice to begin by imposing these unacceptable measures. so we are responding. as i have always clearly expressed to president trump. we will always be defending
canadians interests and interests of canadian workers. >> since nafta negotiations began you launched a diplomatic blitz in the united states. you have been there 15, 16 times. minister freeland maybe 100. and your your row gates were there and you make nice at the white house you went all over the united states. is it time to change the canadian strategy? >> it is very clear that we have said, and i've been saying directly to canadians for a number of months now we have to be prepared for anything. we have been. we've always chosen to be positive and constructive but at the same time in my conversations with the president and canadians conversation with their american friends, colleagues and counterparts, the mess haj has been very clear, the canadians stand united. the canadians stand firm. we will stand up for canada's interest. the american administration has
made a decision today we deplore and obviously will lead to retaliatory measures as it must. we regret that we would much rather move together in partnership understanding that no two countries have economies interwoven and mutually beneficial as canada and united states. >> you're hosting a the g7 in a week. mr. trump will be there. americans, european allies, the eu will be there. how is this going to work out? >> obviously we have done a lot of work to pull people together around common and shared themes at the g7. whether protecting our oceans or empowering women to be more successful in the workforce or addressing economic challenges that happen at home and around the world. every single g7 country is facing a similar challenge of demonstrating that growth can work for everyone.
in canada we talk about growth for the middle class and those working hard to join it. but that is a similar challenge and responsibility for each and everyone of our elected g7 colleagues. that approach is one that we're going to continue to emphasize. the choices made by the united states administration today, you know, have a goal of benefiting american workers. unfortunately we all know that this is going to lead to harm for american workers and american industries. our economies are too interlinked to not have significant disruption in american families and american communities south of the border. we will continue to highlight that working together as friends and allies is extremely important for the prosperity of each of our citizens. indeed, when you look at what the united states has chosen to do to its closest friends and allies and g7 nations, european
allies, canada, mexico, it shows that we need to have a opportunity to come to together to discuss this directly and firmly and look for opportunities to benefit our citizens, not to harm them. [speaking french] >> translator: the question is not audible for the interpreter. the administration's approach and i have had conversations with both of president and vice president this week, to emphasize that they have an ideology-based approach that is pro-american. but they don't quite understand that this is going to harm americans. it is going to harm american workers. and american companies.
we emphasized how important the connections amongst our two economies are for citizens of both countries. unfortunately i think they will now discover that they can not impose such measures without harming their own people, and their own workers. you have made many, you have many conversations with the president and vice president this week. what would you say today about your failure? i think that people will understand that this is a decision made by the american administration and for the american administration. my approach, our approach, our team's approach, the approach of all canadians has been to work together. once again wish to thank all the various premiers, all the mps from all the parties who demonstrated that we have a firm and united approach here in canada. when it comes to these
negotiations and engaging with the united states. i think people know quite well that it is, despite all our efforts that the american president has chosen to make this decision today. >> prime minister, is mr. trump going to be there? >> yes, all indications are that he will be. >> similar national security investigation going on into import of autos steel and aluminum would suggest this will go against canada too. what is your response to that? >> we'll deal with this one today and deal with next steps when and if they come, but as i have highlighted many times, the argument that canadian steel that is in american armored cars and canadian aluminum that is in american fighter jets could somehow be a national security risk becomes even more absurd
when one tries to apply it to cars or car parts made in canada. we will continue to make arguments based on logic an common sense and hope eventually they will prevail against an administration that doesn't always align itself around those principles. >> katy simpson. cbc. >> prime minister, when donald trump took office you made a conscious effort to take the high road where we saw european leaders not necessarily take that road. but at the end of the day, you and the europeans are in the same mess together. has your strategy handling donald trump worked? >> i think we all, we all know the relationship between canada and the united states is a deep and complex one and, engagement and thoughtful approaches combined with the unity and the strength of, of the team approach that canada has highlighted. i have heard many times from
american interlocutors from the president himself, that the fact that we are firm and united as a country in our engagement with the united states, beyond political ideologies here at home, has been a strength in our approach and we're going to continue to stay united in this moment. i know canadians will be there for one another. we will do things to stand together and stand up for our interests right across the country. that is what they expect of this government. but that is also what we expect of each other. >> in your comments, and my colleagues will correct me i'm wrong, i don't think you have said donald trump's name. it still take as month for these tariffs to kick in. are you firm enough line. we heard kathleen wynn describe donald trump as a bully and do you agree with that assessment and is that enough. >> i've been very clear that my interactions with president trump have been firm and clear. we have, indeed he always
understood i will, and do stand up for canadian interests and and canadian workers and canadian citizens this is something we will always do. i made it very clear. president trump, donald trump, to mr. trump, i i will say it as many different ways and types you like, that our relationship goes far beyond the interpersonal dynamic between two individuals. the connections between canadians and americans are deep, broad, multilayered, multifaceted, commercial, cultural, familial, those continue. this decision by the u.s. administration will hurt canadians, it will hurt americans. and we regret that deeply. but we'll continue to look for ways to move forward in a way that does not continue to hurt or continue to harm the citizens in both of our countries the way
the actions of this administration today have. >> can i just ask one thing? katy, you asked if these measures are strong enough and speaking about the measures specifically, the retaliatory actions, this is $16.6 billion of retaliation. this is the strongest trade action canada has taken in the post-war era. this is a very strong response. it is a proportionate response. it is perfectly reciprocal. but i really want to haas -- assure you and assure canadians this is a very strong canadian action in response to a very bad u.s. decision. >> toronto star. >> partially deals with something i ask you though if you're targeting $16.6 billion
worth of goods, what is your analysis and the impact on the canadian economy on all of this? >> christa can speak to that. one of the reasons we are country that belief in free trade, tariff barriers ultimately affect your own citizens most. this, as we have seen when america government allowed a moving forward issues around softwood lumber, the costs of housing in the united states for american homebuyers increased. tariffs hurt local consumers. and as christa has said, as we put forward our list of, of goods that will be subject to retaliatory tariffs we will first of all be consulting with canadians and industry for 15 days to insure that they are not unforeseen or unwanted or undesirable consequences for
canadians. efforts have been made to look at goods that have alternatives, either canadian alternatives or alternatives from count is who we have positive trade relationships that will not leave canadians significantly out-of-pocket. christa? >> yes, so if i could. this list is carefully considered, carefully put-together list. we have been working on it for some time, when the prime minister has said that canada is ready for every -- >> discussion we had here this morning. but we have got another great, bigger panel for you here this afternoon. so this panel is entitled, national security in the progressive movement. we all know there are major divide within our political parties on many issues and debates on national security and how to protect our country and our values at home and abroad.
it is really central to a lot of those. and with the democratic primary larger than ever in 2020, we thought it would make sense to take a step back, look what the divisions are and overcome them to defend our value sets. what is the sense where we are politically, both from within the foreign policy establishment and democrats. how do we disagree with each other in effective and constructive ways? how we can work together to achieve our common goals with this value set in 2018 and 2020 and beyond? so we have an amazing cast of leaders in these fields today, to talk to us about this. unfortunately one of our panelists, who is seen advisor and national spokesperson for moveon.org, is caught up in train drama coming down from new york. unfortunately unable to be with
us. we have the managing director for policy and legislative affairs will fill in for her. and leo kneel has been with truman past six years. i'm sure you all know here. before that she worked in democratic party politics on capitol hill, director of government relations at arab-american institute. for past six years primary liaison to the executive branch, capitol hill, most importantly for this conversation, part another group in the progressive space and representing all of us in coalitions working to achieve our goals together. so she is a deep understanding of the progressive ecosystem and how the movement has really shifted over time. joining lee, we have julie smith, senior fellow and director of transatlantic security program center of new american security. before that served as deputy national security advisor to vice president biden. principal director of nato policy at secretary of defense.
she has a deep background of european security and transatlantic relationship, many of the values we hold dear. finally we have the vice president of the national security program at third way. in this role she extensive congressional experience and where where she was chief of staff to congressman issue and house permanent select committee on intelligence and house armed services committee. we have a wide range of expertise here up on the panel. so, lee, let me start out with you. discussing where we are now, where we have been and, what are we even divided on within the party? more importantly what have we taken for granted for now that led to these divisions? >> this is important conversation to have, not necessarily an easy one but we can start with some of the big picture. after world war ii there was a broad consensus that emerged
really regarding america's leadership role in the world. and i think we all know this because of the structural fundamentals truman value set. and, that does include the commitment to a strong national defense. that is imperative for our security, but not only that but principle of diplomacy, smart and strategic investments in international developments and really advancing democracy abroad and living those values here at home, driving ever to become that more perfect union. seems over time, and certainly in the past 30 years for so, as the cold war winded down, the bipartisan consensus started to fray a little bit and we can go into maybe when and how that
started to happen. that bipartisan consensus that america, the bargain, the agreement, the understanding that america would lead a international rules-based order to advance the western liberal values that we fought for and won came out victorious in after world war ii. that bipartisan consensus is something that we have taken for granted. really benefited from, and it is, it has called into question, certainly called into question in 2016 very explicitly. and, it is, it is a moment now the fundamentals, things we have taken for granted, are being challenged and if not directly attacked. not just debated but really up for, up for grabs, and could go either way. so i think that is, sort of where we're at big picture. and, it is, i think, more
important now than ever to really kind of restate what is core to us, really have a common understanding of why this, the fundamentals here work for us. and understand that it is not just from a party perspective but really, you know, most of the democratic party, and frankly the republican party, have as described to these views for the past 70 or 80 years. but it is up for grabs now, and being challenged quite directly. >> so, julie, building off of that, with your expertise with our european allies in the transatlantic alliance, core to the international order that leigh says we have taken for granted, what are the core elements should be uncontested in america's role in the world and liberal international order? >> when you say the term international world order, rules based order it means lots of
things to different people and for some people it doesn't mean much of anything. when you leave washington or national capitals in europe and say travel to a smaller town in poland, norway, kansas, wherever, the term feels very wonkish. what we're talking about a set of principles a set of norms that we defend uphold through relations among states and through the institutions that make up that order. everything from the united nations to nato to the osce, wto, the list goes on and on. in terms of the exact principles we're talking about, i mean traditionally what we've referenced is open societies, democracies, open borders, rule of law, support for democracy promotion, a whole range of principles and norms that we've tried to uphold and defend.
and as was just noted that now has been called into question, not just by some of our own friends across the united states both on the left and on the right and somewhere in the middle but also by many europeans as well. increasingly if you look at polling data, you see some questioning now. you're seeing nationalism, populism, some doubts about these institutions, can they deliver, not just international institutions but doubt about national governments. can our governments deliver? can congress deliver? i mean the answer is usually a resounding no. i've been traveling across the united states over the last couple of months trying to engage new audiences on questions of foreign policy, to talk about this and it has been interesting. the types of conversations we've been having. one thing i would just note on that, is this sense that, burden-sharing is something that needs to be immediately
addressed. and what i mean by that is, we used to collectively, europeans and americans, be willing to say, we want to invest in the transatlantic relationship in these institutions and alliances for the sake of the relationship. that we invest in it. our europeans invest in it. which know we're they're for each other. we set the global norms and standards. increasingly americans i'm meeting of all political stripes and many europeans are saying, why should we invest in this order, this transatlantic relationship, institutions like nato, like the united nations? what are we getting out of it? isn't america doing too much? it can be everything from defense spending to development assistance you? name it, there is some complaint that somehow the united states is carrying too much of a burden. what was suddenly a root of bipartisan consensus on the values piece is now kind of an open question. and again not just on our side
of the atlantic. this is being mirrored on the other side of the atlantic as well. >> i think that is very interesting, what is happening here is not just an american problem. but let's talk about the american problem for a second. how, how has this become a political issue? what does it look like within the parties? and why can we not, why are we taking it for granted? >> so i say there has always been political divisions how we approach american foreign policy even under the broader consensus of the u.s. as the leader of the free world and post-world war order but there is a largely disagreements over means and not ends. what i think we see now, i think this kind of division cuts across party lines, you see people represent this in all different spaces, there are three big strains in the way that people think about foreign policy one is the internationalist institutionalists.
people believe in rules based order and work through nato and the u.n. and we have rules we set up and rules will govern how we react to different situations. we the strain that says we have to prioritize our values but rules don't matter. you see this on the left and right. folks on the right saying we have to get the bad guys. don't worry so much whether or not we're going through check the boxes at u.n. security council to approve force or not. see it on the left too, president obama's intervention in libya. we have to deal with the situation. this is not necessarily about values or getting niceties down. there is third strain which is rising in the u.s. and around the world, this is something that julie is talking about, skepticism of exercise of power. you see this on the left and right. see this in bernie sanders and see this in rand paul. this is also something we see in the data as generational break. that among younger voters, they are much more skeptical use of exercise of american power and
power more generally. this comes from their experience growing up with the iraq war. the biggest, biggest own goal in american foreign policy. tremendous consequences for middle east. fundamental mistake and handled badly. the decision to go was a mistake and prosecution of it was a mistake as well. so they're really skeptical. they have this view, if the u.s. is going to intervene, it can only make it worse. look at older generations of people. people who saw world war ii. people who saw bosnia, kosovo, they have a sense, when the u.s. intervenes it can be a force for good. you see these divisions happening. within the party the themselves. the real challenge is that it is very clear that the president himself belongs to this skeptical branch of thinking about american foreign policy he is skeptical both of alliances, international institutions, the idea any other country that will behave in a way values based.
it is hard to suggest himself he has any values based approach to anything. so you see a real division in the way people react. first two groups, republicans and democrats alike are saying wait a minute, we didn't sign up for this no values, no institutions, power makes right approach to foreign policy. you see a real division. what we've seen over past year-and-a-half a lot of traditional republicans, reagan institutionalist republicans saying i am not for this. some of them even leaving the party. so we're actually a place in american politics and foreign policy that is actually not divided by party as it is much by how you perceive the president and your commitment to those traditional values. would i say 60% of the american people or more in the camp that we are describing, u.s. needs to be leader and there are rules and there are values and we can agree on those. but we're in a very fluid time in terms of understanding
politics on this. >> how about within the democratic party itself? do we have rooms for both of those planks or all three of planks in the party especially going up against non-values-based president? >> this is a real challenge that the democratic party is struggling with. i work for third way. we're in the middle of this discussion within the party. our view is, look there is room for all of us. democrats are big tent party. people can approach however they like. some people on the left, on far left who think there is a certain way to be a democrat. there are certain values that we need. and like, that there are litmus tests on these things. if you are not on board with a litmus test you will pay a price. but the challenge is in electoral if you need a majority you need joe manchin or heidi
heitkamp. you can't have everybody play like elisabeth warren. we have to have a more big tent. we have to acknowledge we'll make room for that. . . how is that the event a special this value set with a wide host of groups fighting for some objectives but made with different values such as their own. i do think it's important to distinguish between the end goals and the values that drive a lot of this and the tactics and how people go about doing that work. because they look very different and can be conflated sometimes.
also the values driven policy development versus frankly what is messaging slogans. those are different things and they deserve to be called out as such. i do think really at the most basic, president trump is a very unifying opportunity to most americans to sort of put out what we will and will not accept in this country as not progressive but just frankly american at our core. that does have real applications around the world especially in a globalized environment where a presidential tweet is heard everywhere in every capital but also in every high school, backyard and everywhere, all across the world in seconds when we so clearly, and are plenty of instances of this are not living our values, when we say, when we
say we are american and we are a nation built on the rule of law, democracy, equality, opportunity, when we violate that and that is on display, it is really hard to go to our allies and partners around the world and say, well, you need to do this because it's important for this objective for our cooperation with this particular alliance, when we're not doing it at home. there are instances of this trip one that stuck with me was during ferguson because it was still during the revolution in egypt, when president sisi who would basically staged a counter coup sent a press release, lamenting our police in ferguson, missouri, on their handling of the situation or to justify his own actions on the streets of cairo. that is pretty much everything you need to know about how much
our credibility impacts the world. the world watches us in ways we just don't even understand. we are supposed to be not just a military leader, not just an economic leader, not just the most powerful country that has ever existed in real terms or in relative terms that as a moral force good. we have to do that. we have to live our values and be who we are both at home and abroad as much as we possibly can or else we're just not effective. >> the values, it's nice of a goal in this room ourselves united but often with that translates to policy they it cn translate in very different directions. julie, i'm interested from your time at all of your time working in policymaking what are we actually divided on and what, when we translate those values into concrete implementation of foreign-policy, of domestic policy, what are we actually in the fund different sides of
issues on? >> well, as the parties, giving? >> or more broadly. >> well, so there is the debates were having now as the party that is out of government and trying to be a tent and make sure we can have different emphasis that is being placed on different aspects of our values-based foreign-policy, if you want to call it that. but when you get into government i i consider and draft a big 20 page paper with everybody in this room about where next time the democratic party is at the helm, where we would want to place emphasis, on which values, which we would message to the world, message to americans, how do you want to right the ship. but as we all know when you're in government it doesn't always go as planned. first and foremost you might have a big policy goal that just gets washed away by events or you can't quite get the bureaucracy to deliver the way
you want. there are all sorts of bureaucratic hurdles in implementing whatever foreign-policy agenda items you had, and you can look at things like president obama coming in and saying i feel like my mandate as president is defined by removing the united states from these multi-year missions in place like iraq and afghanistan, and that is my mandate. i will make that a key feature of my foreign-policy going forward. but, unfortunately, the world didn't quite lineup to cooperate with that agenda as lots of things happen that then left us can we are still in both places. he actually did leave iraq but then returned to it a few years later. there are just, there's so many hurdles both in terms of implementing your broader strategic vision but then getting down to brass tacks, getting other allies and country to come along. you may put something out, the
rest of the world is determined, for example, to work on climate, but without the united states right now it's challenging to deliver on that. and so if you can't get either your own bureaucracy to move the way you intended, or a group of allies and partners around the world and working with their bureaucratic limits, you can quickly find whatever they can you may have laid out for yourself as president, as a member of the cabinet, doesn't quite go as planned. and we experience that countless times in the obama administration, frankly come as much as trump has already encountered. you look at health care which was a key feature of this campaign, and alas, hasn't been able thankfully hasn't been able to deliver on that campaign pledge. for lots of reasons that we could get into later. it's a good exercise to go through and spending spend thew
out of government as a party thinking through were democratic administration would want to direct most of its energy, what top three priorities would we have four different foreign-policy. but you have to be clear eyed about the challenges of implementation as well. >> mieke, what do you are the lightning rod issues especially working between the parties can be really hard to implement and can be hard to stick up for value? >> one real challenge is we seem foreign-policy, i'll talk about two categories but one of them is that we have this partisan oppositional approach to our foreign-policy, and so we foreign-policy challenges that america faces take longer than one presidential term or even two presidential terms to solve but we can't actually reach agreement as a party or as a nation, , sorry, not as a party, that as a nation as to what end goals in these places are. we repeat the same things over and over again like groundhog
day. anyone who served in afghanistan, people like to the same thing and we take the same note over and over again because we haven't reached agreement about what is it overtime to go and how do we build the plant that is longer than just the one your tour. in many ways were thinking about short termism. it's hard to build, even to the national consensus that we are all in agreement with pushing in this direction beyond a particular presidential term that you have us back and forth and you are starting over. the other challenge i think we really have is our inability to set goals as a nation. is that we personalize our foreign-policy relationship with other countries to whether or not we like or don't like people or what it says about the credibility or manhood of the commander-in-chief. when you think about syria policy is the first debate with
the barack obama's all about whether people would think he was credible for enforcing the redline or not enforcing the red light. red line. it was not a conversation about whether america's ingalls in syria and how do we achieve them, regardless of whether or not that goal was enforced. we cannot seem to be able to say we have a goal, this is what you want to to look like and this is how we're moving forward towards that. the second time around it was a whole conversation with about whether or not president trump would more or less of a man, or enforcing redlined that barack obama may or may not enforce appropriate. it was not about indigo security. century. it was about u.s. credibility and about something that is so much more fragile. i would like to get away from an ego-based foreign-policy, and back to a foreign-policy this is we have goals and it doesn't matter if we like the country or don't like the country. we are moving towards the goal and we as a nation have consensus about what to do. we are not there yet. >> that is case for having more
experts like this, like we have these next few days but leigh,, what would you say to that, first of all, but also you see the debate raging within the community that is denied on the values but says different things about different issues and can be hard to translate those while in government or outside of government and what of those issues to you? >> picking up on a point mieke was saying earlier, i think the structural issue that the left, frankly, is, and i don't know if it is a discomfort with or a lack of familiarity with but a discomfort with use of force and/or just a lack of understanding about the military. and i say this also as a plug for the truman project because it was why we are noted in why we exist. it's a cross train among political and policy professionals with defense and security professionals to fill that gap.
it's changing a little bit especially after the post-9/11 wars but there's a lot of work to do. there are plenty of people who do share our values and are reay putting themselves out there who have experience making defense policy we are fighting in afghanistan, , iraq, et cetera, and that's really important. the nuance is that perception brings to democratic party come to the left, the progressive moment and, frankly, the center as well is really, really more vital than ever. absent that, really that hard security perspective and what the nuance, what the options are, are just absent and it really is a value driven conversation and that's a good thing but it is incomplete and, therefore, inadequate frankly to be credible to reach the persuadable middle of america who wants to feel like they are
protected and they are electing a party that can keep them safe. so unless we get that right you can ping-pong around, you can say climate change, syria, terrorism, whatever. the structural issue there is that lack of understanding and ability and comfort with military. >> you mentioned trump earlier being a good -- hopefully united party in a way it wasn't before of the progressive base broader, more broadly and getting a new energy. so do you see that happening on these issues? to use the party becoming better united or are we still bickering among ourselves? >> yeah, i think that there were issues, so i do think the basis of the party is more animated with president trump in power. that is undeniable, and i think that americans are having a little bit of buyers remorse across the board as wishing activism in places with folks
who usually are not on the street. one of the favorite once i had at the women's march was there was a 30 something year old white guy standing there with a huge sign that said hey, i'm not really a a sign guy but here i. that was probably my favorite side. people are out there. they sense when something is not quite right and want things to stay engaged. issue wise, i think again, i think there is a broad consensus that all, , by god, we just elected a reality tv star who has is nuclear codes, and how and when this person really has no moral core or intellectual curiosity or ideological identity, how and when this person is going to use our military is a scary proposition. it's scheduled think about. i think that could be any issue
that we can come up with, i think, i hope. i do think the bases were animated pic i think that there are some issues that kind of faster under president obama that has been simmering for quite some time, that the administration allowed, that any incoming administration was going to inherit and i think there is a little bit of accounting that needs to occur for that. because, quite frankly, the person who inherited it is donald trump. there's a little bit of soul-searching that needs to occur and i think the base is right to ask for someone in accounting right now. how do you do that, how to prioritize about with it having outrage fatigue or throwing the baby out with the bathwater is where the rubber hits the road. >> please. >> i i was just going to say to
pile on what leigh was just saying. part of the problem is americans just writ large regardless of political stripes are so conflicted about american leadership. there's a point of pride that we have in the toolkit that is available to us and the values that we hold dear. we know that no other country has such a dynamic economy, world-class military, and amazing network of alliances and partners around the world. we bring a lot of strength to global conflicts. we also have unique ability to build global coalitions. it was the united states the build the coalition to go after ebola. it was the united states the critic of the counter coalition. the world looks to the united states to build those coalitions, and yet we are still dealing with the residual effects as mieke mention, iraq and afghanistan. on one hand what you since on the american public is we don't want to commit.
we learned about the dangers and difficulties of rebuilding a country out of whole cloth. we are recognizing the limits, and yet we also acknowledge the unique attributes that would bring to global conflicts. how do you write that, did you can sprinkle in a dose of this kind of feeling that america should quote do something when you see kids foaming at the mouth after cw attacking syria. and so trying to write set that among democrats is one thing. trying to write set it among the american public more broadly is another, and you see elements of it in both parties where they are truly trying to articulate anyone running for office can anyone in a leadership role trying to reflect back the american public, america needs to lead, and we want to be a leader and we are proud of that. and yet we are hearing you, the rest of america, simultaneously
on the hesitation. so what does that mean in practice? and that's what you see the huge array of views on what to do about the cw attack were some americans say it's horrible, it's tragic, but just not for us to solve. and if we get involved to a certain degree we are going to own it, so you don't want that. and other saying at any cost this processes stop, i can't bear it anymore. we are the only ones that could possibly stop this, right, some uncertainty, but what could we do? and those two polls of americans can fix things, the can-do spirit, and yet, gee, g, takinl ownership of syria for the next 30-40 years doesn't have huge appeal. that's just incredibly challenging and i think trump person is grappling with that. i know the team i serve obama and biden grappled with it on
countless occasions, not just in syria and future presidents will continue to grapple with that as well. we are unique. there's no debating that, but we also don't want to do it all, and finding that middle ground is just an enormous challenge. >> one thing we can say we know trump grapples with -- mieke from your organization is one of the leading source of pulling a national security specifically. are you seeing these same trends, out in the polling, or is it always going to be something that is in this logjam? >> i would say what we see in the polling in the trump era is a couple of things. one, tremendous polarization which we all feel. there's not a lot more energized either side base can get here. everyone is at dial 11. the real question is where are the independent and disco where are the people are not -- at the
election there were 55-45 for trump and now they're about 60-40 again. this is the question as we think about how we are approaching these things talking about these things, not about how much more we can talk to base and get people riled up. you're going to spend 40% to get like 5%. the real question is how you can fence of those people middle of what trump is doing is not okay. he is obsessed with poll numbers, and so that's the thing to pay attention to. one of the things we've seen and we've been running this series on confidence in various government actors on handling national security, and we are testing the president, congress, the ic, the military and i think we may have the courts in there. but we ask it, how much confidence to have in the president? we don't say trump so we can just keep running the same question over multiple administrations. what we've seen in the last three or four months is that
confidence in the president handling on national security has been increasing month over month driven predominantly by increasing support from women. so it's one of these things where the president, he's behaving more and more like a normal president, you are seeing increases in how he's doing. this is occurring over the time when he is talking to the north koreans instead of talk about bloody nose strikes. he is engaged in retaliatory strike in cw in syria. some of the other things that are not going so well for them but there are a number of places where he hasn't gotten us into a major conflict yet that everyone fears that he will, and for all his showmanship and the chaos around it people are giving him the benefit of the doubt of these negotiations. that's a political risk for the progressive movement because the longer he remains president, the more our institutional strength atrophies, and also the chaos
and confusion he is selling in his approach has real effect and is real economic effect, gas prices have been rising. there at the highest they've been for a while. market still like in serbia. there's some real questions about what's going to happen. but i think there's a real risk in taking, and adopting the oppositional approach that mitch mcconnell and the rest of them did against president obama for democrats in moving forward against trump. because it is not about just keeping a base unified in opposition. but it's about convincing those people who are willing to give him the benefit of the doubt when he was elected that he was not good for the country. i think that's the real challenge of political strategy. >> how do you persuade the broader public to think about this value set and vote for this value set and really care about it, be the on that? julie, you are speaking with
these groups of people everyday. you struggle with that as had week to mitigate this value set in a persuadable way. how do we achieve that? >> we released this morning some data on the gina haspel nomination of what we saw before and after his nomination it was that support for her confirmation and director of the cia rose dramatically with independence. it was negative before it. it went up dramatically. there were a lot of people who were making not a value-based judgment on on it but it is to middle judgment on her, which was that she was a careerist who would get the job done in an administration with that is all too rare. those people were making a value-based argument about saying we're holding the cia accountable for a torture program that is a stain on american history while there was very large people who understood
that value-based argument. there were enough people, independence to say yeah, , buti care about how this government is saying it won't will work at seems like she's going to be okay, that tipped over the edge of . we look at the way the senate voted, most of the democrats took the value-based argument. there were a a small number of democrats who said you know what, i'll take a careerist even with these troubled times because i am worried that the next person, tom con, maybe worse. so the was a very instrumental approach to this thing. and i think you see that, you'll see the dynamic reflected over and over again. you have to start making effectiveness arguments to that group of people, rather than just value-based argument. >> for those who don't know, julie is directing across the field initiative for your been going to read towns in red states and trying to have these
conversations with normal people, particularly about the transatlantic alliance but also that the broader values side so what has that been like? >> well, interesting to say the least. it's been a challenge just to find these folks and get them to trust us to come out. one of the things if you immediately is the distrust of washington. you think i'm calling from washington, click, you know. we tried to get creative. we have done talk radio and christian radio in some of these cities. we are not partnering with world affairs councils and local universities because you tend to get a lot of liberal audiences. so we're getting more creative in finding these folks through vfw halls or lions clubs, boys and girls clubs. like we were able to work with the lds community and byu and all the rest. but we've learned a lot. it's not scientific but we definitely ticked up on a couple
things that one is russia is unbelievably politicize right now, and you are best not to really raise it either in a mixed audience or in an obvious that tilts to the right because you immediately get into this he said/she said. becomes cometary on the legitimacy of trump's election at the 2016 election and russian meddling and all the rest. so in some ways would like to talk about russia, but more from a future, like what we do in the future working with our european allies, what has been experienced and tried to get away from some of the election meddling and stuff. the other thing we learned along the way is the burden sharing the i mentioned at the top. mayors and county executives and local officials are actually becoming very innovative and we're stumbling on all sorts of fascinating ways that they're reaching out across the aisle and across state lines and internationally to deliver on
their agenda locally for their constituents. and we found that refreshing. they don't feel as tight down by the hyper partisanship that one finds you in washington or any other big cities. we have met a lot of medium and small town mayors and political officials that have told us incredible stories about what they're doing to address the opioid crisis or how they are working on climate change with a small tent in denmark. really fascinating things are happening, and that gives me a little bit of skip to my stick. although under conspiracy theory on the mythology side we are just encountering so much on immigration and refugee themes and issues with our european gas seven acidosis faith trash make -- safe to travel. really with a straight face with that's a really remarkable questions asked of our european guests gas that we bring along on these
trips. so that's been eye-opening in terms of with the most radical conspiracy theories that people telling me that sharia law or sharia is in full force in places like dearborn, michigan, or varies pockets of north carolina. so in some ways it is disheartening when you encounter that. what's encouraging though is what i said about the local leaders but also how many people turn out. we are getting some really good crowds after we built some relationships and have some local validator is a people kind of vouch for us that we're not going to come and just lecture at the but we want to listen. it has to be done. i think it's been important for me as someone who works on policy in this town to understand how it sounds than what people outside the beltway actually are thinking about everything from north korea to syria to russia to nato, and to think about the way in which we have those conversations.
it's been instructive. so it's an experiment. it's not normal think tank work. normally we are here talking to other washingtonians and writing long policy memos. it's different but we do feel as cnas as, it's becoming an up or in part of what we do. >> i want to pick up something julie said about the immigration, the way people feel about immigration. this is one of the things we see in the polling data as well. there are two big categories of foreign-policy, nationals could issues that engender the most polarization and that's on both immigration and on terrorism. and underneath of those things is a real debate in this country that people feel viscerally about whether or not traditional american society is under attack outsiders and how they perceive as defined outsiders.
and both of these instances, the narrative is one repeat over and over again and fox news and all sorts of meeting that people are coming here from other places. they are not americans and they are doing as harm. pew survey looked at generations and how they viewed america's openness. .. . >> there was this culture of america that was under assault. think of the people in a chariot world and there was a taco
truck. they were freaking out about that. because it's not the image they grew up with. but this narrative and how we resolve these questions about what it means to be american and how our society is strong enough to bring in all of these different cultural ties and forge something that essentially who we are is at the core of this debate. and i think it's something that actually you see in the ways that people have turned out and the vote for hillary and trump in this -- in the last election that people who are much more -- who experience and live in a world that is much more multi-cultural and open are much more open to vote for hillary. people that are worried their world was under assault were more likely to vote for trump. and there has to be a way we can bridge that divide and talk about what it means to be an american in a way it's inclusive and not threatening to the people who have a conception of america that is narrower than
that and brings them in and makes them feel part of it, and not some kind of group of people who are going to be left behind. which i think there is a fair strain of that in the way that progressives can talk about the opposition and we have to be really careful about that. we were talking about forging in america and not about that approach. >> giving these realities, say we solve it and we communicate the values super persuasively and the power set wins in 2020. i'm wondering where would you first send our capital giving the stark divisions? >> to pick up on this conversation, i think it is -- if we -- if we select, broadly speaking, take on the president on national security given the trend, especially with women,
because that's terrifying, on national security in this stage in the democratic party, we will lose. that is we're just not there. hopefully we'll get there. but we're just not there. and i do think that we should walk and chew gum at the same time. we need to be credible on national security. we need to be credible on what smart defense spending looks like. we need to be credible on what it means what it chooses about warren bates. we have to be credible on that. but if we go toetoe-to-toe withe republican party, we will lose, i think. we should do what we're good at, which is jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs. this is not the first time we have struggled with american identity. it happens once a decade on what it means to be american. what it means to be, you know, the inheritors of the promise who is owed what. who comes first.
who is at the table. this is part of who we are as a country. we will strive to be better. but it's just in our identity. and i think a part -- a large part of creating some space to have that conversation in a meaningful way that bridges divides and allows people all to rise together and not continue to be divided is a real answer on the future of our economy and a globalized world. it is not about en trechment, america first, going back to the gold standard. that is ridiculous. it is about putting forward an agenda that preserves an american for the future to come and genuine opportunity for our kids and the future that includes taking care of our parents, ensuring health care, ensuring that we have equal access to educational
opportunities, that provide meaningful jobs and a high quality of life. and to some extent, you know, some freedom of choice there. and until the democratic party can put forward an agenda that shows that we have not lost our way. that we don't just elect millionaires. that we have people in office who can empathize with the experience of what it's like to struggle in the country. $15 minimum wage is not going to cut it. and that is a promise to be what little bit left for. it's not an economic agenda. and that, i think, is also a proxy in my ways for security. it's not national security, but we have one pie here. and if you want to cut from one place and take from another, eventually you're going to get to a matter of national security. it's all one conversation. but we should focus on what we do best and stay credible on the defense conversation as well. >> having done part of that entire process within government before, how would you answer that? i mean, what would you do first?
>> well, i think leigh is right in terms of what we need to do to get to that moment where we'll have the choice about what to do. >> yes. >> and, i mean, trying to provide some sort of answer to the american public on the post manufacturing economy. i mean, we're all enjoying throwing rocks right now. and there's a lot to be angry about. i had to check myself on a regular basis so i don't get too angry each and every day. but that can feel like a mission. but it's not a mission for the future for a party. it's not a message that's going to get us there. and so i'm 100% with you with everything you outlined. and i worry that as a party we're not spending enough time on that. because we're so busy being angry. and there's so much to be outraged about. but let's say we did it. coming in, i mean, there's a whole array of options on the
foreign policy front. i mean, it could start from a very basic perspective of just signaling to the world that this is now an administration and a country that's going to return to its core allies and alliances. i mean, what we've seen to date, which i think will continue, is a president that's perfectly comfortable criticizing our allies and attack them more than our adversarieadversaries. and that's really ruffled feathers all around the world. obviously not in places like the philippines or in russia where they're quite delighted to see that habit unfold. but among our closest allies, whether it's in asia or europe or elsewhere, it's really creating issues, although one could have a separate conversation about the gulf allies and how delighted they are. but i think trying to signal first and foremost that we are going to return to a position where allies don't have to question our commitment to their
security and to the global system and that we're willing to play in those institutions, not question them, we want to make them stronger. i do think we have to signal to the world that if we are, in fact, back, we're just not going to carry on with the status quo, though. i think we like to get consumed with defending the status quo or what was once the status quo. but if we have the opportunity to come back in 2020 to think about those pieces of the liberal order, you know, that we started with at the top, what do we treasure? what needs some scrutinizing? what does -- how do we reform this? how do we make it more inclusive and hold on to our values? i mean, china and russia are attacking it from the outside with one valid point. they weren't there or present at the creation. and so it is western. we want it to remain western. that's in our interest.
but it will have to be the order. it will have to be more inclusive as well. and trying to find a way to bring other actors in in a way that doesn't completely dismantle the system will be a challenge going forward. but i think we're kidding ourselves if, you know, we think we can come back in, snap our fingers and the government will be status quo. the liberal order will be status quo. our relationships around the world will be status quo. i mean, much is fundamentally changing each and every day at all three of those levels. and we in some ways will have to rebuild and think now about, for example, how will we rebuild faith in government institutions or rebuild the institutions that are being dismantled and discredited. so we have a lot of work cut out for us. so my worry is that, you know, we really have to find a way. and i hope we will to kind of take a break in the anger and the outrage, which is important.
and it's clearly energizing our party. but focusing constructively on the day after when we get back and we will at some point. let's hope it's sooner rather than later. thinking now about some of the challenges, particularly across government structures, the inner agency process, there will be a big heap of ashes that we will be facing in 2020. and it's not snap backs. that's not going to be the theme of 2020. there will be no snap back. it's going to be a rebuilding exercise at every level. >> i hope the community will be a part of that. >> yes. absolutely. >> i hope that they'll be driving to help figure out what we build after that. >> i think to julie's point about we're the world that exists the day that trump leaves the white house is very different than the world that he inherited. and i think it's a huge mistake
for democrats, progressives, whoever is challenging trump in 2020 or beyond to think about this as how do we get back the last day of the obama administration. with no disrespect to julie and the work that the obama team did, without relitigating any of those fights, some good, some bad, the world we inherit will be very different. so this is about how do we go forward and not how do we restore. and i think that that's a really important thing to me. when we think about the challenge of national security going forward after trump, there are two big security challenges. one is russia, who is basically playing low key on the global stage selling discord and trying to undermine any kind of order to create a chaotic environment in which they can take advantage of things. they don't actually care about order at all. and then the other is china. and china is now becoming the
leader of illiberal. and it is incredibly attracted to the rest of the world. the applicant countries thinking about moving to their reserve currency, there is now going to be -- by the time we get to the end of the trump administration an alternative to countries that think that having a liberal system of government is too difficult because it requires too much complexity and they would rather just say i want to do what i want to do. i want to participate in a global economy. i don't want to have to deal with all of these man -- human right mandates from the u.n. and the u.s. and deal with all of the strings that come tied to their aid about civil society. i just want to do me. the chinese will let me do me. how do we, as the u.s., attract people back to a sense that the world and the system that we have built is actually better for them and more stable in the longrun?
and i think a lot of these countries look at democracy and in the wake of especially the arab spring and think, wow, letting the people choose is really fought for me. the likelihood of me getting dragged into the streets and shot and killed is much higher if i let the people really speak. and so i just want to be part of a different system. and i think that we have to be very clear eyed about the system that china is building and how we create a system or rebuild our system in a way that is attractive to people and actually addresses those challenges. because the chinese have a much longer term plan. they have a billion more people than we do. and they are going at our biggest advantage, which is technology. and we are not -- we can't think more than the news cycle ahead. and that is a real problem. because they're going to eat our lunch. >> do you think we have an argument to that, though? >> we did once upon a time. no, i don't think we're clear enough about what the challenge is that they're posing and the ways in which they're building
alliances with other countries and what the offer is from them and the way the rest of the world understands that. we spend too much time thinking about our relationships with these countries and not enough time thinking about there is an alternative. and i think that their intent is to in the next 15 to 20 years be the regional hedge mond and then beyond that to be the national hedge mond. and i'm not sure the united states giving the resources they're willing to bear that we can actually stop that from happening. i think we're in the position for those of you who have read the book about the transition between the british and american high gem any -- hegemony. how can we continue to create systems which they did in that transition where we can continue to maintain influence, even against a country that has more people and more resources than we do. and i think that that's really the fundamental challenge that we will wrestle with the rest of our career. >> leigh, is american-led world
order dead? >> yes, i think the actual national security structural record order that mieka just outlined and julie spoke to are the essential questions to be thinking about. but i also think that it starts at home. and i don't mean to keep bringing it back to the domestic landscape. but the fact is, we cannot confront these challenges. we cannot put a unified or a nuance set of policies together if we don't have our own health in order. and i think, you know, what that looks like based on history and, you know, my heart strings nostalgic here, is one of two ways. if history is any guide. we can go for after trump. i mean, to answer your question directly, my number one policy recommendation would be to undo the tax cut for all of the economic reasons i just laid out. but related to that, you know,
we will need a healer. we will need somebody like a gerald ford, right. however this president exists office, somebody who can bring the country back together after a very divisive time. gerald ford was a really nice guy that everybody likes. he's not offensive. just pretty much a consensus driver and eccentric. another alternative, and i think the progressive movement would like this very much, is a big visionary fdr, you know, lyndon johnson big program, big government kind of person that has ideas and inspiration and is willing to reinvent what the status quo looks like. there's probably a third option. especially since i just outlined the first few. there will be a third or fourth for sure. but i do think it will go in the
structural direction because a reactive approach to donald trump or a left version of a donald trump is probably not the most strategic for the future of our country. i think for the divisions of the country, i'm watching the landscape shift and i think the democratic party is about five, ten years behind the republicans in our infrastructure. we deal with issues. we like issues. the republicans deal with structural realignment. they go after judges. they go after tax cuts. they go after regulatory reform. they set up, you know, news stations like fox news. they are ten years ahead of us because of their approach. and i don't -- i think we are very privileged to be ten years behind. because what happened to them is they are a victim of their own success. they are eating their own. they've created a monster they cannot shut off. we have the option to go that
route. we saw glimmers of it in 2016. and if we continue to go that route, i think we will be more divided than united. i think that the obvious is to be more progressive. be more vague. and i caution against that, both for, you know, the central questions of real national security challenges from a party that is already uncomfortable with it. but also some of the economic and big ideas that need to come out. i think we need a more consensus-driven approach from the traditional democratic party establishment and the emerging grass roots. i think we need to b more united in our vision. i do think we have more in common in what we believe in the republican party right now. it's really about how to get there and how to prioritize where we disagree.
and we're privileged at this point. >> find gerald ford for 2020. got it. but turning it back on to something a little bit more light hearted or hopefully inspirational than the decline of america in the world, i want to talk to you about leadership. because that's something you know the community is rising in those ranks. hopefully within and outside of the administration. within the resistance in the federal government still for those heroes that are still serving in the federal government. i want to ask each of you maybe a tough question. but what types of leadership really speaks to you personally? what have you seen, you know, in the halls of power that you really think are good qualities of leadership that can help an individual rise to that amazing type of leader? and also what doesn't work in that field? julie, i'm going to start with you.
>> well, sometimes i think people have the impression that leadership can be defined by like almost iq. like how much do you know. how many experiences have you had. what have you written. kind of are you a spot leader. and obviously being a thought leader is one part of it. but i think for me when i think about the people i've worked for, bob gates or joe biden or lower level tony blinken or jake sullivan, i also think about kind of the eq side of it. so your emotional intelligence. it's not just the ideas that you bring to a position in government. but can you inspire others to follow you or can you inspire others to come around and converge around an idea that they can execute as a team. can you walk into a meeting and know immediately how you're going to present your ideas in a way that would be effective when
you're briefing bob gates, it's very, very different than when you're briefing leon panextta. and can you recognize those differences? and even by the day i would have mornings where i would walk into joe biden's office. this is a five minute day. i get five minutes to pitch this policy idea and kind of see if we can shape our argument in this direction. or 50 minutes. and i've got more time and it will be a different conversation. but i think style and substance -- i've seen different leaders be very effective in how they manage groups, inspire groups, bring people along. they manage up. they manage down. that's a specific skill set that is unique and you don't always see people that are in those top positions of power. sometimes they're absolutely brilliant, like in the scary, smart category. but when it comes time to execution for one reason or another, they either don't have the eq or the experiences that will help them translate all of
those brilliant ideas into governing or effective governance. and so for me, i really walked away with this sense that it's a mix and match of, yes, i guess the best way to put it is style and substance. how you handle yourselves, relate to other human beings and the ideas that you bring to bear. so. >> so i would say on leadership there are three lessons that i learned from my old boss senator kennedy, who i think the nation and the senator -- always recognize the humanity in your opposition. we go to the floor and he would scream at republicans and he would make a point about what he was doing and he was the most passionate advocate for his position that you could see. and on c-span, it probably looked like he was taking the paint off the wall. but when he was done, he would walk across the aisle. he would put his arm around his
republican opponent and he would create a human connection with that person. and he was able to get things done in the chamber that no one else was able to get done because he was able to recognize the humanity of those people and be friends, despite their policy disagreements. and at the memorial service, senator hatch and senator mccain spoke movingly about the relationships with him. and i've seen them interact personally, and that friendship was genuine. the second thing that i learned from him is that you need to be able to set out your policies or your end goal in a way that is visionary and important. right? you want to say this is the change that i seek in the world. and then you get there step-by-step. you don't have to get all the way to that goal in one go. and two examples of that for him were on universal health care and improving health care for all americans. he, over his career, looked to
expand coverage for people over and over again. he didn't reject deals because it wasn't everything. it was book the progress that you can get today and come back tomorrow for more. but you have to be able to articulate where you're going. it's not just about the incremental step. it's about the end goal. and the third thing that -- i guess there's actually two things. sorry. the third thing is the incremental. the second thing is the vision. i think we are sorely lacking in the sense of someone who can articulate both the big vision and also be pragmatic in the steps that we take to get there. and i think that if we're going to talk about leadership for america for the next generation, right, for those of us who have a lot of time left to work on these things, we have to have both an ability to articulate the big vision but also the
pragmatic approach on how we get there. and i would really be wary of leaders who set out a big, bold vision that have no plans on the how. and there are a lot of people who will try to switch that. that i think about who we want to represent us in 2018 and in 2020, look for people who are thinking about the house. >> so we need substance and style, vision. leigh, what do you think we need? >> yes, i agree with that. from the truman perspective, we want them to find key leadership. it is a privilege to be here with you guys. we represented really the characteristic stuff. it is moral courage. but, again, not with stupidity.
moral courage. strategic risk and personal humility. and those three things in combination, we've seen time and time again really are pretty some amazing leadership. i'll stick with that. from my personal perspective, the best leaders i've seen have known exactly who they are, and they are willing to be who they are publicly and privately and fight for those beliefs full force. never forgetting or waivering. >> so last question before we need to wrap up. since we've spent so much time in decline and division and unity and things that keep us all up at night, i wanted to ask each of you off the cuff what inspires you? so in what sentences, what inspires you either on a personal level about where we are going as a country and as a globe? and, leigh, i'm going to start with you. >> this might sound ridiculous,
but i'm looking out at america and i'm inspired. washington is not in a great place right now. we're not. it's kind of like living in a slow motion funeral. but if you get out and you actually talk to people and you go to some of the places that have been rethought, where big ideas are taking hold, where the next generation is coming into leadership roles, some of the work that you guys are doing, a lot of the work that you guys are doing, that is what is inspiring me. america -- the american people, the next version of it, i do think we're still on to something here. >> mieke? >> so i've been drawing tremendous inspiration from a generation of leaders that have been emerging over the past year in response to president trump. and it's not just that they're thriving to meet the moment. but it is their organizational acumen and figuring out how they are using their moments in the spotlight to try and advocate
for real change. so when we think about the kids in the parkland shooting. we think of women in the hashtag #metoo movement, they're demanding structural change here and they're trying to use their platform in a way that actually moves us forward as a nation. and their ability to generate hundreds of thousands of people who will come out and rally to their cause. it's tremendously inspiring. it shows we're all strongly together. but we actually have to think about what is the change that we want to see. >> haley. >> it's the same thing. it's the parkland students in particular have really caught my -- captured my attention. and i've been fascinated to watch them. because they've been able to sustain their mission and the movement in some very creative
ways. but they've also, as mieke noted, really came up with innovations in terms of challenging the status quo and what many americans believe to be a subject of gun violence that we have no prospect of making major change on. and they're showing change on a fairly regular basis. so i look forward to continuing to track that movement and joining it and doing what i can to support them. but it's also made me -- i mean, it's inspiring, but it's heart wrenching to see these students and what they have to go through and the fears they face today is something i didn't face when i was in high school. and that obviously brings tears to my eyes. but how they've taken that tragedy and now are trying to move forward with an actual policy agenda at a very young age with very little policy experience. but using these new mediums. i mean, it really inspires.
absolutely. >> yes. well, with that, also i'll say my own personal inspiration is being up here on this stage with these amazing women and the amazing women throughout the whole conference that are living the value set and pushing forth in every ounce of your being. we have a gift for you. so hopefully points way north of our values. you can pass that down. and i think you have one back on your death already. >> thank you. >> thank you very much. >> thank you. [ applause ]
[ inaudible conversations ]. >> live coverage of the truconn national security conference which is taking a 15 minute break before their lunch program. in the meantime, we'll show you some speakers from earlier today. >> please welcome to the stage truman's managing director of programs and sxernl relations jenn mel on. [ applause ] >> good morning, everyone. thank you all for traveling from near and far to spend the next three days with us. on behalf of the staff and board of truman national security, welcome. [ applause ] >> i would like to take a brief moment before we get started to
say a few things to some of those who helped make this event and much of our work possible. please join me in extending a thank you to the chair and national policy greg craig and the truman board members who have supported this event but could not be here. additionally, i would like to acknowledge our wonderful institutional partners who make this event and all things truman possible. thank you so much to the standler foundation, open society foundation, conkey corporation of new york, the macarthur foundation, stephen rockefell rock feller fund. and for once again becoming our transportation partner. so thank you. [ applause ] . >> truman is the community
united in its belief that america is strongest as we stand with our allies to lead, support and defend a growing global community of free people and just societies. we have more than 1800 members in 47 states. we share a common vision of u.s. leadership, progressive values at home and abroad and we believe that america is at its best when we use all of the tools in our tool box. diplomacy, defense, development and a commitment to democracy. since gathering in this very room last year, we have faced challenges to our vision and values that three years ago most of us would never have anticipated. regardless, we per ser veered. we stepped forward time and again to defend and uphold the values up on which our truman community was first built. during this time we must fight. it's essential we do so as a true community. after all, it's when our voices come together to have a shared vision of american leadership
and states that we see the greatest chance of seeing that come into being. the latest speakers who are experts in their respective foreign policy and national security field and all women. this is meant to highly smart, vision of u.s. security painstakingly built by a community and we're stronger thanks to the many hands rather than a privileged few fighting on its behalf. over the next three days we will hear and learn from women who have led the united states through some of the greatest periods of change and challenge, and i can't think of a better expert to get us started than our first speaker dr. kathleen hicks. dr. hicks is the first senior vice president and director of the international security program. previously, she served in the obama administration of principle deputy under defensive for policy and for strategy, plans and forces. dr. hicks was the development of the strategic guidance, the 2010
review and oversaw the defense department's contingency and theater campaign plaining. she is a long standing highly respected leader and what selfless service and commitment to our country can achieve. joining us is a senior fellow and a center for policy. before wer time at bookings, she served as deputy assistant of state and oversaw the middle east partnership and her role as deputy special coordinator for middle east transition. anyone who has worked on or whose work has touched on middle east policy, especially in the post 9/11 years, knows and greatly respects tamara. she is committed to promoting women in foreign policy. and for that, i will hand it over to tamara. please welcome to the stage dr. kathleen hicks and tamara
wittick. [ applause ] >> well, thank you for that lovely introduction. and good morning, truman. >> good morning. >> dworgood morning. >> welcome to your trade war. [ laughing ] >> don't worry. they're fun and easy to win. i am really, really delighted to be here with you this morning. and especially delighted to be here with kathy, my friend and colleague and neighbor around the corner. we're mere steps away from one another. and we're just going to have a conversation up here for a little while about the range of issues facing the united states in the world and the range of issues facing us as we discuss and debate u.s. foreign policy here at home. i know that a number of you have been kind enough to submit some
questions for kath, and we will get to those as well. kath, let me just start with a big, broad question as we wake up to news of european and canadian retaliation for our news. this is a moment -- well, it's not been a moment now. it's been about a year and a half that we've been watching america's relationships with some of our closest international partners become fraught, even as we face major challenges that traditionally we would seek to keep together. like north korea nuke, the challenge of iran, the rise of china, interference from russia. so when you look across that, what worries you most about the present moment? and is there an opportunity that you think we might be missing?
>> well, first good morning to all of you. and special thanks to tamara for doing this to me. and i was thrilled to hear we were going to be up on stage together, and that's so lovely to get to do that with a friend. yeah, i mean, i think the big question before i get to the meat of your question, the big question is how durable those years of capital that we filled up at least since the end of the second world war. there was some capital before that with allies, with partners, with institutions that -- and domestically, how durable is that ability to come together? i think it's going to be very testing. i think it's proven pretty durable so far. and i'm quite hopeful. but i will not take for granted that we'll be able to endure. so what you see in the
responses, whether it's the french and the german's previously with regard to creating -- having an initiative on european security. whether it's the japanese moving forward along with ten others without the united states. whether it's parents going forward or crawling in the lead and taking up saying we're going to move forward in this >> erica area. the rest of the participants are stepping up. there's a lot of tension in there. and i think our friend julie smith, that might have worked for 2017. here we are at 2018. how long can we count on that? and you see the fraying and how it doesn't stay in flames. so it's not going to stay neatly in its lane. it's going to go into these other areas of nato, et cetera.
so plenty of opportunities therefore missed, where we could move forward together in the global economy and look at a rural set for the international system in both security and economic that it accounts for the fact that power differentials are shifting. but, you know, doesn't throw over the system or throw open the system at these tariffs, for example, seem to do in terms of going outside the wto rule set which we, ourselves, created, right, in order to have a system that would be rural space but also we did it for our own national security interest because we thought the u.s. companies, the u.s. industries would perform well in such a rural space system. so good news, i guess, is that others are -- the way in which they're retaliating at least at first glance for me appeared to adhere to the rules, even where our approach does not. so, again, a reinforcement of that rule-based order.
good news where they are trying to grow, if you will, to use the president's kind of language burden, and they're trying to share more of those largely in areas that are very beneficial to us. again, cpp11 is a good example. we need a positive strategy in asia and in the case of europe where the europeans are looking to build great european defense. that's a good thing. but we should not anticipate that those step ins will, first of all, always be from allies and partners. that the void is filled from those by good will from a u.s. perspective. or that the outcome is something that we would like. so here where you see, for instance, north korea, you see the chinese, the russians coming in, you know, to sort of fill the void where the u.s. does not seem to have a real strategy. i'm very concerned about the opportunities that they're looking for out of primarily
among forces to south korea which i think might be disastrous. how they might get the president's desire for a noble peace prize into things that really hurt us in the long-term. so i think that's my overall -- you know, i try to be very rational and pragmatic as you can tell. it's extremely worrisome. but you have to get up every day and execute foreign policy to the united states. and, you know, it gets harder every day to feel that the capital is going to be there to build off of. but i hope we can -- i hope we can be at a position where when we come back to ourselves to lead the international system and be a part of the leadership and the international system in a way that accords with our values and our interests, that the system is there to work with us. >> okay. so it sounds to me as though you're saying that you see traditional american partners stepping up to try and preserve
this rule-based order that we -- >> uh-huh. >> -- once led. and that with luck, we can sort of rejoin it when we're ready. it will still be there. the same rules. >> yes. >> more or less governing it. those rules that we design. because, gosh, they were to our benefit. >> yes. >> right? i guess i have to come back to the fact that power transitions in international affairs are dangerous moments. >> yes. >> right? and we know even if american power is still dominant, other rising powers mean that relatively speaking our power is facing new challenges. and inevitably that's going to be a risky moment because there are questions about how you respond. but as i look at the way in which china's rising power is being exercised or when i look at the way in which russia, which is perhaps a declining
power. >> right. >> but still has a lot of resources at its disposal. the way in which it is challenging america around the world, i worry that we might not be as well prepared to respond as we could be. and i wanted to ask you about this specifically. because a lot of the challenges we're facing are asymmetric, right? >> uh-huh. >> and in the national policy states for decades we have thought in pretty traditional power terms. we worked to build up capabilities in cyber and ai and so on. but, you know, russia and china have economies that governments -- their governments can drive. >> uh-huh. >> right. they are willing to use information operations in ways that we are not. and that means that they can manipulate the environment and deploy tools that -- in ways that we can't. >> uh-huh.
>> so i guess a sub sid yary question is how do we meet that asymmetric challenge. >> what i would say is everything you said is true. but the u.s. has been i'll call it grey zone. i'll use the term grey zone. we've been pretty good grey zone fighter before. and if we harness and leverage the assets we have, we can be pretty good at this. we're not good at harnessing them. so what do i mean -- at harnessing them. so what do i mean by that? russians manipulate information not only we can't do it, if you will. we shouldn't do it, right? because that's not who we are. and that is not how our, if you will, allow the term soft power works to our advantage. soft power works it our
advantage because we have this incredible vision that we put forward, right, of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in our own foundational documents that help others in the world see a way for the world to move. that is more personal, that is more economically free. >> and we also operate on a premise that if you have free and open debates, you' -- >> you're going to get a better outcome. >> -- you're going to get a better outcome. >> right. exactly. so that we displayed for example. but not the only example during the cold war we had an entire agency of the u.s. government that no longer exists. the u.s. information agency stood down over politicized circumstances. but you also have this global engagement center which is a less approximation of the skills you would have had in the usia.
if you could harness what's inside government, that's good. but you also have this information environment. >> there are many ups and downs. and sometimes i felt the road fall out from beneath my feet. nevertheless, i kept pushing forward. what i shared was what we called a story of self. and this year kick ass women -- i'm sorry, three kick ass women will stand beside you to share their story of health. the unique past alongside truman on the issues they care about and how they envision fighting side by side with all of us for the values that we hold so dear. often when hearing someone share their personal path to perseveran perseverance, we look at our own journey and emerge on the other side a little stronger. that is the purpose of these stories. to help us learn from and be
inspired by the past. all while merging forward with friends we have made along the way. i am now so honored to introduce a slate of speakers who can represent and inspire this community. after all, more than -- now more than ever we need to be able to rely on each other for strength and companionship. and the best way to do that is by sharing our stories and learning from one another. for our first speaker, please welcome member of truman's defensive council andrea mars. [ applause ] >> good afternoon, everyone. and thank you so much for having me. how many of you have seen that amy ted talk where she talks about power poses? okay.
yeah. good hands. so she talks about ways to make herself feel more confident. about getting big in a room. and about feeling confident when you may feel inadequate or terrified. so power pros. so i saw that ted talk for the first time the night before the 2013 white house champions and chains award ceremony. i was feeling inadequate and terrified. i had done very little public speaking at that point in my life. i was jet lagged. i had flown from india to la to dc. and i basically had no idea what i was doing. apparently i was getting an award at the white house. and being prepared to talk about myself. the night before while i was pacing my hotel room, a friend send me the ted talk. i'm sure if you saw me in the recording, i'm probably doing this over and over again to make myself feel big and confident at this awards ceremony. so mike green's advice at the
time was to just tell my story, which is a little bit like going on a first date and telling -- just saying just be yourself, right? it sounds like something you just made up in the bathroom like on the way in and not actually anything authentic when you're not used to telling your story. so that was five years ago. about two years ago, graham west encouraged me to publish on the website. it had nothing to do with truman. nothing to do with apple security. it was basically a rant about how conferences on sustainability that catered specifically to women were inevitably dubbed down focusing on energy climate or sustained reliable. it was a waste of money. more importantly it was a missed opportunity to showcase real experts in the field. people doing real good in the field of energy and climates. so at some point in the past five years, i've become one of
those experts. i joked a few years ago that hashtag #spotleaders would be the death of us all. but somewhere i understood we had to acknowledge and embrace our own truth and our own unique confidence. i believe that each of us can profoundly impact this world. it's just a question of figuring out how. so my favorite manifestation of this expertise was in august of 2015 when brandon theory and shawn van diver went to the capital to talk about california's clean mark legacy information. it was one of those west wing days when you happened to know every relevant statistic on a system and passionately deliver run on sentenceses and make sure you're correct. and i'm not sure how many people i convinced to change their mind about the legislation, but i was able to bring forth the portfolio standard.
and that's the thing about chaj changing the word. while i have every confidence that the world will be run by trumanites, a lot of the work feels like baby steps. before the baby steps, sometimes it's looking in the mirror and convincing yourself the step is even worth taking. it's figuring out how to tell your story in a way that's convin convincing. learning to write in a way that newspaper editors appreciate. and sometimes looking in the mirror and gut checking yourself. what do i truly believe? we are bending the arc of history towards justice, but sometimes the arc feels like a very, very gentle slope. much of the work i've done with truman has been around climate change as a national security issue. state houses and in coffee shops. i've spoken before and after the film the burden so many times that i have entire chunks of that movie memorized. and every interview, every roundtable is another drop in the bucket of public opinion. a year ago i was at the
california state democratic convention and i was approached by a woman running for congress. she told me she's gathering crowds in her conservative district by framing issues in terms of economics and national security. energy security, in particular, has resonated in her district because she lives in an area that suffers from blackouts. and she wanted to find me because she heard i belong to an organization that might know something about talking about that. here is the amazing thing about truman. we don't just speak up. we know to shout until someone listens. we figure out how to change a narrative and in so doing we figure out how to change the system. but i didn't start out that way. i used to think that the only people who wrote were retired old white guys with nothing better to do with their days than pontificate in the media. and judging by the responses i received, i can tell you there are, in fact, a lot of retired old white guys with nothing better to do than write letters to the editor in response. so for those of you who are new
to truman, do not be dismayed if you haven't written a book, been on cnn or run for congress yet. it is enough that you were secure in your own values and your own sense of why. we write, we speak, we advocate because of what we believe. we don't believe that donald trump is dangerous because he tweets too much or he fired the fbi director. we believe that donald trump is dangerous because he poses an absolute threat to our values. to our beliefs. because he challenges our lives. and i will scream from the rooftops that i will not stand for hatred and bigotry and ignorance because i know what i believe. because those same values drove me to join the navy at 17 and those same values brought my mother to this country when she was a little girl and those same values caused my grandmother and grandfather to join the navy before pearl harbor. i would be lying if i didn't
admit i often feel like a fraud. that my so-called expertise is pretty limited to california. i'm being honest. but i often rely on google to sound smart. that i often mispronounce the word chasm. during a simulation a couple of years ago, i had to admit that i really didn't know how ability became a law. not really. not compared to a lot of you. so i'm not going to bother you with my contem nation. but i do think that i've come to these couple of conclusions. . .
. as well as any of us this room. she should be honorary truman member, mike green, where is he? i try to get her to tell her own story of coming to the u.s. as a little girl, of becoming a citizen, not speaking a word of english on her first day of school, and wetting her pants when she tried to ask to go to the bathroom in spanish. tenuous relationship with nicaragua, country of her birth. she doesn't want to talk to about any of that stuff. she believes her place in this world is as my editor, the person who can reinforce my values and that's the point t takes all voices sometimes speaking very softly, and sometimes speaking at all. we need to come to grips in the fact of 2018 we see power
inextricably linked to how loud we are, how male we are, and how we carry ourselves in a room. i don't think it has to be that way. i think we can teach our daughters an sons about true leadership and only in our hearts what is wrong. there is nothing wrong with baby steps. vulnerability can be more powerful than ego. i don't think catherine poindexter is here. so a couple of years ago at a mid-year retreat for truman in san francisco standing on a rooftop with one glass of wine and talking to katherine about running for office, making decision to run for office, maybe i could run for office? so that's right it, was a truman member who planted that very first seed a couple years ago at a truman event. friend in november of this year i plan to be the first latina ever elected to costa mesa city
council. [cheers and applause] so i want to say thank you to all of you. i'm greatful for your friendship, encouragement, mentorship. occasionally for the -- [laughter]. i'm kidding. i'm kidding. truman has shaped my voice, has shaped my values and you created a space in which i can figure out exactly what that looks like. thank you from the bottom of my heart. and i especially want to give a shoutout to rob who encouraged me to speak. so thank you all. [applause] >> please welcome to the stage, truman political partner, ashanti golar.
[applause] >> all right. good afternoon, truman family. so it is such an honor to be with you this afternoon. but the fact is i never expected myself to be on this stage hearing my story itself. i'm just a little black girl from las vegas who loved politics. i didn't come from a political family. my family voted. that was it. i was one of those weird kids who liked to watch c-span over "sesame street" because it was so much more entertaining and knowledgeable to figure out how a bill became a law, policies, procedures, to see these people arguing over how to make our country, our lives better, but even at a young age, it was very obvious to me i particularly didn't see people that looked like me and my family and my community. where were the people that were supposed to represent the reflective democracy that i read about in my textbooks? where were the women that were
becoming a majority of the population? where were the women of color that looked like women i saw in my community that were getting things done. my love for politics stayed with me but it wasn't until high school that he truly embraced it. i had a wonderful government teacher named mrs. king. she was that government teacher. she made sure you were registered to vote when you turned 18. that you volunteered on local races and also very well-connected. so one of our lessons she brought in two candidates that were running for election and we were going to be able to ask them questions. so me, being nerdy student i was, i totally studied up on all their policies, their platforms and candidate number one i fell in love with. when it was his day, we had a great discussion. i asked him questions. he answered everything honestly. unfortunately when it came time for candidate two to speak i can
not say the same thing. when looking at his platform, his policies and how he voted on some bills i asked him about a particular bill that he voted against and why. he played it off as if i was some silly little high school student who had her facts wrong but the fact is i knew i had my information correct. i was very mad. but i became infuriated when he called mrs. king after class and told her that i was right. that he did vote for that bill, which meant he lied to me. i kept asking myself why did he lie to me? was it bus i was young? because i was a girl? because i couldn't vote? he was absolutely right. i was young, and i was a girl and i couldn't vote but i could most certainly volunteer and i would do that for his moment. every free moment i spent volunteering for his opponent and i got to know him well. i love the fact that even though i can not vote for him, i can
not do anything for him really, he really treated me with respect and kindness. i talked to everybody i could about my candidate. family, friends, people i didn't even know in the grocery stores, are you registered to vote? you know who you should vote for? they're looking at me, who is this little girl, i'm just trying to get these eggs but i felt it was so important. so election day came and, we didn't have a winner yet because the election was too close to call. they had to do a recount. the recount happened in my candidate won by 450 votes. that showed me the power of volunteering. that showed me the power of people-driven politics. led me to get involved with the college democrats of america, young democrats of america. which led me to my first political job at the democratic national committee. i was in their political department and i became a part of the truman family. what i loved about truman, here
was a organization dedicated to building up the next generation of national security leaders but from the beginning they're doing it with a focus on will, because they knew women were an important part of the conversation, that women's voices were needed to shape the conversation. so i talked to everyone i could, inside and outside the dnc about truman and the great work that they were doing. i took that love with me to my next job in the obama administration at the department of labor. i was able to work in secretary solis's office of public engagement. even then, working within the department of labor with our women's department, on helping female veterans returning finding that irfooting, to our veterans and employment and training services department, to other agencies such as the pentagon and small business administration, truman taught me at the end of the day, economic security and global security are tied together and it is very awesome to have cabinet
secretary that believed veterans issues and global issues were very important and every federal agency should work on them. so fast forward again a few years later, i'm back at the dnc for my second tour of duty, yes, i went back. couldn't get enough. but this time i was in our department of community engagement and when i did my work there i always made sure that i had a focus on women. but there is always an area where i can not help women when they ask for help and that is when they wanted to run for elected office. the dnc at the time no longer had a training department that trained up democrats to run. and this bothered me a lot because i was a woman who was in that position because of other women who believed in me, who supported me, who uplifted mere. here are women calling me asking them for help and i can tell them that i could help them. i could not pay it forward in that aspect. i knew that my next job had to do with getting women
politically and civilly engaged. two days after i decided that, emerge america posted a job description for political director. it was a organization that recruited, trained democratic women to run for office. look at god. it was only job i applied for. two years later i'm still at emerge and proud to say that truman is one of the organizations that we partner with closely to get women veterans and women in the national security space running for office, to make sure their voices are heard at every single level. being at emerge i have definitely become more entrenched in elected office and parity. the fact is we have a long way to go. there are 520,000 offices in this country. men occupy 70% of them. women are 51% of the population but only 25.3% of state legislators. less than 20% of congress and we're less than 10% of mayors.
when you look at women of color, we are less than 8% out of all of those offices. actually will not be until 2021, 2121 we start to see parity with women in elected office. got mine mixed up with someone else's. in addition to my work at emerge last year i was asked to be a sisters of the planet for america. this is another area where work with truman and gender equality intersects. women are 70% of the world's poor. what do at oxam, all our ambassadors use influence to talk about global poverty, hunger and how that relates to needing better policies and laws to impact the lives of women. there are some laws on the books in the u.s. and across the
country that lead to inequality for women. at the end of the day we know we'll start to see better treaties, better laws better policies when we have women at the table helping make these decisions. we know that is very hard to change people's minds, and even longer and harder to change some of these laws, but i fully believe when it comes to national security and gender equity, we're going to start to see all of these better policies, these better laws, when we have more women in elected office. so to all the women in the room, i'm asking you to step up and run for office. this is your first ask. for all the men in the room, i'm asking you to ask a great woman in your life to run for office. and at the end. day everyone in this room is part of the best and the brightest. i would love to see you all in elected office at any level including you men, helping make these changes because we even
need men and their voices to help bring equality to women across the country. thank you. [applause] >> please welcome to the stage truman security fellow, kmele stewart. [applause] >> let me move these so i don't have the same issue. so, thank you all for having me today. i'm going to ask you all to bear with me a little bit. i'm a little sick. i have my tissues and my water, if i have to pause to cough, please excuse me. as i said my name is camille. mine is a story of isms, illness and power of community. i'm daughter of two jamaican immigrants. they left their homes in the countryside of jamaica to build
a new life for the family they hoped to have. they slept on couches, cleaned house, waited tables to get the education that they needed to achieve their goals. mind you they were educated in jamaica teachers but had to come here and start over. their hard work and determination to persevere paid off. we went from the inner-city of cleveland to an affluent suburb in one of the best school districts in the state of ohio and in the country. making good on their determination to provide for us the very best education. i was old enough to notice the difference moving from a mostly minority school district to one where at my elementary school we were two of five black students. i was called the "n-word" my first week. my first real exposure to the ugly sting of racism. to say the least i was
uncomfortable but with child-like optimism and open to the promise of this situation and trusting the leadership of my parents it became a good place. it became home. i learned to adapt to my surroundings and operate in a world where many poem didn't look like me. i found friends and thrived academically despite potentially isolating environment because the support of my parents and the kind, open-hearted folks i encountered along the way. once you find community even the most adverse or uncomfortable of situations can become home. community can give you the strength and refuge from the ills and hard ships of the world around you. i learned that before i could name it. ultimately it was first of a series for moves which i was often an outcast and also able to find community. the tradeoffs for my discomfort was the ability to capitalize on opportunities that may not have otherwise been available to me. i have always wanted to be a
lawyer. i used to make my parents sign contracts anytime they made me promises. whether for grades or for anything, chores, anything. [laughter]. pulled it out, had a witness. it was serious. although extremely proud of me, my dad was not so secretly also a little bit disappointed. he is a computer scientist. he also had technical aptitude and really big interest in technology. he thought i would follow in his footsteps. little did know i would find a way to do both. elementary school my struggle was being an outsider, but in high school i found myself facing a new challenge. when i unexpectedly got really sick. my freshman year of high school. it started out seemingly innocuous, quickly became a diagnosis of a serious autoimmune disease. the threat of losing my eyesight, three surgeries over the course of high school. and missing half my senior year to be tutored at home.
there is fog that will change your perspective faster than going from a healthy, athletic, for weekly, if not multiple times going to doctor's appointsment trying to figure out what is going on with your body. this illness threatened to take away everything i worked hard for. i want to tell you i took it in stride, so far so food but i was encouraged to tell you the truth. it was hard but i got through it and i'm here today. community got me through. my parents, friends, church, et cetera. considering the circumstances i did well and remain bounded and determined to achieve my goal of becoming a lawyer. i had three surgeries, missed a lot of school. my wish at the time wasn't so different from many high schoolers to be normal. normal is rarely great. what i went through taught me how much more than normal i was
capable of. graduated top 10% of my class and was entering sort of a mission. although not my first choice i went to miami university because of proximity to my home and reputation as a public. miami showed me a number of unfortunate and frankly scary facts of the world but over my time there i came to realize it was a mock microcosm, start contrast to violent opposition of my presence and support of best people i would ever come to know on one of the most beautiful campuses with a top-notch education. more proof of the importance of community to get you through some of your hardest trials. once again, i had seen it as i had seen in my childhood moves. i was quickly labeled an outsider and on day one a
swastika carved on my dorm room door, confirming my fear and suspicion about this new place. it wouldn't be the only incident. neo-nazis marched on campus. they hung nooses to the incident and i could go on. i found my way and founder my community. i forgot the second lesson of my youth, i neglected my health trying to be normal. i got sick sophomore year. got out of remission. i would have not not gotten through that semester at miami without the support of my community. my next step was law school and fulfilling my dream to be an attorney. i chose au, because of irinternational program, and their focus on cyber. american was a breath of fresh air. international focus and d.c. itself bread a more inclusive and open-minded environment than i was used to coming from the midwest. little did i know that the health challenge i would face at
this stage of life would not be having health insurance. the battle to continue my very expensive life sustaining treatment, my time working on the hill and seeing the affordable care act battle first-hand, and my desire to help others facing this and other challenges in today's society ignited a desire to get more involved in the public discourse. i supported progressive causes in every way that i could. obama campaign, running for advisory neighborhood commissioner, in my ward in d.c. all while continuing to pursue my dreams and passion for tech and the law. so i went to a cybersecurity company. this job afforded me a number of opportunities to lead at the company and international law and policy forum but like growing up as an undergrad i was one of a few, was not only brown face and woman working in this space, particularly in
leadership. a badge i wore proudly and saw signs of changes to come until i realized i was making less than my male colleagues. additionally advocating for interests of my big clients being only brown face or woman was a constant reminder of the disparities of access to tech information and legal information, causing me to start a startup incubator to serve women and minority on the ons. after five years at that company i got the call to work for president obama and stand up a cyber policy office at dhs i was finally able to support the man who gave me back my health insurance and empower me to think about public service. that was a dream i hadn't dared to dream. how can a black woman with a chronic illness, no network and odds against her wind up working for the president of the united states? i know part of it was my ability and experience going beyond the normal. and i know another major part was network i started to build while on the hill in law school and in my community.
and in that moment i started to understand the power of network and community of professionals that invest in each other. that was one of the most rewarding professional experiences i have ever had. being able to advocate for issues and communities i am passionate about was a blessing. i came to realize i was unintentionally building a career in national security and foreign policy i was prepared to, i prepared to transition out of the administration. i was eager to figure out a way to further work in this space, to make an impact. i had seen first-hand the lack of women, particularly women of color in this space and specifically in cyber and tech, and i wanted to change that. as i had seen throughout my life community is a common thread to success. i was introduced to truman through some obama administration folks and saw it as an opportunity to build a network, a professional community beyond my obama family after the gut-wrenching election
results and flury of emotions that came with it. brian: i found out truman would be my network. an opportunity to continue the good work i was and remain honored to be amongst the ranks of you selfless and talented patriots. this field is a networks of insiders and as someone who always been just a bit difficult, had different limits, looks different, and came from immigrant parennage, i was definitely on the outside, hopeful of the prospect what truman would hold. truman has given this first generation american woman of color a community i couldn't have dreamed of. truman has supported my research and writing, challenged my intellectual pursuits, and as family does, support my podcast, hustle over entitlement. as listeners and guests with your retweets, i gained so much more than i anticipated. truman is the kind of
opportunity women like me and girls like me don't know exist. it is my hope that in addition to our advocacy on the issues truman can be a place that bridges the gap of access and opportunity for young underrepresented, you know connected national security and foreign policy professionals and aspiring professionals. it is my hope that this community can use its influence to open the aperture for the next generation so they won't stumble into this space as i did but they will aspire to it with the boldness and tenacity i had in aspiring to be an attorney. an aspiration women like my mother dare not have. we have begun that work with some of the programing with true diversity, a discourse i've seen on the chat, and focus on diversity through this year's new member orientation. there is still much work to be done. we all have a role. it is my hope that this commune will be a pivot and a closed
culture that will open doors for a new generations and new voices whether they are members or not. often the difference between success and impact or failure in professional pursuits is access and exposure. i am grateful for the access and exposure truman provides. we use it to open doors for the next person. i spend much of my time inside and outside of work doing that. whether by taking a concrete action, building and supporting an initiative, making room for someone else, a silent voice in a conversation, or saying the uncomfortable thing. those are all actions each of you can take. at work, and as you lead this great organization into the future. i want to be the change. i want truman to be the change. i want each of you to be the change. i encourage you to think about how you are building and strengthening this community by
considering outsiders and helping those already part of this community to operate at their best. don't be afraid to have hard and uncomfortable conversations. as long as you have an open heart, an open mind ready for the range of emotions and reactions you will be advancing a necessary dialogue, opening doors and creating a safe space for people from different background and different experiences can learn and lead the change. thank you for welcoming me into this community and thank you for letting me share my story. i love you all. thank you. [applause] >> thank you, to camille, ashanti, and andrea for telling your story. give them a round of applause.
[inaudible conversations]. >> live coverage of the trucon 18 national security conference in washington, d.c. they're taking a quick break before the panel begins. it will be security implications of climate change, conversation with gina mccarthy, former epa administrator. that should be starting very shortly.
>> this is live coverage of trucon 18, a national security conference here in washington. they're taking a quick break, waiting for next panel to begin with former epa administrator, gene ma mccarthy. we leave the program 2:00 eastern. we'll have thomas bowman, speaking at conference for homeless veterans earlier today. >> it should be. like a verizon commercial. how is everybody doing? okay. come on. we can do better than this. [applause] well good afternoon, everyone, i'm excited to be here. we've had a incredible morning
already. a lot of really amazing women on this stage but this is a very special moment for me because i get to put on my old hat with gina mccarthy and it is even weird for me now because i'm having to call her gina. i wanted to revert back to administrator. >> being totally disrespectful. that's all. [laughter] >> if that were the first time. so very excited to be here. i'm melissa harrison. i'm a truman member, political partner since 2011. i came in from the midwest. do we have any other midwest folks here? [cheering] midwest is best. we'll leave it there. although boston is okay too. >> thank you so much. >> so i am currently vice president and corporate public affairs group at owing gill very washington. but previously served as press secretary and deputy communications director for gene n we're thrilled to have her here today.
i never thought i would be on stage getting to interview my hero. this is kind of a surreal moment. we're so lucky to have gina here. director of sea change, center for climate, health, global environment. at, harvard. >> wait a minute. harvard. >> okay. chan school of public health. she is advisor at pegasus capital advisors. we all know she served as epa administrator from 2013 to 2017 where she led amazing work on a number of different climate priorities including the clean power plan, the paris agreement and kasoli agreement. please, let us welcome gina to the stage. [applause] so i promised gina we wouldn't break any news today but i do feel like there are a couple things we should cover. one, today is a big day pause it's the anniversary of my start
date at epa. which i know clearly changed your life. [laughter] it is also national doughnut day. and i feel like there is, there is something that this crowd should know, you hate doughnuts. >> i do hate them. but i love dunkin' donuts. i that to be clear. >> so we can't talk about me and we can't talk about doughnuts but the other thing that happened, one year ago today the trump administration said they were going to withdraw the u.s. from the paris climate agreement. one year later, what is happening? how do you feel, and what does this administration signal to the world when we say we're going to pull out after climate agreement like paris? >> i thought it was great. i don't know how all of you -- [laughter] it was just the base day ever for me. i wasn't particularly pleased. let me just put it that way. i just thought it was the wrong
decision. did it surprise me? no. is it the last thing i think will be the wrong decision? no. but i do think it's a big day to sort of revisit the fact the announcement was made not rose garden. it was sort of, honestly it was painful for me to watch because what was being said didn't match reality. but the one good thing about it is that, and i don't mean this in too der derogatory way, i am glad i'm not in washington. because i could shut the tv off. >> including your husband. >> i do all the time. all he does is yell every morning. just shut up, in a nice way, i say it. [laughter] but you know, i think, i'm trying to make the adjustment. i think that was a very bad decision. i think it sent all the wrong decisions to the international
community that was the most important thing. when we were working on issues with president obama, his strategy was taking strong action domestically. that was the first sort of clause in the sentence. the next was, make sure that it is strong enough that we have credibility in the international world to get a paris agreement done. people have to, there is a lot of things being proposed now that i think are against what i believe the core values of this country are. and certainly against what i think the mission of epa is. we have to recognize announcements don't equal actual job done. that we have to maintain leadership in this country. because climate change isn't just about you know, polar bears and faraway places and that is one of the reasons why i'm at the school of public health. to me it is the biggest health crisis that we're facing but it is also for this group, you know it as well as i, it's a national
security challenge. there is nothing that makes things more unstable than when you do not have clean drinking water. when you have flooding. when you have destruction. when you don't have aerable land. when you can't feed your family. these are the outcomes of a changing climate if we don't take action. the lucky thing i'm not in washington. i really give credit to folks that are here, you know continuing to fight the good fight. i want to give a shoutout to the veterans, the policy wonks, the political hacks that are here. i can't make fun of veterans. i can only make fun of policy people because i'm one. i really want to appreciate that i know how difficult it is. i know my big advice to all my epa staff was keep your posteriors in your seats, and your heads down. because you got, you got to keep rolling with the punches. but it is good to be sort of in
the outside real world. it is not quite as bad one would think by listening, seeing what is going on in washington. a lot of things are happening. >> can you talk a little bit about that. i think we're seeing in absence of u.s. government leadership we're seeing other entities are organizations, industries starting to step into the void. >> i actually think it's a pretty exciting. part of the drama i think is that very often, and i go to talk to young people a lot pause i don't think if you realize, look at what is going on at epa, what is going on in climate, these types of initiatives started at grassroots level and worked their way up. prior to president obama there was not single thing of note to address climate change ever at the federal level. when that stops, doesn't mean everything stops. in fact we have clearly done the job we needed to do to turn the energy system around. >> right. >> clean energy is thriving.
we do have clean cars, despite the fact a few of the automakers would rather not make them or would rather make them and ship them to china is probably more accurate. so there is a lot of great things that are happening but we see dates moving up considerably. i mean everybody knows about california because california always sucks the life out of every -- how many people are from california? see. told ya. true? [laughter] you're doing great. you're doing great. but you know we have states all over, and a lot of them are run by republican governors and they're doing great things because we happen to have great solutions for climate that are much better for lots of other things including people's pocketbooks. that is always very appealing to politicians. they may not call it a climate benefit but the things are moving in the right direction. and so i see cities are really, frankly where the action is right now because what's happened is, as the u.s. pulled
out, one of the biggest concerns everybody had was, what does, how do we, does the united states still have a presence? how do we make it clear to the rest of the world that the federal government does not dictate always the values of this country? that other people can do things? in the united states most of those things happened at lower levels. it was only after a relentless 20 years of yapping by grassroots organizations and states and cities that the federal government tends to act. >> right. >> it has been fun watching cities really being cutting-edge here. they're the ones stepping up. they are the ones showing up with states at international forums, that talk about climate. so they can have a u.s. presence. i think that is enormously important. i just wish that other countries understood the complexities of our system so they could explain it to me. it would be -- >> what is interesting you mentioned kind of the polarization and the fact that we, especially in d.c. you're
seeing democrats retreating on one side, republicans going another on the climate issue but that is not what is happening at the state and local levels. republican governors latched on to the idea of clean energy. you actually worked for a republican governor at one point in time, governor romney. >> i worked for five of them, yeah. five republicans. >> so, can you talk a little bit about the kind of your ideas how we can get rid of the polarization, the fact that there is room for both sides of the aisle to come together on this issue? >> well, i think, you know, i do understand that it's very partisan and for one reason or another climate change, pro or con, has been written into the party politics, you know. you, if you're going to be republican you got to be deny if you're a democrat you better way it on your sleeve, your support. it is so awkward for me, because i don't see, we can not allow, an issue like climate change,
which is basically a scientific finding. >> right. >> to actually be politicized this way. it is the thing that bothers me the most because we unconsciously always turn it into that. if it is not intended we do it anyway. and we have to get rid of it. everybody tries different strategies. i really don't think it is all about talking to climate deniers, and seeing if we can change their mind. frankly i stopped doing that a long time ago because, it was hard to have a conversation. >> right. >> if everybody is firmly planted their feet, so i'm trying different strategies to think about how to get around that. you know, i think it is very clear that people understand that the climate is changing. president obama wasn't wrong when he said we're the first generation to feel impacts of climate and the last to have
ability to do something about it. people sort of get it. i go a lot of places and i'm not surrounded by climate deniers because it is hard to deny when you are seeing it in your face all the time. you know, i think my goal at going to harvard, and university system, i'm at the school of public health. my goal is to try to explain that, first of all, that it is not, it is a science issue but you don't need to make it complicateing an science-based. because nobody understands climate science other than a few people who hang out all the time. the rest of just feel like things are all screwed up and we're comfortable with that, you know? so we have to sort of get beyond that. and so i'm always yelling at the scientists to be a little bit less wonky how they explain things. whenever i go out i explain climate this way. i tell people there is only three facts you need to know. that climate change is real,
that man made emissions have caused it, and that's why women need to rule the world. i think all those things are true. and it is happening. i'm trying to attack it from a different way. i don't need to argue about climate. if we continue to figure out how to move the ball forward. plenty of people want to understand it. they want to know what to do by it. solutions are great. solutions don't take care of climate change. they make the world a healthier place. what the hell are we arguing about? we're arguing about running more cost effective, better solution, be more inclusive, more just, raising people up, getting rid of traditional pollutants, making the world more stable. how terrify something that? you know so let's get over the one thing that made partisan, focus on others. that is why i'm doing public health. if this isn't a public health challenge, i don't know what is.
i'm trying to figure out how, i know we'll be spending a lot of money on climate change, right? >> right. >> we're asking everyone of the developed world to actually participate now that the paris agreement was moved forward and it is still being robustly looked at and moved forward by every country in the world other than us, and all of them, really struggle with, especially the developed world, say why should we be correcting that the problem, the developing world, says why are we struggling to fix the developed world's problem? well, i don't need to argue that. i just need to say that 1.1 million people died prematurely from air pollution in new delhi. if you want to fix that, two sources. coal powered generation, uncontrolledded spewing traditional pollutants out and primitive cook stoves people are using. i can fix both of those things.
cost effectively. so why don't we just tell them, instead of saying, why don't you, why don't you shut down those coal plants because you want to fix climate change. just say do you want to save 1.1 million people's lives. let's them say oh, by the way it has climate benefits. we can do this in some different ways that make so much sense. you know, melissa, as well as i, when you do environmental work and you do it around the country, you do see that, that, the places that are left hine are the poor, the minority, the most vulnerable. these challenges impact our kids the most. let's just make this about our kids, not polar bears. you know, let'sake this about solution, not threats. i don't know any human being that you can scare into doing something. you can scare them into denying they're at risk. >> burying their head in the sand. >> if they feel like they have no ability to fix it.
that is what we did for 20 years in the climate debate. stop it. let's run to a future we can all agree to. not run away from something. that is what i want to do. [applause] you know, this stuff will work, honestly, i'm sorry, i'm ranting but that -- >> it's okay. it's okay. >> but one of the things, you know, people always see me and they actually come up to me, and they say, oh, gina, how are you? i'm like, oh, my god, somebody died and nobody told me. they think i'm a dead woman because of all rollbacks from epa. no i'm not, i'm more energized than i ever have been. you and i realize government is terrific, and you can make systemic progpress but i think you can make it a lot of different ways when you have leadership that is not there.
you can continue to move forward while other things don't. i know all the proposals for role backs, anybody read the proposals, you realize as well as i did, if you read rules as many times as i did, they are frankly terribly written. not just grammatically incorrect. they don't, they don't question the law. they don't question the science. they say, right to argue it another way. that is not how you get rid of a rule. you actually need data. you need facts. not just i would rather not think about it that way. >> now you're getting carried away. >> so, i go and i talk to colleges and young people will not tolerate the kind of inequities in the world that we have created. they will not tolerate it. they don't want tradeoffs. they have information at their fingertips. why the business community is saying, oh, if they're my consumers, maybe i better start investing in a way that i can tell them i'm one of the good
guys before they tell me i'm one of the bad guys. >> right. >> so there is all kinds of things going on outside of the crazy beltway, that are looking very bright and that in people have re-energized. i'm one of them. i think it is great. >> well you bring update at that and facts. i don't want to get too carried away here but speaking of those two things? >> yes. >> the agency looks a little bit different today than it did when we were both there. a lot of fear around the attacks on science and fact that, facts and data don't actually matter anymore. i know you talked a little bit about the rollbacks. are you confident that the work that you did at the agency is going to stand the test of time? >> well i think we did, i think we did the best we could, you know. we knew that it would take a long time and, the you know, the rules that we did on car rules took years. >> right. >> to negotiate. they will take years to
unnegotiate. and they're all, everything that epa does, you know, gets brought into court somewhere or other. and so i'm confident that the courts are going to look at this. so i'm comfortable what we did. i also just realized that you know, one of the best things about washington and one of the best things about working at epa, you get to work with the cream of the crop, not just you, but lots of other people. i mean they are just so good at what they do. if you have an administrator like we have now, who locks themselves up and, they don't wan to learn, and they don't want to take advantage of the depth of none that the career staff has to offer, they're not going to win. they're not going to succeed. they're not going to have done the due diligence you need to do in that position it make rules that you author. really stand
the test of time. i'm really confident about it. i'm confident that whether you're a republican or democrat you actually care about having clean water and clean air. i just, you know, that we get calls from every politician no matter what their partisan politics, if they had a water problem you had to fix it. we need a million dollars, pause we got this problem and you got -- so you know they will not shrivel and roll back everything. that is not what we're made of. that is not how it works. >> you mentioned a career staff, we have number people in the audience career staff in the government, you told the career starve in epa to keep butts in the seats and heads down. what would you advice would you have to career employees to keep working? >> at epa, we lost some talent
in the agency. i asked them to sit there. i didn't quite realize it would be as difficult as it is not the fact what they're doing, not the fact that they're not being asked to do anything, they're not involved in decisions. with can i say? people have to do something best for them and their careers. the thing that worries me the most is that, there is a systemic attack on science. certainly epa is a science agency, when you systematically attack the science. successfully denying science you don't like, you're preventing the agency from seeing anything, so they can't act. that is really what is happening there. you have tremendous difficulties at the state department as well. people don't know what the agencies are supposed to do. they're no the looking at mission of agency is.
not being informed about the career staff what is happening before, what is happening now, what they see. they are the ones that know it all. you can't come out from the cold and come into this and without learning. and that's the thing that bothers me the most. is that there was no effort to learn anything. >> will you share a little bit, i was a little surprised when i got to the agency, about work at ep. and state department, and role that epa plays on an international level. >> you know, with very a small, what i call, a small but mighty international office. and it has been terrific, you know. it quietly does the kind of soft diplomacy you want, if you recognize that you're living in the whole world and not just your own eyes lated country. and for epa it was incredibly important. pollution knows no boundaries whether state to state or country to country.
for our ability as epa, internationally scene as the gold standard for environmental protection to be able to share information with other countries that actually eliminate pollution, that many times our own u.s. companies have, have thought upon people. it is a great value to this company. epa provided the opportunity to work with state to, cleverly dispatch the agencyso you had opportunities to pave relationships with other countries. that help to build the cooperative foundation. i think it is essential. it is what you do, not make demands. >> right. >> you build relationships. and so epa did a lot of international work. everything from looking at long-range transport of air pollution, to how you manage electronic waste. to now, looking at oceans, and
their viability and challenges that we're seeing to work on hydroflurocarbons which epa helped to lead. those are very heavily warming chemicals used primarily in refrigeration and how we do that, we looked at the convention which looks at mercury which starts eliminating that internationally. all that was done because of the strength of the agency. it paved relationships with the state department and different countries, for example, i remember traveling to china to work on cook stoves because, hillary clinton, who was secretary at the time, knew that that was a place where she could collaborate with china and talk about how you deal with women's issues and kids issues. primarily the damage from cook stoves is women and children. >> is anybody familiar with cook stoves? i'm seeing some nodding heads. >> we helped to work across the
u.s. government to create a u.n. program that is still there, but not as supported as it needs to be and, it just has been a wonderful collaboration. and in fact we worked with taiwan in particular to take up the man tell of building their environmental agency up to work with us to be sort of the teaching spot to work for lots of countries in south america and latin america. now travel to taiwan. this morning at the airport in boston, i saw a region 1 employee come up to me. she was flying to taiwan, to do some of the training there. so it still is happening. it's still working and it's absolutely essential. if you actually think that the world is connected. and that it matters. >> right. >> unfortunately epa stopped funding its cook stoves work because it was inconsistent with america first.
duhi. we'll be back. >> well i want to share, that we talked a lot in the last year of the administration about great things happening in the fourth quarter. president obama's quote, that you also kind of gave us the, we're going to run through the tape speech. put on your tennis shoes because we're not slowing down, and we did. i'm pretty sure the last couple weeks i actually had tennis shoes on trying to keep up. >> yeah. >> is there anything that you wish you could have done? is there anything that you left on the table just because we were out of time? >> i can't think of a thing that we did. i think maybe we didn't prepare the staff enough for the transition. you know, i, i certainly was not prepared from looking at it from afar. >> no. >> i don't really know what we
could have done differently. i really tried hard but when you saw the people that were being sent into the agency, you knew that they were already in a solid camp. and there wasn't a learning moment and that was really frustrating. . not in -- they just never had it. that was frustrating. we could have gotten a zillion more things done but we needed a zillion more hours to do it. i think part of, we did a lot of environmental justice work but i
think, by last year and a half was consumed by flint, michigan, consumed by gold king mine, these invisible things that were really challenging. and i think if i were to think about things that need work the most i think the air pollution challenge is fixable and it can drive really good climate work. i think it's the drinking water issue that it were the most about and the united states, and internationally as a climate issue. because now that i am, i remember when i went to, i did a fellowship vote at the harvard school of public health and the kennedy school right out of the gate which is why i am at harvard because i'd so much fun with the students. it was wicked fun. [laughing] wicked fun, that's a good thing. and i was talking to the dean who was asking, she's a lovely person but she says to me, okay, have you read this latest book i
tony mack michaels on climate and public health? and i'm like i'm really sorry but for the last eight years i did read anything other than rules. you're going to have to forgive me. >> not even my brief? >> i haven't read any of these things. i did you start reading, which i then began to, you will see that water is where it's at. if you look at international security issues, water is what is causing tremendous instabilities, tremendous migration. it's about arable land. it's about food to feed people. so when you're looking at the areas in which we have to worry, the united states isn't is it e in its water systems today. we need huge investments in there. we need to think about what we do with water rights that have already been given out that will be confounded by the fact you can't keep moving water from
colorado to california and have the glaciers melting and expect colorado to have water. what do you do about this? these are big deal issues, and that is what i think the rubber will meet the road internationally from a global spiel. that is what is going to cost national security problems. that's what basically the national security folks, the joint chiefs of staff, that's what all of the report said prior to this administration. and nothing has changed i've been we have better understanding of that challenge. >> and we removed the word climate change. >> that's what i mean. really, why? because we have evidence to suggest it is not there and everything is going okey-dokey on the national security side? we had to get real on this. this is one issue that really i did not spend enough time on, i think, from my perspective we
tried. we worked it but the laws around water are less amenable to action. they are slow. they are delivered. they share authority with states. we haven't added a new contaminant in the drinking water side since making 97 because congress made the science, we needed to do for absolutely unattainable. so you have these challenges and we're shrinking cities like flint we have contamination like flora carbons that are everywhere, and ubiquitous. it's really challenging. so it's not just internationally i worry about it but right here i worry about it a lot. and they just don't think the agency had sort of the focused attention on that issue that would move us beyond saying here's all the problems, good luck with that. that's essentially we had to
build it up and say okay, here's a plan, but we couldn't do it. we ran out of time. >> why do you think there's not a a large outcry from the general public? do you think people look out and it's not 1970s l.a. we can look across -- >> i do. i honestly do. for epa that's the biggest challenge, and people don't look in a a bimetal justice communities, and environmental justice community are not demanding for the most part of environmental protection actions because they see that as not central to the most immediate needs. i understand that so the r street left disenfranchised out there. but the funny thing happened when flint, michigan, happened, everybody knows flint, right? i said to myself, why did this not get race up earlier? it wasn't because they were not good people listening to it's because poverty is actually the biggest environmental challenge we face. it's the biggest reason for
instability. this inequity, inequity in a democracy like we're seeing today is unstable. it raises concerns. and so when you look at flint, michigan, i said to myself, , wy am i not hearing this? and it's because two things, is the community itself wasn't speaking up. when it did we didn't hear. when we heard, we thought it was the state. they told surfing was fine. if it wasn't flint i doubt it would've taken anywhere near that length of time to realize that there was a problem there. we have to figure out a way to give voice to people that don't have it. and to figure out how they can demand the same levels of protection that anybody else is experiencing. when flint, michigan, happened i issued this policy that sort of
set people on their heads a a little bit. because i basically said it you have problems in regions and you have told me about them, i'm going to basically take you down if you don't tell me about them know. you have one opportunity. what is going on? what if you heard that you don't know? and things started to sort of filter up because after a while these things pile up and if you don't have a solution, you just sort of put it aside and put it aside and put it aside, and things started to pop up. not because they were hiding it but because this systemic problem that people don't see, and the ones that see them don't have a voice to make them clear. that's the way that it has worked, and it can't work that way. and so that's when we heard about other things happening and you see them in the news now. because we started making them visible. that's what needs to happen, and it's very hard when you deal with them but i think that's the
problem, is for the most part people live in areas where you can't see pollution so you think the government is taking care of it. we are meeting although water qualities. what they do know know is we don't have good enough water quality standards because we have been sort of taking the leg out of the law. and then where there is a problem, that's not where the resources are going. that's why that's a really big problem. that's another reason why i think, what i tried to say is let's make climate change personal. let's use it as a reason to invest in these areas where there are the most vulnerable, where they are the ones who will be hit the worst. look at who got hurt in houston with the flood. let's look at it. it's almost universally low
income people living in floodplain areas where they don't have flood insurance because they couldn't pay for it. and then event them can get reimbursed federally or get a a penny because they don't have flood insurance. because that's a requirement. do we want to make flood insurance available to everybody so you continue -- enormously challenging but if instead of us thinking climate change, we talk about real things and make it personal to people. let them know it's about their kids. because if kids in houston now that have asthma that never had it before because they are living in houses that have mold and they are living in houses that you -- we have to make this real for people, and then i think they will take away from it that it's not, that there's actions that the need to take
themselves, not just expecting government to deliver it, or be the protector. we have to make it real. we have to stop calling it climate change and actually talk about as carbon pollution. because people get -- they understand it's bad. why can't we just cut it down to size so it's not a massive problem but an interesting way to invest? >> i think you said that the epa should not be about birds and bunnies. i think that was close, right? it should really be about public health. >> i just said it wasn't the birds and bunnies, although i do love birds and i a door bunnies. [laughing] -- i adore -- we don't have any funny pictures do you? >> i wish i did. i was really surprised when a way to epa that there are so few public health people in the
agency, even in the research wing. there's hardly any epidemiologists. how do you actually live without this? you were supposed to be connecting the dots, and we hardly ever talked about as being a public health agency. the mission of the agency is public health and a bimetal protection. and would love to protect the environment but we do it basically on what we need from the environment in order to make human health. actually better. we are not the birds and bunnies agency. we are the human being agency. i really think we need to ground all this and we just stop the political rhetoric, stop the big picture and start getting this all about kids. the center that i'm running called c-change is really we're going to do a number of different things. we are looking at kids and health and climate so that we can try to make the challenge on
the most vulnerable human beings clear and connect with those dots and get people thinking about it. we are going to be basically looking at the science that is coming out at the university instead of relying on government to act. we are going to bring decision-making to the table including the business community to tell them we know what you know what you need to know. you figure out what you want to do with it and will get information out to the public, the business committee, government entities and start working on that. we will be working with cities, if you want to buy an electric buses, i i can tell them what communities need. they are the people with the buses will be packed. if they want to figure out how to spend their money wisely, get a twofer and go for the public health first and get the climate relief as well, and we will be looking at food. i'm really interested in the nutrition issues. because i don't think people know about a healthy diet for how we're going to help have
healthy diet and in agriculture that can produce it in a changing climate. so we are going to do all kinds of really fun things that i think are within the climate realm but don't rely on a full throated defense of climate science. it is not any longer necessary. >> you must feel like your kind to come full circle because you spent your whole career in public health. >> i am a public health person. i actually surprising for the epa i never thought i left when he went up there. i thought i was still in public health. i started community health work because i was always interested in health access and what you see in communities that are less served and have difficulty with access. the challenge i had wanted with it was everybody was walking in with lead poisoning, asthma from lousy housing. air quality problems were going on, led in the water and dinner gasoline. it was like okay, this isn't
just about access to healthcare. >> would probably have some people in the audience who were not a life window still lead in gasoline. >> yeah, i don't. but we may go back there again if we keep ignoring the sciences. >> there we go, data and facts again. >> but i do think for a group like this, the message i want to make sure you take away is not the problem but at opportunities out there. you have to realize that outside of washington that our people that understand the value of a democracy. they remember what brought us all together and what our core values are. they are being unconvinced those core values have changed. we are trying figure out how we step up when there are challenges at the federal level to do that. we understand that the united states gets stronger, not weaker when we listen to the science, we would pay attention to the law and when we do what we are
supposed to do. we know what, how difficult it must be for many of you to get up every morning and face the challenges that you face, but we understand the value of public service. many of us of been like me, a public servant their whole lives. lives. we try to find the most creative hopeful way to keep things moving at a time when it may not be moving here. but there are ebbs and flows in life, and this is clearly an app or a flow that is very extreme. have to to get which. but people will step up. i think people don't realize especially young people and i include everybody here other than in that category -- on sorry. there are a few. [laughing] you remember. i keep reminding people, the women's march was the most fun thing i have done in decades. seriously. and then you have the science
marches and they get the black lives matter and then you had the #me too movement, then you have the kids in parkland. you had the marches against gun violence. and you would students teaching a governor that i i swore would never have signed a gun regulation of any kind having to sign it. this is democracy. this steps up your we've not had a march since i work tie-dyed shirts and bellbottoms, and i can no longer fit into those close to it i tried desperately mac so this is not normal. you are seeing a democracy, life. you are not alone. things have not changed. we've given voice to a minority, the majority will speak and that's exactly what your work is going to drive. so you have to not lose hope or energy. you have to recognize that the
sucking sound from d.c. is shifting all the energy somewhere else and we are not going to shut up. many people have tried to shut me up. it will not happen. [laughing] [applause] i will speak. and there are many -- >> i was never one of those. >> you are so quiet and refined. [laughing] so i just don't, i want you to know that we are all out there. we all get what's happening. we all see the inequities. we can speak in many different ways, and to do think it is matter. i think states matter. i think the business community is stepping up. i see that science is continuing and they're going to fight even though they are a bunch a little nerdy people and they know how to do it. we will teach them. i am doing this. you saw the study in puerto rico on the deaths in puerto rico. harvard school of public health.
me, me, me. i taught them how. the governor embraced it. i'm like that's what you do. [laughing] do you know what i mean? the governor gets information right in his hands when is going into his planning sessions to say a lot of people died, what have going to do about this next time? this is fun. this is exciting. we had people, well, you have no idea how much information that we can give to normal human beings without having to go to the federal government that's going to change the world. so we're going to do that, each and every one of us, collectively and as individuals. we are going to be unstoppable. the united states is going to be recognized as the world leader again instead of have people scratching their heads when they come talk to you. >> i think it's been difficult i've been talking to a number of my friends -- >> i love your shoes by the way.
have you seen these issues? i keep looking at them. you with an every time i think you to these events. they are little red, white and blue shoes. it's the cutest thing ever. [laughing] you always have great shoes. >> i'm just trying to keep up with you. people are fatigued. you just rattle off six, seven, eight huge issues the folks in the progressive movement are trying to wrap their heads around and it feels like many things that we have stood for and worked on for years are under attack. how do we balance out with all of the other things are happening? how do we continue to raise climate episode is part of the ongoing discussion just because there are also many other competing interests that are terrible things are happening that we need to be working on at the same time? >> i don't know. that's your problem. it's not my. you just, you can't come sometimes you can't succeed in arguing something one way so you just take a different approach. you can argue climate change.
unfortunately from so many different perspectives, because it changes just about everything. you just have to be hopeful that there are other people in your tent and there are. nobody is leaving and you have to take action yourself. you have to talk to other people. when i go to schools everybody says what we do? i say are you registered to vote? and do you vote? and the taliban if you don't, don't come to my speech next day. day. i have no use for you. democracy is a participatory sport. we have to keep everybody participating because a lot depends on who is running for office and who you vote for. i think we have to recognize that we got really complacent and we need to change that. but i think one one of the, is anybody from epa here? you probably wouldn't raise your hand if you were.
i know you have been here before. the reason why i want to say is that epa folks would tell me often, i would ask and what are you doing for the holiday? they are not going home because their parents disagree with them politically and they just keep criticizing everything epa does. that's obvious going to get worse as facts get all skewed and people say, sort of like taking, doing things that we shouldn't, taking the world down. but i think we have to try to talk to each other. you don't have to convince people about climate change, but there's lots to think you can talk about that continue to build bridges. i don't know what else to do. and, frankly, this country and many others are struggling with roof economies. what is a real economy? we have to face the issue directly. i can't tell you the amount of time that people say to me what about coal country? and they should say that and
every time i'm out i talk about it. this is not a new phenomenon. the rural communities have been struggling for a real long time. why is nobody talking about that as an economic development issue? not a coal issue. because it's not a coal issue. so let's figure this out, why is it that we can't figure it out? i spent time with governor beshear who is of the governor of kentucky and he was one of the first governors to really embrace the affordable care act. and he went through all the machinations she had to do an estate worth half of it was really cold relight and the other half was not, and trying to figure out how to engage people, and he jumped on board and he started his state affordable care act program and it expanded medicaid. do you know what he did in coal country where they were waiting
to come he put health facilities. that's what he can convince other countries to invest in businesses. he didn't just sit around saying i'm going to do this. he figured out again and yank uf like it when did we start doing that? >> i a holistic approach. >> i'm tired of politicians running a a false it because ty think their constituencies won't vote for them if they tell the truth. that's not why you get elected. [applause] you get elected to tell the truth, and that, , so he had the courage to do it. i think we just need to vote for people who have that same courage, who recognize, don't deny the problem. just hit it right on its head. don't dance around it. that's, i think that's what has to happen here. it's not a new phenomenon and transitions and change likely experts now, i think in people i'll be still like change happens all the time.
the change we are seeing now feels dramatic all the time. i do know what i would tell my children who are now 33, 32 and 30 what they should be when they grow up. because i feel like jobs go in and out in moment's notice. it is a frighteningly difficult time for people who have been trained for decades and to see an automated worldtidings of out of a job. we can't deny what we also can't pin it on think that it's wholly unrelated just because you want to get elected or keep your job. i don't like that in case you couldn't tell. >> i didn't notice. >> what else? >> we are coming close to the end of our time. truman has been putting incredible women on stage all week and all day today, all weekend. i thought maybe it would be fun to take a moment, what is your best advice for women and being
the next generation of leaders in this country? >> well, my best advice to you is you need to have confidence. you need to be part of the conversation. one thing i try always to be was to make sure that nobody was sitting on the outskirts of room. you sit at the table. you have the courage to speak. you don't allow yourself to be put on the back burner, e.g. had the expertise and you need to be at that table. surrounded yourself a really smart people, because smart people will recognize that the values you bring to the table. run for office. figure out how we get support for women that want to have a family and have the ability that share that. i think, the last thing is, to
bring all of what you know and how you navigate in the world to the table for the work that you do. in my opinion, and i will admit i am totally biased, totally biased, but women have a gift of being able to pat -- rub their heads around the bellies and pat the heads, whatever the hell they say. you can do more than one thing at a time. the challenges we had today are complicated. it's like a balloon where you pokémon and up pops out the other side. we need people that don't just focus on one thing but think systemically. bring that gift to the table. don't let anyone compartmentalize things. you just cannot do it. because every time that we have a problem we seem to create a separate problem by fixing one. it's time to have women in the mix who have been learning for so long to just so many things. it's a gift and i think we need
to be firm and we need to cajole and we need to be respectful and we need to be forceful all at the same time. the best gift you can give yourself is to try to make sure that you have a rich life, because it is the most difficult balance that you are going to have to face but we want to be whole people, not portions of herself. but run for office if you wouldn't mind. that would be really great. [laughing] >> keep your job. keep those butts in your seat. >> so gina 2020? >> totally. [laughing] >> i am here to make an announcement. all right, everybody. thank you. enjoy the rest of the time. i i really want to thank you for allowing women leaders to sort of take the stage for a while. it's a great, i think, signal to send, and i appreciated very, very much and i think all of the
stupid it's time we get people going, don't you think? [applause] >> before you head out, -- [applause] and now she has the whole world in the palm of her hands. i'm ready for the song. >> i i don't think so. >> thank you everyone. >> beautiful, thank you so much. >> we acclimate nexis so this s a perfect transition to keep into any type of the climate what we're doing. thank you so much. have a great afternoon. >> all right. [applause] [inaudible conversations]
>> he talks about his time working for then congressman mike pence and what it's been like to work for president donald trump. watch the interview sunday at 7:30 p.m. eastern on c-span. next week congress returns from its memorial day holiday work time. the senate returns money to debate president trump's judicial nominations for u.s. district court in kentucky, texas and alabama. the u.s. house is back to states to work on his first federal spending bill for 2019, funding the energy and veterans affairs departments and house operations. live coverage of the house on c-span, and the senate here on c-span2. next winter from deputy veterans affairs secretary thomas bowman. he spoke of the national coalition for homeless veterans annual conference earlier today. it runs about 45 minutes.