tv 116th Congress Freshmen Profile Interviews Part 1 CSPAN January 2, 2019 10:34pm-11:02pm EST
>> over 100 new members of house and senate during the 116 concord on january third. she's been recently interviewed several freshmen members while they were in washington dc to attend orientation sessions. >> what motivated you to run? >> 2016 auction. it was not just about done trump but sense that we were putting party first, country second on both parties of this unwillingness to reach across the aisle and serve your country for how you were elected.
third, it seemed like election came down to a vote on two personalities for most voters. instead of discussing the issues and fighting for the issues as a founders wanted us to. for me was a bit of a watershed event and decided to run. >> why did you thank you can defeat dana rohrbacher? >> come from a business background and legal background. biggest decision i made with the least due diligence. i looked at that business background and law background and said i could do a better job than this guy has the last 30 years. not only understanding the process it takes to get here. fortunately we had a great team great volunteers that allowed us to and. >> explain what you're doing before he decided to run for office. >> in business i built the largest real estate firms in the country and then did a poor work from early states to publicly traded companies before coming in and running for office.
>> what were you doing? >> my wife and i in our 20s and get full credit for starting the initiative but read about the plight of homeless families and how often you lose your job and lose her house and live in a hotel or your car and make it difficult decision to go to a shelter and at the time and so true in many places in the father and older boys to the men's shelter and the mother and younger children to the women's shelter when all they have left is each other and the system was pulling them apart. my wife decided will build a shelter for most families to make sure it doesn't happen in our community and we did. ever since we been active in addressing homelessness. >> what effect did that have on you? >> to encompass that in our 20s show that you can be the change you want to see and you can a group of committed individuals can make a difference in the community and beyond. >> what do you plan to do when
you are here starting in january and what will be your priorities? >> i will pick up exactly where we left off on the campaign. campaign promise all along has been commonsense for common ground. i talk about how i believe most americans are between 20-yard lines. we can focus on what keeps us apart instead of what brings us together and i'm looking forward to working with fellow democrats and republicans on the other side of the aisle who are prepared, ready and willing to put countries and communities first. >> what committees would you like to serve on? >> ideally energy and commerce but interested in transportation and structure. >> why is that? >> common ground is. that's where you find common ground with people across the aisle to put the country and community forward and let's focus on those areas that we have in common in those two committees do good job of doing that. >> where is your desire to reach, graham come from?
>> business world but in the business world i had the opportunity to manage comedies up to 10000 people you don't get there without doing it in a team effort and understanding all the different machinations and different desires even within the corporate still exist and you need to work through that to build a cohesive team to move forward. >> what else from your business expands do you think will be applicable to serving in the house of representatives? >> one thing that comes to mind is people who serve in congress have never run a business they don't know what it's like to have to make payroll or sign personal guarantees and don't know what it's like when hundreds of families depend on your decision making the right decision in such an absolute way that they could lose her job if you make the wrong decision. my dad when i first went into the business world that remember there are hundreds of families who live on every decision you
make in that that is a burden that we should keep in mind. >> what influence did your parents have on you? >> i grew up in columbus, ohio. my dad was a quintessential american entrepreneur. the youngest of four kids who worked in the business going up and fortunate with his support to go to law school and coming back taking over family business [inaudible] >> how will you balance work and family back in california? >> my wife and i have been married 20 years and have four kids in our 20s. she's written numerous books and we talk about there is no balance but the question of which way the pendulum is swinging. we all manage it and you manage because you have to manage it and the more you have on your plate the better you deal with it spirit what about logistics.
to go back to california quite a bit but to be in washington. have figured out where you live and how you will handle those back and forth trips? >> we have it we came in one day early prior to last week of orientation and figured it out right then and there where we rent the apartment and anticipate 35, 40 weeks a year to meeting between dc and here. been here for the weekdays and be back in district for the weekends to meet with constituents. >> is in a financial burden? >> i am fortunate if i made for some it is. we've been fortunate in our businesses to create the opportunity to do this and serve the greater good. >> and florida's 27th congressional district democrat succeeds 15 term covers woman alina who chose not to run for reelection and she served as the entire secretary during the clinton administration.
>> you are a household name in the longest-serving health and human service secretary for bill clinton and will that help you? >> areas will help because it's very much but the democrats will focus on whether it's healthcare or the environment or gun-control or immigration reform those are issues that are central to the democratic platform of what we ran on and frankly what the american people care about. >> what about your experience after serving in washington. he went to florida and university of miami president and what about that experience will help you out here? >> i was president of the university of miami and before that i was chancellor of the university of wisconsin president of hunter college. lot of experience with young people and with the issues they
care about and obviously a lot of experience in world-class medical care. both at wisconsin in university of miami we have big health systems. people are concerned about pocketbook issues and prescription drug in the out-of-pocket cost for insurance. that's my areas of expertise and would hope to focus on here and not only help people in south florida but in my district hundreds of thousands of people registered for obamacare and that's the largest number in any congressional district in this country. they expect me to make certain that we do everything we can to make healthcare affordable but particularly if the focus on prescription drug. >> describe your district. why did you choose south for the district to run for congress. >> first of all, i've been living in the district for 20 years and my grandparents lived in a district and my aunt and uncles and my cousins and strong family ties and keep in cousins
that came over from cuba because they were cuban [inaudible]. when the lebanese left lebanon they went all over the world so i have relatives all over latin america but particularly my cuban cousins are in miami. let me say this. the south florida district represents involves the beaches and everyone knows south beach and miami beach in downtown miami and coral gables and coconut grove it's what people describe when they describe miami and all within miami-dade county. it's wonderful district and represented by the republican for almost 30 years so it's been a republican held district and i decided that i could flip it for the democrats and begin the focus on the domestic issues as well as international issues because of latin america. we consider ourselves capital of latin america but certainly the
rustic issues like healthcare and immigration like sea level rise the of our mental issues are life-and-death for people in south florida. no climate deniers in south florida. >> from the 1% hispanic so what will be your priorities here in washington? >> that publishing cares about healthcare. that was the primary issue in the campaign and they also care about immigration reform. so many of their friends and relatives as well as people that live in south florida are undocumented. we need to do something about that but they also care about environmental issues. when you talk to young people in my district and i have university of miami in my district there interested in two things, interested in the environment and making sure we have a world left for them and interested in gun-control in a sensible gun control policy. >> where did you grow up? >> cleveland, ohio.
>> how did that shape you? >> it take me. i came from a working-class district in cleveland ohio and my family second generation immigrants from lebanon hard-working people blue-collar worked in the factories in cleveland particularly in the still factories and auto-parts factories in cleveland so i feel lots people in south florida from the midwest so i feel those midwestern values and i care are still in cleveland. we have a place that we go there for christmas and other vacations so those midwestern values and things that things are besought elected in the presidential campaign and the most is the job in economy and it doesn't work for everybody but may be booming but does not work for everyone.
the decline of the role of unions because of the decline in the exporting of certain industries and the steel industry in particular has hard-hit the midwest. when i was a kid growing up my relatives and my friends parents had really good jobs and union jobs and in the steel mills and in the other industries we've got more a gig economy and i believe the government only to get in when the private sector can't get in but we have a lot of work to do. just the decision by gm to eliminate jobs all over the midwest is disappointing and i'm not sure what we can do about it but it's a reflection in the trade policies of this administration but also in the fact the economy does not work for everyone and that's what we
have to work on. >> have you heard from the clinton, former president bill clinton to a victory? >> i have. i heard from him and he said he was proud of me. i had political scientist so i study politics and teach about politics policy. i taught about congressional rolodex and excited to practice it. >> what from your teaching will you bring here in one device to former president give you about serving in the house? >> he said the same thing to everybody. learn to listen and learn the rules so you can get legislation passed but i'm a freshman but not a rookie. the substantive areas are not as much a challenge to me as to learning how to work on legislation. always had staff people when they hear a government that did that and now i have to do it myself.
it will be an awful lot of fun and marty having fun and love campaigning in south florida is a very special place with people. i like the whole thing. respect politics and people who put themselves out and run for office. i made friends on the other side of the aisle and the leadership of congress both republicans and democrats for a long time. they've all been welcoming insane even the staff people here on the hill has said welcome back. >> c-span spoke with rob again jim jim hagedorn. his father is a former us representative from minnesota. >> you ran for the seat before. why were you motivated to serve in the house of representatives? >> i thought our country's future was online in the way things were going with president obama and left-wing policies i thought that needed to be corrected.
i jumped in the arena. we ran three straight times which is not uncommon in many members of her wrists with had to do that including newt gingrich, former speaker and here we are. >> how are you able to pull it off this time? >> we work the district and went out and to cancel the people in is not a lost art. we prove that in 21 counties and we shook every hand. walked every parade and stood up for what we believe. i let people know what you wanted to do the job protect the country and wanted to reform the government and make sure we protect the god-given rights and sustain agriculture in our role. i think in the end people appreciate folks that will stand up. >> you come from a family of politics. >> my family served from 1934-1982. is quite an honor the voters have given me but it's something.
>> what advice did he give you? >> he said to come out for orientation and keep your head down and meet new friends but a good staff together. seek out the committee assignments that will fit the district to make sure everything you do is to serve the people of southern minnesota. >> what influence did she have? >> mother is the nicest person on earth. best supporter and kept pushing me to do the right thing and to seek the dream and do what a good to serve the people and be upfront and honest with the folks. >> what about your family and what did your father tell you about balancing washington and minnesota? >> about to get married here every week so it's something that my fiancé has been on here for orientation and it's hard to find time because you have to meet people and listen to their concerns. we do what we can right now the
country is at a crossroads and have house that is a democrat in senate and will begin president with donald trump and republicans will be negotiations back and forth. but he work to do on the committees and i hope on every culture committee and transportation committee will work with democrats across regions to get things on. >> you are not new to washington dc and what is your pact or back on your? >> i worked for congressman from 1984 during the reagan revolution. what i learned is that one nonskid member of paris working as part of a congregation can achieve great things when there is an opportunity. the cut taxes and the economy rolling. went after the communists around the world with freedom fighters by the united states to help defeat the soviet union and protect our god-given rights like abortion with henry and
doing things to make sure we do not have federal funds for that. one congressman part of a coalition can get a lot done as long as you work together. >> what are your priorities for the congress? >> our district is primarily agriculture and small business and manufacturing with the mail mail clinic, medical care. we can make sure we take your business in those areas. farm economy has been in recession in many respects for five years and low commodity prices but i'd like to do everything possible to keep the price of culture and farming down make sure we expand our markets and have good global trade and have programs to sustain farmers when times are tough and all that helps our rural community and as a role department that is important to our district. >> democrat tom defeated leonard lance in new jersey seventh congressional district. he was born in poland and previously served as the
assistant editor estate for democracy, human rights and labor during the obama administration. >> i was born in a town on the baltic sea coast. we lived in a very small town outside of warsaw and i was six years old. >> i came to america with my mom and spent my first grade was with new york city and from that point on in princeton, new jersey. >> has that experience impacted who you are today? >> yeah, in some ways. the experience of being an immigrant and of understanding what america and how different the united states of america is on the rest of the world and i grew up in a communist country and a dictatorship and even though i was a small child i memories of what is like to feel powerless in witnessing my parents feeling powerless in front of the state, police and
authorities and coming to america and feeling that equation completely reversed government works for us, not the other way around. made an impact on the earlier on. >> one of the early memories -- >> one very distinct memory of watching my mother push a wad of cash across the table into the hands of what i now understand to have been a corrupt local official and was trying to get a passport so we could get out of there. almost every transaction in a country like that carries with it bribery and abuse of power and that stuck with me. >> when is it that you knew you wanted to be involved in foreign policy because that is your background and in public servi service. >> it began with desire to be involved in public service.
even as a child growing up i knew in some way i wanted to get back to the country they gave me freedom and gave me the opportunity and i guess the first opportunity i had was as a speechwriter and state department to the secretary of state -- i like, that is not the first opportunity. i was a congressional staffer and should have mentioned that first. right out of college working for senator moynihan of new york. that was between college and grad school. >> he went on to do what? >> i went to oxford as a rhodes scholar and came back and worked on president clinton's first presidential campaign and then became a speechwriter at the state level. >> for who? >> then secretary of state warren christopher is gone to work for madeleine albright a secretary and went over to the
warehouse to become president clinton's chief foreign policy writer. >> have you heard from the clinton sent you one? >> i heard from hillary, yes. she gave me a congratulatory phone call, nice to hear from her. >> what was that conversation like? >> well, i think we both felt a sense of relief actually that not just i had one but the democrats had one this threshold we have two exercise checks and balances and a very delicate moment in history. >> you defeated leonard lance and one was a moment you decided to run and why did you thank you could win? >> it was a gradual process. after i left the obama imitation where i was an assistant secretary of state i was concerned about the direction the country had taken after the 2016 election everything from
the changes in our foreign policy to attacks on healthcare and on basic human rights and the muslim ban and ban on asylum and refugees and the horses of the rhetoric we are hearing from the white house and i felt i wanted to do something practical about it and the changing control of the house of representatives was the most practical thing i could contribute. then i asked they contributed as of potential future congressman and went home to new jersey and was encouraged to run. finally i ran out of excuses. >> who encourage you to run? >> as i consulted with, local activist groups, people i've never met before who were involved in the political life of the district and i expect them to say no, it will not work
and you should support someone else and more and more people told me they thought i could do it and so i got over my initial hesitation. >> what are your priorities for next year? >> beginning with what my home state of new jersey is we need investment in every structure interpretation and the gateway tunnel between the whole economy of the eastern seaboard actually depends on that infrastructure investment and i want to try to redo tax bill passed year and hurt states like new jersey a great deal. loss of our state and local income tax in particular and want to take part in an effort to stabilize healthcare system and make it more affordable. i do think we have to exercise checks and balances with the trump demonstration goes too far whether it's a attacking the
justice department or the fbi or attacks on the right to asylum and refugees coming to our country as i did when i was a picture of what. >> new congress, new leaders, watch it all on c-span. c-span's washington journal, live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up thursday morning we will discuss top senate storylines of the new 100 exceeds congress with washington post senior congressional correspondent, paul kane. then talk about top storylines of the new congress with wall street journal congressional reporter christina peterson. a discussion on commercial benefits with the 160 congress with the firewall editor chief. be sure to watch c-span's
washington journal five at 7:00 a.m. eastern on thursday morning. during the discussion. >> a divided government return to washington with the convening of the 116th congress, democrats assume control of the house of representatives will republicans increase their majority in the senate. the service has been described as the most diverse in history. over 100 new members coming to washington including more women and minorities than ever before. join us at noon on thursday as the 116th congress gavels into session but watch your member take the oath of office, the election of a new speaker in the congress began its work. new congress, new leaders, five on c-span in c-span2. ...