tv 116th Freshmen Profile - Reps. Reschenthaler Kim Cox Kirkpatrick CSPAN March 28, 2019 4:34pm-5:11pm EDT
>> tell us where you were born. >> i was born in my ditch under district and that was outside of pittsburgh. >> how did you grow up,. >> my parents were originally teachers and my mom eventually became the library director in my hometown. she was a school librarian in the elementary school. >> what were their politics? >> they were pretty in the middle-of-the-road. my grandmother was elected he was a democrat stronghold and she was a republican. but they are fairly conservative. >> did you get your desire to serve from your grandma questioning. >> i have been committed to service, i was always attracted to politics, when i was in high school, i would get picked up, i couldn't drive i was too young,
but the republican chairman would pick me up, drop me off at neighborhood, i would do literature drops, put up yard signs. i would do political parties and rallies and have always been drawn to it. >> where did that come from? how did you decide, and how old were you the entry when you decided questioning. >> i was a member being a kid and staying up late on friday nights listening to 2020, and my football coach, the wall street journal articles and brought it back to me the next day includes management try read it. i always remember being into. for whatever reason i was always into the news then cartoon. >> why did your football coach pleasure questioning. >> i wrote to a game with him in talking about what he did and he was talking about cases and equipped an article and i read it and it turned into a habit. >> you and on to become a lawyer yourself questioning.
>> it was being young and the football coach, i thought i could make a difference being a lawyer. when i was going into eighth grade, i was going to vacation in south carolina and a former asked me what i wanted to do and i said i wanted to be a lawyer but i also want to be a military officer i don't know. and he said he could do both. and i said how, and he told me about being a navy jack, and i was in eighth grade. >> expand to us what we don't know what that is. >> other branches in the military have a jet course. what you do is everything from powers of attorney, to sailors to marines to criminal defense prosecution, environmental law, operations, it's a phenomenal practice for anybody who wants to serve. >> you are able to fulfill that lifelong dream? what did you do after law school? >> i was fortunate to get into
the core, i did it into a year end virginia. i was helping marines and coast guard and then i deployed to iraq. i was very fortunate because i got selected to go to the court of iraq which is the iraqi federal court system and we were prosecuting terrorists in iraq he judges using iraqi law through use of an interpreter. it was an amazing experience. >> about a hundred suspected terrorist that you prosecuted? >> there was a hundred different cases because you prosecuting groups, so for example i 15 defendants, but i prosecuted roughly a hundred terrorists and had 92 convictions. they are called convention orders in their system. >> i will review and you're doing this question it. >> i was fairly young, 26 or 27.
>> what did that experience teach you? >> it was appreciation for the united states and optimism for the war in the world. i felt like a lot of the racks i worked with looked at us for examples for justice and separation in government. that was really inspiring and it gave me a lot of hope for the future in general. i was felt that so many people were interested in the western style of government justice. so it was a phenomenal experience. >> what did you do next? >> in about three days on my return i got a case with a navy seal he was falsely accused of covering up abuse on a terrorist. i was one of three attorneys that were signed and charged and tried. i went back to iraq and was a defense attorney in the u.s. federal court in iraq. a cross examine the accuser.
my client was acquitted on all charges. in the no's on the next two cases, one of them took place in iraq as well. those were both acquitted two. after that i became the officer texas oklahoma. for the navy legal. i saw cases in that area of the operation. i had a case outside of chicago, i did that for two years. >> you served on the local level? >> i got out on my drive from where i was stationed in texas back to pittsburgh in my hometown to be on the commission. i did that and then i ran for district judge, and not provided about a year end a half and i focused on solving the root cause of problems. mental health screenings, reform the way that we do truancy. i had a chance to run for state senate then. i was very fortunate, i ran in
the democrat, what was the democrat seat, and that was 2015. >> password to now? >> i am 35. >> i ran at 29 and plaintiff commission at 28. >> why did you decide to run for the u.s. house of representatives seat? >> i felt like i could do more. i wanted to help as many people as possible to serve in a great capacity. being congress give me a chance to work on issues that are really important to me in my background of foreign affairs. it also gives me a chance to help so many people and add a stronger voice. >> have you already used your experience in iraq and the work that you did there in the first few months of being on the job in washington? >> it has definitely helped on foreign affairs and judiciary.
my background is a perfect mix. it's not about the experience it's about the outlook. before was a judge i had to listen to both sides, i had to make a balanced decision either way. i always like to see and provide in the opposition shoes so i can learn both sides and have an equilibrium. that has what has carried with me. that comes a lot from iraq because the court system is much different. ours is much more adversarial. i started litigating in iraq and was exposed to a foreign court system that was more magisterial in our court system. >> what has surprised about washington? >> the partisanship is frustrating. i'm used to working with democrats. all my bills and state senate i democrat co- prime sponsors. there's more willingness to reach across the aisle in advance to public policy. it also seems like there's so many focus on soundbites.
so many of the issues we can't describe them on soundbite. we have to see what the root causes and top discussions. and then we go from there. you cannot boil down the problems that we face at talking points. >> you have a lot of experience doing very interesting things, has been learning curve? >> it was a pretty active body and i cut my feet there. most of my staff will come in and my chief of staff, my district staff, all the men came with me and we started from 0, anywhere you go to when to be learning curve. but i'm fortunate to come in with experience. >> what is been the hardest ? >> coming from a body of 525. the tempo in the case of work is
the same. but it's more extended. it's monday through wednesday, monday through friday every week. two weeks on and two weeks off. and monday through wednesdays a little bit different. >> how would you describe your work ? >> i work all the time. i jokingly said no life and i work for this. i start my day reading the newspaper, listening to podcasts, come in and take meetings, i am working pretty late. it doesn't feel like work to me, i enjoy it. you can ask my staff i'm doing this all day. >> on the other side of the aisle, andy kim who is representing the third congressional district. he previously served on the national security council during the obama administration. >> my father came here for an education, that is the dream that he always believed in. he is somebody who grew up in a north to dench and south korea and a survivor of polio since he was a baby.
no one thought that he was going to be able to have the options that he had. my mom grew up in a poor farm. my mom got a phd my mom became a nurse. that is why they came here and that is why they stayed to give me my sister the same opportunity. >> what did they say about living and being as citizens in the united states when you're growing up? >> they were so appreciative of the opportunity and it was something that they never took for granted. they always told me it was important to give back as well. they both ended up choosing jobs that were helping other people. my dad dedicated his life for cancer and alzheimer's, my mother worked as a nurse in her own community. service isn't just a job it's a way of life. that is something that you do nine to five and then you punch out, it's gotta be about your mindset and what drives you and they instilled in me. >> does that service start early for you?
>> absolutely, something that my mom made me go to the hospital with her every saturday to volunteer. my dad always told me that it was important to see the human elements that he was doing. he was a cancer researcher but he actually went and talked with families that were involved. he wanted to remember that this isn't just some type of experiment. it's something that we do in the lab, is something that we do to help people. that side of him is something that they always taught me about. and i've tried to hold that close to my heart whenever i have worked on issues even if it was issues on, terrorism on the other side of the world, i try to remember the human side and what's impacting people's lives every day. >> ready to go to college, what did you major in and why? >> i went to the university of chicago into political science. while i was there i worked at the homeless. it was important for me that i was grounding myself in the value of the community. that had a great honor in my
public school in new jersey had a great honor to become a rhodes scholar. and always focused in on the aspect of it. the u.s. national security policy in the middle east and then immediately went and became a diplomat national security official. i was trying to think about how i can apply this to better serve the country. >> what sparked her interest in international relations ? specifically the middle east? >> i was in college during september 11. that of course was such a huge impact on my generation and everyone across the country it was such a formative part of my life and development especially coming from new jersey where we intimately connect with new york city and towers. that was a very personal issue for me. then watching my classmates from high school and college serving
in iraq and afghanistan, this is not just some type of curiosity, it's about people's lives that were being risked. i want them to do everything that i could to get our country in a better path. >> you serve in the obama administration, how did you get that position and what did you do? >> i served as a servant, i got interested in the foreign policy after september 11, first starting at the united states agency under the bush ministration, then i briefly served on the hill under senator richard, a republican, and then had the honor to work at the state department. for me it was always about serving the people and what i worked on afghanistan, no one asked if i was a democrat republican they just wanted me to it focus on the job. i worked my way from the bottom and try to make sure i can leave my experience and expertise. >> your civilian advisor from
afghanistan? what did that until customer. >> i worked as a personal team alongside other advisors on the team being the civilian i was in particularly focused working with the afghan government and economic policies, i was a point person to work alongside corruption initiatives -- we recognize it has to be a comprehensive strategy. there are no military collisions in our country that faces. and there's no way we will be able to move forward unless were able to make sure the political and economic solution that are moving alongside and parallel to military effort. >> when and how did you decide you would run for the seat in washington questioning. >> i'll be honest, i never thought i would run for congress. i wanted to serve -- but i said before i was someone that i consider myself as a national
security expert and very much a nonpartisan way and really checking out the door. i decided to do this because i asked myself one question, every moment in my life when i'm thinking about a new job, where can i be of most impact. where can i pmo service to this country? and when i saw my home district and the challenges that people face with healthcare cost and soaring prescription drug costs, and their concerns about jobs and the economy i felt like this is a place where i could be able to help and i had the dedication that i want to be able to serve them. it's a humbling experience to have the structure represent my home district where he went to kindergarten. it's truly humbling. >> you have two boys, what you tell them about what you do? >> i have a three and a half-year-old in a one and a half girl. i would say clearly the perfect time to be in congress.
it's not crazy at all. this is really the essence of why iran. i'm a public servant, first and foremost i'm a father of two baby boys, and i worry every single moment of my life, i'll be honest, they have no idea what i do. this job takes me away from them so much. that's the hardest part. i don't get to talk t talk them into bed. but the way i look at it, this is my way of trying to be a good father. to look out of push for a better future for them and fight for their education. and for other families around new jersey and across the country. while they don't know what i'm doing now, i hope as they get older they will look back on this time and be proud of their data.
>> how are you balancing this life to washington in new jersey? >> there is no way to balance. it's a sacrifice and i'm always going to be indebted to my wife and my family because they are having to do so much more to help make this work and is truly a family effort. there is 0 balance when it comes to family working in congress. so my job is to do everything that i can to build the support and we do this alongside my wife while making sure i'm delivering for the people of the district. i will say, i've gone around the district and talk to constituents, i think they are really proud of what my family is doing and they recognized the sacrificing -- more importantly they see a pair of two baby boys and they know that i'm doing this because of the passion for my family and community and that my head is in the right space.
noah will go to this unless they want to make a difference. >> what are your parents reaction to coming to the united states and seen their son serving in the u.s. house customer. >> a little more powerful experience is lost two years watching my mother in particular how she had gone to this process. i remember her coming out of the voting booth crying and having the chance to vote for her son for u.s. congress. after everything they had gone through, january 3 i was up in the galley and i had my right hand raised in her and my father were crying then. and how proud she was. what she told me when i asked her about the experience was that she wasn't crying because of everything that got me to it that moment, she was crying because she was so excited about what i do with this experience and what it can do going forward. she is proud of the promise of
what it's like and being the only korean american member of congress. that is something that is particularly powerful. >> california's 21st congressional district also suddenly faced washington, tj cox, a mining in just a train engineer and businessman. his father migrated from china and his mother came to the u.s. from the philippines. >> how did your family in the california ? >> it was a long root, my dad came from china, my mom from the philippines, they both met at montana state university at the international back in the 50s. but my dad finished a phd at montana state and he took his first job in california. >> why did your parents migrate from china and philippines respectively? >> a classic immigrant story, a land of opportunity. my mom used to sneak in to the american movies, tyrone powers was her biggest hero in my dad
went from england to canada and the a lot of them were kicked out of china and he moved my family -- my dad sites to canada for his masters and phd at montana state. >> what do people say about the journey for them ? >> it comes down to what my mom told me which was get to work. you come here, you work hard and you take advantage and a wonderful opportunity that america rights to all people in immigrants. >> what did she do for work ? by mom was a pioneer. she was one of the state of nevada's people will october trinity officers. she had a passion for social justice. she got that from my
grandmother. one of our family stories is how back in the philippines right after world war ii, my grandmother noticed there is a certain segment of our troops that were being discriminated against, they had no place to go to relax, so my grandmother took it upon herself to open the first social club for african-american troops. >> why? >> she solid as discrimination and she was awkward to put up with it and do something about it. it's one thing to see things. we all need to know that it's much more important to take the next step and do something about it. >> what did you do for living? >> my dad was one of her nation's top researchers and experts in hydrogen technology. seeing renewable technology. we were talking about a dinner table 40 some years ago. in 1976 and 1977 we had a chevy cavalier that was retrofitted to
run off liquid hydrogen some 40 years ago. but in a cruel irony my dad was killed in a car accident when i was a teenager. >> i'm sorry to hear that. >> what lessons did you learn from your parents in the past that they took in life? >> once again, the opportunities that america forged each and every one of us. public education available, great institutions of higher learning, and you can take advantage of those, and you can be successful in anything that you would like to do. >> when you went on to do what in college? what did you major in? >> it's funny, when i registered for college i registered for chemistry in a came home and told my mom that i signed up for chemistry, and she said no your dad was chemical engineering, so go back and sign up for that, and so i did that.
and certainly engineering and technology engineering background as a platform to going to do many different things. >> what are you going to do question work. >> i worked overseas, i worked in africa for a number of years, i was working for a number of consulting firms putting in environmental equipment, processing equipment and that type of thing. it was a fascinating place to be in west africa, some 30 years ago and it still is today. >> you made your way back to california? >> yes to get married to my wonderful wife who we are still married to date, 26 or 27 years later. >> happy valentine's day. >> thank you.
>> your four children? >> your wife is a pediatric intensive care physician? >> yes. >> it sounds busy how do you balance it? >> it's a lot of hard work. a lot of love and dedication for kids. my wife kathleen is really an example for me and working in the center valley as a physician she sees the consequences and the injustice for a whole system. how your health and your life expectancy is determined by the zip code you live in or were born in. and she has a real passion for public health and making a difference and that's an example i take to work every day. >> when you went back to california, one thing you saw the need for jobs, explain what you are doing at the time? >> after traveling all around the world in her training, she
took a job in california, she knew that's where she could make the greatest difference and have an immediate effect. when i came i had a background in engineering all over the world, i just got an mba and what was i gonna do? so i volunteered for habitat with humanity and that led me to it start an organization that i been running for the last ten years. it invest in economically distressed neighborhoods in regions to provide the things that we know the people need quality affordable healthcare, well-paying jobs, educational opportunities, clean energy facilities and so on. . . .
every almond, you may not know this, every almond in north america has be pasteurized. the most common way as chemical pasteurization. does that sound good to you? exactly. i see the look on your face. we developed a fully organic steam pasteurization system that can pasteurized a load of nuts in a fraction of the time chemical pasteurization takes. >> what you bring to the table in washington? give us all the experiences you've had. >> i can tell you. you've seen the face of a new freshman class, particularly on the democratic side is diverge, which is just beautiful. it's useful. but you know, the one thing i think we all know is there is no
substitute for experience. my experience in engineering, construction, finance and getting things done. my commercial that experience to be effective on day one. >> and your mom's motto? >> exactly. get to work. >> c-span spoke with an actor who is representing us distributorship rooster represented the first congressional district from 2009 until 2011 and again from 2013 to 2017. >> it's nice to be back in this term feels different, definitely. i'm fortunate my staff all came back so they've are experience, they know what they're doing. we hit the ground running. but i feel more collegiality with this group of congressmen and women than i've ever felt before.
[inaudible] >> i don't know. a lot of them are younger and they don't come with a history of contention and maybe they rip into actually working working together and getting things done. >> asked me where he grew up. >> i was born and raised on the apache indian reservation. my family came there at the beginning of the century to go food for the calgary. when they have a surplus they have been the general store. my dad worked in the general store. i'm mother was a schoolteacher. apache was my first language. >> what was that lifelike? >> it was great. it was a great life. lots of freedom. you know, and a lot of time riding horseback come assuming in the river. a very rural up bringing. and i thought that's the way life was. i have no idea about washington d.c. at that time. >> what did you learn from those years on the reservation?
>> i learned a respect for different culture. so i internalize the apache culture when we moved off the reservation i had a really hard time of culture rating to what i called anglo european western culture. eventually i did. i thought it for a while, but just realizing that there are different cultures and you've got to be able to work in multiple cultures. i really treasure that now. >> does not inspire your desire and motivation to learn chinese? it did. >> why? >> are members and missionaries coming to the reservation when i was a child from china and they have said they found apache sounded a lot like chinese. so i had to take a language in college my final assignment. so i signed up for a mandarin immersion course over the summer and i love it. it was natural for me.
apache is more toned and so is mentoring so it's just a natural fit for me. the sent instruction. the center and start shares are also very similar. >> didn't come easily? >> became easily. >> what did you do then with a skill? >> at the time and early 70s i thought it would go to china and actually work there. we didn't have diplomatic relations with china at the time so i became a teacher. so i taught elementary school, junior high school for a couple years and then ended up going to law school. >> what triggered you to go to law school later in life? >> i was the first member of my family to go to law school. i loved learning and i knew i would need a career in which i would continue to learn throughout my lifetime and it seemed like i really enjoyed my time. >> how did you then get involved in politics? >> very randomly. i was practicing law in my law
firm that i had established in some of the native americans in our legislative or came to mean and said we wish would run for the legislature because you grew up on tribal land and you've been successful in business and we think you could very successfully bridge both cultures. i talked to my law partner. he said it's a good idea. you're probably going to lose but it will be great for practice because we will get our name out there. started going around knocking on every single door i could find come introducing myself. >> you deserve previously for a couple of terms. you lost. he ran again. you want a menu decided decided to run for senate against the former senator john mccain. what did you learn from that? >> that was a really good campaign. it was the kind of campaign i
wish we could see in every race because it was civil. we never, ever stooped to personal attacks. it was all about the issues than i highly, highly respect the former senator john mccain and his family. >> what did you learn from him? >> you know, i learned you can be of an opposite party and really talk and debate about the issues and work together. ultimately worked together. >> what is your future out here look like now? >> that's a good question. honestly after the senate race, my three grandsons were born. two of them were premature so i was happy that i have the time to spend with my children and my grandchildren doing that two-year stint. really didn't and i was going to run for congress again. but you know, i voted for the affordable care act. the affordable care act saved my grandchildren and my children
from bankruptcy. when the incumbent in this seat voted for the republican health care bill, and i just said i can't stand on the sidelines. i fought too hard for this. she ultimately dropped out of the race. she's now a senator and that's how it all happened. >> what will you be doing out here? your priorities? >> you know, in this bill that we are going to vote non-to not shut down the government increases funding that high priorities might, but also reducing prescription drug costs. keeping health care, reducing restriction health costs are the biggest two issues i hear about. >> new congress, new leaders. follow it all on c-span. >> president trump heads to michigan this afternoon. he's holding a campaign rally in
downtown grand rapids. c-span will have live coverage beginning at 7:00 eastern. you can also watch online at c-span.org and listen live with the free c-span radio app. on saturday, former texas lawmaker beto o'rourke kicks off this is presidential bid in el paso, texas. live coverage starts at 1230 eastern on c-span and that will be on c-span.org. you can listen with the free c-span radio app.