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tv   New Member Interview with Representative Karen Handel  CSPAN  July 18, 2017 7:49pm-8:04pm EDT

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free press discuss the media coverage of the riot and the aftermath. the 1967 detroit riots 50 years later. live starting at noon eastern on c-span 3. >> thank you for talking with c-span. >> what has it been like? >> it's been a whirl win but a great opportunity. >> what was the most surprising thing that you have picked up on in the past two weeks. >> not too much was surprising. it is a fast pace and that's important because we have a lot we need to get done. and then making sure on the issue side and policy side but also getting the team put in place as well. >> so on that, on the side of the issues, most representatives come in with a learning curve to
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learn issues. you're coming in in the middle dealing with a debt ceiling in the budget. how do you bring yourself up to speed to make the decisions a f individual so i spend every single evening catching up on issues and, as many briefings as i can get to, i go to. so, yesterday we had a very good budget briefing. we had a tax reform briefing. yesterday evening. and then, frankly, my colleague not just from the georgia delegation but from across the entire caucus has been extraordinarily helpful being willing to spend time with me if it's before a set of boats in committee, a bill markup to help me get up to speed and answer all my questions. so, that's been really, really helpful. >> do you have a mentor here, someone specific as a colleague who is currently serving you've been relying on? >> congressman doug collins has been terrific. he and i serve on judiciary
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together and congressmean drew ferguson serve on education and workforce today and several of the female members have a fairly tight-knit group and have really made sure i know my way around. >> some people when they hear they are coming to congress you mentioned bringing a team together. what kind of decisions do you have to make on a practical side. the technical side, the support team you need to do your job? >> you know, coming in in the middle of the cycle, i had a very short window. most of secretary price's team were very well versed in health care issues and all went with him to h.h.s., a good thing and bad thing where i had a completely open pallet to start over but we're getting there. i have a strong director, chief of staff and filling out the rest of the team. >> tell us about the day-to-day, what's it like in the life in the life of a new representative? simplts i'm usually here by 7:00, 7:30, catch up on the
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news, what's happening for the day, look at the votes, get briefed, any additional reading i need to do and then it's briefings, committee meetings, usually votes in the mid-morning and votes again towards mid-afternoon late day. >> so for that reason, you talked before you are depending on you mentioned secretary price serving his position, newt gingrich previously served this position. did they offer you any advice coming into it? >> i have extremely big shoes to fill with the leadership that's been in this position and secretary price has been a long-time friend and mentor and he and i still try to carve out some time every week to just at least talk on the phone a little bit about just issues in the district and all of those things. so, he's been terrific. >> now, you live in georgia, serve georgia but grew up around washington, d.c. >> i grew up in southern maryland. my husband and i have been in georgia for just about 25 years
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now. so, it's home for us, it's where we've spent all but eight months, i think, of our marriage so georgia's home but it's interesting to be back in the washington, d.c. area, some old friends are here and have been looking me up. that's been fun. >> what took you from this area to georgia? >> my husband's job, when we got married, i was working in the administration.you know in '92 re-elected. georgia, atlanta, was number 1 on our list to go to and maybe six months into it he got a job promotion to go to atlanta and he said let's check it out. as soon as we got there, within three months, i said to him, well, honey, i love it here. i've already told my dad but you have to tell your mama. >> is he still in atlanta, will he still remain in atlanta? >> he will. we will stay and keep our
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georgia where we live, in the heart of the 6th district and i'll commute back and forth. i think one of the ways to be able to keep my feet on the ground, to make sure that i go home and i'm doing my grocery shopping and going to church with the people i represent and also important to me to keep a circle of friends who aren't in the world of politics because they don't care about any of this and they will tell you. >> really. what will you hear from them? >> thus far, nothing too much. i get a bit of a pass for the first couple weeks to get the office set up but my friends are not in the political world so they will be very candid and straightforward with me and i think that's a very grounding perspective that's needed. >> you said you worked in the administration, specifically for maryland q.w.e.l.l., i read you developed a mantra how you define yourself, something along that line. what is that and why is it important to you? >> i think probably talking
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about the fact she taught me you don't ever let other people define who you are but you define yourself through your convictions, your words and your actions. and to be really true to that to the fullest extent that i possibly can. and she and i have stayed in touch and i have always appreciated the opportunity that she gave to, frankly, a young girl who i didn't know anything about the world of politics. i didn't have a college degree. and she took a really big chance on me and i'm very grateful for that. >> now, people not knowing about politics as you say you ran for several positions, were secretary of state at one time. you ran for the senate as well as the governor's office, as well. what did you learn for those experiences especially now in the position you hold? >> to be, again, true to myself and my convictions and to always make sure that when i am looking at particular issues, that i'm looking at it through the lens of what is best and right for the people of the district. the people of my state.
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and the people of the country. and then let the politics come afterwards. don't try to find a solution based on politics. find the best right solution and manage my politics after. >> now, we've been that in mind and the record you had, what made you decide to run for this position particularly against your opponent? >> you know, as you know, it was a special election so there were 18 of us to start with, which was really just incredible that number of candidates for the seat. i had really made the decision to be back in the private sector but, also, you know, you look at opportunities and i don't get to pick when the opportunities come along, they present themselves. and after a lot of soul-searching and contemplation with -- for myself and with my husband and a lot of conversation with people in the district, it seemed like the right thing to do and here i am and again an extraordinary opportunity. >> so it wasn't an automatic yes in your mind i'm going to do it,
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you had to be convinced? >> my husband and i -- he has family in richmond and we always drive up for christmas and you have nine hours up and nine hours back. so, 18 hours of being on an issue is a long time so we looked at it from every which way you can imagine. it's also a commitment for him and, you know, i wanted to make sure he was 100% for it and i wanted to make sure i could contribute and, you know, i'm not necessarily, um -- i'm not a good political sound-byte person. i'm really more of a policy person. and in this time where we really, as republicans, have to move from what i call vocal opposition into a real era of governing that's a good fit for me and a big deciding factor. >> as you know, the money spent in this race was impressive on both sides. what do you think about that and
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the money in politics, a large issue especially come campaign time. >> i think so. you know, i guess it was an awful lot of money, frankly, pretty obscene the amount of money spent on a district congressional race in campaign, much from outside. only history will be able to look back at this and make a determination around, you know, have we gotten to a place of imbalance, money versus the individual voice of the voter. that's always a fine balance to achieve. what i will say is that, you know, in this race, one of the big success factors for me was the fact that i had such a long, um, tenure in the district, almost 25 years. and the people in the district, um, most -- many of them, i know. and so, they were personal relationships and that mattered to people and mattered across political lines, as well. it wasn't a republican thing or a democrat thing.
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it was a friendship thing. >> so now, what committees do you serve on and as junior member how do you plan to make an impact? >> i am privileged to serve on judiciary and education and the workforce and those are two great committees. i like to think on judiciary i'm not a lawyer so i can bring a different perspective to the table. we were talking yesterday about the opioid drug epidemic and a lot of talk about the legal aspects of it and i hope what i can bring is, you know, at the end of the day, the moms and dads who are dealing with their children facing an addiction or, gosh forbid, they've lost a trial, put a more human face on it than just the legal side. on education and the workforce, coming out of a chamber some of those labor issues and workforce issues are important to me and as someone who worked her way up, i understand how important a
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very solid k through 12 education is and we need to make sure our young people, when they graduate from high school, that they have the skills and education they need to do whatever comes next. and next might be going into the workplace. it might be a two-year technical college. it might be a four-year college. but, we have an obligation to make sure they're ready for whatever path it is life takes them down. >> representative karen handel serving the 6th district of georgia. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> c-span, where history unfolds daily. in 1979, c-span was created as a public service by america's cable television company. it is brought to you today by your cable or satellite provider. tonight on c-span3 we'll join a house committee for an update on the every student succeeds act. we'll take a look at efforts to
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modernize the army and look back at the national governors association summer meeting which took place over the weekend in providence, rhode island. >> i sat in my wagon with my dog and i watch the the riots. it was right directly across from our station, a clothing store called zak's place. i saw a guy come out of the clothing store with ten hats on his head, literally in a stack, and carrying bundles of things, of clothes with him. >> the 50th anniversary of 1967 detroit riots sunday at noon eastern, american history tv live from the detroit free press newsroom to hear first-hand accounts of the riots. >> they gave the order not -- "don't shoot." "be cool" "just let it go" that
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was the orders they gave them. and word got out. word got out that suddenly there's, you know, 50,000 people on 12th street just helping themselves to everything. >> the 1967 detroit riots, live sunday starting at noon eastern on american history tv on c-span3. sunday night, a report how smear tactics are used to influence public opinion in her book: she's interviewed by "washington post" media critic eric wimple. >> you don't stick up for mccain. you hail the "washington post" who you feel has not properly reported on this incident as opposed to saying, hey, donald trump, why are you smearing john mccain. >> number one, no offense to you, this was the "washington
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post" i wrote about. >> no, i -- >> but number 2 i'm not here to cheer on john mccain or donald trump. i think the media behavior and people do mistake when you criticize media people or when i do at times, perhaps it's donald trump doesn't mean i support him or am cheering him on. i can see those as separate things but it is misread often as you must be supporting him or must not like x or y because you said this and it has nothing to do with that but looking at what i see as fair or accurate media coverage but the candidate and i have spoken out frequently about that including some of the "washington post" coverage. >> reporte. next, hear from state and local education officials in a house education and the workforce committee hearing on the implementation of the every student succeeds act. the hearing runs two and a half

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