tv Newsmakers CSPAN March 24, 2013 6:00pm-6:30pm EDT
senator coburn. of thed by the future republican and democratic political parties. >> this week on newsmakers, senator coburn joining us. jeremy peters, congressional reporter. senator, let me begin with the first question. the senate passed this week to keep the government running avoiding a government shutdown. it says aboutink the process going forward for negotiations on some sort of grand bargaining? isthe first thing it shows that we passed an appropriation bill even though -- it was called a continual growth --
resolution. it was an appropriation bill. it had very limited amendment opportunities in it. we are seeing input. the house passed it right after we did. we now have some certainty. the problems for a grand bargaining, let me put in context. what we have done and the agencies for have number and on theire handicapped ability to be successful. they can actually manage the jobs that we asked them to do. it has been a horrible over the last few years. , everybodygaining knows it needs -- what it means to be made of. what is hard to get to is the political dynamics in terms of
how it affects collections. -- disease dizzily in washington is people care more about the next election than the future of the country. if we get to a grand bargaining, you would have some people quit worrying about whether or not to get reelected and fix the country. if we do not, it will be about people protecting their interests and their political position. the country will suffer. >> on that point, the house this week past by most measures what would be considered a highly political document -- their budget. it is a political document. >> this is highly political. lex i am not disagreeing. neither of these have a chance of becoming law. at are you a your colleagues not more time finding a middle ground instead of going through
show but? -- showboat's? >> they want to get paid. that is number one. where finally a budget you can offer amendments and highlight things that need to be changed in the federal government is an important exercise. , 76example, last night senators voted to eliminate the medical device tax. if you put that in the budget, if it is allowed to come up, it will go through the senate and through the house. ands counterproductive counter prudence in terms of supplying equipment to people whether it be a diabetic or a heart patient. reason why other it's good.
i do not doubt that we should spend time -- there are a lot of talks that are being discussed about reaching -- reaching a grand bargaining. you've reached the president with his sleeves rolled up, working with senators of the other party and representatives and they will come to the consensus. wea note for our viewers, were talking about this on friday as the senate is taking of the democrats of budget and there is a marathon session going on. though ahead. >> senator ammann i want to talk about the way these go forward. are you saying it is important to get senators on record for a medical device tax. are there other boats were you want to get senators? is there a better way of doing this goal -- going forward.
, it is novel to you because we have not done in 4 years. i have done it four times before. there is nothing wrong with this process. it is the only time with -- with minority rights are truly protected. are there political games being played? yes, there always will be. amendments about duplications. we when not to do it. i wanted them to vote again so they will not eliminate $200 billion in elimination. they are going to get a vote on it. we will have to explain to the american people why we have worry seven training programs that do not work. they are not willing to clean them up and give somebody a skill for a lifetime. and save some money. >> senator, i want to switch
that and go to a subject is in the headlines a little more these days on the budget which is gun control. last night, harry reid said he will move a bill of universal background checks. you were part of a coalition that was discussing whether or not this was feasible. there is a poll this morning that the 85% of gun owners support this. you are an nra member. it seems like you have not signed onto to this bill. you must have grave concerns if the american public overwhelmingly supports. what are your concerns? >> almost every member of the senate does it -- how you do it is important. presently, the way it is designed or where we fell apart
was on the record-keeping side of it. if you take that same poll among those same people, or if i percent absolutely do not want any record-keeping because they do not trust the government -- want anyutely do not record-keeping because they do not trust the government. i do not know a republican that does not want to enhance a universal background check. how do you do that and protect the second amendment at the same time is very important. , very close and the gun groups did not like the fact that if you actually follow the law, know that you are not selling it, what they wanted you to be able to prove in the future that you did that. with americanfit jurisprudence. american jurisprudence is you
are innocent until you are proven guilty whether then you are guilty until proven innocent. the time between the cell of a gun and one can use in a crime on average is 11 years. what we were going to do is put gun owners who follow the law and 11 years who cannot find a piece of paper that said they did it right and the presumption is you are guilty. gun ownersjority of in this country and law abiding citizens do not want to sell a gun to somebody who should not. they will follow this. where we get locked up is on the areas and the idea of the universal portal where you can know you are not selling a gun ,o someone, american citizens gun owners in this country what absolutely follow the law. they do it in a responsible way and will have a background check on the vast majority of people. that is what we want.
>> following up on that. harry reid is bringing to the ,loor, without that changing do you think there is a chance he could possibly get 60 votes on the bill as he has drafted now or is he going to have to change it if he wanted to pass is mark do you believe he wanted to pass is mark >> i believe he does. that are things we can do will limit a lot of problems in the point i make is that we have to be recognized that most gun owners today are upstanding law abiding citizens. no matter what wrong we write, the criminals are not going to follow. in a gun record
dealer's book on a gun that , itt have been transferred is too light. once the crime is committed, it is about enforcement after the fact. what we want to do is prevent it from happening in the first place. that is why you want to get universal background checks. we have to wait to do if we trust the american people. enforcement is very, very easy. youou go around gun shows, have law-abiding citizens. >> to clarify, does a pass the senate? >> yes, it will. it depends on how you do it. there is a legitimate frustration in a lot of gun states that have concealed carry and wide open responsible
citizens. whether or not you can trust the federal government, is it itewhat out of culture? wasn't like those in the northeast. for the rest of the country, it is not. i think we can get there. my hope is that we can get there. i do not want to sell one of five guns to somebody who is mentally impaired or a felon. >> are you offering language on the floor and what is -- what is a universal background check look to you? >> do you want me how it refers >> to the second amendment. ,> if you want to buy my gun you have to come to me having checked through a portal with the fbi and the national background check and you get a
certificate that is good for 30 days that you are not on the list, you are not a criminal you are not mentally impaired and you have to show that to me. doave to make sure it is you a photo id. i know you have been cleared through the list. i can then sell you a gun. if you cannot show me that, i cannot sell you a gun. i break the law by selling you a one ofyou do not have these statements. >> from what you explained thomas does that differ from what senator reid is going to put on the floor? >> yes. they are going to require any gun sold at a gun show to go to a license background check. they are not owing to do that. first of all, it is going to cause a fee. you are going to erase the
purchase of writing a gun. the gun-control people people would love to see that happen. it would not be effective because if there is a true portal, they will make an agreement that i am not buying the gun here and i will make sure a week later, i will bring my portal certificate. i will get charge $50 or $100. , you thinkt, senator it is not effective. does it passed the senate? >> i do not think so. , itt does pass the senate will not have the house. the whole idea is to get something that will pass both houses. >> maybe you can help explain what is the rationale of people who are afraid of there being a federal record of gun owners? when i gold to the drugstore to
buy cold medicine am i have to hand over my license. why should that standard not be applied to something that is much more dangerous -- a gun? >> it is not written into the that theredment should be no inefficient that if you are not on the list you should not be able to buy a gun, that is number one. they do not want any encroachment on that. there is a difference between those two. , -- >> there is a worry do you think the federal government is going to confiscate peoples guns is mark -- guns? >> and there are a lot of physicalcause of the capabilities and poking its nose
and every area of people's business and in terms of all of the stuff that you have created paranoia and this country, some of it is justified. and we areintrusive not a limited government anymore. if you go back to our founders, the best government is the destined smallness government is the best government. we are saying gun owners will be responsible. people know how to use a weapon thomas how to handle a weapon, how to store a weapon. we do not want anything that would inhibit that. >> if i may shift gears once again from the gun issue onto another hot issue that is immigration, there is a group of senators that there meeting and putting out a plan on some sort
of comprehensive immigration overhaul. senator paul gave a speech not too long ago outlining what he inks should be done. where do you stand on the pathway of citizenship that is going on these days? a you are not going to get comprehensive immigration bill until you can satisfy the american public that we have a way of north our border is secure. our border is not secure. we have that discussion about all of those other things thomas you are never -- things, you are never going to get that vote until we have shown we have secured our border. --how would you go of doubt go about demonstrating security that the american people would need in order to get it immigration bill done? >> i have spent several days, some of it
on horseback, i have spent a lot of times on our borders. if the american people went -- our strategy today is of those who are trying to come across it legally and those trying to smuggle drugs in it legally. we are never going to solve this problem until we address in the mountainous areas and in some of the other areas we addressed in the easier areas which is , utilizing, sensors the technology that we have. we have areas in arizona right haswhere the border patrol a gate where they can come across because they kept cutting the fence. it is not a big fence, it is a barbed wire fence. a made a gate so they can walk through. , sohe fence is not working
your solution is to build another fence? >> no, you have to look at it in perspective. they cannot put things against it. went it is him -- when it is monitored, it works. when you look at the san diego border, we pretty much controlled that. we have good monitoring, we do not have much coverage coming across. we have not done everywhere else. we are saying it is too hard. -- it is not just dancing. , it isood intelligence utilizing a multipronged approach. control our we can borders. we have chosen not to. measure would be your when determining when the border is secured him a some time -- secured, some concrete numbers?
congress would make that decision every year. are we maintaining the border? have we done what we need to do? i do not want to talk about the rest of it until we do that. people in this country are not worth about immigration, ao world about it legal immigration. they are worried that once we get some type of bill that allows any connection to those who, in illegally any halfway to citizenship, you will another flight of people, across. to aw would you ever get point if congress was asked to do this every year? >> it is not hard. you are at asking questions without the knowledge of ever being at the border. if we go down there and spent three or four days across the whole arizona border and the
west texas border, you have to see that in your mind to know what we are talking about. we have tremendous holes and our borders today -- in our borders today. it is not a secure border. of numbers are down because our economic picture. the amount of mules carrying drugs is not down. the number of spotters is not down. until you give me the confidence that we are doing one of the primary goals that we are charged with is securing this country, i do not want to have a discussion about any other aspect of it. >> how would you become coveted enough that enough is being are youat specifically looking for?
>> there will not be any apprehensions. >> how do you measure it is mark -- it? >> you measure what is coming through the borders. >> we have a last -- we have a few last minutes. isanother thing coming up about the republican party. i want to give your thoughts about the national committee going forward. >> i cannot help you because i do not think up out democrats and republicans. we focus on the parties too much and not the individual. whether if they are going to think long-term or short-term, the parties have heard of in tohington because we tend think about the short term until the next election instead of what we should be doing for the country. i do not hate any attention.
pay any attention. i have never been to a republican national convention in my life. i never will. there are great people who have a run for public office, who are not in line with ideology but common sense and fixing the problem that is in front of us. >> you are one of the most conservative members. let us look at it and ideology. conservatives seem to have a problem in this country right now. people do not believe that conservatives are empathetic. do you think it is a problem for the movement you are a part of? >> i do not think so. i do not agree with the label "conservative." let me give you a question. if we fix problems today, we will secure the safety nets for
a ton of people who actually need our help. ,or the mom who is a single mom working every day who needs help with her children or her healthcare. by not fixing our problems, what we are going to guarantee to that single mom with a child is there will not be a safety net left. havee who think that -- not studied the international scene and have not looked at our at interesting rates when they rise and we will lose another $650 billion that was not go to the programs that will help those individuals. a message of helping people become successful whether -- or rather than helping them become dependent is a much stronger message that will accomplish something for those people.
that israel conservatism. >> that sounds like compassionate conservatism. you have tried to work across party lines with your democratic colleagues. you have been on fiscal cliff talks, working on gun control legislation. ?o these gangs of six work >> you build the core. if we get an enhanced background check out, it will be because of the work of schumer and i. look, you all post a lot more partisanship that is here. there are great relationships here, great talks. there is a political flavor and then the policy flavor. we get out find trying to hammer out policy.
of the partisan talk and getting to the next election is what is wrong. we have to many people interested in the politics than the policy. >> let me ask you, you plan to leave -- term limited. what are you going to do after you leave the senate to keep you have tried to cut out waste. how do you keep at it if you are not in the sent? >> it will be someone else's job. thend the question is, presumption that other people cannot do more and better than i have done and they can. only we can do it. america is full of millions of people that can do a far better job than we are doing in washington right now. i have a whole lot more experience. i have better judgment. they are not so insecure that
they have to hold the position of elected office. they would not worry about it. we need more people who do not care if they are here are not. ofsenator tom coburn am a oklahoma. -- coburn, oklahoma. >> thank you. >> let me turn to you, a lot of hot button issues. what did you hear about the budget? , everybodyaying knows that outlines, grand bargain it would work. that is the first nugget. that which hent thought the appropriations bill might function and the importance of getting that back to functioning. -- itnted out something
was pointed out by members of the appropriations committee that running the government on these stopgap resolutions is not denied -- an ideal way of running. they should not be running anymore because you do not have a way of getting rid of them. >> gun control, universal background checks come to the floor when they return from their easter break. when did you hear from the senator? >> i heard that he thought a broad measure will not has. -- past. ,e pointed out another hurdle the house of representatives than -- that is more conservative. he believed anything that goes through will be limited in scope. >> does he get to offer amendments to change it to how he wants it done? to be the going
process in which we see it play out. diane feinstein's bill will be an amendment banning assault weapons. we know it will not pass. a lotgoing to have to be of distance to get it closed right now that really -- >> what about ammunition clips? is that going to get a vote is mark -- vote? >> i think, yes. it is not about whether it will give votes, the president was forceful. is argument that he made difficult one for opponents of stricter gun laws to refute. most americans see this as a matter of yes thomas less how -- yes, let's have our
representatives of both this up or down. it is about whether it meets the threshold of past. it does not seem to have a lot to support. >> immigration reform, this is from a conservative saying i am not going to talk about this other stuff until we confirm that the border is secure. >> that was one of the most fascinating part of the interview when three of us attempted to press senator coburn about what he means by a concrete, deliverable weight to secure the border, he suggested this every year congress of verifying. frankly, what i was attempting to get at and question the idea that congress is asked to do something through a regular process every year procedurally whether it is a good idea is difficult