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tv   Politics Public Policy Today  CSPAN  May 6, 2013 10:00am-12:01pm EDT

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work on flood protection and water supply efforts. today in the house.
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wednesday the house will host a joint meeting of congress to hear from the president of south korea. also on the agenda, a bill allowing employers to grant, time instead of overtime to hourly workers. the house heref on c-span and the senate on c- span to. we have more live coverage, and that today. c-span to a discussion looking at the current political structure in egypt. last year the president replaced jose mubarak as president after years of political protest. the new america foundation will examine the situation in egypt with a panel discussion. >> this is grant -- mrs. grant was interesting. she was of their lives
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regarded as an abject failure, unable to provide for his own family. then and almost no time at all suddenly he was the most popular man in the country, the man who saved the union on the battlefield and said president of the united states. time of theed her white house. she said it was like a bright, beautiful dream. the most wonderful time of my life. i think that gives you an idea of how much she enjoyed being first lady and how she felt her husband had finally achieved a recognition he deserved. >> be part of the conversation on julia grant with your questions and comments live to fight on first ladies at that o'clock eastern. and c- c-span radio >> that is week former secretary
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of state madeleine albright talked about the situation in syria. speaking at the event hosted by the truman national security project, she spoke about the possibility of the u.s. taking action in syria without backing from the u.n. as long as it was supported by a coalition of nations. remarks from friday are just over 50 minutes. please tweet away. we are all about social media right now. as you all know she's been a beacon of american leadership. right now. the world. beyond that, she serves as a role model. strongthe north star for national security policy. she reminds us that america is difference, but the one required to bring out of the other
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nations together. be a woman. there have been so many in her shadows. she is also not afraid to dive in the political fights. she is knocking on doors, canvassing. she is ready to get into the dirt. that is what we all need to do to get the policies that we need. i have had the honor of her guidance because she serves on our advisory board. as a testament to the endurance of leadership, madeleine albright used to be the president for the center of national policy. generations and brings our groups together. please join me in welcoming
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secretary albright. [applause] >> good morning. thank you very much. it is very nice to be with all of you here this morning. i am truly an enthusiastic backer and i am pleased to participate in this conference. i am very happy -- i feel that projects are able to connect and work together. i am thrilled to be here, thank between the truman project is a marriage made in the think tank heaven.
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all of us to focus even more on the truman project mission to support an active, progressive, and successful american foreign policy. that cause is vital, not only for the united states, but for the world. i am delighted to see so many current and future leaders. president obama has recently embarked on a second term. secretary of state kerry has already traveled to the middle east and europe and asia.
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c ofgiven the existence of telephones and other modern conveniences, this much flying around may seem odd, but it does reflect the complexity of the current moment and the urgency we all feel about finding solutions. the good news is that the president and his team began position than they did four years ago. i said then that every new formcan president inherits of an international emergency crisis, two wars, and the steepest decline in america's international standing since the anon. i think we have made steady
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progress. we have brought our combat against al qaeda, weakening and scattering its support structure and eliminating osama bin laden. with help from our nato allies, we ended 40 years of dictatorship in libya. the administration has used diplomacy to tighten multilateral sanctions against iran, whose leaders are increasingly divided and under obvious stress. our message is clear that iran will not be allowed to build or acquire nuclear weapons. mr. obama has also finalized trade agreements with south korea, panama, and colombia. and presided over a surge in u.s. exports that has increased in the number of private-sector jobs. done. the truth is that with little fanfare, president obama has
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become the globe's most widely respected major national leader. many have commented on the president's cool demeanor and his ability to project calm. this matters because panic is not helpful when one is walking on a high wire. like a tightrope walker, mr. obama is trying to make forward progress without tipping too in one direction or another. this reflects less a personal choice than it does common sense. in our era, there is no perfect formula for shaping world events. there are dangers on every side and the watchword of the moment is balance. administration wants to build pressure on president bashar al-assad to
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step down without paving the way for heavily armed extremists to fill the vacuum. in north korea, our leaders have pushed back firmly against the harsh rhetoric, a reassuring allies and enlisting help at the same time as leaving the door open to some kind of negotiations. in afghanistan, the president has honored our agreement to assist the national government, but said that we will not pursue unachievable goals. in the middle east, secretary kerry is engaged in a brave effort to revive the peace process but with the understanding that we cannot want peace more than the israelis and palestinians. it is their land, their lives,
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their futures which will be at stake. in the economic arena, the approached global affairs which conveys confidence but not arrogance. his strategy has been to lecture less without leading less, to use words in a civil tone that makes it easier for others to stand with us. this has logic because with most countries most of the time, persuasion works better than bullying. the administration does have its share of critics. many of these are easy to dismiss because they demand simple solutions to complex problems or because they are so obviously biased. during the recent campaign, the president was accused of apologizing for america, which he never did, of betraying israel, which is an outright lie.
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other criticisms, however, are more thoughtful and reflect issues with which the administration continues to wrestle. these include the questions of syria's use of chemical weapons, and developing a transparent policy according drone technology. to new facts and ideas. this is in contrast to some leaders we have had in recent past and holds the promise of an of the next 3.5 years. as we consider that prospect, it is important to understand the context within which our leaders must operate. it makes it difficult to
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formulate a consistent foreign policy. is first and most obvious globalization. a little more than generation, billions of reservoir of knowledge and to the means for broadcasting their opinions to a worldwide audience. this has extraordinary for people who are unhappy and desire to change. the elected leaders are immune from the pressure that is now emanating from social networks and the streets. we can see the results in the partisan divide plague our country, in the division in europe, in the overthrow of arab dictators, and in russia as a pro-democracy movement. it is no accident that many countries new political leaders are popping up almost overnight and there able to capture votes. less because of their ideas than because of their skill in exploiting frustrations.
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in some countries, experiments are under way in "crowd sourcing democracy." bear in mind that national leaders are increasingly vulnerable to changes in public sentiment. becomes more dispersed, the same is true for power among countries.
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in the past 15 years, several large developing countries have grown at a record pace. many have leverage and are using it. in asia, china is testing how far it can go with claiming offshore territory. itsa has moved to protect interests in afghanistan. turkey has become deeply involved in arab politics. seat on the security council. qatar is planning a significant role in north africa and the persian gulf. their interests are diverse and governments often lack the political security required to compromise. the consequence is a widening gap between the pace of events, which is excel rating, and the
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willingness of world leaders to take coordinated action. these changes may be unavoidable, but they also contain risk. the third reality we face is the evolution of the security threat appeared a direct confrontation between major powers is less likely today that many times in the past. that is good, but the sobering
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grievances that gave life to the al qaeda movement continued to future violence. we cannot defeat terrorists by battle of ideas wherever it is houses of worship, and on the internet. cyber warfare is a growingat all level of harassment and intelligence gathering, the battle of hackers has already begun. many of the west's leading financial and academic and media institutions have been warning below. for americans, security will always require vigilance on but we have to strive to build a wall around our electronic infrastructure. it is little wonder that while other job sector stagnates, the market for aspiring cyber defenders has never been better. the fourth trend with which we must cope is related to the first three pillars. those of the pillars of the postwar international system, which i believe are weakening. the imf and the world bank
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still operate and are needed, but as alternative sources of credit and capital take their place, few countries look to them for guidance. in new york, the united nations, which gained momentum in the cold war ended, has been sidetracked. as for u.n. peacekeeping, it is given the assignments that no one else wants. back when i was ambassador of the united nations, i was besieged by members of congress who worried that our sovereignty would be trampled on by world government. today, we should worry less about the ambition of multilateral institutions than because there are vital tasks that only they can do. when serving in the clinton administration, i felt america's goal was to bring nations closer together in pursuit of freedom, law, and peace.
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the obama team has the same objective, but the process has been made more complex by the trends. with so much going on, our leaders often have to proceed a case by case basis, improvising in the search for solutions to particular problems. in one case, we might turn to nato. we might have to act alone. at the same time, we have to strive to create more effective networks for addressing shared problems, such as proliferation, terror, the global economy, and development. our national security officials must have as many options and tools as possible. despite budget constraints, our military must remain second to none. we also have a profound interest
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in sustaining nato and helping the u.n. system to adapt and developing close and cooperative bilateral relationships across the globe. cooperation requires investment in diplomacy, technical assistance, and in helping friendly countries do a better job of defending against common threats. according to surveys, the average american thinks we give about a quarter of tax dollars to foreigners. terrible. the truth is that our entire international affairs budget, including everything from the protection of our ambassadors to emergency food for refugees, is equal to about 1%. i do not know about you, but i am fed up with politicians who demand a strong america and then vote to deprive our diplomats of the tools they need
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to protect and advance our interests. that is why our country should have a comprehensive national security budget that will enable us not only to wage war, preserve peace and to lead both on the battlefield and bargaining table. our second imperative is education. the technological revolution has opened a huge divide between the skilled and unskilled. a gap that is affecting every measure of personal accomplishment and national strength. make no mistake, our country's challenged and we cannot afford to fall behind. finally, we have to persevere
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in our support for a democracy. there are some a look at the electoral gains made by islamist parties in the arab world and conclude that democracy is more likely to cause trouble than relieve it. after all, the new government in egypt has yet to find its political footing while the country's economy has slowed and the tourist industry has crashed. in libya, gaddafi is gone, but the new regime is weak and too weak to maintain order in the face of powerful militias. among palestinians, the electoral appeal of hamas has undermined middle east peace efforts, while in iraq, elections have done little to narrow ethnic and religious division. these and problems elsewhere cause me to worry that skepticism about democracy will grow.
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already, we you're influential voices talking about freedom up with an asterisk implying that to chart their own futures, others cannot. this kind of cynicism is typically summarized by commentators as just being realistic. i have another name for it. hypocrisy. we should remember that the alternative to democratic support is embracing government that lack the blessing of their own people. that leads not to stability, but to its counterfeit, leading the shackle to dictators, at odds with arab democrats, and based on our affinity for people who win elections,
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but on the integrity of the electoral process and on whether democratic institutions are able to function after the voting is held. democracy provides no easy answers to the problem of governing in the digital age, but it does broaden the scope of public debate and give everyone a voice so that new ideas can be heard and minority views taken into account. opening, i believe the americans should welcome meant. if we fail to value free expression, we forget our own history and forfeit our own right to lead. we live in an era of constant change and this means that we have to constantly adapt, but we should remember what does not change. 68 years ago, following the death of franklin roosevelt, harry truman became president. he was thought to be a petty politician, not very smart, and likely to fail. he had been vice president for less than two months and done little to prepare for its new
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for job. and yet he is remembered now was one of our most effective presidents, so effective that a prestigious national security project there is his name. the reason is that harry truman understood and reflected what is best about america. he was optimistic about the prospects for human progress, but conscious of the perils posed by weakness and fear. for allies and friends. it was exempt from the rules that apply to others. america was the champion of weberty, law, and justice for admired president truman because he dared to build greatly and because what he built was made
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to last. to honor his legacy, we must strive to do the same. to that end, i pledge my own best efforts. thank you very much. that. [applause] >> ok, we are ready for questions as long as you identify yourself. >> [inaudible] recent public opinion polls said the american people have no interest [inaudible] in any kind of action in syria. to what degree does that knowledge about where americans
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stand emboldened the regime and restrict the president in the options he has? >> let me say i think that the whole discussion about syria is incredibly complicated. in terms of the evolution of false ideas about how to deal with syria. i read a book, which is about when the munich agreement was made. looking at that part of history, i realized something i had not in many years. how tired the british and french over from world war i. their economy was a mess, their defense infrastructure. alwaysough i have
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considered chamberlain one of the more odious characters in history, i can understand what was going on. he really wanted to make sure there would be peace. why should we care about people in faraway places? there is no question that we are tired from iraq and afghanistan. our budget is a mess and there are questions about the strength of our defense and the structure. and yet, we do know everything that is going on inside every people in faraway places with unpronounceable names. what are the right things to do? that is the discussion. there is an awareness in this
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country that something has to be done. it is my sense that as president obama has been saying, there is an evolution of thinking about what to do. a variety of different ways that we can help. i do not think the president assad cares what the public thinks. he lives in his own world of denial, supported by the russians. we need to do what is right for stability, and what we believe is the right thing to do. >> are there any women who like to raise their hands next? >> my name is jessica. i was intrigued by what you said earlier about having a comprehensive national security budget.
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i work on the hill and i have seen the discussions on going about protecting the defense budget over the state department usaid budget. i was wondering if you could budget that would entail all aspects. >> we have talked about this for a long time. the hill. i worked for the first chairman of the budget committee. it seemed like a very innovative experiments. sensey ways, it makes because national security is indivisible. in terms of what has to be done, there are carryovers from one
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the other. there are real questions about some of the civilian sounding things the defense department is doing. and what happens when diplomats and usaid people are in danger zones. there is a crossover of things. the hard part about it has a lot to do with congress. there are committees whose responsibility is oversight for a particular part of the budget and they do not want to give up some of their prerogatives. whether one can do it in terms of the process is the question. make sense. i do not know what the real
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numbers are, but the defense budget is somewhere around $500 billion. the state department budget is more like $50 billion. that does not make any sense. by looking at it from the perspective of the national security budget -- the other part would be a multi-year. that is a little bit of a problem because members of congress want to have some kind of control over where the money goes. the other part when i was there, the problem we had was trying to get voting on contingency. sometimes you do not know where the next thing will happen. this was really true in terms peacekeeping operations or where we had to deploy force. it would be a huge discussion, but in the long run, it would be helpful. >> mark, now you can go. >> [inaudible]
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i want to follow-up on the question on syria. the things you mentioned, promoting democracy, not being shackled by a dictatorship, the idea that we need to get rid of assad, they seem to be going in the wrong direction right now. you presided over a very successful war in kosovo. no extremist there. libya was a relative success. in hindsight, if we had done some sort of a no-fly zone two years ago, al qaeda would have been less likely to interest- rate the free democratic people and given the mess there is now, what do you think we should do? >> if my grandmother had wheels, she would be a bicycle. if, if, if. i can understand what happened.
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let me bring up one concept is one of my favorite issues to talk about. it is the issue of responsibility to protect. what happened in the years i was at the u.n., we focused a what was going on inside countries, what could be done by the international community to and do things or mitigate things. there was an evolution of that. we have the canadians talking about security and coming forward with this concept, it is a leader was not able to protect his or her own people, the international community could help in that regard in some kind of support system. if the leader was actually killing his own people, there was the responsibility for the international community to do something.
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what i found interesting was on libya, the responsibility to protect was talked about. we were in the middle -- this is a task force that i am cochairing plus the foreign policy with governor romney. as the libya issue came up, we were asking ourselves, did it help or did it complicated? in some ways, complicated because even though a specifically listed in the resolution, they went a little further. i do not agree with that, but that was what was the criticism, and they have gone further in order to destroy gaddafi's compound. that has some effect on how people felt about syria. syria is very different from libya.
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discussions about the no-fly zones and a variety of safe areas did not apply as much to syria as it had in bosnia oreven there, we had a terrible time with establishing the safe havens. veryyrian military is strong. i did not spend a lot of time and hypothetical looking back. i do look at something else though, which is the unintended consequences of foreign policy decisions. some of the decisions that go way back in terms of how much the russians have been supplying to the syrians over the years, that somehow escaped people's notice. various other aspects have had an effect on how people look at syria and the fact about invading another muslim country. the unintended consequences of
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previous decisions way on me. >> do you have any advice -- >> sorry, mark, we have to move on to someone else. >> i am rachael. >> i know you. >> you described secretary kerry's efforts in the peace process. open opportunities for more progress? >> i think some of you have
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heard me say this. if i were to ask any of you whether you would say if he would like to go to camp david, you would say yes. i can tell you that i do not care if i ever go back. we came very close. one of the issues that was a hustle problem is in many ways, is leader of the palestinians has the right to make decisions about the size of the palestinian state. we were also asking him to make decisions about the disposition of the holy places over which he did not have sole control. when we started calling some of the arabs, this happened because he put a generous proposal on the table. the arabs had no idea what we were talking about.
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where i think there has been a change is what secretary kerry was talking about. the meeting with the arab league leaders who have put the initiative on the table with some additional wiggle room, not as a final offer, but as a basis for some negotiations. the problem is that netanyahu does not think that is the world's greatest thing, but people change their minds. i do think there is more out there at the moment that needs to be explored. i salute secretary kerry for pushing and exploring, he has been to the region three times.
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one of the things we do know one of my discussions about democracy, many of you are students or were students and you know back in class is, all you ever do is have this in less discussion as to what comes first, political development or economic development. they go together because people want to vote and eat. there needs to be economic development among the palestinians. there needs to be a way that hamas is not attractive to them as providing constituency services and jobs. that has to come out of the palestinian authority or some other way of getting economic development. i do think there are things to explore. i salute the secretary for
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looking into all of the options and talking to the parties. as i also said, we cannot make decisions. the parties themselves have to make the decisions. we can put ideas on the table and look for ways to be supportive, but we cannot make the decisions for the parties maybe up front? >> melissa harrison. you mentioned climate change. i was wondering if you could give a few thoughts. what level of responsibility secretary has in those discussions? >> i believe that it is one of the important issues that has to be taken up for any number of
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reasons. i was just listening -- i hate to tell you this, but i listen to right-wing radio as i drive, which is a good idea to stay away from me. there was a ridiculous discussion today about, it is cold -- i think it is a mistake to call it global warming, but it is climate change. all one has to do is look at various things and extremes of going on. i am from colorado. it does not usually snow there in the last week of april, beginning of may. there is positive proof that something is going on. the other is the effect that climate change has on a number of aspects that have to do with stability. inave just been involved many discussions about problems to do with water. wait until we start arguing over water. food security.
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i just drove by the world bank and there are huge signs up about poverty. that has a lot of that has to do with climate change. if people think it is only polar bears or something, that is not what is about. it is about human security in all of its various aspects. manyis interesting that people do not know about secretary john kerry, and he been very interested in climate change all along. he has been pushing in arguing for it for a long time. i do think there will be more. the problem is one of the reasons that i argued about partnership -- americans do not like the word multilateralism.
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it has too many syllables and ends in an ism. all that means is a partnership. i wrote a book to the president elect. with the audacity to hope that this book might be useful. the need to deal with that whole side of issues, the economy, climate change, issues, pandemic requireswhich cooperation. whatever the president puts forward really does require other countries to work with us. my sense is that is a very important priority. >> keep the questions short because we are getting tight on time.
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>> i wanted to ask you about iran. the negotiations are ongoing, but they are stagnant. the secretary has always taken an interest in this topic. what do you think needs to be done to restart things? do you think sanctions need to be on the table? >> we are in a very interesting time as far as iran goes. they are in a state of political disarray, trying to sort out before elections in terms of -- ahmadinejad seems saner than some of the others all of a sudden. there are some issues about what he said and what is going to
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happen. one of the reasons things have slowed down seems to do with their domestic situation. the course i teach is the national security toolbox. the truth is there are not a lot of tools and there. there is diplomacy, bilateral and multilateral, the economic tools, sanctions and embargoes, and the threats of the use of force, use of force, intelligence, and law- enforcement. i think from what i can tell, the sanctions have been useful in terms of isolating iran. in terms of creating some economic issues for them that may have an effect on what happens in these elections. we have talked about all options being on the table with iran and the president has means allthat
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options. diplomatic aspects. i think we have to figure out how to syncopate the tools, but there are not a lot of them. they do require international cooperation. there has been more of it on iran then one could have imagined. it continues to be of very difficult situation where all options have to be kept on the table. >> thank you, yes? >> going back to syria, would there need to be a no-fly zone in syria? you would not need a security council?
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>> i can tell you what happened on kosovo. we knew there was something going on we had to do something about it. i went to moscow to try to find out what the russians intentions were if we brought it up in the security council. they have made very clear to me that they would veto it. i went back to my room and knowing full well that people listen to you in hotel rooms in russia, i called each one of the foreign ministers separately and said this is what i heard and they are going to veto this. iti was not reporting correctly, they would correct methey did not.
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the bottom line is we decided that we had to go the security council, and went to nato. the u.n. did not like it and there have been a lot of questions in terms of, it might have been moral, but was it legal? i think we did the right thing and a lot of people are alive as a result of it. it is an independent country. this is my personal view. i only speak for myself. these are big if's. it should be done in a way multilaterally. what is interesting about libya -- the arab league was the gatekeeper on that. in some ways, having that kind of a multilateral approach to it in some way an international think is important.
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i do not think you need to have a security council resolution, especially if it is evident that it will be vetoed. you have just driven into a cul-de-sac. >> thank you. i am a little bit legally blind, if i am not using your name, that is why. >> i am from the department of defense. i have a question about leadership and management of the state department. secretary kerry seems to be lukewarm on the subject. i would ask you to reflect on the wisdom of conducting such a review to justify a larger budget for the state department and usaid. would you recommend that he take such a review more seriously? >> what i find -- first of all,
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you guys have a big budget. you do not have to worry about it. [laughter] what is interesting, and i want to talk about the evolution of what happened. when you are sitting at the state department, you really do look at that with some envy and what happens at the defense department and the qdr. if you are secretary of state, i speak for myself, in terms of not having a lot of control over various parts of the diplomatic or the civilian budget and how does usaid fit into its despite the fact that the administrator was one of my best friends, he only wanted a between him and me on budget issues.
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he tried to figure out how the usaid budget fits in. i had the idea that we should coordinate all lot of what we were doing -- i picked four countries that needed to have coordinated aid in order to use the various parts of the american department will system to coordinate aid to those countries. secretary clinton came out with a qddr, which is an interesting document in terms of keeping the staff together. i did not know where you did that secretary kerry is lukewarm on it. it does not have to be every year. ano think it provides interesting infrastructure. i would not make the assumption based on what i know -- he is just getting started. one has to wait to see what the approach is.
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>> the very last question. >> [inaudible] i wanted to ask you about, with 2014 approaching and u.s. troops withdrawn from afghanistan, as well as the rise of islamic party is in much of the arab world, one thing that is greatly concerning is the rights of women. what remarks would your share? >> i never went to afghanistan when i was in office, but i did meet with women refugees and people coming out of afghanistan in terms of their heartbreaking stories about what was going on and what they needed in order to have a normal life in
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afghanistan. frankly, during the clinton period, we did not recognize the taliban for that reason. the question is, how to make sure that as we move forward, the rights of women are protected. i would hope that would be part of what the discussion is about. there have been advances made in that area and i do not think we can solve the problem in afghanistan by giving up on the rights of women. that would be my view. afghanistan is one of the most difficult issues in terms of its longevity.
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a little bit of this idea that trying to sort out who the players are. decisions about how much time to spend with the taliban, what to do, and how to make sure that country has some kind of regular structure. i am trying to avoid saying that if the previous administration paid more attention to this, instead of going into iraq, we need not be in this position, but i will not say that. [applause] >> thank you very much. >> madam secretary, you have lifted up the voices of a generation. you have ended genocide in
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eastern europe and face down dictators and now there are -- now you are a matchmaker between cmp and truman. we will make a pledge to you. with your continued fight for democracy around the world we stand with you. resealed that pledge today with this plaque which is a replica of the inaugural medal given out during harry truman's inauguration. we would like to present that to you and thank you for everything. [applause]
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>> congress comes back today after being away for a week-long recess. the senate will gather in at 2:00 eastern. plans to finish bill on an online sales tax bill. work authorizing the army corps of engineers to work of flood protection and water supply projects. the house will dabble in at noon eastern for legislative business. it will consider a number of legislation bills. wednesday, a joint work session for congress. also, a bill allowing, times instead of overtime to our workers. coverage coming up today. a discussion looking at the current political structure in egypt. last year the president replaced hosni mubarak at three years of political protest. protested to you today. the new america foundation will
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examine the situation. that will be of c-span2. grant was interesting. they have this extraordinary roller-coaster existence. lives he was regarded as an abject failure unable to provide for his own family. it almost no time at all suddenly he was the most popular man in the country, the man who saved the union on the battlefield. then president of the united states. >> giulio loved her time of the white house. she said it was like upright and a beautiful dream, the most wonderful time of my life. so i think that gives you some idea of how much she enjoyed being first lady and how she felt her husband had finally
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achieved the recognition he deserved. >> be a part of the conversation on julia grant off with your questions and comments with facebook, bone, and twitter. that is live at tonight at 9:00. [applause] >> the national rifle association held its annual meeting over the weekend in houston. among the speakers he criticized president obama for what he called the president's attacks on freedom of second amendment rights. he spoke about half an hour. >> thank you. you are kind. we do it all together one by one. thank you. thank you very much. thank you, houston, and good morning. appreciate your kind
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words. genuine american hero, god, ourour service to country and york nra, we salute you, and we think you from the bottom of our hearts. -- thank you. [applause] at this gathering one year ago, i predict that our freedom might soon faced its greatest threat ever. i spent the past year warning gun owners all over this country that if reelected, president obama would launch an all-out historic attack against our second amendment and the personal freedom of hundreds of millions of law-abiding americans. when i said that, the news media call me paranoid.
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obama vehemently denied his ked us.n agenda, moche they even passed out flowers -- fighters saying that he would protect our rights, and a lot of americans were deceived into believing him. deceived. it should not take long for barack obama to show himself, the real barack obama. even before he was sworn into office, before his inauguration, the president launched an all- out historic attack against our rights, from gdansk to magazine vans to convoluted schemes tantamount to national registration of every gun owner in america, some executive orders voted on by no one to
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vice presidential commissions and a flurry of legislative attacks to new entries to gut our second amendment. -- un treaties. media appearances, speeches, anti-gun rallies, and the presidential bully pulpit. apparently, there's nothing the president will not do to get something through congress to advance his agenda to destroy our second amendment. nothing. so far, banks to you and millions of americans all over this country just like you, that is exactly what president obama has gotten. -- thanks to you. that's exactly what president obama has gotten -- absolutely nothing. [cheers and applause] a lot of courageous men and women in the u.s. house and
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senate have stood up to the president and they have depended our freedom. they have taken a lot of heat from the president, michael bloomberg, and the media. so it is really important that they hear from every nra member, every gun owner, every american who value of our freedom and our great country to those senators and congressmen who have stood with the second amendment, we say thank you. and we ask you to keep defending our rights. [applause] us and youood with have also represented the people in your home states. let there be no doubt we stand firmly with you. that is important, because while the senate votes < two weeks ago is significant, it is the one skirmish in what can only be defined as a long war against our constitutional rights.
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as we sit here this morning we are in the midst of a once in a generation fight for everything we care about. we have a chance to secure our freedom for a generation or lose it forever. we must remain vigilant. resolute andn ever steadfastly growing and preparing for even the more critical battle that bloom before us -- loom. i'm proud to report as i stand in front of you this morning that the state of our nra is stronger and larger than it has ever been. [cheers and applause] you and americans like you made that happen all over the country. [applause]
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our commitment to freedom is unwavering. our growth is unprecedented. today the nra is a record 5 million strong. [cheers and applause] even as thousands of americans join our cause every day and are still signing up, the media and anditical elite denigrate us they cringe at the side of long lines at gun shows all over this country. they mock americans who are buying firearms and ammunition at a record pace than the basic old and scorn the nra. they don't get. scrn.y scold and they don't get america. the president of the united states of america, president
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obama, held a press conference 17 days ago and angrily called the nra liars. really? spent his the man who entire reelection campaign saying he supported our second amendment rights and would never try to take anyone's gun away. .e calls us liars this from the president who repeatedly claimed that 40% of fire arms sales don't require a background check. that was never true. and the washington post gave the forident three pinocchios that one. andy coulson sliders. the biggest whopper of all, one
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of the president's favorite lines is that 90 percent of americans support his background check bill. cannot grant and rave about anything else. 90% americans don't want criminals or the mentally ill to get their hands on guns. kind i don't know what of polling data with the white house, but i do know this. when it comes to keeping guns out of hands of violent criminals or the mentally deranged, nra members agree 100%. [applause] but mr. president, the bill u.n.-backed would not accomplish that goal. your bill was a check that criminals avoid. the bill you ordered a law- abiding to participate in would simply -- was simply a maze of
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regulations that could criminalize waffle fire arms transactions and create government a massive list of every law-abiding gun owner in the united states of america. schumer's bill you first supported and still support would create a data base of every gun owner in america. chin-tumey that you later backed would not a prevented newtown or to sanaa or tucson or aurora and will not prevent the next one. that's why the president could not get the 90% of the senate to go along with him, because americans saw through the political posturing all over
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this country. they treasure their freedom. they don't want government to take that freedom away. as they say in texas, the hat andnt's 90% is all no cattle. i ran into a member of congress a couple weeks ago. we spoke for a moment. then he said, wayne, i guess i have to go back and listen to the 90% of the phone calls that are not coming in. [laughter] that's a true story. it tells you everything you need to know about president obama's empty 90%. so, mr. president, you can give all the speeches you want. you can conjure up all the polls you can and call nra members all
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the nasty names you can think of, but your gun control legislation won't stop one criminal, would not make anyone gotfor anywhere, and that the defeated deserved. [cheers and applause] the only 90 in the president will not talk about it chicago, now run by his chief of staff. the president will not talk about chicago, and he should, because in the entire united ranks 90th out of 90 jurisdictions in federal
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firearms prosecution's. dead last. when i brought that up on meet the press, the media ignored it. the president does not talk about that 90. ,nd the national news media their cameras perched like vultures right now in the back of this hall, they have not muster the courage to walk into the white house briefing room and ask about chicago's 90 a ranking that is getting people killed every day and every night. a shooting every 6.3 hours. [cheers and applause] the deadliest city in america, the president's own hometown, rank of last in federal firearms prosecution's. and the media does not have the
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guts to ask him about its. if the president had one clue about how to clean up violent crime, don't you think he would do it in his own hometown? if his policies brought us chicago, why do we want to listen to him on anything else? you'll never hear the media asked him that. maybe it's because all those reporters still have obama bumper stickers on their cars. [laughter] [cheers and applause] the national media and the political elte are all part of the same class. -- political elites. they think they are smarter than
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us, they know better than us. can tell us what to own, what to eat or drink, or not, and how to live or not. take michael bloomberg. he has gone from the mayor of new york to the title of national nanny. from sugar and salt to trans fat , toruit drinks to and soda tell you what you can or cannot do or order when you go to a restaurant, this guy cannot seem to find enough ways to boss people around. to he wants to tell us who elect or night. come on, folks? sarah sleep. if michael bloomberg were not a billionaire, would anybody ever even bother to listen to him? boos]
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now he's created his own billionaire superpac, ready to spend hundreds of millions to attack the nra, demonize gun owners, destroy elected officials who won't bowed down to his will, and obliterate the second amendment, all while the anti-gun media, as opposed elite eights money in politics, is all too happy to take and too breathless to brag about bloomberg's money and politics. already they are conspiring right now, regrouping, planning, preparing, organizing, even waiting for "the next the next horrific crime, the next census, terrific crime to explore it." just the other day, and antigun spokesman told a national
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journal, "the next newtown is inevitable. those things can galvanize people to act. politics does not get any more disgusting than that, folks. they wait to use the opportunity of a violent tragedy rather than prevent tragedy itself. let me say that again. solutionsn implement that could prevent senseless violence, they choose broken policies that enable tragedy, tragedy they wait to exploit by choice for a local game. -- gain. we know even now there aren't dangerous, deranged, evil people crowd society prepared to unleash unspeakable violence in our neighborhoods, our schools, our churches.
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they use tragedy to try to blame intoo shame us compromising our freedom for their political agenda. they want to change america, change our culture. they want to change our values. but, you know what, this is america, the first country in the world founded not on a race but religion or on royalty on a set of god-given principles inalienable in millerite rights. [applause] that americans come from long line of patriots who broke from king george to live their own lives as free people. and nowhere does freedom live
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anymore than our second amendment right to own a firearm to defend ourselves, our families, and our nation. [cheers and applause] without that freedom we are really not free at all. there is nothing more good and right and a normal in america and an honest american citizen owning a firearm to defend himself or to protect her family. [applause] they can try to blame us, shame on us with all their might, but when it comes to defending the second amendment, we will never sacrificed our freedom on the altar of elitist acceptance. we will never surrender our guns -- never.
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[applause] you represent the voice of america. they are hearing from you right now. more americans today than ever before understand the principle of the second amendment. the freedom it gives us as individuals to be responsible
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for our own safety, protection, and survival. imagine living in a heavily populated area where gun ownership is discouraged. imagine waking up to a phone call from the police at 3:00 a.m. in the morning warning that a terrorist event is occurring outside and ordering you to stay inside your home. i'm talking, of course, about boston, where residents were imprisoned behind the locked doors of their own homes. a terrorist with bombs and guns just outside. frightened citizens shelter in place with no means to defend themselves or their families from whatever might come crashing through their door. how many bostonian wish they had a gun two weeks ago?
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[applause] how many other americans now ponder that life or death question? a recent national poll answered that question decidedly. with danger lurking outside their door, 69% of americans said, yes, i want my freedom, i want my second amendment, i want my gun. [applause] lying in wait right now is a terrorist, a deranged school shooter, a kidnapper, a rapist, a murderer, waiting and planning and plotting in every community across our country, lying in wait right now.
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political schemes, congressional legislation, presidential commissions, or media around tables will ever change that inevitable reality. i said before and i will say it again. no bill in congress, no rose garden speech will ever change that inescapable fact that the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. [cheers and applause]
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ballston proves it -- boston proves it. when brave law enforcement officers did their job in that city so courageously, good guys with guns stop terrorists with guns. [applause] country people are more and more frustrated with washington, d.c. and the political and the media elite. they are dismayed over a political debate that has nothing to do with addressing our problems and everything to tired, advancing an old, failed political agenda. everywhere i go, i have learned that the nra is truly a at the heart of america's heartland, the we are the middle of
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river of america's mainstream, and that what we wanted is exactly what most americans want. we know our mental health system is in shambles and we all want it fixed. we want criminals with guns prosecuted and incarcerated. we want the federal gun laws on the books right now to be enforced against drug dealers with guns, gangs with guns, and violent felons with guns. [applause] everyone of you feels that way. i know it. that,y would just do those violent criminals would not be on their way to their next crime scene. they would be sitting in prison. we all want our children to be safe. we want them to be protected. that's why we proposed trained police and security officers in
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every single school in our country. [applause] there's not a mom or dad in america that wants to leave their children unprotected. reallywashington elites wanted the same thing, they would stop demonizing law- abiding american gun owners. there would stop trying to convince the american people that all gun owners are potential criminals in waiting. and they would actually implement programs that address our problems in a real and meaningful way. put police and train our security in every school. and forced the federal gun laws on the books right now/ interdict and incarcerate violent criminals before they get to the next crime scene. rebuild our broken mental health care system. help the mentally ill by getting them off our streets and into treatment.
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leave thed's sake, rest of us alone in this country. [cheers and applause] [applause] washington here is that message you're sending right now, because the political and media class just don't get it. in a lot of ways, they have lost track of what this great nation is really all about. and people like us all over our great country. it has always been we the
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people, not the political class, all the way back to the founding of this country. here's what i'm talking about. >> in a recent closed-door speech to donors, politicians, and media, bill clinton spoke about american gun owners. if "a lot of these people, all they've got as their hunting and their fishing for they have been listening to the store for so long that they believe that all." and we all remember barack obama's 2008 conference. "it's not surprising they get better, they cling to guns or religion." the arrogance of their superiority requires this reminder -- they don't rule us. they don't give us rights, we grant them power. they don't make us free. we are free already. as long as we have a second amendment, we always will be. policies ared our
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only as powerful as we the people allow them to be. gunfire] [cheers and applause] >> we are the people. this is our country. freedoma fight for our and freedom that separates us from every other nation on earth. that freedom makes us stronger than other countries and that freedom makes us better than other countries. that freedom is on the line. and never more on the line and right now. and through the 2014 congressional election. obama said president this was only round one. brown two is on the way. they're coming after us with a
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vengeance to destroy aus and every ounce of our freedom. it's up to us, every single nra member, every single gun owners, all americans all over this country, to get to work right now and to meet them head on with an nra that a strong enough and large enough to defeat any and all threats to our freedom. [applause] today we are a record 5 million strong. we must not and will not slow down, not one single bit. by the time we're finished, the nra must and will be 10 million strong. , patriotic,edicated americans who cherish freedom
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and all that's good and right about america. aroundon't care if it's one, around two, or around 15. the nra will go the distance. a matter what it takes, we will never give up or compromise our constitutional freedoms, not one single inch. [cheers and applause] . our feet are planted firmly in a foundation a freedom, unswayed by the winds of political and media lin-sanitinsanity. dampmed, tohem be
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those who scorn us. [cheers and applause] sellafield your hearts with pride, clear your eyes with conviction. this is our time to stand and fight. now and in the next election and the one after that. now and for the rest of our lives, to save our second amendment for future generations, we will never back down. we will never surrender. we will always stand. we will always fight. we will always stand and fight for our american freedom. thank you very much. [cheers and applause] thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013]
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>> is back to work for congress today. they've been off for a weeklong recess. they're back at 2:00 p.m. eastern for the senate. they plan to finish work on an online sales tax bill to be applied nationally. boats expected to authorize the army corps of engineers to work on production and water supply projects. the house will gavel back in a noon eastern today. 2:00 p.m. and 5:00 the emperor legislative business. there will consider suspension bills. wednesday the house will host a joint meeting of congress to hear from the president of south korea. live coverage of the house on c- span. the senate on c-span2.
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more live coverage today coming up on c-span2, a discussion looking at the current political structure in egypt. last year president morsi and replaced mubarak as president. there have been years of political protest. new america foundation will examine the situation in egypt. panel discussants starting at 12:15 eastern on c-span to. c-span both the first lady series continues tonight with a look at julia grant, the wife of the nation's 18th president. she attended presidential staff meetings and through lavish parties protective of the gilded age parents to monitor husband to run for the third time and once said like the white house was a garden spot of orchis and i wish it might have continued forever." join us tonight at 9:00 eastern on c-span. on c-span3 and c-span radio as well, for the life and times of julia grant. airedch our previously profiles, check out our website. >> over the weekend, president obama delivered his first
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commencement address of the year to the grand reading class of ohio state university. the president urged graduates to take up the mantle of citizenship by becoming active participants in their community. the ceremony took place in the university football stadium in columbus, ohio. it's about 25 minutes. [applause] >> thank you. hello buckeyes. [applause] o.h.! o.h.! o.h.! thank you so much. everybody please be seated. thank you dr. gee for the wonderful introduction. i suspect the good president may have edited out some other words that were used to describe me. [laughter] i appreciate that.
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i am going to let michelle know all the good comments. trustees,rd of congresswoman beatty, mayor coleman, and all of you who make up the ohio state university, for allowing me to join you. it is an incredible honor. most of all, congratulations class of 2013. [applause] of course, congratulations to all of the parents, family, friends, and faculty. here in the horseshoe, this is your day as well. [applause] askve been told to everybody, please be careful with the turf. the coach has big plans for this fall.
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[laughter] i very much appreciate the presidents introduction. i will not be singing today. [laughter] ha ha. [laughter] it is true that i did speak about certain university of a few years ago. certain university. to be fair, you did that president ford speak your once, and he played football for michigan. [laughter] so, everybody can get some redemption. in my defense, this is my fifth visit to campus in the past year or so. [applause] one time i stopped at sloppy's to grab some lunch.
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it's sloopy's, i know. [laughter] i am coming off a foreign trip. [laughter] i am at sloopy's and many of you were still eating breakfast. at 11:30. on a tuesday. [laughter] to the class of 2013, i will offer my first piece of advice. enjoy it while you can. soon you will not get to wake up and have breakfast at 11:30 on tuesday. [laughter] once you have children, it gets even earlier. but, class of 2013, your path to this moment has wound you through years of breathtaking change. forcede born as freedom its way through a wall in berlin, tore down an iron curtain across europe.
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you were educated in an era of instant information, which put the world's accumulated knowledge at your fingertips. terror came of age as touched our shores and historic recession spread across the nation and a new generation signed up to go to war. you have been tested and tempered by events that your parents and i never imagined we would see when we sat where you sit. and yet, despite all this, or perhaps because of it, yours has become a generation possessed with that most american of ideals. the people who love their country can change it for the better. for all the turmoil, for all the times you have been let down or frustrated with the hand you have been dealt, but i have seen, what we have witnessed
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from your generation, is that perennial quintessentially american value of optimism. altruism. empathy. tolerance. a sense of community. a sense of service. all of which makes me optimistic for our future. consider that today, 50 cadets in your graduating class will become commissioned officers in the army, navy, air force, and marines. [applause] 130 of your fellow graduates have already served, some in combat, some on multiple deployments. [applause] of the 98 veterans earning
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bachelors degrees, 20 are graduating with honors and at least one cap serving his fellow veterans when he came home by starting up a canvas organization called vets for vets. as your commander-in-chief, i could not be prouder of all of you. [applause] consider that graduates of this university serve their country through the peace corps and educate our children through established programs like teach for america, startups like blue engine, often earning low pay for making the biggest impact. alreadyyou have launched startup companies of your own. i suspect that those of you who pursue more education or climb the corporate ladder or enter the arts or science or journalism, you will still choose a cause that you care about in your life and you'll
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fight like heck to realize your vision. there is a word for this. it is citizenship. we don't always talk about this idea much these days. citizenship. let alone celebrate it. sometimes we see it as a virtue from another time. a distant past. one that is slipping away from a society that celebrates invention and ambition above all else. individuales ambition. a society lost in instant technology that empowers us to leverage our skills as never before, but also allows us to retreat from the world. the result is that we sometimes forget the larger bonds we share as one american family. but it is still out there all the time, every day, especially when we need it most. just look at the past year.
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when a hurricane struck our mightiest cities and a factory exploded in a small town in texas, we saw citizenship. when bombs went off in boston and when a malevolent spree of gunfire visited a movie theater, a temple, an ohio high school, a first grade classroom in connecticut, we saw citizenship. in the aftermath of darkest tragedy, we have seen the american spirit at its brightest. we have seen the petty divisions of color and class and creed replaced by a united urge to help each other. we have seen courage and compassion, a sense of civic duty and a recognition, we are not a collection of strangers,
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we are bound to one another by a set of ideals and laws and commitments. and a deep devotion to this country that we love. and that is what citizenship is. it is at the heart of our founding. as americans, we are blessed with god-given talents and inalienable rights. with those rights come responsibilities to ourselves and to one another and the future generations. [applause] withif we're being honest ourselves you have studied and worked and served to become good citizens, the fact is that all the routes the institutions that give structure to our society have at times betrayed your trust.
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in the run-up to the financial wall streetmany on forgot their obligations don't end with what is happening with their shares. in entertainment and in the media, the ratings and shock value often trump news and storytelling. is a joyousn, this occasion, so let me put it charitably. i think it's fair to say our democracy is not working as well as we know it can. it could do better. [applause] and so, those of us fortunate enough to serve in these institutions owe it to you to do better, every single day.
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and i hadn't thinking a lot lately about how we can keep this idea of citizenship in its fullest sense alive at the national level and not just on election day, not just in times of tragedy, but all the days in between. because i spend a lot of ame in washington, i have connection with this issue, because that sense of citizenship is so sorely needed there. i think about compassion, energy, and a sense of selflessness of your generation, what it might mean for democracy that must adapt more quickly to keep up with the speed of technological and demographics and wrenching economic change. i think about how we might perpetuate the notion of citizenship in the way that another politician in my home state of illinois, adlai stevenson, once described
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asriotism, not as short flimsiest outburst of emotion but the tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime." that would patriotism is. exports citizenship is. [applause] what citizenship is. i don't have any grand theories. on a beautiful day like this, you guys have celebrating to do. i will not get partisan. i'm asking the same king of you that president bush did when he spoke at this amendment in 2002. america needs more than taxpayers, spectators, and occasional voters, he said, america needs to opine. motto istes from whose education for citizenship, i
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know all of you get that this is what you signed up for. it's what your country expects of view. so, in reply, i will ask for two things from the class of 2013. to participate and to persevere. your democracy does not function without your active participation. at a bare minimum, that means voting eagerly and often, not having somebody drag you into it at 11:30 when you are having breakfast. [laughter] it means knowing who has been elected to make decisions on your behalf and what they believe in and whether or not they deliver on what they said they would. if they don't represent you the way you want or conduct themselves the way you expect, if they put special interests above your own, you've got to
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let them know that it's not okay. if they let you down often enough, there's a built-in day in november where you can really let them know it's not okay. [applause] but participation, your civic duty is more than just voting. you don't have to run for office yourself -- and i hope many of you do at all levels, because our democracy needs it. it will give you a tough skin. i know a little bit about this. president wilson said if you want to make enemies, to try to change something. that is precisely what the founders left us the power each of us to adapt in changing times. they left us the keys to a system of self-government. the tools to do big things and important things together be
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cannot possibly do alone. to stretch real roads and electricity and a highway system across the struggling continent, to educate our people with a system of public schools and land grant colleges, including the ohio state university, to care for the sick and of honorable and provide a basic level of protection from falling into abject poverty to the wealthiest nation on earth, to copper fascism and disease, to visit to the moon and mars, to gradually secure our god- given rights for all of our citizens, regardless of who they are or what they look like or who they love. [cheers and applause] we the people chose to do these things together, because we know this country cannot accomplish great things if we pursue
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nothing greater than our own individual ambitions. unfortunately, you of grown up hearing voices that excessively worn government is nothing more than something separate and sinister at the root of all our problems. some of those voices also do their best to come up the works. they warn that during is always lurking just around the corner. you should reject these voices. what they suggest is that our brave and creative and unique experiments in self-rule is somehow just a sham in which we cannot be trusted. we have never been a people who place all our faith in government to solve all our problems. we should not want to. but we don't think the government is the source of all our problems either, because we understand that this democracy is ours and as citizens to understand that it's not about
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what america can do for us, it's about what can be done by us together true the vote hard and frustrating but absolutely necessary work of self- government and, class of 2013, enough to be involved in that process. [applause] the founders trusted us with this awesome authority. we should trust ourselves with that, too. , when wehen we don't turn away and get discouraged and cynical and abdicate that authority, we grant are silent consent to someone who will gladly claim it. that's how we end up with lobbyists who set the agenda and from middle-ched class families a. the wealthy demanding washington stay out of their business and then whisper and governments here for special treatment that you don't get.
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that's our small minority of lawmakers get coverage to defeat something that the vast majority of their constituents want. that's how our political system gets consumed by small things when we are people call to do great things like rebuild the middle class and reverse the rise of inequality and repaired the deteriorating climate that threatens everything we plan to leave for our kids and grandkids. class of 2013, only you can ultimately break that cycle. only you can make sure the democracy you inherit is as good as we know it can be. but it requires your dedicated an informed and engaged citizenship. and that citizenship is a higher and tartabull to take, but it leads to a better place. it's how we built this country together. it's a question president kennedy opposed to the nation and his inauguration. it's the dream that dr. king
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invokes. it does not promise easy -- either success or immediate progress, but it has led to success and it has led to progress. and it has to continue with you. which brings me to the second thing i ask of all of you. i ask that you persevere. whether you start a business or run for office or devote yourself to alleviating poverty or hunker, please remember that nothing worth doing happens overnight. -- or hunger. throughh inventor went 5000 prototypes before getting the first really fancy vacuum cleaner just right. dyson. we remember michael jordan's 6 championships. we don't remember his 13,000 missed shots. as for me, i lost my first race to congress. and look at me now. i'm an honorary graduate of the
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ohio state university. [applause] the point is if you are living your life to the fullest, you will -- unless you are living alike to the fullest, you will fail, stumble, fall down, but it will make you stronger. and you will get it right the next time or the time after that or the time after that. that's not only true for your personal pursuits but it's also true for the broader causes that you believe in as well. so you cannot give up your passion if things don't work right away. you cannot lose heart or grow cynical if there are twists and turns on your journey. the cynics may be allowed as voices, but i promise you they will accomplish the least.
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at those folks who stayed it, those who belong work of change that gradually pushed this country the right direction and make the most landing -- lasting difference. whenever you hear those voices saying you cannot make a difference, whenever somebody tells you to set your sights lower, the trajectory of this great nation should give you hope. what generations have done before you should give you hope, because it was young people just like you who marched and mobilized and stood up and sat in to secure women's rights and voting rights and workers' rights and gay rights, often at incredible odds, often at great danger, often over the course of years, sometimes over the tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime, and they never got acknowledged for it, but they made a difference.
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[applause] and even if their rights were ecured, those were those -- there were those who fought for those same rights and opportunities for others. that should give you some hope. where we are going to give you hope, because while things are still hard for a lot of people, you have every reason to believe that your future is bright. you're graduating in to an economy and job markets that is steadily healing. the ones dying american auto industry is on pace for its strongest performance in 20 years, something that means everything to many communities in ohio and across the midwest. huge strides in domestic energy, driven in part by research at universities like this one have us on track to secure our own energy future. incredible advances in
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information and technology spurred largely by the risktakers of your generation have the potential to change the way we do almost everything. there's not another country on earth that would not gladly change places with the united states of america. that will be true for your generation just as it was true for previous generations. lot to lookt a forward to. but if there is one certainty about the decade ahead, it is that things will be uncertain. change will be a constant, just as it has been throughout our history. yes, we still face many important challenges. some will require technological breakthroughs or new policy insights. but more than anything, what we will need is political will to harness the ingenuity of your generation and encouraged and inspire the hard work of dedicated citizens to repair the
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middle-class, to give more families a fair shake, to reject the country which only a lucky few prosper because that is antithetical to our ideals and our democracy. all of this is going to happen if you are involved, because it takes dogged determination. the dogged determination of our citizens. at aucate more children younger age and to reform our high schools for a new time and to give more young people the chance to earn the kind of education that you did at the ohio state university, and make it more affordable? so that young people don't leave with a mountain of debt that will take care and concern of citizens like you. [applause] to build better roads and airports and faster internet, and advance basic research and technology that as always kept
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america ahead of everybody else. that will take the grit and fortitude of citizens. to confront the threat of climate change before it's too late. that requires the idealism and initiative of citizens. to protect more of our kids from the horrors of gun violence, that requires the unwavering passion, and resolve of citizens. .t will require you 50 years ago president kennedy told the class of 1963 "that our problems are man made. therefore, they can be solved by man. and man can be as big as he wants." we are blessed to live in the greatest nation on earth, but we can always be greater. we can always aspired to something more. it does not depend on who you elect to office. it depends on u.s. citizens, how
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big you want us to be, how badly you want to see these changes for the better. and look at all that america has already accomplished. look how big we have been. i dare you, class of 2013, to do better. i dare you to dream bigger. for what i have seen of your generation, i am confident that you will. and so, i wish you courage and compassion and all the strength that you will need for that tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime. thank you and god bless you. and god bless these united states of america. [cheers and applause]
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>> president obama heads to austin, texas on thursday for a middle-class jobs creation initiative. he will speak at four different events on that day. live coverage of the u.s. house, members are gabbling back in after a week-long break, beginning their day with general speeches and later it's a number of suspension bills. now live to the floor the house here on c-span. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. the chair lays before the house a communication from the speaker. the clerk: the speaker's room, washington, d.c., may 6, 2013. i hereby appoint the honorable kerry bentivolio to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, john a. boehner, speaker of the house of representatives.


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