tv Justice Ginsburg CSPAN December 22, 2013 2:05am-2:51am EST
coburn.senate.gov. you can look through that report of about 100 different examples of waste and unnecessary spending by the government. ken from georgia on our line for republicans. glad tosenator coburn, see you on the program. i have seen you on the other discussingn fox, your latest addition of government waste. -- edition of government waste. as you mentioned, i was just watching a program where there is a move afoot to have an amending constitutional convention of where the states' legislatures have to put forth the idea of amending the constitution.
this would be to get term limits. i agree, at one time i did not believe that was the solution. as you havevinced, expressed numerous times, that that should be the case. term limits would help get people to be more responsible and to get the career politicians out. one point. hopefully you would not leave until that is passed. -- you a reason of voice are a reasonable voice, one of the few and the government. uote, i have used it talking to some people. "we are spending money we do not have for things we do not need." that is a good quote for a book on money makeover for individual families. host: ken brings up the idea of
term limits. on twitter, what will term limits do if new members still have to take high dollar money to get elected? guest: if money is the corrupting influence -- money is not the corrupting influence in washington. if you can buy my vote for a dinner, you have already sent the wrong person. going to take less and less money, not more and more money. as leaf which campaigns to social media which are less expensive -- as we switch campaigns to social media, which are less expensive. you get people here who do not know what you cannot do. happeningk at what is -- most people who come to their first time have a history of being in elected office. 70% of the senate is career politicians.
their whole career has been in the political arena. what our country needs -- we do not need another career politician. we need people with real-world experience to have been through the school of hard knocks. who have made mistakes and made things right and who can make a judgment of their experience and apply it to problems in front of the country. whichd of the conflict, is natural, it does not mean they are bad people. the natural conflict of how do i stay here and advance my career. that is in contrast in conflict with what is in the best interest of the country. i am term limit, i have term limited myself. i am going home. there is no positive benefit. you need more people who do not know the system who do not buy into the biases of the political elite. they come here and say that will not be the case.
wisdom and their experiences to apply to our problems. host: a few minutes left with tom coburn of oklahoma and author of the wastebook. mark from california on our line for democrats. good morning. caller: good morning. i am a disabled vietnam veteran. i have seen a lot of fraud and abuse in the pa system 0 -- in the va system. they say it is the best health care system we have. that is a lie. most of the stuff that comes out of washington is a big lie. we have been fed a lie. we need to get money out of politics. until we do that, our government is broken. everybody is on the take. i do notr a very few,
know. i just wanted -- guest: a couple of points, they are not on the take. what they are on is how do i make sure i get to stay here. and my career is more important than the country. that causes more poor decision- making. the second point is why should a veteran, disabled or not, be forced to go to aca system -- to a va system rather than wherever they want? in some places-- it is great, in some places it stinks. i would give veterans the right to go wherever they want. you served our country, you are service connected, you go where you want and we pick up the tab. if you want to go to the va, great.
if you want to get care somewhere else, you should. we create competition and make the va better than what we see today in many places. that will give veterans a choice. they fought for freedom, why shouldn't they get freedom to choose their health care? i proposed that for a long time, i cannot seem to make it work. host: we want you to talk about specific examples from this year's wastebook. one that stood out was paying for a study that had people lying in beds for 70 days. nasa study.is a paying people to see where the physiological effect of being in a headdown position. that is what they should have their astronauts doing. they should put the very people they are going to be putting through this. that's why they hire people.
we take 10 people or 12 people and pay them $18,000 for six months to lie flat. let's do that to the guys in the program rather than contact -- rather than contract out. i am questioning why you would not have the very guys who are going to be your flyers doing that. host: over your four editions of the wastebook, how many examples have you been able to retire from the book? guest: 20 -- host: out of 400? guest: what we have done is prevent more of the same. nsf pays a lot more attention to what we are saying, nih pays attention. does not pay any attention. they probably have not even seen the wastebook, they do not even care. it is such a convoluted mess of priorities. the state department spent $5 million to buy crystal where. -- crystalware.
whether we need it or not, we spent $5 million. what could that do for education of inner-city schools? we are out of control. host: richard from philadelphia, pennsylvania on our line for independents. you're on with tom coburn of oklahoma. caller: thank you, senator coburn for your wastebook. i appreciate the information. the comment on nsa. i agree with the other caller about the conflict of confidence that exists and has always existed. i wonder about the technology, the development that gives this type of intrusion. not through the government for beingty purposes, inundated in our society. i am concerned about that. host: senator coburn?
guest: he is right to be concerned. one of the things i have told my staff and i am going to do -- i am not going to carry a cell phone. i will not have a blackberry. too much technological capabilities to invade my privacy. there is no guarantee someone has not -- it does not have to be the government -- the fact is that if you want your privacy that, you have got to get rid of the electronics, the mobile devices. somebody, somewhere -- not the government -- google or facebook, we just saw a deal yesterday where facebook can see what you're typing. and not necessarily on facebook. i think he is right to be concerned with this modern method of communication. there comes a lot of motor abilities. -- there comes a lot
of vulnerabilities. we have demonstrated irresponsibility. one of the things that is dangerous for a republic is for people to lose confidence. lose confidence in the government's offices -- in the ices, lose's ausp confidence and the rule of law. that is how you get the unwinding in a republic. people want us to address the real problems rather than play games. too often, we play games. our motivations tend to be about us. oft: senator coburn, author the fourth edition of the wastebook. you can see it at on the next "washington
journal" we will talk with scott by david sanger. then fund-raising and spending elections 4 and 2016 and role of outside spending s.oups by super pac "washington journal" is live morning at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> i was a donor to martha's of your e so many viewers. michael and i would do the annual consideration of things we cared they were se important to us, issues that we match bout because they the our broader belief but the and rs in our community martha's table delivered hot meals to the little park outside
the bill and melinda gates at mcpherson square and i would see the van there people and i knew that it was volunteer driven. volunteers, 80 hard working staff and they had the ous influence in community they were serving. it was a great brand and i join thaty wouldn't i organization and see if he can put my skills to work and see if i can understand better why do e have this issue persistent child poverty. why do we have so many children that are not graduating high and going to college and being able to attach that careers the way i was able to. and c.e.o. of t martha's table on leading the based nonprofit c-span ight at 8:00 on "q&a." >> now a conversation about the role in eme court's
>> someone else will have to control the microphone. for me great privilege to have an opportunity to ask uestions of justice ginsberg instead of the other way around. [laughter] >> i want to thank all of you ut there who planted questions with me in the hopes that i ould ask toes questions, but i probably won't ask any of those questions. let's start, justice ginsberg, the supreme court of the united states. your court handle the most difficult and most ontroversial questions of our day and of our society involving voting, property, ra ace, freedom, campaign contributions, all of those thin things. about this pecial
court? despite the fact you decide hese controversial questions, the supreme court of the united states is the most respected nstitution in our government and has been for a long time. tell us about why that is. >> i would add that it is respected highst court in the world. one reason is that we have been in passing on laws an executive actions for constitution constitutionality. in most countries in the world supremacy was deeply rooted, and it was not world war ii that inrts abroad began to engage judicial review for constitutionality. so, just to take a few notable
cas when president truman that the country was at war in korea and could not risk strike in the steel plants, so the steel mills and the was challenged and court held, mr. president, you o not have that authority acting alone. you need congress to be with you. so, what did truman do? the next day he turned the mills owners.the that is remarkable to many courts in the world. we have an excellent police court, but we have we do not have our own purse. and yet when the supreme court a decision like that,
probably the most dramatic was nixon nixon. the court says turn over the he did and resigned from office. so, part of it is the court has very long s for a time and it is accepted. take your famous case, bush v gather. the court made its decision. i dissented, as you know. that.do know >> the next day the country accepted it. in the as rioting streets. the election had been settled. that, that the court is a evered institution and i think that all of the current members common, we ng in want to keep it that way. we want to be sure when we leave the court it will be in as
secure a position as it was in we became a member. .> that leads me to a question you do decide very controversial the , and sometimes disisn'ting opinions clash with -- dissenting major s clash with the opinions and they come back every year in october after the are rendered in june and you all seem to get will with one another notwithstanding the difficult and intense decisions that are made. is that true? what are your relationships? collegial he most place i have ever worked. faculty. any law and part of it is we know we have to work together to keep in the position that it holds. that take bush v gore,
was a marathon. we read the review saturday, riefs filed sunday, argued monday and decision out on tuesday. days, we after, within had our regular january sitting we all came together and it though nothing had happened. it was the same. we were going on to the new sitting. >> has it always been that way? book written about swornons called "nine in a bush scorpions in a bottle" i know some people felt in past year the justices on the animosity toward one another. if that is true, what do you to what do you attribute the relationships that you have now? in different periods the
collegial and uncollegial. perhaps the post striking uncollegial court s when president wilson brandeis.louis mcreynolds had been appointed before. jews so s didn't like much so that when brandeis spoke mcreynoldsnce justice left the room. every time there is a new photograph.ake a the year brandeis was appointed, because no photograph justice mcreynolds refused to justice been dies. brandeis. have -- so there have been animosities from time to time but i can say court is most t
collegial. > it is well known, i think, you and justice scalia are very good friends and have a relationship with one another notwithstanding the fact that his judicial philosophy are judicial philosophy can e quite distant and you have dissented from his opinions and vice versa. is that true about your justice hip with scalia? and what causes that to be true? >> i met justice scalia for the on the me when he was faculty of the university of teaching at was columbia. , it was about a famous administrative law case the d. krfpc. circuit that wil been handed down, vermont yankee, and he was severely critical of that decision. i disagreed with almost
said hing he saeid, but he it in such an utterly way.vating [laughter] >> and even now, ted, you have consumer of our products our styles areat quite different. his style is attention grabbing, would you say? and mine is, i would say, moderate and restrained in comparison. i find it attention grabbing when you ask me a question and court.uing in the it gets my attention. scalia are justice opera buffs. opera together. i read in the paper that there
has written an opera about justice ginsberg and did youcancel kwrafrplt -- scalia. did you know that? everything in the court is seniority. although i'm older than justice scalia, he was appointed before was. o the opera is called "scalia begins pwrg." >> tell us about the opera. you write an opera about the two of you although i peoplehere were a lot of that would like to take a hand at that. but it is really going to happen. going to show some -- page from the m score so you can see it does exist. composed by a a young man who advertises himself composer, lyricist and
pianist. but he also has a law degree and constitutional law class , was reading these opinions justice scalia's opinions, my opinions and he decided there make a great opera. a sample. give you scalia's opening aria. "rage aria". [laughter] refrain goes this way. the justices are blind. they possibly spout th this. absolutelyution says nothing about this. that is his opening.
is in the ve aria verdi and it goes you for a rching in vain bright line solution it a roblem that isn't so easy to solve. but the beautiful thing about is that, like n can evolve. it applause] >> i'm sure that everyone of us to stand ing to want in line to see the opera. year, do you a kwraoe expect? what is the plan? > there is a reading or a
singing in february somewhere baltimore. o, that will be the first time that the entire score will be play played. ginsberg, in 1981 justice agan appointed sandra day -- connor to the court. tpeufirst woman to serve on the united states supreme court. been 112 appointments to the supreme court. you were 18. is that correct? white?u replaced justice >> either 107 or 108. > you were the second woman appointed to the supreme court, just 20 years ago this year. to the court an when it finally had a woman you came on the court two women justices? say what it is leak
female.h three justices, >> when sandra was asked that question what does it mean to woman, she said if you think i'm glad ruth bader insberg has come on board you cannot imagine the joy of john -- o'connor toze be no longer the lone male spouse. [laughter] > she was there all alone for 12 years. a sign that women were there to when i was appointed. hey did a renovation in our robing room. up until then there was a men.oom and it was labeled so, when sandra was at a the need arose she had to go back to her chambers. a women's led
athroom equal in size to the men men's. so, things were changing. or every year that we sat together, that justice o'connor nd i sat together, invariably one lawyer or another would call me justice o'connor. heard a woman's voice and they knew that there was a woman. although we don't speak now, and don't look alike, with three of us, no one calls justice sotomayor, no one just justice kagan ginsberg. change. exhilarating after sandra left and i was all corner of the bench - and i did feel lonely -- now
sit toward the middle and elena is on my left and sonia on my right. ted, those well know, two women are not shrinking i et violets. they are very active in their questioning questioning. it is woman for the school hildren who parade in and out to see that women are there of the court's operation. since you mention that the ral argument process i think most people don't know that the a rt hears about 75 cases year and each case, except in is allotted tions, one hour for oral argument. a halfans each side gets hour. some people think that the awyers get up and lecture or give a speech as part of their
oral argument. all.s not like that at can you describe what oral argument is like and how much you participate? >> let me just say something we hear 75 cases that opinion.de by a full hat 75 comes from a pile of over 8,000 petitions for review, we select a very small number. the reason we do that is we see of job as keeping the law the united states more or less uniform. it is a statutory question or a constitutional questi question. if everybody agrees, if all the lower courts are in agreement, for us to step in. d when good judges are of minds on what is the right
answer, that is when we step in will not be one u.s. law on the west coast and middle one in the states. so, the 75 we get down to that way. the oral argument time, as you said, is a half hour a side. that is very precious. the justices come to the bench reams of ng done reading. so the justices start with decisions in the lower court. do that before i turn to the lawyer's brief so we will know if the lawyers are giving an decisions.unt of the >> if they are not justice ginsberg catches them. diswe have many, many
frien curiae., so many that the justices can't justices f them so my have the instructions read the green briefs. supports a petition and dark green the response and friend of the court briefs in thraee piles. one is skip, that is the largest pile. another is skim or read pages .ine through 13 a small pile is that says read. really e the really, ood ones, people who are not just saying me, too. come to the bench we
and prepared armed for the hearing of the case and that we e questions think are the most difficult once on which the decision may turn. o, the advocates should have a khapchance to address what is oe maker's mind. resent our wyers interruptions. like us to keep quiet and let them present their spiel. but for me when i was reviewing that s cold bench, one just listened, was the worst possible because i had no idea of the was it the minds judges. a question is asked not so much to elicit response but to persuade
a colleague. justice tries to assist a lawyer who is on the by asking a helpful questi question. becausers miss this cue they are so suspicious. come off the bench i have a pretty good idea where my that case.are on each metimes talking to other we are talking through the counsel and not to counsel. found that certain styles of advocacy by the work better in the court? justice scalia was here about of a few months ago and talked about advocacy and he has written about it. you must have your own views about what works and what doesn't work. you say a word or two
about that? prepared that a well opening sentence is a good idea. out.an get that >> sometimes. to ride with the ave, go where the court is taking you and don't try to the ely to get back script that you planned. i always had about four or five i wanted that this s essential for me to say and the rest i could skip. so i would try to make sure in poin ument i made those points. question -- if i was responding to a question, then i thed immediately pick up on possibility that i wanted to get a pause thout leaving that would invite another
question. >> this raises something that you were an ow but advocatover as you just -- yourself as you indicated before the supreme court. you handled cases involving of women and discrimination. >> and men. .> and men questions of gender discrimination arose. 39 cases or argued something like that before he supreme nted to the court. does it make a difference that advocate ourself an and so know what it is like out there? your cheeks have not -- colleagues have not argued. a solicitor was general so she argued a number of cases that one year. it make a difference to be on the court to have been an advocate? does in this
respect. i try to keep my questions ti t tight. as a professor a behave as a professor with complicat complicated hypothetical that on. i try to abbreviate the questions so i'm not cutting lawyer's time successful successfully. it is ou appreciate what like to be interrupted and listen to speeches in the form of questions. you avoid that yourself. cheolleagues have a little more broader attitude question-asking process. >> yes. but i have occasionally that.nted on i think we appreciate ou and ous that half hour is we try to be more disciplined.
it is such a contrast to observe provoke in the united states supreme court and do what i'm going to do in february, go to of justice, court highest court in the european union. in have the justices sit magnificent maroon velvet robes ask no questions at all. hey sit through the entire argument. i think it would be very hard were to stay awake if i operating in that type of court. the uld you are comment on confirmation process? and then we will have some questions from the audience. yearsou were confirmed 20 ago the vote was 97-3. three t look up the senators who voted against you but i bet you could name them. the process has become very
contentious. john roberts, there were 20-plus otes against john roberts for confirmation. there were more than 40 votes alito when he was confirmed. an you comment on what the confirmation process has become compared when you were confirmed? two of us were confirmed in days.on before that there was the failed bork.ation of judge robert there was justice thomas's nomination. think the committee was mindful that its public because n had declined of those two nominations. there was a deliberate
effort to be civil. will been no women on the enlarged the they committee by two and had senator carol mosely,braun were added to the committee. in june. nated any senator could have put a my hearing o that wouldn't come up until the new way.was under and although there were three none of the s, three tried to stop the from mation process occurring speedily. the ggest supporter on judiciary committee was not now biden. president joe
he was the chair of the committee. but it was orrin hatch. i had, as was announced, a affiliation with the american civil liberties union. one senator asked me any questions about that affiliation. my hope is that we will get back to the way it was. the chief and justice alito. true of is also justices kagan and sotomayor, negative, negative votes. i knew great man that and loved said the symbol of the isn't the es really bald eagle but the pendulum. has swing too far in
one direction in the handling of judicial nominations and should back to the middle. >> i think we would all hope that. et's give a hand to justice ginsberg. [applause] do we have time for questions? >> we do have time for questions. microphones.o i would ask that you go to one of the micro phones and identify ho you are and company and no questions from the media today, please. thank you. cases no questions on that are pending decisions or to be heard. thank both oft to you for your historic leadership in protecting the rights of gay to marry. it was a terrific change and necessary. you.nk [applause]
you for sharing your thoughts with us today. one thing as an american as part of the business community that has troubled me increasingly i would like and your view on it is there are longer laws and ambiguous laws. we have the example of how at&t ried to buy a company they thought they could buy but with great lawyers presumably but yet struck down by government and cost them $4 billion. is alwaysss community trying to think they are following the laws but they are ambiguous, unclear. putting a greater burden on courts, number one? a ber that, if you had message to legislators or wish they could do something, you had a magic button you could press would you like congress to do differently than they are doing today? the first part of your uestion, many, many laws are
can be s, dense, and ead in more than one which, sometimes more than three or , ur ways. sometimes more than three or four ways., sometimes more than three or four way, sometimes more than three or four ways., sometimes more than three or four ways.a, sometimes more than three or four ways.y, sometimes more than three or four ways. in that respect our congress stand up so well in the world. there seems to be a lack of discipline discipline. used in otherbeen places is to have an expert the ing committee go over theisions and try to detect ambiguiti ambiguities. ambiguities the are deliberate because the political hot potato and the members of preferred to bump it to
the court to say what the law meant. i think people in the business world who care should know eir representatives that you are having a hard time unclear.he laws are >> next. > justice ginsberg, i work at . can question after same-sex marriage and same as a whole where do ou see equal protection jurisprudence being applied down the road? >> thank you for asking that the equal protection clause is my favorite clause in he constitution and i think it