tv Washington Journal CSPAN December 22, 2013 7:00am-10:00am EST
raising and spending for the 2014 elections. dave levinthal with the center for >> thank you mr. president. what was the message you are trying to send by not attending the sochi games? all, i suspect that me attending the olympics when we have other things that people have been talking about -- i will go to a lot of olympic games post-presidency. ♪ good morning. that question at the president's news conference.
the obama's are spending christmas in hawaii. we will begin on the issue of the u.s. allegation to the sochi olympic games and get your comments. it is sunday morning, december 22. welcome to "washington journal." our phone lines are open. the numbers are on your screen. host: this is the question. using the olympics to address social issues. you can also send us a tweet. here is how we posted it on our twitter page should the president use the olympics to address social issues? here is the story on the sunday morning from usa today. the headline is that the president has made a decision by naming a veil of the delegation
and sent a message to russia. they are delivering a strong message of opposition. the delegation will include an openly gay athlete, billy jean king. it will not include the president, first lady, or vice president. they have all headed previous delegations. time sincethe first 2000 that a president has not been a member of the delegation. ins is slated for february sochi, russia. lubbock,ticizing the he is a great idea. here is more from the president on friday afternoon. [video clip] >> the fact that we have folks like ellie jean king or brian
boitano -- they themselves have been world-class athletes. everyone acknowledges them for their excellence and their character. they are also members of the lgbt community. you should take that for what it is worth. when it comes to the olympics and athletic performance, we do not make distinctions on the basis of sexual orientation. we judge people on how they perform. and off thecourse course. on the field and off the field. that is a value that is at the heart of american sports. president onom the friday at his news conference. give us a call and let us know your thoughts on using the olympics to address social issues. in particular, the announcement of the group that includes
openly gay athletes. it will not include the president, vice president, or first lady. the numbers again are on your screen. host: this is the headline from the chicago tribune. from our website at c-span.org and the facebook page, we are also getting your comments. should the olympics be used to address social issues? join in on the conversation on facebook. before we get to more calls and comments, the newsmakers program will air after "washington journal." there will be a conversation with the bi -- davd vitter. here's is a portion of our conversation. [video clip] of an issue will
this be in 2014? guest: at least 80% of that whole campaign. in terms of what it is about. i do not think that will be unusual. it is a huge issue. >> would you like to see her defeated? >> she is helping to drive the country in the wrong direction. she helped to elect harry reid. she supports altra liberals who disagree with the mainstream of louisiana. host: our conversation with david vitter as he reflects on the 2014 senate election. the role of the affordable care act on louisiana voters. that phone interview airs at 10:00 eastern time on c-span and c-span radio. meanwhile, the story on the health care issue in the new
york times. momentum is uncertain as health-care enrollment deadline nears. for most americans, the deadline is monday. that will take effect on january 1. it is supposed to be a turning point in the troubled strip the new health care law. the moment when the spotlight will shift from the online marketplace to the insurance companies, providing coverage to hundreds of thousands of people. as that date approaches, a series of decisions by the white house to delay some of the most important provisions and extends deadlines has caused uncertainty among insurers. that this morning from inside the new york times. back to your calls on using the olympics to address social issues. we will go to appleton, was confident. democratic line. caller: i do not agree with using the olympics for that. i think that the only reason that they are doing that is because of the way russia stuck us in the back area -- .
if they would send snowden back to the u.s., i inc. the situation would be better. --in does not realize that just wait until the republicans get into office. he will find out that he should have been nicer to the u.s. host: thank you for the calls. republican line. good morning. anything do not think clinical should be socially said during the own picks. it should be kept pro olympics. setso think that we should a missile defense shield back up. host: thank you very much for the call. from yahoo! news, president
obama -- no. vice president biden -- no. the white house announces that the delegation for the opening ceremonies and closing andmonies in sochi russia the list is notable for who will not be going. france is also announcing that its top officials will snub the games. keep in mind that michelle obama did lead the u.s. delegation in the opening ceremonies of the 2012 games in london. next is connecticut. the morning. caller: i just have a comment on the committees that will be attending the olympics. -- entering politics into to try to get camaraderie -- as for billy jean
ago, she played tennis. i never forgot. i was traumatized by it. it was not something that was done. i am not in favor of her being in any committee. someoneo respect for who aborted an unborn child to play tennis. host: we appreciate your call. how is president clinton's point of view any different -- president putin's point of view bt community any different from the republicans at home. the question is using the olympics to address social issues. here is this quote, which says that who are we to be using the
olympics to lecture the russians about how to run their country? king as aillie jean symbol of what? isn't that sumptuous or worse -- arrogant? from 3wiresports.com. our phone lines are open. let me share you what president putin said during his recent year and address. he talked about social issues as well. here is a portion. the entire speech is available on c-span.org. [video clip] >> today, many countries are andewing the morals national traditions between nations and cultures. society is now required not only to recognize everyone's right to
religious freedom and privacy, but also to obligatory late scrutinize the parity of evil and good. these are notions that are contradictory. it is a destruction of traditional values. it not only causes problems, but is anti-democratic. it is contested based on vague ideas. again, that is a portion of president putin's speech. we have posted them on our website. on our twitter page, there is this. it may be the russians country, but they are hosting the world. our focus is on using the olympics to address social issues. there is a complete list of all who will be attending and leaving the delegation.
the opening ceremony is led by janet napolitano. she is now the president of the university of california. she will be joined by the u.s. ambassador to the russian delegation. kingalked about billie jean and brian boitano. closing sarah to -- closing ceremonies will include eric heiden, a five-time olympic gold medalist. santa cruz, california. democratic line. caller: hello. good morning. i think it is fine to use the limbic says a social platform. we have done that before with jim thorpe. the athletes in the 60's. , as a country, by law, support gay people.
i think that we should let russia now that this is not ok. host: thank you. billie jean king issued this tweet. i am honored to represent the usa in sochi and i hope these olympics will be a watershed moment for the universal acceptance of all people. " mississippi, good morning. caller: good morning. how are you doing? i disagree. i do not think that we should be pushing this moral issue around the world. it onuntries come into their own. the united states has done a lot. host: thank you for the call.
politico has this related story on gay marriage. in salt lake city utah, judges surprised people and overturned the marriage ban. one court opened early yesterday to open licenses. about 40 minutes north of salt lake city, people showed up and were later turned away. the clerk apologized and said the county officials had told him that opening for special circumstances may balk -- violate the constitution. he also said that he was told that the standard security requirements were not in place. the confusion and reports of -- shows how it caught many people off guard. janet is joining us from
massachusetts. good morning. caller: hello. i think that making a political statement -- i disagree with him. thes no attempts to destroy second amendment. that it has been opened for putin to do that. host: ok. the winter games are getting underway in early february in russia. bob is joining us from california. good morning. caller: i kind of looked at the olympics as a lot of countries do. over its history, we have kept out people from different religions and ethnic groups. ympicsl ic --
reflect sports. it is something that we have strong interest in. we do not spend that much money to protect other people. it really is indicative of how we live. but it would countries have done in wars. it is a reflection of that. host: thank you for the call. we're also tracking your comments on our facebook page. again, using the limbic to address social issues. many of you already posted your comment saying no. said some incompetent peanut farmer from georgia already tried that. is that the point of the olympics? danny says that the president has no business address in the games. he does enough game on his vacations.
then again, why not today? there is no business that is not the governments business. next is chris, florida. republican line. caller: host: good morning. i do not think the olympics is the place to address social issues. gay and lesbian community do not think of it as a social issue. they think of it as a human rights issue. they want to be looked at as being accepted as anyone else's. it depends on who you talk to. host: ok. another common. stop letting the media define us. we are not a nation of gays. we do not celebrate perversion
of that order. duck dynasty continues to get a lot of attention. that was the focus on friday. the chicago tribune is writing about the star, who made some similar comments available on youtube in february 2010. it was an event in pennsylvania. he said "they committed indecent acts with one another. they received due penalty for their perversion." that their insolence, god haters. they are heartless and ruthless. they invent ways of doing evil. that is from phil robertson from 2010. that story this morning from inside the chicago tribune. john is joining us next from san francisco. caller: good morning. i think that social issues will
come up. the fact thatat the russians have an anti-propagation law is blown out of proportion. he is somehowhat making being gay illegal. be under atus will threat. example of a bigger how russia is always being portrayed as being backward. putin is a much played the part. thatat the riot issues they have dealt with here in the media. they were exalted as superstars. the greatest people in the world. if they had done the same thing in the united states, going into a cathedral and tearing it up or
going into the subway and doing provocative things like kissing the police, there would have been arrested here and put in prison for five or 10 years. effortee it as another of the western media and western politicians to try to chip away and humiliate vladimir putin. i think he is actually doing some good things in russia. host: thank you for the call. valerie is joining us from jasper, indiana. good morning. billie jeaon't think rking should be representing coulter. -- our country. there are too many issues. people are not all for her. --hink that somebody
there are too many things that she stands for the people do not believe in. host: ok. thank you for the call. this is from joe, who sent us this tweet. we should send the "duck dynasty" family to the delegation. this has also been getting attention -- secret u.s. aid to help colombia rebels. this secret assistance from the cia also includes use chopping help from the national security agency, funded through a multibillion-dollar budget. it is not part of the $9 billion package that began in 2000. the previously undisclosed program was authorized by george w. bush in the early 2000 and has continued under president obama.
that is the front page on the cia operations inside columbia. u.s.e asking about the olympics and being used as a social issue. a couple of your comments by e-mail. do not know if they'll ebix is the best place to stick up a finger to russia, but i do know that when you stick up your middle finger, it usually involves a payback. it should be outraged if it isn't well-received. the world believes that we should not have the death penalty, perhaps we should not participate in games until we get rid of it. socialthey'll ebix as a issue is the focus of this morning. we showed you this morning the front page of the new york times. there a piece on former president clinton. jonathan martin is reporting that he may be a globe trotting citizen of the world, but these days he is focusing on his home state.
the election ballot for next year looks like a clinton family tree. some of his protéges and ask staff members and family friends -- paul is joining us next from arizona. democratic line. caller: how are you doing today? i was just going to comment on nelson mandela squeeze passing. -- recent passing. we should be reminded that equal weights are a world issue. we cannot keep it to ourselves. with the religious right treating homosexuals like they are some sort of evil group, their people that want equal rights. not just in our country, but the world over. that is my comment. host: thank you. dean says the olympics are a great place to adjust social issues.
it is like a thermometer every year on the health of the planet. we have the front page cover story from the new york times. the post shames mccain. they share some quotes. the brave maverick became a bitter old man and is learning to let go and looking back on his own life. how he turned clichés intimating. inside, they make this point. there is no such thing as friends, i can count on one hand the number of real friends i have. sean is joining us from corpus christi texas. good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. i was going to comment that the united states has a legacy that we are revered for. we expanded justice and freedom and equality to everybody. we should continue this legacy. he did win a nobel peace prize.
he is not earning it by using drones in the middle east. he has used this as an opportunity to live up to the title. waysing the olympics as a to communicate to the rest of the world that we stand for justice, equality. nominating the people that he did was a good first step to go further. by boycotting them all together, that is what i would've done anyway. thank you for taking my call. host: some of the headlines on the sunday morning. a follow-up on the shooting that took place at a high school outside of denver colorado. the victim passed away over the weekend. lightadline is claire's lives on. they hailed her big part. it was a front-page story on the development of story in the south of sudan. for on board and the south of sudan were injured as the
aircraft tried to make an evacuation. the state department issued a warning to leave the country immediately. the richmond times dispatch -- mcauliffe hits the ground running. he prepares to take office in early january. this from the boston sunday globe -- catholics in the age of pope francis. martha is joining us from louisiana. republican line. caller: good morning. they seem to have a good issue against russia. i was wondering why they do not go after the extremist in the muslim world. the jihadist. that is all i have to add. host: we will go to west in spartanburg, south carolina. caller: good morning. only one criticism. you should take a lot more of your calls.
i just want to take a second about billie jean king. there was not an olympic champion in tennis until 1984. i think that she definitely deserves to be there. if you look at the history of her, her accomplishments -- she 29 grandhe won slam titles. she should leave the olympics. it is that simple. host: thank you for the call. from william, on the twitter page. they are for young athletes, competing for their respective sport trip -- . the question is using the olympics to address social issues. a lot of people are rating into that -- reading into that.
this is the first time since 2000 in sydney, australia that the president is not attending. the story is available online. harry reid -- believes that john boehner will cave in on immigration reform. he argues that speaker boehner has a new willingness to confront two-party groups. this gives him confidence that he will not have to break up the senate immigration bill. he can negotiate piecemeal reforms in the house. he is saying that his boss is sticking to his strategy. the speaker has been very clear that the house will only address immigration reform and a step-by-step, common sense manner. that is a story from the hill newspaper. bob is joining us from missouri. good morning to you. caller: thank you.
will -- as an independent, i put this into context. i think we're in a very rational situation with russia. it was an example of using politics and the olympics. it made a great statement. host: thank you for the call. next is chris from new haven, connecticut. caller: good morning steve. foodthink that we have -- and is beginning to act more and more like we are at war all the time. this is a tradition for the united states to add -- stand up for rights all the time. i think that the examples of our athletes this time will be a good example. host: why? caller: i think that it is a good example to the world. going --can people are growing in their sensitivity to
lgbt persons. i have a niece who is married in australia. i have a nephew who is married in poland. i know that my nephew would be very disappointed if his sister, who is gay, was not represented by the american delegation. in russia, we have an international family. she was married in montréal. my own family went up to montréal to attend the wedding. my mother was absolutely enthralled with the wonderful wedding that she and her wife had. america is beginning to understand that people are people. the way that they live should not be denigrated. we're getting over it. dynasty" notwithstanding. host: there's a headline i will
share with you in just a moment. this is from "the washington post." the centennial anniversary. happy birthday, federal reserve. how the most powerful bank was created. that is in the business section. joe in los angeles, good morning. caller: yes. i want to remind people that marriage predates the constitution of the united states. it was the first form of government. , who have a more conservative view of marital status, or to engage in this with aal and insult them gay agenda. -- thatin and told to is an insult to good manners. we're sending a message that what we are projecting to the
world is our gay agenda. we want to project that throughout the world and change the world of culture. it is just evil. i think that we should keep politics out of it. inject theimply not gay agenda into the olympics. host: thank you. jana makes this point -- maybe it is just the news media that is outraged. to "duck dynasty," this headline. the state may produce "duck dynasty." those comments are getting a lot of attention as they reevaluate the relationship with the robinson family. ralph is joining us from plainview, texas. good morning. caller: how are you today?
they want to push this insurance on us so badly. why are they not willing to take the same type of insurance? host: ok. thank you for the call. from our facebook page, we are asking the question, should the olympics be used to address social issues. you can weigh in. isricia says that putin using this as comeuppance. next up is mo from indianapolis. caller: yes. good morning. as anot see the gay issue public issue. it is a private issue. in my opinion, we should not be promoting a private agenda for
what you do in your a dream. that is your business. that should not stop you from being able to do anything. i do not know what you do in your bedroom. i would not want to promote a private relationship when you cannot help to keep the earth populated. host: thank you for the call. phil writes in the chicago tribune that our country still has severe shortcomings and issues of race and lgbt equality, despite the enormous progress. to our failings mean that we have forfeited the right to call out others, either directly or symbolically? absolutely not. that is from the chicago tribune. francis is joining us next from connecticut. welcome. caller: good morning.
i would just like to say that i agree with the person before. the one that you read out. it should be a private issue. marriage as anat institution being changed is the issue. not whether people are homosexual or lesbian. i have always been friends with homosexuals and lesbians. i have never treated them badly. i do not want my country to represent people who change that. host: thank you for the call. i thought the members of the delegation were just fine, just enough pushback. nbc is the host of the winter games in so she. there is a related story about the washington bureau this morning. the story points out that nbc news is spending the last few
days looking at moves that could ask senior talent. -- ax senior talent. they have stumbled in the midst of year and buyouts. better and have complained that the turnaround is not serious enough. instead of getting better, they have been getting worse. it is a mess. one senior executive was so outraged by the changes that she went over her head to complained to her superiors. the two cannot work together. they have been accused of checkbook journalism. they are landing he interviews. one possible change dealing with "meet the press," one of the options includes bringing in the msnbc team. details are available at the new
york post website. potential changes here in washington. jerry is joining us from jacksonville, florida. republican mine. caller: i want to talk about not using the lump except the platform for political purposes. they have been using these athletes since 1980, when the u.s. boycotted be moscow olympics. the only people who are ever heard were the athletes. not the russians or anybody else. it did not change anything. that is all i have to say. host: thank you for the call. coming up later, we will turn our attention to the situation in north korea. there is a new edition of the book and the air joining us. we will turn our attention to the issue of money in politics. good morning. where you from? caller: south carolina. i want to comment about the gay issue with russia.
to me, this is the height of hypocrisy. i just wanted to get my reasoning for that. go ahead. host: go ahead. caller: i did not know i was on the air. the athlete deals with arenas around the world. they put their political differences aside. the recent caller stole my thunder. we feel that strongly about an issue -- we should just boycott the games. at least gay athletes should. i am not sure that russia is creating all of the athletes to see if they are gay. we're kind of taking this to an extreme. this is a little silly to me. if we were at that point, i would say let's move forward. let's boycott the whole darn thing. i am betting there will be gay athletes from all over the world. probably some russian athletes who are gay. host: ok. thank you for the call.
from the new york times, some of the books they may be ridding yourself. number one on the list is a series of essays. they're called "things that matter." bill o'reilly is number two. george washington is number three. numberand goliath" is four. next is chatsworth, georgia. independent line. caller: hello. how are you? the subject about matter that they're talking about with lesbians and the gays. i do not remember reading in the bible about god reading adam and adam. he created adam and eat. -- eve.
we are all from one race. adam and eve. we are all equal. nobody is above anybody else. but the gays and the lesbians put their issues in our face. we are sick and tired of it. if they want to be what they want to be, that is fine. just do not push it in my face. host: ok. thank you very much for the call. this is from the london independent. it is a story about a pr executive. -- sheks for the company sent out a tweet that says going to africa. hope i do not get aids. just kidding, i am white. her tweet is getting a lot of attention. she is under fire for sending a racist tweet before flying to
africa. that is online from the london independent. augustine, georgia. good morning. caller: how are you? shouldolympics, there not be a political platform whatsoever. it is like a baseball game. you go there to relax. we do not need to push the world agenda. host: last call is from jamestown, north carolina. caller: good morning. i'm doing well. i would just like to say that i agree with what the president is doing. sending any major political figures to the represent -- the olympics to represent the united states. there is nothing wrong with that. it can be used as political leverage to let the world know what is going on. host: ok. jake says do not punish the athletes who train most of their lives to get there.
we still competed and won a not to germany posted them. the president and first family are now in white. they arrived at midnight local time. they will spend the next 17 days in whole eye. it is the sixth time in a row that they have spent christmas in white. -- in hawaii. they are talking about past presidential vacations. john f. kennedy spent many christmases in martha's vineyard. you can read that story online at washington post.com. coming up next, we will have scott snyder joining us and leave it -- later david sanger. be senatorguest will david vitter.
we will talk about the impact in louisiana. here's a portion of that conversation that will air at 10:00 eastern. [video clip] >> i interviewed the louisiana state climatologist. this is what he told me. he said that louisiana might be the most full marble state in the country in terms of climate change. in particular, that has to do he says that relative to sea level rise is off the charts here. what is your response? >> we have a huge problem with coastal erosion and all the problems that you're talking about. that is a take problem. we have been doing a lot to counteract that problem. we have made progress. right now, louisiana is losing about a football yield of coastal area. you can imagine a football field in your mind. every 30 minutes.
that is 24 hours a day, seven days a week. no time off for weekends or holidays. that is an issue. weather and climate is the fact air. climate has not been a dominant factor so far. there are arguments that it would be in the future. i think that the science -- the established science is mostly an impact of the levy on the mississippi river pushing out what used to be the natural process of building deltas. they're overflowing banks every spring. also, the channelization of the coast. it has led to the infusion of salt water into the coast. it sort of kills the vegetation. have in the those dominant causes today. host: in terms of the louisiana state climatologist, taking that into account -- he says that in
terms of climate change, louisiana is the state most vulnerable to damages. does that concern you? host: yes. this is an issue no matter what. that concerns me and we have done a lot of things to counteract it. vitter joins david us on newsmakers. that will be at 10:00 eastern. you are watching "washington journal." we will take a short break and when we come back we will turn our attention to the situation in north korea. scott snyder as we continue on the sunday morning. ♪ will 2013 wraps up, we
tell you about our year in review series. i will look at five important issues we have covered in the last year. here's the lineup. monday, immigration laws, tuesday, the luster rule changes. and surveillance on wednesday. thursday, it is gun laws. and on friday, we wrap up with a look at ajit and shut down. that all begins on monday on c-span. >> the thing i care about most is to make it more of a museum. with more pieces of beautiful furniture that belong to presidents. there is a antique furniture here now. most of what is is from 1910. >> why isn't there more antique furniture? is, thomasg
jefferson did the most wonderful thing of putting in beautiful furniture. the set and the war of 1812. everything was burnt. they had to start piecemeal since then. every president who came to get what he did not like. they used to have auctions. every president could change the decor. once president grant had the blue room violet. chester arthur had it robins egg blue. atally, that was all stopped the time of theodore roosevelt. >> the first lady's influence and image. tos week, lou hoover jacqueline kennedy. >> "washington journal" continues. host: we want to welcome back scott snyder. his area of expertise is the
u.s. and a written policy. we want to begin by asking about the kim jong un family and the dynamics that must be going on. what is happening? guest: it is clearly a complicated situation. , through the north korean workers party, found his uncle guilty of state crimes and has had him executed. jong-un is the son of kim jong-il. he has three brothers. two older brothers. ao. is in exile in mac he goes back and forth. is presumablyther
in north korea, but we have not heard much about him. he also has an aunt, who is reported to be very ill. i think that the concern about the execution of the uncle and the illness of the ant is that they were two of the three main and mentors. were expected to help him to learn how to be a leader. they are both kind of sidelined. we still have the top north korean general, who is the top of the military. he is an advisor. it is obviously a messy situation. we have not seen purges or executions in this way. historically, when his father amassed power, he did not kill his family members. they were just sidelined to
diplomatic posts. the fact that the uncle was executed does represent a serious departure from the way that the family had done its business and leadership in the past. host: not only that, but to be so public about it. guest: that is right. it was announced internationally before domestically. in the past, these purges have all been behind the scenes. au have a situation where public spectacle has occurred in front of all the korean people. it sends a message to every north korean leader that he is in charge. at greatlenged him personal risk. it also reveals family provisions go up to the top. historically, most divisions have been kept behind the scenes.
the north korean publicity machine focused on unity. to have this kind of family division at the top also raises questions about the special leadership of the kim family. certainly for outsiders. host: i want to share with you this photograph. it is courtesy of the daily mail in great britain. this is the uncle. he was executed. as you look at the picture, what do you see? guest: this is -- you see he is being taken to the firing squad. at this point, the judgment has been rendered. it is just really quite a dramatic picture. especially because this was in the major paper of record. people, the north korean did not get this kind of
first-hand view. host: his crime was what? guest: he had a long list of reputed crimes. thatost serious ones or the media reported that he was trying to launch a coup. he was also accused of full entering and jeb -- drug use. many other offenses. another measure that caught a lot of attention internationally was the crime of natural resources at cheap prices. this was to china. removal alsohis has some implications for the north korean relationship with china. host: you mentioned how it played out in the state-run media. and you read this and tell us with the caption says? guest: it is -- i cannot.
-- it is not -- it is partially blocked. viewable, i dos not know. i cannot figure out. host: the fact that this is what is seen is important. why? guest: historically, this sort of urge has happened behind the scenes. people find out about it weeks and months later. isthis particular case, it right there in the real-time. everybody knows. generally speaking, once it has been reported, some media has access to at least the voices.
the shocking things is that this was a family affair. he did this to his uncle. host: here's a picture of them back in february. also picturesre of him as an advisor to his father. -- he has been a figure who has been visible to the north korean people as an advisor for a long time. the north korean state media is now busy expunging his image. documentaries going on to the media that previously had images. he has been airbrushed out. there is a very expensive effort to go through the archives. the korean media archives have been removed. they are expunged of images
right now. host: we're showing some of these photographs. they are all courtesy of the daily mail. this is another scene of him and family members. why was he selected to replace his father? well, the best report that we have on that is from a japanese individual who served as his chef. that, at that caughthe had been publicly entering japan on illegal visas. without authorization. as a result of that, he was removed from consideration. he was the first son. people might have thought he would be the inheritor of power. between the second and third sons, the rumor is that kim jong-un has greater leadership
qualities. he was more aggressive in terms of personality. may be better suited to be the leader then the second son. host: we're talking with scott snyder. our focus is on the situation in north korea. also, the u.s. relations with korea. this gives us a sense of how the this transpired. s uncle was taken away from a workers party meeting. within two weeks, he was murdered. guest: the announcement was on december 4. he was removed. this, in essence, is a show. it was really put onto show the world and to the north korean people that he was being removed. the decision had already been made. it was already moving forward.
what would surprise a lot of people was the rapidity. also the execution. host: did he know that this would happen? guest: it is hard to know. wonder,u have to looking at him and historical images. jong-il andind kim kim jong-un, where did he think he was headed? he left an important trade delegation in the early 2000. people thought of him as he might be able to somehow help north korea in the direction of economic reform. some analogies have been made to chinese purges in the mao era. heis almost as though
challenged the leadership. of image anderms expectation. our guest is scott snyder. he is from rice university. he has also studied at harvard. he is the author of a number of books. i want to share with you the comments of john kerry. he was traveling in the region last week read this interview -- he responded to the execution in north korea. [video clip] >> it tells us a lot about how worthless and reckless he is. it also tells us a lot about how insecure he is. it tells us a significant amount about the instability internally
of the regime. this is not the first execution. a significant number of executions taking place over the last few months. importantly, it underscores the importance for all of us of finding a way forward with north korea in order to de-nuclear eyes of the peninsula. it is an ominous sign. >> what does that tell you about him? we know so little about him. >> north korea remains relatively opaque. we do have insight. the insight that we have tells us that he is spontaneous, erratic, still worried about his place in the power structure. he is maneuvering to eliminate any potential adversaries or competitors. host: the comments of the secretary of state john kerry in
an interview that aired last week on abc news. scott snyder, let's begin on the middle point that he was making. with regards to what is next in terms of the region's -- theroducts that prospect of internal instability is a double-edged sword. as long as power is not consolidated, it is going to be hard for external parties to engage with north korea in ways defensiveto a solution to north korea's nuclear problem. that is one aspect of it. on the other hand, it may be that the leadership, as currently configured, is going in the wrong direction. itthere is instability, could lead to a different kind of leadership. that could create better
circumstances for trying to achieve the objective of d nuclear rising north korea. denuclear rising -- de nuclearizing north korea. the differences between south korea and north korea are considerably greater than the differences between east and west germany. the economic out is greater between north and south korea. the way that people have been socialized is much different. the north korean people would have an even greater challenge and jury of difficulty inat and degree of difficulty integrating with south korean society. the south korean society has been growing, but it may not be cost ofgh to handle the
the absorption of north korea on its own if it is a sudden change in north korea. host: the other point of 's comments, the amount of executions happening in north korea. do you have any comments on that? publicthe number of executions have at least doubled. aides were executed in advance of his detention and trial and execution. host: our line for independents. good morning. at the publicly available information we are able to see, not necessarily intelligence, it seems to me that north korea is run like
organized crime. you have all of these different parts of the government that run different stuff and bring in hard currency for their own benefits. you have what looked like a sanctioned public hit coming from the top. it seems like an organized crime family like the old days back in new york. what are your thoughts? there are a number of analysts who have drawn that analogy. if you look at the types of products that north korea has been exporting, including illegal manufacture of drugs, illegal cigarettes, even counterfeiting of u.s. currency, there are many ways in which the product line parallels that of a crime family. there is no doubt that north korean state operatives have been engaged with organized crime counterparts as far as a
network to be able to do this kind of distribution. what might be a little unique is that you have a family and a regime that is being controlled by those regime -- those interests acting as a nationstate. that has presented a number of problems, particularly trying to get at those issues. another aspect is the china- north korea relationship has shielded north korea from perhaps some of the measures that could be taken more proactively in order to a dress some of -- in order to address some of those issues. from new yorkus city on our independent line. good morning. caller: north korea knows that
againstll not be whatever action it is doing. china would never allow a democracy ordered with the west. it would never allowed north and south korea to unify. there was a story of a similar execution in bangladesh. the guy was condemned to death and they killed him overnight. it was in 1970. the west talks about situations and things about which they want to talk. china's interests are directly affected by north korea. it does not look like kim jong- un is subject to me in relation by china. manipulation by china.
that kim jongrned on his out-of-control just like secretary kerry is concerned that he is out of control -- that kim jong-un is out of control just like secretary he isis concerned that out-of-control. how much can the u.s. and china work together to try to a dress this issue? -- address this issue? leery of thea headstrong kim jong-un? they really wanted and tonomically minded leader take the helm and follow in china's footsteps. has abdicated -- has
advocated a line of trying to hold onto nuclear capabilities. host: from florida, and daniel is next on the -- from florida, el is next on the democrats ' line. screen thered your -- she said keep your comments brief. child, the korean incursion into south korea, the chinese- led incursion into south korea i becamefirst time aware of military matters and global things. -- and god love
dennis rodman -- he is the best ambassador america can have anywhere. here is the problem. what about when richardson, when ,e was governor of new mexico handed over all of that nuclear s.formation from loss alamo he said -- los alamos. extubated --on -- excavated that ground. thing, north korea is a nuclear power and you have greta -- gretarend --gre van sustren running over there.
host: thank you. let me go back to his second comments. dennis rodman is still over there today. guest: they call a basketball diplomacy. i see a lot of basketball, but not much diplomacy. it does not appear that the united states has been able to figure out a way of effectively ofching onto rodman as a way achieving any objectives. one of the most prominent ones is whether rodman cannon facilitate the release of a korean -- whether rodman can facilitate the release of a korean american. rodman indicated he might take that up, but then he stepped away from that. in terms of the broader exposure, it is fascinating to watch kim jong-il and dennis rodman sitting next to each
other. i do not know if it is effective from the north korean perspective. --is the one instance is looksce where kim jong-un like a kid. and all the other pictures, he is falling -- following and his grandfather and father's the steps and portraying himself as a leader. host: this is a comments. it is called north korea's dennis rodman problem. work, no part to the north korean can travel thomas speak, or worship freely. as many as 2.5 million north oreans died of starvation related illness in the mid-19 90s. 1990's. 200 thousand still languishing in prisons. 200,000line unburied --
still languish in prisons. the dead lie unburied. picture of the a situation inside north korea in 2000.te 1990s and up to the situation in parts of north korea has gotten better. there is no question that the north korean leadership structure imposes severe forms of inequality and desperation on the lowest people in that structure. the political present camp system is still operating in a major way. north korea is unquestionably the worst governed country on earth by almost all the indices that are out there.
everyone should want to see improvements in north korea. the human rights situation is the subject of the u.n. human rights council's inquiry that has been in place over the past few months. they will be releasing a report in march on the situation. enable furtherht actions by the international community to condemn what just happened in the north korea. ist: "washington journal" carried nationwide on xm 120. .ur guest is scott snyder this is a tweet from james. please show the picture of north and south korea at night. this is an infamous photograph taken several years ago. you can see the difference between north and south korea. scott snyder.
guest: the picture is really germanic. it shows the energy problem that north korea has. it shows south korea looking more like -- the picture is really dramatic. it shows south korea looking more like an island. joining us from north carolina. good morning. snyder. mr. in 1952. korea what do you think the odds are that we will have to go to war again with north korea? the second question is, if we that chinae the odds and russia would participate in that conflict like they did the last time? looking at that picture, it
looks like korea in 1952-1953. in south korea, there were lights over it just like here in the states. guest: the big difference in the 1950s was that there were night many lights in south korea that would've been able to show up on this kind of satellite image. i am increasingly worried that there is not a peaceful pathway to solving this problem with north korea. it is a matter of concern because even though there are few options for effectively dealing with north korea from a policy perspective, i think there is a risk of being in and also acquiescing to north korea continuing to develop the capability of having ability that could
reach the united states. have stepped back from north korea to a certain degree. thea seems to be sending message to north korea that it will not honor it treaty obligations -- is treaty obligations under the framework of 1961 if north korea provokes an attack. abandonednot formally that treaty obligation. it is still in effect in a partial way. ,ost: our guest, scott snyder the council on foreign relations. there was a recent blog you theed on friday with
could this be a korea-chinar u.s.- relations? guest: it is pushing, to a certain degree, debate in china over the possibility of a policy approach that would be more aligned with the u.s. and south korea. whether or not china would ultimately be willing to take that would involve dealing with potential instability in north korea remains to be seen. the: you can read that on counsel for former relations website. our guest, scott snyder. joining us from ohio. good morning. caller: i am skeptical of mr.
snyder's view that north korea is a loose cannon. the north korean leader doesn't dare get out of line or china will slap him down. i really believe that north korea is a proxy for china to these ofwest's resolve these certain policies we have is these are the -- vis a v certain policies we have. there are certain allies we would back up like the philippines. the saber rattle laying that goes on there shakes loose valuable information for china to evaluate. thank you for taking my question
. guest: there are divisions on how china deals with north korea. china is increasingly put on the defensive. the u.s., south korea, and japan have tried to use those provocations as a way of any potential effort by china to do anything like that. certainly, they are sending the message that north korean provocation carries costs for china's own national security interests in case china did not always recognize that was the case. williamr next call is joining us from massachusetts on the republican line. good morning.
caller: i have been listening to your show for a little while now. it is terrible what north korea has gone through. it is well over 100 years now that they have literally been enslaved, especially since the end of world war ii. it is since 1905 when the japanese moved in. not help north korea. they have been living like this well over 100 years. i know the united states is leery of war. we have been to iraq and we are still in afghanistan. but who else, if not the united states, is going to free the north korean people? i believe china is tired of the -- kim regime. what else can north korea do besides rely on the united states or nato? if we got together with china and russia and reassured them
that we are not there to threaten china or russia, but just to get the god awful kim regime out. thank you for allowing me to make my comments. host: thank you. guest: the problem in dealing with china is precisely this issue. hasnorth korean leadership taken advantage of that situation on many occasions to gain resources and to graduate regime survival. the question really is -- the geostrategic question -- is what can the u.s. and south korea and due to close that gap and change the context that will allow the international community and allow north korea to move in a direction that might have a different future.
can i go back and ask you about the dennis rodman question? why has he developed this relationship with kim jong-un? what does it potentially mean in the long run? guest: it is a peculiar relationship. no north korean leader has had a relationship of this sort with any american. the opportunity to visit north was in partally brokered by individuals who recognized that kim jong-un had an interest in the nba. rodman took advantage of it. there were several competing efforts to try to get nba representatives to north korea. rodman was the one who took advantage of it. in the coming weeks, we are and ato see another visit
game involving other former nba players that is going to be held on january 8, kim jong-un's earth day. .- birthday there will be expanded interaction. it will depend on the eye of the beholder whether that game and spectacle will be one to help us -- help enhance the standing -- enhance the standing of kim jong-un. host: we go to california, the independent line, good morning. caller: thanks for taking my call. my question is regarding north korea and what their role is in -- do those islands or japan
have the ability to shoot down an icbm? interestingis an set of questions. north korea has not figured in the island dispute between china -- china and japan. the u.s. got involved with vietnam and it is possible to imagine north korea might try to find ways to take advantage of the existence of other disputes in the region to further its own interests. it intersects in terms of the thative priority of issues u.s. leaders bring with them when they visit and talk with chinese leaders. the u.s. has to prioritize. is it more important to address that issue or the north korean issue? to using those
islands as a way of striking down any kind of icbm from north korea, there are already other assets in place that are being notloped that would necessarily require or need use of those particular islands in order to try to achieve that objective. the u.s. investment in that area has been more in alaska and northern areas of japan. also, we have just seen the announcement last spring of a new deployment of high altar to air defenses in guam -- high altar today aired defenses in -- altitude air -- defenses. host: the president and vice president traveled to the dmz
zone. how many troops remain on the south korean border and what is their mission? guest: only a small portion of those are right at the dmz. of theor of generative u.s. forces stationed in south korea is to determine north ofean aggression or invasion south korea. they also have a broader regional stability contribution to make together with the u.s. troops in japan. host: a quick follow-up on reunification of north and south korea. what are the current tactics in seoul for reunification? governmentst the literally tens of billions of dollars. that is a tough question
to try to deal with right now. i see a greater rhetorical devices by the current south korean president on the need to achieve reunification. there are a lot of additional preparation is needed on the south korean government to be able to handle that particular event to allow the. -- to be ableland to handle that particular even tuality. ethel.rom oakland, caller: i was at the army base and they were shipping stuff to these countries, chemicals that were not supposed to be shipped overseas. i was a ship clerk.
i worked at the army base. in sanout of local 250 francisco. i worked as a longshorewoman and ship clerk. all over the terminals in oakland, california. i shipped the chemicals to north korea and south korea. they were shipping stuff overseas. host: thanks for the call. did you want to respond? do not have a direct response to that comment. arth korea is perceived as proliferation risk for shipment of conventional arms and nuclear missile components to other parts of the world, including
iran. that feeds back into the north korea is a mafia state. host: our independent line. scott. good morning, i agree with scott, the speaker i see on my tv right now, that korea is a rogue nation and this nut.uy is kind of a i agree with one of the callers that called in and said korea is a puppet government for china to to protect oure interests in south korea. we have a weak president.
he likes to do things diplomatically. he has the tools and hand. almost everything we buy is from china. china is in the best position to deal with the rio. --t: we will get a response china is in the best position to deal with korea. host: we will get a response. thank you, fred. government isnese perplexed on how to deal with kim jong-un. they seemed to do better with his father and grandfather. that is the decisive issue. it is really the danger in terms of instability in north korea. can we afford to have that sort of problem in the middle of northeast asia, one of the fastest growing economic regions in the world.
host: information on north korea is difficult to come by. is kim jong-un firmly in control? grasp of hisa country's military leadership? guest: that is a tough question for us. with thett snyder council on foreign relations. thank you very much for being with us. when we come back, we will turn our attention to the nsa with david sanger. back with the paperback edition of this best-selling book, "confront and conceal." this weekend on c-span 3's american history tv and "book tv is on dayton ohio as
we look at the life and literary circle of dayton, ohio. .e travel to the city it includes some historical sites and the home of the wright brothers. here is a short portion of our visit to the national museum as we explore the memphis belle, the famous world war ii bomber plane. this is one of the most important artifacts to the u.s. air force. is theht even argue it most important. it is debatable. this is tremendously significant because it is a national icon. it goes to the heart of why the air force is a separate service. it represents the service and sacrifice of thousands of air man who fought in europe and across the globe in world war ii . with all of that context, it is hard to argue that this is not
our most important, most significant artifact. we are standing here in the restoration facility. behind me is the most important project going on here at the museum, the memphis belle. when it rolled off of the production line, it was another b-17. towas slated to go over europe to fight in the strategic bombing campaign going on over there. the strategic bombing campaign was essential to our war effort. there was no guarantee that it was going to work. it was a new concept that had not been proven anywhere. this concept came out during world war i. air power could be decisive. air power could win wars.
air power could go behind enemy lines and bomb strategic targets like enemy factories, all of the things necessary to wage modern war. the idea that we had in world war ii that we were produced other strategic bombing aircraft and strike those targets in europe that would halt the german war machine. there was no guarantee it was going to work. the memphis belle went over to europe at the time that concept was being forged. host: this weekend, we hope you tune in on c-span 3's american history tv. that was a portion of our visit to dayton, ohio. you can check out all of our program on our website at c- span.org. as we continue on this sunday of the newvid sanger
york times, a national security correspondent and author of " confront and conceal." let me begin with this one excerpt that can't -- that captures the essence of the book. patience with technological detail, barack obama was deeply engaged in planning america's covert attacks on iran. perhaps not since lyndon johnson has set in the same room had a president been so intensely involved in the step i step escalation of an attack. step byexplain -- step escalation of an attack. can you explain? what broughtf thereon to the table words of sanctions. there was something else -- to the table was
the sanctions. there was something else. the israeli case, we believe the israelis were responsible for the assassination of a scientists.anian the u.s. and israel together were responsible for a program called elliptic names -- olympic games. that was the cold war it for a secret program to use a different -- that was the code word for a secret program to use a different kind of weapon. you have heard president obama talk about the need for cyber defense. we have seen it recently in the attacks on banks and most recently on target. with the u.s. will not discuss as often is that the u.s. has become a significant cyber office if power as well.
the biggest -- significant cyber sive power as well. it ran pretty well until the summer of 2010. the book opens with the director of the cia at that time coming down to the situation room and announcing that the secret cyber worm the u.s. had spent tens of millions of dollars putting together had gotten loose, was spreading around the world and people were giving it a name. operationthis huge had been blown. at that time, the iranians were speculating that it was the united states or israel and it turned out to be both. host: we will have a full hour new david sanger of the york times. we will get to your calls. is on holiday.
this is a holiday -- a story from your newspaper. the president urged to sharply data mining. this report was made public by the white house, which surprised people. why ? guest: the five people who looked at these issues were all hand-picked by the president, including two people who were extremely close to him in the administration. this report was written to be an unclassified document. there is no classified version of it. what you see is what you get. differentup with 46
recommendations on things that have to change on the national security agency. runs together with the cyber command, which is responsible for those kinds of weresive attacks we talking about moments ago. of justice?e big iny did not find much merit the bulk collection of americans' elle a phone data. this is who you called and how telephoneericans' data. you should have to get an individual warrant, an individual order of the fisa go pursueou want to steve scully's phone calls. that is very different from the way it works right now. the way it worked under the system that president bush set
up, the court issues a blanket order. an analyst sitting inside the nsa concludes that they have a reasonable suspicion that steve scully might be communicating with terrorists and of course, that would never happen. if it did, they could pursue that by themselves. they would not need to go back to the court and say, we need to look at his phone numbers or we need to look at david sanger's phone numbers because he called sanger. that is a big change. what you saw as recently as yesterday when the director of national intelligence declassified some material is that the nsa is continuing to argue that this program is absolutely essential. they argued that they could live with the individual court orders. there were other things in there
as well. this group said that the national security agency should no longer be in the market of finding flaws inside computer programs that they can exploit to develop their own weapons. andmber the olympic games the program against iran. on three or four flaws and microsoft windows that the americans and israelis found and used to drill inside the iranian program. there will be a big behind arguments about whether or not the intelligence community can unilaterally disarm and give up the cyber weapons, including the chinese, criminal groups, who may be using those flaws, which are called zero days.
host: let me go back to an issue bookyou touch on in your and the subject of a new york times editorial. how do you deal with the guarantees of the fourth amendment of the constitution and deal with national security issues using 21st century technology? old issue for an the country. the fourth amendment has been around for some time now. constant pendulum swing in fourth amendment issues and general constitution issues between the preservation of individual rights on the one hand and assuring the security of the country. we saw it during the john adams alienstration with the and sedition acts. we saw it during the lincoln when he suspended habeas corpus during the civil war. we saw it during the franklin roosevelt administration when he
japanesemps to intern americans and we saw it after 9- 11. what is different this time? we have haddecade, an explosion of digital technologies that have enabled the government and the private sector to do far more with a much smaller base of information. in the past, no one in the government ever thought of collecting all of the metadata, the information around to the phone calls that are made in and out of the united states or even inside the united states. why didn't they think of doing that? because they did not have the computer power in the all the rhythms to sort through them. why collect the haystack when you have no chance -- because they did not have the computer to sortd the algorithms
through them. why collect the haystack when you have no chance of finding the needle? -- sent president said this committee off, he said, do not tell me whether they are legal. i am a lawyer. i can sort that out. tell me whether we are doing things simply because we can rather than because we should. the committee came back and gave 46 examples of things they thought they were doing because we can instead of because we should. host: the president responded to reporters' questions on this issue. here is an excerpt. [video clip] >> if something slips, you say, mr. president, why did this slip? so the point is not that my programnt of the 215
has changed in terms of technically how it works. met is absolutely clear to is that, given the public debate that has taken place and the disclosures taking place over the last several months, this is only going to work if the american people have confidence and trust. again, tryingost: to -- tryinggain, david sanger to thread that needle. guest: you picked the most fascinating excerpt from that news conference. obamas a different barack who was senator and was railing against these programs and sitting down with ron wyden
trying to figure out how to rein them in. once you become president, you become interested in the tools that are out there. what confront and conceal its all about is the story of a president who came into office and discovered if he was going to withdraw from iraq and afghanistan, which he knew he was going to have to do, he was going to need some new tools to defend american interests. he settled on a tree. i called them the light foot print strategy. a phrase that comes out of the white house itself. there are drones, there is cyber, there are special forces. --y are all under burdened they are all supported by this cyber capability. he says he has confidence in the program, but he realized americans do not and he would have to adjust this program to american expectations. he is saying there is not a
problem with the program. he is saying there is a problem with the way he explained it. that is different from what he was saying as senator. the other interesting thing he brought up in the course of that was that he himself indicated he resulted in changing these and perhaps moving this program into private hands. he does not think he can live without it. he is threading the needle between his own party, those on the left, wyden and many of his own colleagues, patrick leahy from vermont, who want to eliminate this program, and some in his own party, including dianne feinstein, who says his program is absolutely essential. he is trying to find himself some wiggle room so he does not have to kill the program, but it
some democratic by in -- buy in for it. some of these programs you could have made public without notifying terrorists about a way around them. you know what the atmosphere was in washington after 9-11. he probably -- you probably could have gotten public buy in for this program. host: george w. bush began these programs after 9-11. we are going to continue to weave in x -- we've and excerpts fromave in excerpts "confront and conceal." even obama had been shocked by the qlogic cost of the nation ospreys are 29-11. for every dollar al qaeda spent the joomla! tif
--cumul 00 cumula - cumulative cost of 9-11. we were sent off to try to figure out what america has spent in the response. spent wasat we had the lives of 3000 americans killed that day, the lives of another 5000 americans killed in afghanistan and iraq after that. cost that comes from and this newves system that we go through now and airports and the rest of the security state. when we added it all together,
including the cost of -- iraq wasand iraq justified as resident bush as a take, having not saddam hussein in place after 9- 11. when we added all that together in the cost of long-term care of those who were so grievously wounded in those wars, we ended 3.3with the number of $ trillion. i do not think anybody could have imagined that. we have a lot of budget debates in washington. said,body sat down and ,he cost of responding to 9-11 or would it be a better response to spend that money in different ways?
competitiveness or some foreign aid programs to try to better america's dealings with the rest of the world or some anti-poverty programs. there are all kinds of ways you could debate for doing it. think about how much time we end up debating in washington this weapons program, this education program. the amounts are tiny compared to what we spent in response to 9- 11. .ost: our guest is david sanger the book is "confront and conceal your call scott is joining us from peekskill, new york. caller: i am glad to hear your sensitivity on 9-11. my father was in world trade second2 when the airplane hit.
it is a very difficult moment for our family to deal with every anniversary. host: did he survive the attack? caller: he did. he has been very traumatized. his company virtually ceased to exist as of that day. being a senior member of that company, it was difficult for him to deal with all of the changes. he had been going to the same place to work and all of a sudden the building doesn't even exist anymore. he was running through the smoke with his briefcase and the firemen found his wallet six months later and returned it to him. could not find him all day. it was a traumatic event. glad to here you share so many sensitivities to the matter. guest.tion is to your
across the street from the new york times building, there is a billboard asking you where your is and the 2000 architects and engineers who are demanding an investigation on the building's destruction and the overwhelming evidence that pre-planted explosives destroyed it. since this has everything to do with our national security, can you explain what rational and scientific basis your paper has or failing to objectively cover this crucial issue? so much for your question. i grew up near peekskill and i grew up near new york. trust me, the people who work at the new york times have as much of a critical interest in what happened on 9-11 as anybody else. there were not only reporters there, but they live and work within the city. we have devoted fairly
considerable amounts of time over the past number of years to the question of all of the eateries, conspiracy theories, regular theories, non--- different -- of all of the different theories. we have not yet found any convincing evidence to suggest there was a plot that the president knew about in advance, which was one of the theories. i was with the president in florida and he looked shocked by what happened. we have not found any evidence so far. that does not mean there is none there. we have not found any evidence to suggest the building collapses were caused by anything other than the two airplanes that flew into them.
host: this editorial from the new york times. bad news for big brother. a free society should have another kind of security, the security of citizens who fear their conversations are being watched, monitored or scrutinized. the basic ideals of citizenship are jeopardized. the way to restore that trust is not through cosmetic touchups, but by ensuring that the administration complies. guest: i do not want -- i do not write editorials. if you read even the beginning pages of the 300 page report that the president's advisers turned out this week -- host: it is on the c-span.org website as well.
guest: you do not have to read all 300 pages. there were 2 law professors on that panel, including one who talked with president obama when the president was teaching at the university of chicago. lay out the 2 definitions of security. they go back to the latin origin of the time -- of the term. exactly what that editorial does. there is one element of security that comes from the fourth amendment -- securing your place and your persons. if somebody is going to go search your house and search need tone records, they have a warrant from a court or an order from the court. and there is the other side of security among which we talked about since the traumatic events
of 9-11. that is the state securing the country and its viability. it is always a balancing act. what is remarkable about this was week, just as everybody leaving washington for christmas holidays and new year's and so forth, is that you had a federal judge for the first time stand up and say, if i had to rule on this, i would probably find that the bulk collection of telephone data program is unconstitutional. he called it almost orwellian. programelse said this has not been as successful as the nsa would like you to think. on the panel were 2 experts that had been in the administration. they will have to figure out a
way to retrench. in the president comes back from hawaii, he will have to figure changesto show that the he is making are deeper than simply moving the program from government hands to private hands, that there are new checks and balances. in onif you are listening c-span radio, we are talking to david sanger of the new york times. our next caller is from new york g. -- our next caller is from new york. guido on our republican line. guest: there are many in the nsa who say if they had had the ability to do in this telephone system -- go back and look at
phone calls that came in and who the associates are, they might well have picked up one of the 9-11 conspirators hitting his instructions back from europe in afghanistan and so forth. that was the origin of this program in the beginning. i think president obama agrees with some of that. you have not heard president obama or the heads of the intelligence committee say we need to eliminate the program. the question is, can you maintain the efficiency of the program, the speed of moving through a single database and build in more legal protections that will make americans comfortable with its use. host: our next call is nancy from new jersey. caller: my first comment is, and you made a point about the cost of nine-11. there was a really good book put
out -- about the cost of number 9-11.- -- cost of there was a really good book that was put out. i would like some articles that the data center in utah is capturing all of the internet traffic in this country and storing it and that the government has analysts that try to pick up on certain information in all of that data and use it and there are trying to analysts break the internet traffic that is encoded so that even if you send data securely or encrypted, the government is working on
ways to break that so that they can see what the data communication is. guest: there is a facility in utah. it is not yet operating because they have run into some construction difficulties. believe that what that facility is all about is to be a centerpiece for data collection. certainly, they collect a lot of data. the nsa is a foreign intelligence collector. but the web is borderless. if you are collecting web data, it's almost impossible not to be doing it in europe and the middle east and africa, and also in the united states, which then
takes you to the question of, how much of that are you comfortable with. i think that will be the question right after the telephone data collection program is out of the way. the second question is, how much of this is actually useful. and then the third question that comes out of this is, if there are encrypted conversations, and you want the government to be to create dock doors to that encryption? -- back doors to that encryption? i would send everyone back to that advisory report. there is a fascinating recommendation that says that the government should get out of the business of breaking helpption, and instead microsoft, google, other american vendors who are trying to create [inaudible] why would they say that? two reasons.
one is, the american business community has come to the government, come to the and said, you are undercutting the competitiveness .f american business if the chinese or japanese believe anything they put in the cloud or anything that runs through the u.s. or any american equipment they buy has a back door in it in the encryption system that can take that data and dump it to the nsa, they're not going to buy american goods. i was in germany two weeks ago. the head of deutsche telekom is talking about having a german- only subset of the internet, somehow in the thought this would protect them from the nsa. is thathappening here the snowden revelation has
brought out all of these not only nationalistic but protectionist forces who want to say, here's a reason not to buy american. the snowden spy scandal may be the first spy scandal that has more of an economic effect that has a diplomatic affect. a report that the meeting that took place at the white house with executives from yahoo!, google had very little to do with healthcare.gov and everything to do with these issues we been talking about. guest: people like melissa andr, the head of yahoo! the chairman of google and others all use the moment to say to the president, we have gotten together and put together a set of principles. here is what we think we're going to need if we're going to remain competitive. while those principles don't
align totally with what you saw in the advisory committee report to the president, they align pretty well. ins is a remarkable case which the business community is actually lining up with the civil liberties side pressure, for different reasons. interested, your competitors at "the washington post" came out with a new poll about how americans view the nsa. the headline, americans conflicted about watchful eyes. let's go back to your book, "confront and conceal." emergence ofe, the an obama doctrine has been a redefinition of the circumstances under which the united states will use diplomacy, coercion, and forced to shape the world around it. guest: that's right. the president came in saying het iraq was a dumb war and
would get americans out. he pursued the plan that president bush had laid out when he left office. we are out. then he did the surge in afghanistan that i think it's fair to say he regretted almost as soon as it started here it he did these very public national thatity council meetings allowed for the surge, but he wanted to do it over a very short period of time. there were another trillion dollars over 10 years on top of the money we had already discussed. followed by another committee called the afghan good enough committee that the white house said enough -- nothing about, that met on saturdays in the situation room to figure out, what is good enough to get us out of afghanistan. the other part of the obama doctrine is that the days are over when the united states can
afford to send one hundred 50,000 troops to a country for six or seven years, discover you can't really alter the inner wiring of the country, all you resentment, then withdraw. that is what led to the light footprint, the use of johnson special forces. , has theair question light footprint begun to run out of gas? there is reason to think it has. drones in cyrus don't help you much in syria. they don't in afghanistan help you establish a judicial system or help farmers get their goods to market or make sure that the schools are open for girls and for boys. toy enable the united states move in quickly, but to leave quickly. and not to leave a lasting imprint. i think the big question afoot foot now is, is the obama
doctrine -- we have three more years left -- when we look back at it, will we say that president obama made lasting changes in the way the united states interacts with the world, theid he simply reacts to american political at the tests that after a decade of war in afghanistan and -- impetus that after a decade of war in afghanistan and iraq, we want to pull back. years of any two- term administration is mostly a foreign-policy presidency, because you can't get very much done on the domestic agenda. host: in 2012 david sanger came out with "confront and conceal." tom is joining us for michigan on the independent line. caller: good morning, gentlemen.
we make the east germans as he look like amateurs. are you familiar with this program called carnivore? as theit's the same total information awareness, i think it is, yes. as the world has gotten more digital, the nsa has look for more ways to look for warning and be able to pursue individual terror threats, and digital technology allows a government stasiin ways that the could not imagine. it's interesting that you brought the stasi up. in october, it was a vivid phone call between chancellor angela
obama,and president right after the revelations that the in essay had been monitoring angela merkel's personal cell phone since 2002, long before she was chancellor of germany. she herself had grown up in east germany before the wall fell, and said this reminded her of growing up under the stasi. i'm not quite sure how the president responded to that, but it is certainly something the president did not want to hear. certainly somebody elected on the kind of platform the barack obama was elected on would not want to hear that. that is what makes me think he probably is pretty serious about wanting to build in the kind of legal protections here. on the monitoring of foreign leaders, the issue that angela merkel was bringing up, they have already brought this issue
into the white house rather than have the nsa alone decide. eat, ian has this to think the president was right when he said to the media they would be screaming why the u.s. did not do data mining. guest: if you're the president of the united states and every morning someone comes in with matrix, and mr. president, there's been no 9/11 on september 12, 2001, i don't think anyone here would have thought that you could have gone a dozen years with no major outside attack on the united states. we thought one was imminent at that time. i think the president has come to realize, and certainly came to realize after the benghazi attack that so tragically killed the american ambassador in libya and three others that you're
held personally responsible as president post-9/11 for any kind of breach, even though it is a big, porous country. we have got both diplomats and troops sent out around the world , and they are all vulnerable. yes, you do want to ask the question, if another attack , what would we wish we were doing that we were not doing already. host: you say, quote, a president is clearly struggling with two overwhelming imperatives, an obligation to put out the fires, and a desire to build something lasting. iraq might still be messy, but it was no longer america's mess. afghanistan would be more complex. guest: that's right. afghanistan will be more complex. the president said in a news ,onference that a year from now
almost all american troops will be out of afghanistan. that depends on whether president karzai has a small, continuing presence. host: how likely is that? i would never want to bet a week's salary on president karzai being predictable on anything like this. think there is at least a 50-50 be ae that there will small american presence, that karzai will kick this down to his successor and the americans will say, we cannot plan this way. we have to know we are staying or know we are going, and be ready to get out. those forces are not simply there to stabilize afghanistan. they're also there to keep an eye on pakistan. we think about afghanistan because we're there for a dozen reasons. but it is pakistan that has a raging insurgency and 100 to 200
nuclear weapons we are worried about. one chapter in this book is called bomb scare. it is about the president cost of discovery in 2009 that there was possibility that a weapon had gone loose in pakistan. it turned out to be a false alarm, but that really focused their attention. ever try to figure out if there was a loose weapon. host: this intimate photograph of the events that led to the capture and killing of bin laden -- just looking at the expressions on secretary clinton, the president and vice president -- what he do decide to put this photograph in your why did you decide to put this photograph in your book? guest: it captures obama's .ational security initiative in some ways, that's an unfortunate choice. was aboutden raid
cleaning up past business. it wasn't about what you create in the future. it was an incredibly well executed an organized attack -- and organized attack. it's reasonable to ask the question that the administration that was able to organize the attack so well has had such difficulties in the past year in execution on a range of domestic and foreign-policy issues. discussed onave rollout ofm, the health care was not pretty -- the bin laden attack was different. this morning on the situation in north korea, and almost bizarre story about the execution of his uncle and what it means in north korea. if there is a 2014 possible story of something that comes up to bite us that we are
all not focused on now, it's north korea. host: why is that? guest: the iran negotiations are going on to keep iran from becoming north korea. but north korea already has six to a dozen nuclear weapons. you rarely hear president obama talk about it. irannk you can argue that is in a tougher neighborhood in some ways. in north korea, what we have seen as we just discussed with scott snyder, is that you have a young leader who is consolidating his power at the possible expense of the security and stability of his own deeply poor state. american presidents have been waiting for the collapse of north korea since harry truman. if north korea does either
implode or explode, there is suddenly going to be a scramble for that six to a dozen nuclear weapons, and we want to be prepared to make sure they do not go into the wrong hands. there could be divisions within the north korean military that , as a resulteing of the execution of his uncle was in fact a reflection of that. there is something going on there that we don't fully understand. if that blows up, it's going to be very hard. wikileaks documents published some fascinating discussions between the united states and south korean government about what you do when north korea collapses, and how you avoid a scramble with china for influence in the area of north korea. given a lot harder today,
china's current mood about territory in general, than it might have been three or four years ago. host: our next caller is joining us from woodstock, illinois. i can't believe i'm going to ask the following question. what does the word oversight main? -- mean? about when you think back what the intelligence committees were created, capitol hill, after the church commission and the cia in the mid-1970's -- it's a reasonable question to , is oversight fully contentious these days. when overtime, and some of these committees been concerned about the vulnerabilities the united to allowce, willing the intelligence community to go too far and accumulate too many
powers. that is a big debate. debate because-- you not only see divisions on capitol hill, but you see divisions within the president's own party on this. diane feinstein could not be in a more different place than pat wyden.or senator that tells you that the intelligence committees, if they're doing their oversight on not explaining well enough either to their colleagues or how they're people keeping the intelligence community and check. same question goes up about the judicial branch. i think you will see some changes. i would not be surprised if you see changes in the foreign surveillance court. one of the recommendations the advisory committee had was that
the appointment of the judges to that court would not simply be ,omething that the justices do but that other justices itticipate in as well so does not become ideologically aligned with whoever happens to be chief justice. host: this is from one of our viewers on our twitter page. bin laden's stated goal was to bankrupt the usa through fear and overzealous nationalism. looks like he succeeded. three if you take that point $3 trillion number, you have to say that certainly on the economic side of it, he did not bankrupt united states, but it certainly had a huge cost. in economics 101, they teach you about opportunity cost, how else you could have invested that money. i think when historians look 9/11,at the period post- they will say, could you have
accomplished more with less? could you have invested that differently? host: mark is joining us from washington state. caller: i went to bring up two points of honesty. only 1200 americans were killed on 9/11. not 3000, as the president quotes. host: what is your source on that? that is common knowledge, and it is easily proven. what is your source? i don't have a source right now. this is a worldwide never-ending war. there can be no victory against terrorism. terrorism is a tactic.
host: on the 1200 number, i've never heard that number before -- guest: on the 1200 number, i've never heard that number before. terrorism is a tactic. that is something that president bush frequently confused. you heard for a while during the iraq war, president bush go out and give some speeches about combating what he called islamo fascism around the world. it made members of his own staff wince. it took a series of disparate groups and tried to agglomerate them together and make it sound the kind of in conflict we were in an world war ii. why else would you use the phrase fascism? the strategy the president obama and others have settled on,
which is more in line with reality, is that you take these individual groups and realize that while they may have some , they ideological bonds really are not a well organized, oiled machine. you try to break them up into component parts because they're a lot easier to fight that way. the second question the caller raises is, do you want the country to be constantly on a war footing? obviously to that is no. no country can remain on a war footing for a dozen or two dozen or three dozen years. exampless replete with of how that diverts a country from the kind of progress that we make. does that mean that we forget all the defenses and let anything happen? of course not. but there's got to be a bit of a balance there. tried to obama has bring that balance back, but as
i suggested earlier, i think as president he sound much harder to do than it was when he was talking about it as a senator. on hisr happens happens watch and defines his presidency. host: let me go back to a couple whatller's points about happened on 9/11. we just finished the 50th anniversary of the assassination of john f. kennedy. 50 years later, despite what the war commission had written, a lot of people feel there are multiple governments involved very we look at 9/11 -- invo lved. we look at 9/11. what people think might've happened, will we be dealing with this for the next 50 years? guest: one of the things that struck me during the kennedy -- consideration not only of kennedy's presidency, but how the nation time, the more
we have gotten into it, the more questions have come up her. i think you say that to a lesser degree -- can say that to a lesser degree about 9/11. commission did not do a complete job, and people will be going back and looking at that. investigative documents will become declassified, as they have over the kennedy administration, and they will raise new questions. the bigger issue, the one we will live with for a long time, ist "confront conceal" about, does it change the way the united states deal with the world, and did it change in the way we wanted to. for the first six or seven years after 9/11, the entire mechanism of american foreign-policy turn towards counter-terrorism. only inn the past --
the past two years have we begun to focus on some other big issues. not only the big issues of our day of climate change or global financial stability, and so forth, but the question of whether or not the united states has an essential role in asia as . stabilizing force, those are the big issues we need to debate. if we spent all of our time trying to figure out one more element of the plot of 9/11, fascinating as that may be, it may keep us from having our eye on the bigger prize. host: one of your concluding points in open -- "confront conceal." of're on with david sanger the "new york times." caller: thank you very much,
david sanger. you have been wonderful on this program. one thing i like is in reference to the nsa phone calls. you mentioned the word balance. i also want to add the word .revent the government has the responsibility to secure the country and the citizens. tell my fellow citizens, don't be afraid. what they're doing, they're trying to protect us. host: thank you. guest: lewis is making a point that you hear from general keith alexander, the outgoing head of the nsa. we have 100,000 people who go to work every day in this country trying to make the world more secure within the intelligence to detect future threats. if there is a message about
9/11, the iranian nuclear program, the north korean awfulr program, about the things we have seen happen in syria in the past few years -- we are not very good at warning. most of the wars we have entered into the past 50 years, we had no concept a year beforehand we would be involved in. that tells you that we need to sharpen that. but that does not eliminate the need for balance. there is still something critical to the constitutional protections, including the fourth amendment -- the question is, do you want to leave the question of how to do that balance to a secret debate between policymakers and the intelligence community, or do you want to open it up more. whatever you think of edward
snowden, whether you think he violated his commitments to keep information secret -- and he certainly did -- whether you think he should stand trial and take whatever punishment he would have to take for revealing to say this.u have he made this debate much more vivid. you would not have seen president obama standing up in the press room the other day, talking about the issues this way, had it not been for those revelations. host: let me conclude with your words, as a summary of this book. you say, the global influence of power is at a critical inflection point. how the united states navigates the next few years will almost certainly determine whether the best we have to offer can transcend the decline in influence accompanied by the rise of so many competitors. guest: that's right. let's face it. we could do a separate our on this. the superpower days are over.
we have to not only manage these haveured terror forces we been discussing before, but we have to be able to manage the rise of a great new superpower in china. that's another big part of the book. history is replete with countries that don't do a great job managing rising powers. the british did not do a great job of managing us more than 100 years ago. we are not doing a fabulous job of figuring out how to manage china as well. means for going to have to get used to the fact that were going to have to share some power. mostis not something politicians want to describe. they want to describe the u.s. as fundamentally an unchallenged power, and militarily, we are. but our influence around the world is much more fractured today. because of the internet, china,
the rise of other powers including india, more cohesive -- we have to adjust ourselves to that. very little of the foreign policy debate you see centers on the question. , "confront sanger and conceal, president obama's secret wars and surprising use of american power." his work available online at nytimes.com. we appreciate you stopping by. we will turnck, our attention to money and politics. david levinthal will be joining us. he's with the center for public integrity. you are watching c-span's "washington journal" on the sunday morning, december 22. we are back in a moment.
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from washington directly to you, putting you in the room at congressional hearings, white house events, briefings, and conferences, and offering complete, gavel-to-gavel coverage of the u.s. house. all as a public service of private industry. tvpan, created by the cable industry 34 years ago and funded by your local cable or satellite provider. now you can watch us in hd. "> "washington journal continues. host: 2014 marks another election. and politics.ey good morning. thank you for being with us. we check out open secrets quite often, and if you log onto the open secrets website, the role challengers and incumbents -- the incumbents have raised on average in the senate about $5.8
million. challengers, $360,000 on average. you look at the house of representatives on average and income at house member as well as half $1 million versus 117,000 four challengers. guest: -- 117,000 challengers. guest: if you are an incumbent, in have old in -- built advantages. you are surveying up in capitol hill, and have the ability to conduct press conferences, send out press releases, interact with your constituents. almoste the ability to constantly be seen and heard, were a challenger, you don't have the same luxury. you are a known commodity to voters, which typically is a good thing. ability to use your campaign structure that you've already set up and put in motion in your previous election, to go
and turn it back up again, get the fundraisers going, get the money flowing. as a result, you find yourself oftentimes as an incumbent with a significant cash advantage over a challenger who oftentimes is just going to struggle to keep pace with that type of operation you already have in place as an incumbent. host: the watchdog for all of this is the federal election commission. on your website, publicintegrity.org, this piece -- you point out just after the federal government shutdown, one of the government's more dysfunctional agencies stopped functioning altogether. fec.ese hackers waylaid the hamstrung by political bickering, case backlogs, staff departures. guest: it has been a terrible year for the fec.
they are not just suffering from one or two problems, which has made this a year for the fec where they have historical levels of gridlock, where they're unable to make decisions on key issues facing the commission. you have had democrats and republicans on the commission really just going at each other's throats through much of a year, although we do see a change with a couple of new commissioners having, board. for the issue of the hacking, just to seize on that, when the government shutdown it's important to note that they fec had all of its employees for load, every single one. many federal agencies had a skeleton crew in place. they had people who were there to man the computer servers, due security, make sure that something like a chinese hacking incident would be able to be repelled. that was not the case at the fec. this is an agency that exists
for the purpose of disclosure and transparency. for days at a time, it wasn't functionerve that key that it serves for the public, which is go ahead and publicize the millions upon millions of andrds that candidates political committees and parties and super pac's also meant to it so they can check it, make sure it is in compliance with the it so they's, submit can check it, make sure it is in compliance with the law. host: you can join in on the conversation. the numbers are on your screen. you can send us an e-mail, email@example.com, or send us a tweet.
not surprisingly, leading this list is kentucky, where senator mitch mcconnell is in a tough primary challenge. so far more than $19 million in what is a relatively small and not a big market in terms of advertising dollars state. guest: it is not going to far out on a limb to say this could be the first senate race in u.s. the $100hat cracked million mark when all is said and done. year,y in a nonelection you have 19 million dollars put forth towards this. the candidates themselves are raising an incredible amount of money. you have super pac's involved in this race, and various outside groups that have the resources, that are willing to put in the resources to this particular race. it is as high-profile as a senate race as you have going in the 2014 election cycle, and one that started pretty much right after the 2012 election ended.
the airwaves in kentucky, if you live there you have probably heard a lot from both sides and a lot from the outside groups a want to have an influence in the trajectory of this race as it goes forward. if you think things are inundated right now in terms of the airwaves, if you think you're hearing a lot from the candidates, just wait. it's only going to become a cacophony by the time september, october, november of next year roll around. host: all these figures are available online at opensecrets.org. 9 million, six million, 4 million, 3 million -- these are in ohio's eighth congressional district. new jersey six. you can see the list here, including california's district 52, $2 million. these look are like senate races, not congressional races. guest: let's go back a
generation, and this would have been impossible except in the most extreme circumstances because of the difference in election law. citizens united versus federal elections commission decision by the supreme court in 2010, whether you like the decision or don't like it, it changed the game in the united states when it enabled a whole bunch of political actors, be it corporations, super backs -- super pac's, nonprofit groups especially to pour more money than they ever have before into elections. saying particularly in elections that are highly contested, ones that are very competitive, groups really trying to invest much money as they can to become players. there's a definite willingness among the very wealthy organizations and very wealthy americans who are politically active, politically motivated, both on the right and the left to get involved in these races.
they have a numerous number of vehicles to effectively open up their wallets, get out their credit cards and say, ok, nonprofit group, were going to give you $1 million or $5 million. groups have the infrastructure in place, they have the capabilities, the know- how, political resources to quickly turn that cash into things like television, radio phone banking, pretty much every tool in the political toolbox that you have your disposal. on a basic level, what can they do that they could not do before -- if they can do direct advocacy, they can go and say, i love this candidate. vote for candidate x, or vote against candidate y. you don't have to dance around the issue. you can go right to the heart of the matter and beat up on a candidate as much as you want, or lovingly promote a candidate as much as you want. host: our guest is david
levinthal of the center for public integrity. dave from wisconsin is our first caller. caller: i wanted to agree with you about the influence of the citizens united decision, which was an accumulation of a bunch of different supreme court decisions since the early 1900's. it has put undue amount of corporate money into the election system, and also, the politicians really -- in order to get elected, they have to spend so much of their time raising campaign contributions. and when they do, their influence has got to be towards where they got the money in the first place. i think that has an effect on who they actually represent when they do get into office. raises a veryler
key point here. you're looking over the u.s. capitol in the studio here, and dotted all across the areas right around the capital are restaurants and bars and lobbying offices and whatnot, where almost every day, particularly when congress is in session, they have 5, 10 fund raisers every single location. there in this building all the time too. what is going on here? if you ask a political consultant, how much does a sitting congresswoman or dayressman fund raise in a -- spend fundraising in a day, or four about three hours. effectively, that is happening for many people who are in congress. they will go up to the hilt, vote, go to the capital, do some a fundraiser.uct
sometimes they will have a breakfast, lunch, and dinner fundraiser scheduled in the same day. a lot of people will get disenchanted with that and say, why do they have to do this? the easy answer is the way that they system is set up, if you are a challenger, you are going to do everything you possibly can to raise money because you know you have an inherent disadvantage with cash. incumbents know if they are not doing the requisite fund raising to keep pace with an upstart challenger, then they're going to be in a bad position too. financial armsa race, a political money arms race where both sides know that if they are not keeping pace, they will be at a severe disadvantage and feel some hurt come september, october, november when the election is truly heating up. a robust to have campaign fundraising operation,
they want to have a robust campaign operation where they can knock on doors and make phone calls and reach out to constituents. is forst the way it everyone, democrat or republican right now, and no one side is really taking off rated both of them are engaging in this type of process very heavily -- off. both of them are engaging in this type of process very heavily. spent more says, who money in the 2012 election, obama or romney, and back in 2008, mccain or obama? obama spent more than mccain. in 2012, it was just about tied. we are strictly talking the candidates themselves. when you factor in the outside groups who came in and 2012 -- we're talking about politically active nonprofit organizations, super pac's, these organizations that can raise and spend unlimited amounts of money to advocate for and against politicians -- then the
advantage was slightly to the republicans in 2012. as we look to 2014, as we look to 2016, we are already seeing the balance shift in a major way. democrats are becoming very keen to the way the process is run right now. after theright citizens united decision, another federal court case called speechnow.org, which gave rise to super pac's specifically, democrats were unwilling to engage in this process. they did not want to form super pac's. they folded big money in politics was a bad thing, and would hurt democracy. the president was adamant about this, even use an opportunity in the state of the union address to decry the use of big-money the seeds ofsaw that being planted to change in early 2012, when the president
himself after making all of these overtures and declarations about big money that he did, very quietly said, i give you my blessing, democrats, to form super pac's. citizens united is the law of the land, and democrats are effectively saying, we may not like it, but we're going to have to play the game by the rules given to us by the supreme court. we do that at our own peril and we will be at a disadvantage when it comes to running against republicans, who are all too happy to embrace the current law. colleen is waiting from chapel hill, tennessee with david levinthal. he is with the center for public integrity. caller: good morning. said, itt you just should be called corporations and super pac's united, not citizens united. it is definitely not for the citizens. a certain on
committee, you should not be able to receive moneys from any financial corporations. on defense, you should not be able to get money from boeing or the super defense programs. [no audio] the call, but let's go back to her earlier point. guest: the caller brings up a sentiment i have heard a number of times from people who feel the same way, that if you serve on a certain committee, if you have oversight over a particular , there is a legal corruption, in their words, with being able to receive campaign money from the very people that you're overseeing or the very industries your overseeing. that is probably not going to change anytime soon, but to give you an idea of how often this happens, if you are a chairman of a particular committee,
you're going to receive more money or be in the upper echelon when it comes to receiving money from financial interests, banking interests, from securities and investments and other people who are involved in the financial industry. largerly speaks to a point, that congress is the one who makes the laws. but congress is also trying to run for reelection. the players are the referees. it makesituation where it very difficult unless there is some major flashpoint to change the way that the rules are made. we talked about the federal election commission. the chinese hacking incident was the tip of the iceberg to describe what was some really roth -- issue.l
levels seen staffing dropping to a 15 year low, which is really remarkable considering that the work the staff has to do over there is considerable compared to what it was even a few years ago. it was not a surprise when there was an independent survey of all government agencies that came out to stick couple of days ago, and among small agencies, those with less than 1000 people, the federal commission right 28 out of 29 when he came to employee satisfaction -- ranked 28 out of 29 when it came to employee satisfaction. if you care about elections, regardless of your party and ideology, they are the cops on the beat, making sure the candidates and political actors are complying with the law and not doing anything that would cut against the validity of an election. they are making sure elections are free and fair, and they are
bleeding out at this point when it comes to cash and resources. from the final number 2012, how much did we spend in federal elections? guest: overall, the center for responsive politics estimated it was around $6.3 billion when it came to federal elections alone. that would be money that the candidates themselves had been involved in, and all of the outside groups as well. that was the most expensive presidential election we've ever had in history by a lot, and were fully expecting that in 2014, that will be the most expensive midterm. at this stage in the game, it's almost impossible to think that in election would get less expensive going forward because of the factors we've been discussing. host: this is a tweet from one of our viewers. both sides raising $1 billion -- to me, it is disgusting. guest: we used to have a presidential public financing system in this country that the republican and democratic .andidates would i into
this happened throughout the 1980's and 1990's, to the 2000's, although that began to erode. it effectively fell apart in 2008. john mccain was the last candidate who participated in the presidential public financing system among democratic and republican candidates. when you get to 2012, the only ones who are participating in that program are the libertarian and green party candidates and other minor party candidates to effectively had no chance of winning election. both mitt romney and barack obama during the primary and general election opted out of that system. you have a lot of people up on capitol hill right now who are saying it is a total waste of time and money, the federal election commission still has to administer it, and they would like to see it just go away altogether. you do have a lot of campaign finance reform advocates who say the system can be saved. instead of killing it, instead
of getting rid of it, instead of pushing it to the side, we should help it. we should try to invest back into it and make that a system where presidential candidates from both sides will buy into so they don't have to spend so much time crisscrossing the country, fundraising. the president went to hundreds of fundraising events during 2011 and 2012. critics of that would say, you have got the president of the united states who is spending not just ours, but days upon days upon days not dealing with the problems of this country, not even going to necessarily talking to average americans at campaign events all the time, going to little fun raisers with 100 people, 200 people where they are writing huge checks. host: with an eye on 2016, i want to share a tweet posted a few days ago.
you will notice a much younger chris christie when he was in college saying, enjoy the holiday break. two fellow college students out there, we hope you have a great break and spend some quality time with your loved ones. is looking that he very seriously at a presidential run in 2016. host: here we are in 2013. -- guest: here we are in 2013. the presidential election has already begun for 2016. it space to the idea that in the united states now, there's no break from a campaign. to that arms race. if one side is going to be doing it, the other side has to do it order to keep pace. we have seen a number of organizations, particularly for chris christie, on the pro- hillary clinton side you have former us super pac's --
numerous super pac's that have arisen in the past year who have come to not only support a potential presidential bid by hillary, but oppose a prudential -- potential bid. it is to be that if you were running for president, you would form an exploratory committee. these days, you just have all of your supporters, and form a super pac. they can raise unlimited amounts of money. there is one super pac called ready for hillary which is at the tip of the spear when it comes to the pro-hillary clinton operations existing right now. so many people who are supportive of her and who have been supportive of her when she ran for president in 2008, when she ran for the u.s. senate in new york state, who supported
bill clinton when he ran for president, they are the ones who are the heart and soul of this organization, which is already millionsoint raising upon millions of dollars. we will have a full accounting of this in january, when they have to file the next campaign- finance reports. they have already been extremely successful right now, and they have the ability if hillary clinton was to run for president , they will have an entire organization ready to almost had over to her. and a candidate can do this. -- any candidate can do this. if chris christie or martin o'malley or any of the other names being batted around right 2016, anyesident in of their supporters want to get together and form one of these organizations, they have the ability to do that. a lot of people would disagree that that should be the away that american politics are run.
a lot of people would say, this is a great thing that gives them an opportunity to get an advantage early. tweeti want to share one from laura, who says citizens united is one of the worst things ever to happen to this country. we will go to chaz, in miami. if you could be brief. caller: this is just an expression of the fact that this country is turning into a plutocracy. i teach literature and theater. no one is going into humanities because they can't afford it. i had to move from patton -- manhattan because it's too expensive to live there. kids coming up to college can't afford it. costs $50,000 to go to school. the same thing with an electorate. my parents came from cuba. one of the reasons they came from cuba, one of the reasons there was a revolution is because unless you had at that
time $100,000, you could not run for congress in cuba. that happened to my father. he wanted to become politically involved. he could not afford it. that is what is happening in our country today. host: we will get a quick comment from our guest. expensivections are to a point where if you want to run for federal office, particularly, it becomes incredibly difficult to do to be a legitimate candidate, someone who will have the potential for success. there are occasional exceptions to this rule, but on average you're going to have to look to raise at least $500,000 in the sleepiest of districts, and likely $1 million or $2 million in a particularly active district. it's just the way it is right now. if you want to run for office and you don't have a lot of money, the local level and may be the state level is about the best chance you're going to have if you don't have those
resources just that your hands and fingertips. host: public integrity is the website. david levinthal, thank you for being with us. we appreciate it. we will continue the conversation tomorrow morning on c-span's "washington journal" at 7:00 a.m. eastern time. among our guests, greg ip. we look at the u.s. economy and what is ahead for 2014. ly will be joining us, from cap leisure -- kipl inger. all week during this christmas holiday celebration, 7:00 a.m. with the "washington ournal" -- check out scheduling information online any time at www.c-span.org. have a great week ahead, and a very merry christmas. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013]
>> i know you are eager to skip >> coming up, "newsmakers" with david ditter. after that, president obama's conference with reporters followed by vladimir putin giving his annual state of the nation address in moscow. simmons or david fitter the ranking member on the public works committee, thank you for being here. >> joining us as david drucker with the washington examiner and coral davenport covering energy and environmental issu