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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  May 4, 2015 11:00pm-1:01am EDT

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able to sustain itself. not knowing how many troops and how many police goes to troops explain more what that is and how is it that we don't know the numbers. guest: we have to rely on the afghans to give us those numbers. every morning if you were in the military or police department, there was a roll call. it tells you who's present and what are their qualifications. and we no longer visibility at the command -- at the company level, we don't have visibility below the corps level. the numbers being reported, most of it is by hand. none of the systems talk to each other and we give the money directly to the ministry of finance and never designed a system and never forced the afghans to actually follow their own rules and regulations. for example, there's some i.d.
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cards these are just basic problems with designing an h.r. system. i'm happy that our military out there and the pentagon are finally addressing this problem and we've identified for years. host: how are they addressing it? guest: they are bringing in experts from the pentagon than i briefed my staff that designed personnel systems and designed systems to protect our money.
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this is our money going directly to the afghans. we also are conditioning and i'm very happy that general campbell and others who are working on this are conditioning money going to the afghans based upon them actually following our lead and following our requirements. this is something we have talked about. i have been hardshipping on that for three years. the g.a.o. and others have, too. but we finally got a team out there who is taking it very seriously. and we have a willing partner on the afghan government who wants to fix the problem. guest: he has been sworn in for special inspector general. more than 30 years of experience in oversights and investigations
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as a prosecutor, senior federal government advisor. he takes the first call from south dakota. guest: i don't do policy. you have to realize why we are in afghanistan. that's where the attackers on 9/11 came. we made a policy decision to kick the terrorists out and help
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create an afghan government to keep the terrorists out and supported by their people. we have spent about a trillion dollars in afghanistan. that's the war fighting as well as the reconstruction. so actually reconstruction is a pretty good dollar for your value. lot cheaper than boots on the ground. i can't question that policy. i think it's a policy that i believe in but that has been made by the policy makers you are alluding to another report we just released this week or last week, which doesn't paint a good picture. this should have been a high priority. develop the trillions of dollars of oil and minerals in the
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ground to help afghanistan sustain itself otherwise it will be a declining state. unfortunately, the organization, two organizations working on it that ended up never talking to each other. one called the task force for business security and operations run by the pentagon, trying to develop the minerals and oil and other industries, which is kind of an odd role for d.o.d. usaid is your traditional organization. apparently neither of them talked to each other and the organization funded to the tune of $800 million expended taxpayer dollars. they were required to coordinate that we were told in our latest audit that the ambassador didn't learn about some programs until the afghans came up and talked
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to him. we have a number of audits and organizations dealing with them. it may have been a good idea but it was poorly executed. guest: mark, republican, hello there. caller: listen someone has written a book about hezbollah and they intercepted some money that was being sold as american counterfeit america can dollars and when they examined it, they found it wasn't counterfeit at all and spending so much money over there. throwing it away. all our foreign aid is being funneled into the pockets of cronies and patriot rons and this is a do-gooders of the world. our roads and bridges are collapsing.
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jobs that are paying pennies. this is disgusting and turns my stomach and tired of these people that we need to help others and not helping ourselves. $19 trillion is paying for all of this, $19 trillion in debt. guest: again, i don't see the policy. i just see how it's carried out. and i do agree with the caller, there has been a lot of waste, fraud and abuse. we wasted a lot of years in reconstruction. i don't think we asked the simple questions do the afghans want this project, need this project, can they use this project. we never considered corruption. afghanistan is one of the most corrupt countries in the world and never took into consideration the security situation. so i agree with the caller on
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that point, although i would make the distinction that actually reconstruction and redevelopment is a very efficient way if done correctly. the troops cost more money and lives at risk. just keep that in mind. $1 trillion we spend in afghanistan, only less than 20% dealt with reconstruction. the rest was war fighting. guest: let's get to the new president. what do you see from him, his office his government in this will realm of afghan reconstruction? guest: i'm impressed with him on addressing problems looks like we have a willing partner to wants to address the problems of
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corruption. we brought a case to his attention dealing with a $1 billion field contract that the afghan ministry of defense was letting. we uncovered that four, five contractors got together fixed the price and was going to cost the afghan government $200 million and was going to cost the u.s. taxpayers. we brought that case and the allegations to our military. our military went over and we just didn't brief somebody in the afghan government, we briefed the president and the president took charge. he fired generals and canceled the contracts and started to investigate it. and we have been supporting him and his team on this. so this is something new. we never had a team in the pal ace that cared. they talked about corruption but usually blade it on the united
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states. here you have a new regime that looks like they are trying to do something. so we are very impressed. my job is to trust but verify. so we are going to keep watching and working and hoping for the best. host: special earl inspector general for afghanistan. >> how long have you held this position? who held it before you and who came up with the idea to spend $600 million on those jets? my other thing is why are we building schools that weren't there before we got there. host: how long has this position been around?
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guest: it was created in 2008 which is eight years too late. first person who held the position actually resigned under a lot of pressure for not being aggressive enough and not being effective enough. the position was then vacant and i was appointed by the president three years ago. who made the decision of buying airplanes that didn't fly? we are trying to find out and you may wonder, can't you find out, is thrnt a name on the paperwork. the paperwork is hard to find. we have a criminal investigation going looking at this. and i will tell you, we will hold the people buying planes that don't fly. if it's criminal, we can turn it over to the department of justice to indict. but or civil, we can prosecute
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that in a civil case. but holding people accountable like firing them or reprimanding them, we have no authority. we have to turn it over to the various agencies inzuding the department of defense and state. we have identified a lot of waste and abuse and as far as we know, no one has lost a job no one has lost a promotion or gotten a loss in their salary because of all the problems. we have identified, the state i.g. d.o.d. and g.a.o. and it is called personal accountability. you have to hold people personally. host: funding for the inspector general office. what's the funding and staff
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level, has it been cut this year? are you in good shape in? guest: we have two hundred employees and plight between auditors and investigators and then a support team of analysts and management specialists. we have about 40, 42 in afghanistan. the rest are back here working u.s. portions of the cases and audits. we have gotten strong support from the administration but mainly from congress. we have gotten all of our budget requests, which is about $56 million. we have a problem right now and i think maybe the caller or who contacted you may have seen some press on this and that is out of the blue, we were told we were
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going to have to reduce our staffing by 40-some percent. know we were told that by the state department. now, i have a problem with that, not that i think we should have a lot of people in afghanistan, but my people are working. we have a new cooperative government that we are working with, but i'm an independent inspector general. you read my statute it talks about independence right through it. since 1978, i.g.'s determine their staffing and when we submit our budget, we don't submit it through the agencies, we submit it directly to congress. so for the state department, who we investigate to tell me how many people i should have in afghanistan is indirect contravention of my independence. it's similar to the wall street banks telling the bank exercise
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how many bank exercise you should have or the team steers union and american trucking association saying to the highway patrol in new jersey, you rnl -- we'll tell you how many people you should have watching the highways. this is absurd. so we are going to fight that cut. we may cut our staff. if our staff has nothing do, there is no reason for them to be there. i'm trying to save money for the government and not try to waste government money. it's our decision, not the decision of the state department. host: bill has been waiting from connecticut, democrat. caller: thanks for c-span. i'm saying is, i'm tired of all this military spending and u.s. military aggression. we spend more money than other 10 countries in the word on
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defense and always looking for another enemy. if iran gets a bomb, we forget about the monroe doctrine. we told everyone stay out of north america, yet we are meddling in bases in 150 countertries and i believe these politicians, all they want to do is have continuous wars going on and on and on so they can bring more money into their districts for their military complex. and it's really disgusting. it's what is going to take our country down. just like rome, because before military spending used to prop up the economy because it was put on the tab. now there's no more tab because the united states is broke. and we should have only making decisions on wars veterans that served in the service.
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and i thank you. guest: well, you know, i understand the caller's frustration. i think a lot of people are frustrated with the government. the government doing a good job. and all i can say is that i'll paraphrase what churchill said, democracy but doesn't know anything better. the united states may have a lot of problems but i don't see anybody else doing it better than we are. i know the caller may disagree. he has the opportunity to voice his opinion and to vote and petition congress. and i think you ought to keep in mind and i keep reminding people at state and aid and we are the only government that created my office. 34 inspector generals appointed
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by the united states and very next day, they start investigating his policies. i don't know any country in the world that does that. and i told people at aid and state, if you want to sell democracy, tell them about the i.g. concept. i get calls from germany norway sweden and people say how can we create sigar and create an independent inspector general that is total separate, even though appointed by the president, but totally separate from the executive branch and that's a wonderful sign. host: your term? guest: i serve at the pleasure of the president, so any time i go back to the practice of law, but there is no term per se. my agency is a temporary agency and i believe in temporary
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agencies. it goes out of existence when the amount of reconstruction funds fall below $250 million not yet spent. there is $15 billion authorized appropriated and not yet spent. we could be around for a while. i leave that to this president or the next president. host: where does the money come from foreign affairs budget? guest: there is an o c.o. account. it comes from state and aid and various accounts and foreign affairs as well as military. what is interesting, 60% of it is actually coming from d.o.d. and d.o.d. is using. a lot of our reconstruction money has been in building the afghan money and afghan police and supplying them with salaries bullets tanks.
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host: how does the spending contrast in past wars? guest: i can't compare. but i will throw this out to the viewer we've used government contractors going back to the end of our independence. someone told me if you look at that famous picture of george washington, the guys rowing were contractors. there are questions as to how many we should have and whether they are doing inherently governmental functions. we have always used golf contractors. host: good morning clarence.
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independent caller from georgia. caller: it comes from us, the taxpayers. but that wasn't my question or comment. my comment is this, i'm retired from military and seen how much money has been blown and gone in these rat holes and talking about $110 billion rebuilding afghanistan. they made a big deal of $130 billion been spent in baltimore over the last 10, 15 years this alarming compared to $120 billion that is spent in afghanistan and no idea what the outcome is going to be and yet we can't spend and we are condemning the people in baltimore and the leaders there because they said what happened to $130 million. shame on this country. shame on us that we can go around the world and spend $110
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billion and feel good about it and criticize people for spending $130 million in a great city like baltimore, which was a slave state and a slave city that still hasn't gotten over reconstruction from that time and we are complaining about $130 million. shame on us. guest: we shouldn't waste money and that's my job is -- i was appointed by the president to make certain somebody's there who will find people who are stealing the money or misusing the money and try to hold them accountable and i agree. we got to keep in mind, the amount of money spent on foreign assistance is miniscule in comparison to what is spent in the budget. i don't know the exact number, i think it's 1%, 2%. so we're not talking about the
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biggest expense of the u.s. government. so that keep in mind, we can't balance our budget by cutting off foreign aid. and that would be cutting off our nose to spite ourselves. this is a way to do democracy building. it has to be done. it's very risky but it has to be done well and that's my argument. let's think before we spend. we probably spent too much in afghanistan. we spent too much money too fast with too small a country and with too little oversight. i think the president has said that. so they recognize that. and our job is to try to make it work better because we are going to be there a while. host: trying to audit, doing what you are trying to do, freedom of movement to cooperation with people, lack of it, you mentioned paperwork you can't find.
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paint a bigger picture if you could. guest: it's getting more difficult to get around because of the security situation. i remember when i started coming just three years ago, i could travel around most of the country. i could go to masar kandahar, my people, my agents actually traveled around in cars without having military escorts. we don't have anybody in in masar. so it's very difficult to get around. very difficult to get sources because we can't go out and talk to the afghans in many places outside the wire, outside the bases. they have to come in to see us. we get a lot of information from them. we use afghans as sources and
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they do monitoring of sites for us. so we try to come up with other means to do it. but this is not your normal i.g. operation. my auditors where helmets and my agents are carrying machine guns. this isn't your ordinary situation. host: there is this head gine in "usa today," afghan deaths are up 70%. afghan security forces suffering record casualties. and other international military support they have come to rely on. the number of afghans killed in the police and army killed or wounded, the numbers increased 70% in the first 15 weeks of 2015. lisa, good morning a
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republican. caller: i don't understand how we can spend so much money overseas helping everybody else with the budget that we don't know what the roof is because we keep raising the roof. we are so in debt and even our great-great-grandchildren are going to be in debt. why are we having fundraisers on television to support our vets when the vets in time past, they were treated with respect. now they are nothing but a low life and see them in the gutters and alies and we support people that don't even really want our help. i don't understand this. host: anything else you want to respond to? guest: the afghans, i got to go back to -- they didn't invite us there. we came. and we're trying to fix and help
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fix a country that has been at war for 30, 40 years. it was the home to terrorists who attacked the united states. and we made a decision to get in there, catch those terrorists, kill as many as we could, take them out and try to form a government that would keep them out. and now you have isis appearing there. there is some evidence of that. but it's an important issue. we can't ignore the rest of the world. if we do we do so at our peril. i don't do the policy. and an important policy tool is reveement. host: someone on twitter asked this question, can you take any leftover afghanistan reconstruction money and use it
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here to do any reconstruction? guest: we do recommend programs that are being killed. host: another damning afghanistan reconstruction report and the news isn't great. generally speaking, what's the reaction on the hill to these reports and what you put in them? guest: very interested and support them. i was told by chairman and ranking member just last week that we are their eyes and ears. we speak truth to power. we don't varnish what we say. many of the reports they get back from various agencies who are trying to protect their budgets and their programs are just happy talk. and that's what the role of an i.g. is. we speak truth to power and we
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have gotten strong support and you have seen it from the appropriators. host: robert in jonesville indiana, democratic caller. caller: yes, sir, how are you doing. i appreciate c-span and i watch it every day and i watch these republican members in the house and they say we broke, we broke. we got no money and i'm a self-employed contractor. and any way i just can't imagine, blows my mind to spend $110 billion where afghanistan ought to rebuild their places. what blows my mind, the budget that was passed by paul ryan, he wants to make medicare a voucher plan for old people and took the
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meal meals on wheels and cut social security and republicans don't understand what's going on. but i watch c-span every day as far as the house and the senate and senate. what blows my mind is that congress would give $110 million to rebuild something that we tore up to help the people. afghanistan ought to rebuild their own infrastructure. what we need to worry about is our infrastructure here in the united states. and to promote jobs and rebuild our bridges and roads that are full of potholes in every state. it blows my mind the way the congress has -- i mean, they do not care about nobody but themselves. all right, we get the point. guest: once again, i do not do
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the policy, i just see how it is carried out. i know the caller may not like the answer, but i think that is a question that should go to congress and the appropriators and off the writers. i will say this, i harp on this a lot, but the fact that you have c-span, you have voters -- and i hope whoever called votes, can see what is going on on a regular basis on the hill, and you see government officials like me come in, and i am subject to questioning -- i think it is fantastic. i'm not doing this so that i get another invite and more coffee from c-span, but you do have great donuts. what is really important is that most of the world does not have it. just like they do not have ids, they do not have a free press. going back to what the caller said why don't the afghans
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do this? they only raise $2 billion in taxes. it costs $5 billion to $6 billion. you see the gap. we are doing that. as far as rebuilding, we did after world war ii. we helped rebuild germany. we helped rebuild italy, who was part of the axis, and we helped the rest of europe. this is not unusual to do something like this. host: time for a couple more calls. wes, harrisburg, virginia, republican for john sopko. caller: good morning. this is wes. i am a world war ii vet and ex-employee -- x government employee. as background.
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i'm really interested in the government and of it, namely the employees in need, real intelligent, dedicated employees who are not merely bureaucrats but have training and are kind of backdoor policy writers writing be contracts. they have to be exposed to what they are writing the contacts about, and other words, have the knowledge of that comes with experience and learning. i really appreciate your being an independent investigator and finding out about the subjects. i wrote a specification for dump trucks for the army, and everyone was criticizing it for being a white elephant and
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wasting government money. the result was that a dump truck carries dump gravel and dirt. it is not the means of transportation, so we had one hell of a fight to get quality dump trucks from the tradeshows and going out to the field, and getting the information. have fun with the rest of the day. host: thanks for calling wes. guest: i think wes, that is a great point that you make. that is one of the issues if you read our report. we have contracting officers who never are in the country, or do six-month tors, or you get some poor sergeant who knows nothing about electrical requirements.
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and they're building a hospital he doesn't know, but he has to sign off on this. unscrupulous contractors will wait when the new guy comes in who is on a short tour, who knows nothing, and say, + all of this. that is why we get so many buildings that fall down, so many problems with construction. i think wes is totally on point. we need career contracting officers, career contracting officer reps and they need to be there longer than six months, for one year or more. if we did that, and we inspect the buildings before we cut the checks, we would have saved billions in afghanistan. this is not just a complaint with the military, it is a complaint with the aid and state and other agencies.
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that is what we are fighting you can see it in our reports. host: andrew, independent. caller: hello, i want to thank c-span for putting on a good radio show. i had a couple of questions. one was whether there were publicly issued reports regarding the money that is spent, and the other question i have is whether the compliance related to any of this money what were some of the controls over the money being spent? thank you. guest: all of our reports are public. that is our policy. if we finish our report, it is up on the website. if it is worth writing, it is worth publicizing, unless it is classified a violates the
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rights of individuals. for the active control requirements, there are some. there are many control requirements on the money being spent, most of them were waived or ignored by contracting officers who did not know what they were doing. we find that time and again. we are not holding the contractors accountable. we are not holding the co's ncoand cors accountable. people get in the country for a short amount of time. the common, and then they are gone. all they want to do is sign off so it looks good on their performance reviews. that is a serious problem. we are starting to do a number of "lessons learned" reports. i hired a sharp team who are subject matter experts who lived and worked in afghanistan who will be performing these
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reports. i hope the caller will come back in a few months when we issue the first one, and we will issue a series of them, so that we do not make the same mistake again. whether it is syria, lebanon, someplace in africa, it doesn't matter. we can't keep repeating this. host: jason from san diego, california. caller: good morning, i will be brief. you mentioned, a hospital being built. did we provide a health care system for the afghan people? guest: yes we do. we spend millions of dollars per year, as well as some of our allies. we pay for salaries of the doctors, clinics. we have allegations that many of those clinics do not exist or are not open. we build hospitals and clinics that even the afghans did not know we were building until we gave them the keys to it. yes, we do support their health care system. host: we are just about out of
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time, what is next for your office? guest: we have a lot of reports coming down. actually, one that i spoke of dealing with this headquarters we call it the 64 k, 64,000 square-foot headquarters that cost the u.s. government $30 million we've promised to find out who was behind this which the commander in afghanistan did not want. we also have a report looking at the dod organization about some problems with their extract of work -- extractive work. we have a report coming out on the rule of law programs which have not been done well. we have a number of audits coming out dealing with how we handle refugees, which is a big issue. again, we have a problem with lack of capacity. plus, a number of criminal
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investigations will be breaking. those are some of the issues that we are looking at. we came out with a list of serious problems, and about seven of them i talked about here. we're folk in focusing on those is >> on the next "washington journal," the latest developments in the 2016 presidential race. and then robert bixby looks at the house and senate budget agreement, which the house passed last week and the senate is expected to pass this week. plus, your phone calls comments, and tweets. live on tuesday at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span.
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coming up next on c-span, former neurosurgeon then carson -- ben carson announces his candidacy for president. and then a discussion on presidential war powers. later, president obama in new york talking about his my brother's keeper initiative. tuesday, the senate energy and natural resources committee holds a hearing examining wildfire management. the u.s. chief testifies on the -- the impact on these communities. see it live at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span3. >> the new congressional directory is a handy guide to congress with color photos of every senator and house member plus bio and contact information and twitter handles. also, district maps, a map of
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capitol hill, and a look at congressional committees, the president's cabinet and federal agencies and state governors. order yours today through the c-span online store at c-span.org. monday, author and retired neurosurgeon ben carson announced his decision to seek the 2016 presidential -- he spoke about his goal of improving the economy. this is c-span's road to the white house coverage. it is about one hour.
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[cheers and applause] >> please silence your cell phones.
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please stand for the presentation of colors by representatives of the american legion post number 32 from michigan.
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>> the national anthem is presented by candy carson on the violin and the choir selected of god directed by pastor larry callahan. >> ♪ oh say can you see by the dawn's early light what so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming who's brought stripes and bright
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stars through the perilous fight o'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming and the rockets' red glare the bombs bursting in air gave proof through the night that our flag was still there oh say does that star-spangled banner yet wave o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave ♪ ♪
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[applause] >> let us pray. god of all creation we thank
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you. we come to give you praise and glory today for you are the source of our strength, god. we ask your blessings upon this gathering, dr. ben carson, his family, especially his mother, sonja, and committee. we ask that you would guide and direct his thoughts, his words and his steps. we ask that they will be full of wisdom productivity, and guidance. god, as you protect this country and protect us and cover us cover dr. ben carson and his family. protect even the committee, god. we ask your blessings upon us and we expect you to do the
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supernatural. it is in the name of jesus that we pray and we will leave it to be so. amen. ♪ ♪
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>> ♪ you better lose yourself in the music, the moment, you want it, you better never let it go this opportunity comes once in a lifetime you better lose yourself in the music, the moment, you want it, you better never let it go this opportunity comes once in a lifetime ♪
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>> ♪ you better lose yourself in the music, the moment, you want it, you better never let it go you only get one shot do not miss your chance to flow this opportunity comes once in a lifetime you better lose yourself in the music, the moment, you want it you better never let it go you only get one shot do not miss your chance to flow this opportunity comes once in a lifetime you only get one shot you better lose yourself you only get one shot do not miss your chance to flow this opportunity comes once-in-a-lifetime
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you only get one shot opportunity, once in a lifetime ♪you only get one shot ♪ ♪ [applause] >> ♪ lord, i give thee y -- my
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-- ♪ ♪
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♪ ♪ [applause]
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♪ ♪ [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen, please give a warm detroit welcome to a powerhouse of musical excellence. from nashville tennessee maritime.
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[applause] ♪ >> ♪ when you walk through the storm hold your head up high and don't be afraid of the dark ♪ >> ♪ at the end of the storm is a golden scott -- sky
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>> ♪ walk on walk on through the rain ♪ you'll never walk alone ♪ ♪ you'll never walk alone ♪
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♪ ♪ when you walk through the storm, hold your head up high ♪ ♪ and don't be afraid of the dark ♪ >> ♪ at the end of the storm is a golden sky ♪ ♪ and the sweet silver song of the lark ♪ >> ♪ walk on through the wind, walk on through the rain ♪ ♪ though your dreams be tossed to and fro ♪ ♪ walk on, walk on ♪
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♪ and know in your heart that you'll never walk alone ♪ ♪ you'll never walk alone ♪ ♪ you'll never walk ♪ ♪ you'll never walk alone ♪ ♪ >> ♪ you'll never walk ♪ ♪ alone ♪
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♪ [applause] ♪ >> ♪ o, beautiful for spacious skies ♪ ♪ for amber waves of grain ♪ ♪ for purple mountain majesty ♪
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♪ above the fruited plains ♪ >> ♪ america, america ♪ ♪ god shed his grace on thee ♪ >> ♪ and crown thy good with brotherhood ♪ >> ♪ from sea to shining sea ♪ ♪ >> ♪ god bless america ♪ ♪ land that i love ♪ ♪ stand beside her ♪
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♪ and guide her ♪ ♪ through the night with the light from above ♪ >> ♪ from the mountain ♪ ♪ to the prairies ♪ ♪ to the oceans white with foam ♪ ♪ god bless america ♪ ♪ my home sweet home ♪ >> ♪ god bless america ♪ ♪ my home sweet home ♪ ♪
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>> ♪ mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the lord ♪ ♪ he is trampling out the vintage ♪ ♪ where the grapes of wrath are stored ♪ ♪ he has loosed the fateful lightning ♪ ♪ of his terrible swift sword ♪ ♪ his truth is marching on ♪ ♪ glory, glory, hallelujah ♪ ♪ glory, glory, hallelujah ♪ ♪ glory, glory, hallelujah ♪ ♪ our god is marching on ♪ >> ♪ in the beauty of the lilies, christ was born across the sea ♪
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>> ♪ with the glory in his bosom that transfigured you and me ♪ >> ♪ he died to make men holy, let us live to make men free ♪ while god is marching on ♪ >> ♪ glory, glory, hallelujah ♪ ♪ glory, glory, hallelujah ♪ ♪ glory, glory, hallelujah ♪ ♪ our god is marching on ♪ ♪ his truth is marching on! ♪ ♪ his truth is marching on! ♪
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[applause] >> historians will write about this critical turning point for a matron and how that a nation and how -- a nation and how we have responded to the dynamic forces changing our world. we can no longer afford the continuing dysfunction.
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of opposing partisan rancor or the rhetoric of the political class. if america is to survive the challenges of the modern world we need to heal, we need to be inspired, and we need to provide the exceptional spirit that built america. never before have we been so closely connected to each other but more divided as a country. we have created so many boundaries for ourselves by forcing friends and neighbors to pick sides, that we have stifled all productive debate. respect for one another has become the exception, not the rule. our government was devised to represent our citizens and to promote the common welfare for the pursuit of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. instead, we find ourselves drowning in government deception, dependency, and debt. our government was designed to reflect the will of its people. instead, washington has become a parlor game for special interests and the political elite.
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america's individuality is both brilliant and unstoppable. that same driven ingenuity once built this nation into a world power of commerce and thought leadership of free expression and unbridled opportunity. these are the values that caused america to become respected and admired across the globe and it must be the same values that inspire our american revival. it is our time to work together, all of us, each with their own unique talents, to bring insight to the challenges we face. it requires the full capacity of our gifted thinking, constrained only by the limits of our imagination and our willingness to see the job through. the generations before us built an exceptional nation and we can once again become the authors of ideas that have such profound magnitude. great transformations begin from a single event and, with
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directed focus, we can propel nation into the future with the government of, by, and for the people. first, we must heal. and healing requires a leader with calm, unwavering resolve someone more concerned about the next generation than the next election, someone who knows the pursuit of happiness is best fostered with opportunity and justice for all. we need a leader who inspires us with deed, someone dedicated to investing in the next-generation of great thinkers, doers, and their own destiny. someone who will protect their freedom to discover and forge their own path. we need a leader to revive the true promise of america. spreading open the doors of opportunity for individual advancement. giving each of us a greater chance to flourish together. engaging people and their
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government and a mandate for -- mandate to leave the country better off than the one we inherited. we have the fortitude to heal and the imagination to inspire and the determination to revive the americans dream. one nation under god indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. we can see this through together. with a leader that derives his strength from god, and his duty from the american people. ♪ [applause]
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dr. carson: thank you. thank you. thank you very much. [applause] dr. carson: thank you. thank you. all right. we have limited time. thank you. thank you so much for that warm welcome. this of course is my wonderful wife candy. who is also a detroiter. [applause] >> go tigers. dr. carson: even though we are both from detroit, we had to go to new haven to meet each other. but kandi has been by my side now for 40 years. [applause] dr. carson: and as my best friend.
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we do everything together. she even learned how to play pool because she knew i was a good player. [laughter] dr. carson: she wins some overtime but the sum -- some of the time but most of the times i beat her. there are media here and their headline will be that carson admits he beats his wife. [laughter] dr. carson: if you guys would not mind sitting down, so that i can introduce our son -- my oldest son, murray and his wife are right here. stand up, please. [applause] dr. carson: murray is an engineer and his wife is an analyst for a polling company. my middle son cj and his wife marlen is right here. ben junior. [applause]
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dr. carson: cj is an entrepreneur and merlin owns a company that does placements and they do a lot of things. they own a lot of stuff. very cool. and then my youngest son royce is right here. his wife is at home with the baby. [applause] dr. carson: royce is a cpa and they all three got married in 2011. [laughter] [applause] dr. carson: now, i have introduced my family. you say, who are you? i will tell you. i am ben carson and i am a candidate for president of the united states. [applause]
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dr. carson: thank you. thank you. now, you know, america remains a place of dreams. and a lot of people are down on our nation. and they want to point out all of the bad things that have happened here. but have you ever noticed that there are a lot of people trying to get in here and not a lot of people trying to escape? [laughter] dr. carson: you know, it says something. and it was a place of dreams for my mother. my mother came from a large rural family in tennessee. and was shuffled from home to home. she always had a desire for
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education. she was never able to get beyond the third grade. and she married at age 13 with the hope of escaping a desperate situation. she and my father moved here to detroit. and he worked in some factories. in fact, i remember one christmas being right here in this auditorium, sitting right over there. it was for gm employees. they had a christmas program for the kids. but some years later, my mother discovered that he was a bigamist and had another family. and of course that occasioned the divorce. you know, she only had a third grade education. and consequently, we were thrown into a situation of dire poverty. and she still maintained that dream of education but now it was for us more so than for
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herself. we moved in with her older sister and brother-in-law, a typical tournament -- tenament dwelling, gangs and sirens and murders. both of our older cousins who we adored. i remember when our favorite drug dealer was killed. [laughter] dr. carson: he drove a blue cadillac. the used to bring of candy so we like to see the drug dealers. the rats and the roaches. in the more upscale areas they call them water bugs that we know what they are. [laughter] dr. carson: my mother was working extraordinarily hard
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two, sometimes three jobs as a time -- at a time as a domestic, trying to stay off of welfare. the reason for that is that she noticed that most of the people who saw go on welfare never came off of it and she did not want to be dependent. she us to be independent. she would work as long and hard as necessary leaving at 5:00 in the morning and getting back after midnight, day after day doing what people did not want to do to maintain her independence. and she was very thrifty. she would drive a car until it would not make a sound. and then she would collect all of her dimes and nickels and quarters and buy a new car. people would say, how does that woman afford a new car? she knew how to manage money. my mother was the secretary of treasury, we would not be in a deficit situation. [applause] dr. carson: and, you know, there
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are many people who are critical of me because they say carson wants to get rid of all of the safety nets and welfare programs even though he must have benefited from them. this is a blatant lie. i have no desire to get rid of safety nets for people who need them. i have a strong desire to get rid of programs that create dependency in able-bodied people. [applause] dr. carson: and we are not doing people a favor when we pet them on the head and say, there there, we are going to take care of your needs, you do not have to worry about anything. you know will so stuff like that
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-- you know who else is stuff like that? socialists. the programs end up looking the same. there want to take care of people from cradle to grave but they want to be involved in every aspect of their lives and they want most of their earnings. but they say it will be a utopia and nobody will have to worry. the problem is that all of those societies and uplifting the same, with a small group of elites at the top controlling everything, and rapidly diminishing middle class, and a vastly expanded dependent class. that was not the intention for this country. this country was envisioned by individuals who wanted everything to be surrounding the people. oh, four, and by the people. not of, four, and by the
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government. and the government was to respond to the will of the people, not the people to the will of the government. we have about the whole thing to be turned upside down. i am not an antigovernment person by any stretch of the imagination. i think the government in the constitution is wonderful but now we have gone beyond what the constitution describes. we have begun to just allow it to expand based on what the political class wants because they want to increase their power and their dominion over the people and i think it is time for the people to rise up and take the government back. [applause] dr. carson: now, the political class will not like me saying stuff like that. i will tell you a secret.
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the political class comes from both parties. and it comes from all over the place, ok? [applause] dr. carson: and it includes unfortunately even the media now. you know, the media, the press is the only business in america that is protected by our constitution. you have to ask yourself the question, why were they the only ones protected? that is because the founders envisioned a press that was on the side of the people, not a press that was on the side of of the democrats or the republicans or the federalists or the anti-federalist. -- anti-federalists. [applause] dr. carson: and this is a direct appeal to media.
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you guys have an almost sacred position in a true democracy. please do not abuse it. [applause] dr. carson: now, you know, my mother's dream was to move back to detroit and we were eventually able to do that but i was a terrible student and my brother was a terrible student and she did not know what to do so she prayed. she asked god for wisdom. and you know what? you do not have to have a phd to dr. god. you just have to have faith. and god gave her the wisdom, in her opinion. my brother in her did not think it was wise. [laughter] dr. carson: making us turn off
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the tv and submit to her written book reports were she could not read but it did not matter. as i started reading those books, which i really did not want to, and i started reading about people of accomplishment, i began to recognize that the person that has the most to do with what happens to you when life is you. it is not somebody else. and you do not have to be dependent on the good graces of someone else. you can do it on your own if you have a normal brain and you are willing to work and you are willing to have that can-do attitude. you to remember, it was the can-do attitude that a lot of this nation to rise so quickly. because we had people who did not stop when there was an obstacle. that is how those early settlers were able to move across a rugged and hostile terrain. they knew how to do things.
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and there were many communities that were separated from other communities by hundreds of miles but they thrive. why did they drive? -- thrive? because people were willing to work together, to work with each other. if a farmer got injured everybody else harvested his crops. if somebody got killed everybody else pitched in to take care of their family. that is who we are. we americans, we take care of each other. that is why we are called the united states of america. and what we have done is we have allowed the purveyors of the vision to become rampant in our society and to create friction and fear in our society. people are afraid to stand up for what they believe in because
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they do not want to recall the names. they do not want an irs audit. they do not want jobs threatened and families messed with. but isn't it time for us to think about the people who came before us? and what they were willing to do? so that we could be free? nathan hale, a teenage rebel caught by the british ready to be executed. he said "my only regret is that i have but one life to give for my country." a couple of nights ago, i was in mobile, alabama. there were several world war ii veterans there in uniform. and i took pictures with all of them. and they were thanking me. for being courageous enough to
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do what i am doing now. and i said no. it is you who we must like. -- must thank. [applause] dr. carson: we think about all of those brave men and women who sacrificed life and limb over the years so that we could be free. and we dare not soil their effort. by being timid now. not standing up for what we believe. we have to recognize that one of the rules in saul alinsky's
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rules for radicals is to make the majority believe that what they think is no longer relevant. but what you think is the only way intelligent people believe. and that way they will keep silent. because i will tell you something, they do not care if you do not believe what they believe as long as you keep your mouth shut. that is what we have to start doing, we have to start opening our models for the values and principles of america. [applause] dr. carson: and i have got to tell you something. i am not politically correct. and i am probably never -- [cheers] [applause] dr. carson: and i am probably never going to be politically correct because i am not a politician. i do not want to be a politician. [applause]
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dr. carson: because politicians do what is politically expedient. and i want to do what is right. [applause] dr. carson: we have to think about that once again in our country. you know, this past couple of weeks, there has been a great deal of turmoil in baltimore. where i spent 36 years of my life. and we see the turmoil in our cities all over our nation. we need to start thinking about how we get to the bottom of this issue. you see, i believe that the real issue here is that people are losing hope. and they do not feel that life is going to be good for them, no
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matter what happens. so when an opportunity comes to loot to riot, to get mine, they take it, not believing that there is a much better way to get the things that they desire. interestingly enough, many of these people buy line, and sinker the idea that our economy is getting much better. but the unemployment rate is down to 5.5%. you know what, if the employment rate is down to 5.5%, the economy would be humming. obviously it is not. it is one of the reasons that the founders said that our freedom and our way of life is dependent upon a well-informed and educated public. because what you have to know is
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that you can make the unemployment rate anything you want it to be used on what numbers you ask. after look at the labor force participation rate which is the -- you have to look at the labor force participation rate which is the number of people eligible to work who are working. this is now at a 37 year low. unless you understand those kinds of things, it is eminently possible for a slick politician and biased media to convince you that everything is wonderful when your eyes tell you something different. and i am saying to people around the this nation right now stop being loyal to a party or to a man and use your brain to think for yourself. [applause]
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dr. carson: that is really the key to us as a nation becoming successful again. not in the loving ourselves to be manipulated -- and allowing ourselves to be manipulated by people who think that they are the kingmakers, that they are the rulers. they are not the rulers of thought. we the people are the rulers of thought in this nation. we get to determine what kind of nation we have. other people cannot dictate that for us. we can never allow anybody to take that right away from us. and we do that when we submit to silliness. for instance, the majority of americans were opposed to the so-called affordable care act. and they rounded down our throats and said that this is
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the way it is going to be and if you do not like it, too bad. that is never supposed to be the word of this country was run. if we accepted it will continue that way and it will get worse. we have to get the right people into place. we need it only to take the executive branch in 2016 -- when i say we, i am not talking republicans. i am talking anybody that has common sense. [applause] dr. carson: and we have to have another wave election and bring in people with common sense who actually love our nation and are willing to work for our nation and are more concerned with the next election. that is what is going to help us.
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we also are going to have to concentrate on fixing the broken economy. $18 trillion in debt and we have representatives that applaud themselves of the deficit does not go up as much this quarter than last quarter. they are completely out to lunch. we have to drive that back down. [applause] dr. carson: but it is our responsibility. you need to know who your representatives are and how they voted, not how they said they voted. if they voted to keep raising to compromise the future of our children and grandchildren, you need to throw them out of office. [applause] dr. carson: $18 trillion.
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think about what that means. if you have to pay that back at the rate of $10 million a day we are putting that on the backs of people coming behind us. this will be the first year of the national debt exceeds the gdp. economists will say when the ratio reaches 90%, at that point the economic slowdown is inevitable. we have been doing this for a while now. the economy grew at a rate of 3.3% even during wars. in 2001 into 2014, and grew at a rate of 1.8%.
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that seems to be the new norm. last quarter grew at .2%. i do not care how anybody tries to spin it. that is what happens when you have a ratio of 103 which is what we have now. this is what we have got to fix. we have got to fix it immediately because we cannot continue on that pathway. it will have dire consequences in the long run. and i will be giving an in-depth economic speech with a lot of details about things that have to be done. we have to fix it we can't just talk about it. how do we fix it? recognize that we have the most dynamic economic engine the world has ever known right here in america. we need to use it again. we can't work it when we
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wrap in in chains and fetters of regulations. it does not work. it does not work when you have high taxation rates. we have the highest corporate tax rate in the world. and yet we sit there and people wonder why people do work overseas. while they obviously do not understand business. people do not go into business to support government, they go into business to make money. [applause] dr. carson: we obviously have to create an environment that is conducive to them making money. and, you know, that means lowering that corporate tax rate, making it competitive. if we were really smart, we would do another big stimulus. you are saying what? what did he just say?
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remember that big billion dollars stimulus? what happened to that. there is $2 million of offshore money and they will not bring it back because it will be taxed at 35%.what if we give them a tax holiday and let them bring it back and repatriate that money? it will not cost us a dime. [applause] dr. carson: that is the kind of thing we have to start thinking about. if you go to a financial advisor, and you are in trouble they will tell you they will ask you for questions. -- four questions. what do you own and what do you owe? we all a l -- owe a lot.
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but we own a lot also. just in terms of lands in the mineral rights for it we are probably at least $50 trillion. we own dams, we own levees, we owned railroads. the government owns 90,000 buildings, 70,000 of which are being not utilized or underutilized. think about that. at the same time, the government is leasing over 500 million square feet from the private sector using your taxpayer money. it is totally horrendous, when you look under the hood you just want to set it -- shut it back down. it is that bad.
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i will tell you what we are going to do is god ordains that we end up in the white house. i will tell you what we are going to do. we are going to change the government into something that looks more like a well-run business. [applause] dr. carson: and when i say we, i am talking about our team. when i started listening better, -- this endeavor, i was familiar with a man who started over 30 companies, extraordinarily successful. i asked him to put together the rest of the team. his name is terry giles. terry, where are you? [applause] dr. carson: and now that we are transitioning from an exploratory committee i have
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asked terry if he would take the lead in helping to select the people who will be able, who have enormous experience with business and with making things work so that we can transition our government from this inefficient thing that we have into something that really works and works the way it is supposed to. according to our constitution. [applause] dr. carson: we also have a great team. we have our let's see, who do we have? [laughter] dr. carson: we have our chairman which is barry
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bennett. who never wears a tie but you will get used to seeing him and he does a terrific job. and we have our director of communications. who does wear a tie. [applause] dr. carson: and we have our treasurer and finance director logan. [applause] dr. carson: and we have our national spokesperson, anna beth. [applause] dr. carson: and we are going to be doing different things than you have seen before because it is not political, as i have said before. and there are going to be people who say you cannot do this, you do not have any experience.
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let me tell you something. i do not have a lot of experience busting budgets and doing the kind of things that have gotten us into all the trouble that we're in now. but do i have a lot of experience in solving problems. complex, surgical problems, that have never been done by anybody before. i do have experience -- [applause] dr. carson: i do have corporate board experience with 18 years at kellogg and 16 years with costco, as well as a biotech company. kandi and i do have experience starting a national nonprofit scholars fund. nine out of 10 of those fail. ours is thriving in all 50 states and has won several national awards. [applause] [laughter] -- dr. carson: so the point being that you can gain experience in other ways. it doesn't have to be just in politics. i can name a lot of people in
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politics who have been there all their lives and you probably wouldn't want them to polish your shoe. we need to be smart enough to think for ourselves, to listen for ourselves, and in terms of a pedigree that you need, and you know something, i have to tell you, everybody's been telling me, are you ready for this? they're going to come after you with everything under the sun. they're going to look through every record you have. they're going to try to say you're a horrible doctor. everything that you can possibly imagine. i know that. that's the way they are. i expect that. it's ok. don't worry. just listen to what's being said. i'm not even asking everybody to vote for me. i'm just asking people to listen to what i'm saying and listen to what politicians are saying and make an intelligent decision based on your intellect. because the real pedigree that we need to help to heal this
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country, to revive this country, someone who believes in our constitution and is willing to put it on the top shelf. [applause] dr. carson: someone who believes in their fellow man and loves this nation and is compassionate. somebody who believes in what we have learned since we were in kindergarten. and that is that we are one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. god bless you and god bless the united states of america. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]
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>> ♪ glory, glory, hallelujah ♪ glory, glory hallelujah ♪ ♪ glory glory, probably ♪ --
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alleluia ♪ ♪ is truth is marching on ♪ ♪ his truth is marching on ♪ ♪ his truth is marching on ♪ [applause]
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>> carson, carson, carson, carson. >> former hewlett-packard ceo carly fiorina announced her candidacy for the republican presidency monday. here is the video she released. carly fiorina: -- hillary clinton: i am getting ready to do something, too. carly fiorina: our founders never intended us to have a professional political class. the only way to reimagine our government is to reimagine who is leading it. i am carly fiorina and i am running for president. if you are tired of the
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soundbite, the ego, the corruption, if you believe it is time to declare the end of identity politics, if you believe it is the time to declare the end of lowered expectations if you believe it is time for citizens to stand up to the political class and say enough, then join us. it is time for us to empower our citizens, to give them a voice in our government, to come together to fix what has been broken for too long. because we can do this together. >> presidential candidates often released books to introduce themselves to voters. here is a look at recent books by declared and potential candidates. hillary clinton looks back on her time in the obama administration in "hard choices." in "american dreams," marco
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rubio outlines his plan to restore opportunity. mike huckabee gives his take on politics in culture and "god, guns, grits, and gravy." and rick santorum argues that the republican party must focus on the working class to retake the white house. in "a fighting chance," elizabeth warren recounts the events that shaped her career as an educator and politician. scott walker argues that republicans must offer bold solutions in "un-intimidated." kentucky senator rand paul who recently declared his candidacy calls for smaller government and more bipartisanship in "taking a stand." more potential candidates with recent books include former governor jeb bush. in "immigration wars," he argues for new immigration policies.
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in over go stand for something," john kasich calls for a return -- and "stand for something," john kasich calls for a return to american values. independent vermont senator bernie sanders recently announced his intention to seek the democratic nomination for president. his book "the speech" is a printing of his eight hour long filibuster against tax cuts. in "promises to keep," joe biden looks back on his career in politics and explains his guiding principles. neurosurgeon ben carson calls for greater individual responsibility in "one nation errico in -- one nation." in "fed up," rick perry says that the government is too intrusive.
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lincoln chafee, and "against the tide," recounts his time as a republican in the senate. carly fiorina of shares lessons that she has learned from difficulties and priam's in "rising to the challenge." bobby jindal criticizes the obama administration and explains why conservative solutions are needed in "leadership and crisis." and finally, in "a time for truth," texas senator ted cruz recounts his journey from a cuban immigrant's son to the u.s. senate. look for his book in june. >> coming up on c-span, from the new york university bar association, a discussion on presidential war powers. and then president obama in new york talking about is my brother's keeper initiative. and then the special inspector general on afghanistan reconstruction on spending in that country.
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>> tuesday, former arkansas governor mike have to be announces his candidacy -- mike huckabee announces his candidacy for the republican presidential nomination. he will make the announcement from his hometown at the university of arkansas in hope. that is live on c-span. >> tuesday, 2016 democratic presidential candidate hillary clinton hosts a roundtable discussion at rancho high school in las vegas. she will discuss immigration policy and strengthening families. live coverage on c-span. >> the new congressional directory is a handy guide to the 114th congress, with color photos of every house and senate member plus bio and twitter
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handles. also, district maps, and it look at congressional committees, the cabinet, federal agencies and state governments. order your copy today. it is $13.95 plus shipping and handling through the c-span online store. >> in february, president obama asked congress for authorization to use military force against isis. in april, a panel of lawyers and authors discussed presidential war powers in the role of congress in authorizing military operations. posted by the new york -- posted by the new york city bar association, it is one hour and 20 minutes. host: good evening. my name is jonathan hastings and i am the chair of the city bar association's task force on national security and the rule of law.
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i am delighted to be here tonight for this panel discussion. we are delighted to be here tonight for this panel discussion. a president at work. an examination of the war powers of the executive branch and the role of congress in authorizing military operations. tonight, we will discuss an issue that is both timeless and timely. the president's war powers and congress's role in authorizing military operations. these issues date to the first days of the republic and have remained central to our understanding of the constitutional structure. through lincoln's use of the force against the confederacy in the civil war, roosevelt's response to the rise of nazi germany, and postwar interventions in korea, vietnam, and conflicts that followed. questions of the war powers are central to the current fight against al qaeda and other
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terrorist groups since 9/11 and today the response to an emerging threat, such as the islamic state, for iraq, and isis. in the days after 9/11, congress enacted an authorization for the use of military force to respond to the attacks of 9/11. since 2001, this authorization has provided a statutory basis not only for the conflict against al qaeda and the taliban in afghanistan, but for global conflict against al qaeda as well as associated groups including offshoots in yemen this framework statute has provided a wide range of counter terrorism and military operations including detention interrogation, and targeting. in the so-called war on terror
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which president obama has said it like all wars must end. region -- recent developments have focused attention on the president's war powers and the role of congress in authorizing the use of military force. they include the draw down of u.s. forces in afghanistan and the rise of new groups like isil that threaten regional stability. this past february, president obama submitted the proposal if a new force organization targeted at isil. as we will discuss more tonight the proposal was notable for what it includes, limited ground combat operations, as for what it does not include, no corresponding sunset of the long-standing 2001 aumf.
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the united states is at a crossroads and actions in the coming months will shape the course of future responses to the issues for many years to come. tonight we will be exploring many of these questions including the authority of the president to respond to the use of force as commander-in-chief. the role and responsibility of congress in responding to new threats. whether the nature of new threats like isil require us to rethink traditional conceptions of the war powers and the optimal ways that the powers of the two coordinate branches should be exercised. we're fortunate to be joined by a distinguished panel of experts. i will go ahead and introduce the panelists to you and they'll speak in order and after that we'll have time for questions and answers. answers. i would ask in advance, when you
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have a question, please come up to the microphones to ask. first we will hear from ward narrow more. he is a u.s. army advocate who was deployed to iraq as the chief legal advisor in the 101st airborne division before being aside -- being assigned, he served as the deputy chief of the international law division. a distinguished career in academia and on the ground. he'll be follow by ryan goodman. he's a professor at nyu and co-editor of the just securities blog. he formally taught at harvard law school where he was a professor of human rights and humanitarian law and director of

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