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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  December 21, 2015 7:00am-10:01am EST

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politician talks about his ideas recidivism for inmates. as always, we will take your ♪ host: good morning. welcome to the washington journal. we begin this morning with your top concern for the year ahead. national security? the economy? trade agreements? jobs? the presidential election? if you're a republican dial in at (202) 748-8001. immigrants, -- democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents, (202) 748-8002. e-mail,also send an journal at c-span.org.
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the phone lines are open so start dialing in. we ask this question after this poll that came out recently that found national security is now a top concern. fear of terrorism surges after the attacks in paris and california and will likely impact the 2016 election. or is it the economy? dial in and let us know. i want to begin with president obama's interview with npr before he left for his vacation in hawaii where he talked about his isis strategy. >> i think what is fair is that post paris you have a saturation of news about the horrible attack. nessbines ambitious with savvy media operations.
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if you have been watching television for the past month all you have been seeing and hearing about is these guys with masks and black flags who are potentially coming to get you. i understand why people are concerned about it. this is a serious situation. but what is important is for thele to recognize that power, the strength of the areed states and its allies not threatened by an organization like this in the same way that al qaeda was able to carry out unspectacular attack we ended up making -- carry out one spectacular attack, we that making -- it took a while to snuff out al qaeda and there are lingering remnants. at no point was there ever since do catastrophic
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damage to us. plus mediar to isil operation and refer to what americans are seen in the american media. are you suggesting that the media are being played in a sense? is pursuing ratings. this is a legitimate news story. i think that it is up to the media to make a determination about how they want to cover things. there is no doubt that the actions of isil are designed to their power and the threat that they pose. that helps them recruit. that adds in the twisted thoughts of some young person they might want to have carry out an action, that somehow they are part of a larger movement.
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i think the american people and are that understandably concerned. i think there is legitimate criticism of what i have been doing and our administration has been doing in the sense that we basis,t, on a regular described all of the work we have been doing for more than a year to defeat isil. host: president obama in his interview with npr ahead of his vacation in hawaii, talking about the isis strategy. is that one of your top concerns for the year ahead? we're getting your thoughts this morning. on isis, here is the washington times this morning. president obama says that social media is part of the visa screening. he said that in his year and news conference on friday. stephen dina and reports that is not what members of the u.s.
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citizenship and immigration services officials said that when they testified before congress said it is running a pilot program that only thousands of applicants have had their social media presence scrutinized as part of the application for immigration and fits. andl fraction of the leases applications the government approves each year. -- the visas and applications government approves each year. larry, your top concern for the year ahead? caller: i'm a black army veteran and my concern is republicans winning the presidency. which c ted a war costed $4 billion. i can't believe people are thinking about putting these people back in charge. that just shows you how mindless these people are.
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have a nice day. host: larry, a democrat in mississippi. he says the presidential election is his top concern. while we wait for more cost come in, take a look at what paul ryan had to say when he sat down with meet the press on sunday. he talked about his priorities for next year. [video clip] >> let me move to your relationship with th president obama. >> i think criminal justice is one of the areas we talked about getting done. we will see what we can get that done. that is what -- we are still looking at the trade agreement. i have not made my mind up. that is something conceivably that could be done. let me say this. he is not on the ballot again. there will be other people on the ballot but i believe the president has succeeded in transforming this country and a direction it was never supposed to go in a person -- never supposed to go in the first
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place. host: paul ryan talking about the 2016 legislative year. what is possible for the agenda. is that one of your top concerns? david, from arkansas. caller: national security i think has to be primary over everything because without our country and the values and the culture we have developed over a few hundred years, we have no country. me when iexacerbates hear people that want to limit people from some countries from coming into america. to say, you are a bigot. let me turn that table a bit and ask people that are listening to think about this. what if instead of just bring in
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50 thousand or 100,000, -- 50,000 or 100,000, let's say we brought in 50 million. if you are not racist, why would you object? lending and 50 million muslims -- letting in 50 million muslims and 50 million mexicans. host: that is your top concern? national security. you agree with this idea of a ban on muslim americans until congress figures out who is coming in? attorney.am an my specialty is not immigration and these types of things. i do think we need to put a band-aid on this for a while. i truly believe this. i have studied -- it has worried me so much that i have gone and studied all of the books and
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things involving religion. people need to look at this. this is a religion but it is guided by political principles. anyone that tells you -- and this is not racist -- ministers who know what they are talking about, they will tell you. governor huckabee, who is my governor, an individual that i know. , hisw governor hutchison attorney is actually representing me. the thing is, these people know this is a political philosophy. islam means to dominate. to control. it's not a peaceful religion. there's nothing peaceful about killing people when they leave your religion. host: david, i want you to listen to what the leader of the mcconnell,c mitch
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had to say when he was on "state of the union" yesterday. >> we're not going to follow that suggestion that this candidate made. it would prevent the president of afghanistan from coming to the united states. the king of jordan could not come to the united states. obviously were not going to do that. host: david, you just heard it from the majority leader, they are not going to follow up on donald trump's proposal. that.: i know if i was in charge of things, it would not be able to be done that way. i am talking as an individual in the middle of america in views,s explaining my not as a public official. -- this is you that a systemic problem. books -- get any biblical
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about the religion of -- host: let me get another voice and. in. [indiscernible] host: you are more worried about what he can do in the next year? caller: i'm more worried about obama and i am isis. host: what are you worried about? caller: his executive orders bringing all the people over here he is bringing over, letting these people in here. all of the kids he claims coming up from mexico. i live here in texas and i've been watching these adults with these kids coming in. he is an ignorant man when it comes to foreign policy. you: here is a headline for from an opinion piece in the wall street journal.
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cheer up, obama's legacy can be erased. it is written by phil gramm, former senate committee banking chairman. it says, the white house has ran through in the agenda -- an agenda that can be undone by a republican president and they go through how that would happen. scott in arizona, an independent. caller: good morning. merry christmas. host: merry christmas. caller: i'm a retired military officer and i am also a disabled veteran. things you have to understand from a military intelligence perspective, top agenda. -- propaganda. you cannot win a war without expecting propaganda.
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your enemy can never win a war without effective propaganda, which is turning the people against themselves. host: this is obviously your top concern for the year ahead? caller: yes it is. america is an experiment in violence. on saying was founded we are no longer going to take it from the king. so we took up arms. every other nation or nationstate or want to be nationstate is going to follow our model. , bethel,nk connecticut. independent. caller: my top concern is the presidential election in homeland security. good morning. merry christmas. host: good morning. tell us why.
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caller: i was listening to the interview with the president and i believe it was npr. as i'm listening to it it is sort of like blaming people for listening to the news or whatever other people are saying regarding what happens in paris or california. i'm not sure why there is this denial of what's going on. it seems to be pretty clear the matter who you are, where you are. i just don't see an urgency in how to deal with this in the current administration. i really concerned that in the , if presidential election it is somebody who is following that same philosophy, we are not going to address this issue. i think we are taking a chance with our homeland. host: how should be addressed? caller: a couple of different
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models out there. i'm not an expert although i have military -- career military in my family. -- i thinkis that the first thing you have to do is recognize what it is and that it is a threat. it is only after you recognize it as a real threat and that it has capability will you be able to develop a strategy. is it a threat? maybe it is. maybe the media is blowing it up. it does on occasion bookings up. -- blow things up. unless you recognize it for what it is, we're never going to be able to address whatever that strategy is. those that say there is a i got ittoday in place contained were addressed -- contained or addressed, i cannot see it.
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host: frank, are you for combat troops? think we am for -- i do have combat troops in that area, don't wait -- don't we? we have special forces. , both in syria and iraq, afghanistan. we have troops. i think i heard somebody say yesterday that there is an area where this concentration of isis, isil, what everyone to call it. nobody has attacked it. why is that? what frank, take a look at "the new york times" put together. where isis has gained and lost territory this year. isis has advanced on strategic arts of syria -- strategic parts
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of syria. the gray striped area, areas lost by isis this year. the areas that are controlled by isis. to give you an idea of the lay of the land. president obama during that thoseiew also addressed that are critical of him for not using more force against isis. [video clip] >> when you listen and you ask, what exactly are you talking about and you say, we will bomb more. where is it that you are going to bomb? when you talk what something like carpet bombing what you mean? strikes out precision based on intelligence of where isolate is. where -- based on where isil is. if the suggestion is that we kill hundreds of thousands of innocent syrians and iraqis, that is not who we are and that
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would be a strategy that would have an enormous backlash. it would be terrible for national security. unfortunately many of these critics can get away with beingting bombing more or less discriminate in how we approach that would make a difference. way, i trust this my commanders, folks were fought long and hard in places like iraq or afghanistan. when they described to me, here's how we gather intelligence, here's how we approach targeting, we have been at this for a long time in afghanistan, iraq. laces like somalia and yemen where we have gone after terrorist targets. the key is to make sure that we have sound intelligence. i make no apologies for us
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wanting to do this appropriately and in a way that is consistent with american values. host: president obama responding to critics who say he is not using enough force against isis. is that your top concern for next year? the threat of isis and terrorism. the national security top the list? jobs, the presidential election? take a look at this headline from the wall street journal. republican leaders set a low bar for next year's session. legislative leaders and mr. obama have a short list and the overlap in certain areas such as overhauling the criminal justice system. passage of the transpacific partnership is possibility even though mr. mcconnell warns that the deal is unpopular on the campaign trail in both parties. he said -- mr. ryan has said they want to ensure that congress passes 12 individual appropriations bills, a return
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to a process that avoids last-minute continuing resolutions and giant spending bills like the one that they passed last week before leaving town. it says in the washington times this morning, a front-page story about how lobbyists were able to get a provision into this $1.1 trillion spending bill worth $1 billion. it says in the expand of 11 days, $1 billion in future federal tax payments managed. lobbyists2000 pages, swooped in to at 50 forward to temporarily preserved the pulse on by the hotel, restaurant, and gambling industries along with billionaire wall street investors that allowed them to put real estate in trust and avoid taxes. they want support from harry reid of nevada who responded to appeals from executives of casino companies, politically powerful players, and huge
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employers in the state. the lobbyists even helped draft crucial language. your top concern for next year? caller: my top concern is americans being able to get along. each morning i try to enjoy your show but it seems like it is just an outlet for people to spew hatred. you sit there and allow people to call the president ignorant. that's unacceptable. that's very divisive. i think political rhetoric has affected the climate in america. people are acting upon things they hear and people are very casual about calling the president al qaeda names on your -- calling the president all kinds of names on your program. i thought i could get informative information and learn things. i have learned there is so much hate in the united states. every race that has come to america has been ostracized.
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everyone. host: it is unfortunate that you have that opinion. i think if you watch the show you get information about what washington is reading. information about -- information from the guests. we tried to spend a good amount of time focusing on different issues. getting a myriad of perspectives from both sides of the aisle. we do ask that the conversation stays civil. there is no time delay. in, it is veryl much like a town hall. people are live on the show and they are giving us their comments. itdo ask that people keep civil and sometimes they don't. most of the time they do though. we appreciate that. google charles ford north carolina -- we will go to cheryl's ford, north carolina. caller: one thing that can concerns me about the refugees
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coming to this country, we cannot control the street gangs. going.ow you wonder i'm if they let refugees in they cannot guarantee there are no terrorists coming in with them. you have 10,000 refugees income even 5% of them are terrorists, fromre they going to stop born of the city -- from blowing up the city? i say get rid of isis, wipe out the taliban and then let them into the country. that is my comment. host: here are some comments on twitter. and says, this bigotry continued propaganda from these people is a big concern because it could send us down and ugly road. stella says millions will change values that this country has embraced since our humble beginnings. anti-women's rights,
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anti-minority rights, and time rights and aim push for more wars. some concerns from our viewers on twitter this morning. you can go to facebook.com/c-span or send an e-mail, journal at c-span.org. caller: good morning. three things i am concerned about in the coming year. i'm concerned about what our unconstitutional thing our president will probably be doing . i'm very much concerned about the country being run over both by legal and illegal aliens. my most concern of all is that donald trump will not be elected president. thank you. host: why do you want him to be elected? caller: we need someone strong
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who will correct the country. i just don't think anyone else will. i don't know whether he will correct the things that people like myself -- i am and 88-year-old veteran with an enormous amount of history. i think the only thing that will save us is someone that will on thep to the liberals way to totally destroying the country. i don't know whether trump will do it or not but i have to put my faith in him that he will. host: why do you think he won't become the nominee? he is leading in all the polls. concerned that he will not get elected. it is hard for me to believe
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that a country that elected obama twice will elect someone like trump. sound reasonable. good morning. you are on the air. caller: a shift from our founding principles. the federal government protecting rights and giving us opportunities. helping us to have a hand up. i think too many people are looking toward the federal government for a handout. looking for the government to solve our problems and give us programs, entitlements, and wealth. i think that is a weakness from within that has a long-term force on our nation. host: what did you make of this spending bill that the two sides came together on, compromised?
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got provisions they wanted. democrats as well. caller: very disappointing. we are overspending our budget. making federal jobs the best jobs to have. if you want to get ahead, go work for the federal government. i just think private sector should be the best place to get a job. host: there is a headline on the hill's website this morning. president obama gave federal workers arrays this year. there's this from the new york times. paul ryan defending the compromise on this spending bill. you heard a little bit of it. asked, in here that when mr. ryan did not say -- i have not been thinking about it. i stepped up when i had a duty and an obligation to do so. i'm excited about the potential and excited about the
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opportunity. we will go to steve in philadelphia, democrat. what is your top concern? donald my top concern is trump. say to him, you have to keep the rhetoric down and let the president and our government do its job to fight isil, isis, whoever you want to call them. host: so you believe hillary clinton made the claim at the debate that isis is using donald trump as a recruiting tool. you believe that? caller: it may play into it. i think it plays into it a little bit. i do know that we are not the people that he -- when donald
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trump speaks like that, we aren't those people. we are american people made up .f immigrants of all over all nationalities and religions. my basic point is that i think that the president is doing a secretly getting these guys like bin laden and other isisl qaeda, taliban, and heads. he is eliminating them quietly. actually telling the enemy what they're going to do on national tv while they are debating. it is ludicrous. i don't understand it. , thetell the president
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president is telling everybody what his plan is. i never heard the president say anything about plan, just about the oil tankers he is taking out, the money system he is cutting i have to say. we are surrounded by the shores -- atlantic, pacific. isis is not coming here and going to take over this beautiful country of ours. people, fdr said it, and he said it well. there is nothing to fear but fear itself. these candidates are making you fear. host: ok, steve. take a look at donald trump's reaction to what hillary clinton said about him being a recruiting tool. it made the front page of "usa today," with a headline, "trump:
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clinton lies like crazy." he repeated that on "meet the ."ress your [audio clip] liar, and everybody knows that. she made this up and then there -- anin thin air. >> if you knew your words were being used, would you change your language? my wordsecause i think represent toughness and strength . hillary is not strong. she is weak, frankly. she has no stamina, nothing. she could not even get back on the stage. no one even knows what happened to her. >> why do you keep going on this? >> i tell you why. we need a president with great strength and stamina. hillary does not have that. we cannot have another bad
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president like we have right now. we need a president with tremendous intelligence, smarts, cunning, strength, and stamina. >> there are a lot of things that i have heard about hillary clinton. she did travel more than any secretary of state. it is a grueling job pg has been on the national stage for 25 years. >> she may have traveled a lot, but she did not do the job upause the entire world blew around her. she wasted a lot of time, energy, money, and frankly, a lot of lives because her disaster for a the world. her decisions were horrible. hundreds of thousands of people have been killed because of her faulty decisions. >> i have heard you say that -- hundreds of thousands of people? >> of course. how about all of the bad decisions. how about libya? how about what is going on with
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the migration, which was caused by her faulty decisions. how about now? you look at our president. the iran deal. one of the worst deals i have seen negotiated in my life. a bad deal, that decision -- bad decision. host: donald trump on "meet the press" responding to hillary .linton focusing on him that is the headline from it says,on journal," "even if he does not win the him."tion, the party owns bernie sanders and martin times innamed him nine the democratic debate without naming other contender in the crowded gop field. hillary clinton finishes up the
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a 25 point advantage. she is likely to begin spending even more time in iowa and new hampshire, where winds would all but extinguished mr. sanders's .hances "the wall street journal" goes onto say that her campaign plans to send her husband into places like iowa and new hampshire in the coming weeks. we will go to bob, texas, what is your top concern in 2016? were just mentioning the two biggest concerns i have, as a republican, donald trump credibilitye much at all. my biggest concern of all is the coronation of hillary clinton. the fact that she will be swept into office, and as trump said, correctly, though i don't like him, she does not say the truth.
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she sets up her own servers. she does what she believes she was to do. the current president's problem is he does not follow the laws. bigger than that, he has damaged our way of running the country. he has made the congress ineffective. congress will not be effective as long as he is president. he will continue to do what he wants. i believe hillary clinton will do the same thing if she moves into office. host: who is your candidate ben? caller: actually, i like carly fiorina. i think she is a phenomenal candidate, would be a great is she does not make it, marco rubio is a good candidate as well. host: y marco rubio? caller: rubio, you can see, anyone who has watched the debates, he is well spoken, he understands things. he explained that triad to mr. trump. he is well educated. i think he is similar to john kennedy.
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i think he would do a great job as president of the united states. host: take a look at the front page of "the washington post." limit get your reaction to this. stumps a looseness on unnerves gop activists. say he is activists the best hope to face front runner hillary clinton but say they are alarmed of his seemingly disdain for the day-to-day grind of retail politics. caller: i would say it is his focus. he is extremely focused. you watch him in the debates, whenever he is challenged, he is able to refocus and shape his ideas. i would not say he is aloof. that, butle may say i don't. certainly able to
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turn on the charm with one donors.ency, that is it "the washington post." "the wall is from street journal" this morning that chris christie is gaining in new hampshire, but rivals are focusing on his record. found that mr. christie has more than doubled his support in new hampshire into in since the survey an november. donald trump still trails with 32% among likely primary voters surveyed. followed by senator cruz and marco rubio. speaking of ted cruz and his lead, as many of you know, he is leading in iowa. that is the headline in "the financial times," he leads in iowa despite his stance on ethanol. he believes that they should go another direction that there should not be these ethanol
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subsidies. his support from prospective republican voters in the state this, the on to say poll that put him in first place separately found that 51% of iowa voters played to participate in the caucus supported the renewable fuel standard. in an interview, the governor of iowa cited sociological data showing that more than half of iowa voters would not make a file decision about which candidate to vote for until the final month before the election, meeting mr. cruz is the could still about three by the start of february. rural iowa willa caucus, and their votes will be loud and clear. we will go to dad in massachusetts, an independent. good morning to you. your top concern? caller: good morning. thanks for having me on. i think itcern --
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should be the majority people's top concern. the massive conflict of interests within our government. 2012, the government basically stopped a law, the und act.n it prohibited the government from using propaganda within the borders of the united states. , basically,the act our government, by law, can use propaganda that they have made and disseminate within the borders of the united states. unfortunately is it provides legal protection for actors who are acting in the
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capacity of disseminating propaganda in the borders of the united states. it gives them legal cover if what they are doing is in the best interest of the united states. host: all right. elmore is a democrat in tennessee, you are on the air. caller: thank you for having me. i'm concerned about the way we are prosecuting this war. we are still putting our trust in military might and also perversion. as long as we prosecute this more from this particular perspective, we are never going to get rid of ice is because isis is an ideology. this is why we see it throughout the country, throughout the united states, throughout the world. as long as we use our might, and
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pe thingscan shake t without understanding the root causes, we will continue to experience the problems we have seen today. we have felt to learn a lesson when we went into the desert storm in 1991. also, 2000 one, after 9/11. we continue to use this .articular point of view we have to look at it from a completely different vantage point. then, when we do that, we can focus on the correct think. donald trump made a comment about creating a temporary home for muslims coming into the nation. that point is well taken because if you fail to understand as to what causes people to become angry, this problem will continue to facilitate. the question is what do you do next after you find out the root causes? int: we will go to kent
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illinois, and independent. caller: good morning, c-span. my biggest concern is -- i'm a 65 your vietnam veteran, disabled. i want to see america take america back. what i mean by that is every time you pick up the phone to lall, you press one for españo and two for english. saykids are not allowed to the pledge of allegiance. people are able to destroy or mutilate the american flag. also, for the last 10-15 years, people have said, we have to get money out of politics. yet, here is the chance with donald trump. who is probably going to get elected is hillary clinton who is tied to billions of billions of dollars from other country donations who she will be obligated to.
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i want to see people take america back. stand up. let's say the pledge of allegiance. stores are now not saying "merry christmas" the people, they are saying, "happy holidays," because they are afraid of offending someone. this country should be one america. people who come here should be forced to learn english. host: ok. we will go to terry next, indiana, democrat. caller: good morning, united states of america. host: good morning, terry. caller: say, i listen to the republicans, the democrats. i did not hear a word talking about marijuana from the republicans, but all the democrats word. will be aho corporation president -- the corporations run this country now. it is ridiculous. i would like to see bernie sanders. marijuana is the number one in legal drug sold in the world.
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if you legalize it, you would cartels.drug it would be pennies on the ton. they sell it for $8,000 a pound. the gangs do. that is the number one seller. if you legalize that, you could break up 99% of our gangs. our streets would be saved just by legalizing marijuana. it is ridiculous how it is now. statepfather was a staple parole officer, and he told me year after year, you could buy drugs from the inmates but you would get much better drug deals from the guards. host: you might be intereste d, in our last hour, we will be smith.ng with jeff he wrote this book, "mr. smith
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goes to prison: what my year behind bars taught me about ."erica's prison crisis we will go to kathy next from ohio. caller: thanks for taking my call. i appreciate being able to call for the subject because i think the best ring is preventing the loss of wildlife habitat and the degradation of the environment. one is not destroying ourselves with nuclear weapons because there is no coming back from that. the same thing goes for the loss of wildlife habitat and the ofrd edition -- degradation the environment by our own hands organized development. if you look rather city, every single would've bought is for
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sale. that is not good. we are slowly destroying our environment. at the bottom mine, whether things are destroyed by us or the terrorists, it is the same. host: what did you think of the deal struck in paris by all the countries? caller: honestly, i think every step forward is fantastic. i have not read the details of the deal. i do not know how much in that talks about preservation and keeping our trees that we still have intact and preventing clearcutting, reinforce, and that sort of thing. i'm very encouraged that we are taking steps forward. host: you might be interested in this. "wall street journal" reports of what will much happen will take flights at
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obama's policies, including the iran deal, the deal reached in paris, and the affordable care act. "iranian hacking threat the breach came amid hacks linked to iran's government and just a few years after american spies destroyed and arabian facility with a ormhisticated computer w the still classified intrusion illustrates a top concern for u.s. officials. u.s. secretary of state john kerry reassuring iran on visa restrictions.
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the obama administration pushing to support international trade with iran has advised the nation's rulers not to worry about new legislation that restrictions on people who travel to iran. the rules will unfairly target travelers to iran and could investment interest in their country. countries and companies have been traveling to iran -- u.s. companies as well -- to invest in the country. this is part of the spending bill that restricts people from fromeling to iran, syria -- having the visa requirements waived, they now have to go through the process. be will go to ernest in georgia. good morning. you are on their. -- on the air.
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caller: by biggest concern for 2016 is how long will be mediaan people and the allowed on the trunk to be the luck of the draw. mb can you be? if you look at the dictionary for fool, you will see a picture of donald trump. host: pauline, an independent. you are on the air. your top concern? caller: i'm so sorry. .hey had to use my middle name anyhow, good morning, miss greta. the united states, oh my god, come on now. americans, hello. please, please be civil. this is supposed to be christmas, you know, the birth of our creator of this earth.
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let's be civil. let's not be dumb and ignorant and stupid. let's not be afraid of everything. are we americans or are we a wusses?f wa the only real native american and american is only the native americans. the tribes. host: ok. that is probably not in oklahoma. her top concern is the fear she sees and americans. what is your top concern for the year ahead? jobs,t the economy, possibly trade? we have about 10 minutes left. , yesterday,how you bernie sanders was on "meet the press" and he was asked about .he dnc and the campaign as they say, most democrats have put last week's embarrassing
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fight behind them as sanders agreed to an investigation of how his campaign accessed hillary clinton's data. he has fired the person from his campaign, apologized to mrs. clinton at the debate, and the dnc sanctioned him, but reversed course on saturday. here is bernie sanders on "meet the press." [video clip] >> on two occasions now in the last several months, breaches have occurred as a result of the incompetence of dnc vendors. two separate vendors. the first time, our staff said we got information from the clinton campaign. they did the right thing. they went back to the dnc. the second time, the stuff screwed up,- staff and i apologize for that.
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but, to significantly hinder our campaign was a complete overreaction, and that was absolutely wrong. >> hewitt knowledge that you have staffers who essentially, if they did not rob the voter files, they certainly took pictures. >> let me say this. let's be clear. breach caused a by the dnc vendor, not by us, information came into our campaign about the clinton campaign. >> magically? >> yes. >> ok. caused byas a breach the incompetence of the dnc vendor. the information came into our campaign. the first time it came in, our andf did the right thing said, we have information from the clinton campaign, we don't want this, and went to the dnc.
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the second time, one staffer or more screwed up. we have fired that person. the point is the dnc proposed because of the initial screwup our own access to our own information which significantly hampers our own campaign. for jelly, that has been resolved. host: bernie sanders on "meet the press" yesterday about the back-and-forth with the dnc and his party. we will go to danny, pennsylvania, a democrat. caller: thanks for taking my call. host: your top concern? caller: my top concern is the economy. the scare tactic with isis. listen, they have been here. we are not going to change those folks. my daughter is getting her masters degree in college. kids are coming out of universities and don't have enough jobs here.
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i agree with the guy, the veteran who was in the military in vietnam, bringing stuff back here to this country. we have our own kids being shot by police officers. these folks are looking at how we run our own country. we cannot even run our own country. how are we going to tell another country to run their country. we have to come together. the wall street " board --of vittori editorial a serious roadmap for syria released on friday. in the world of fantasy diplomacy that the obama administration inhabits this .pparently counts as a victory syria is to have a conference of cease-fire, negotiated political transition, free and fair
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elections all within 18 months. writes "the wall street journal." is now gloating that he will not have to leave ,ffice, and with russia, iran and hezbollah fighting his battle, he has every reason to believe he can hold onto power. david, a republican. good morning. caller: good morning. my main concern for the next year is how our congress and .enate passes their budget they are supposed to know that in october, when the fiscal year is over, they should have the budget ready for the next year. my second concern is if they would do something about the immigration. i mean, illegal aliens do not just pick fruit in this
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country. it builds, they weld, they were can be power plants, the oil refineries. they do not just make eight dollars-nine dollars. $50,000-$1 million because when you work those projects, they have to pay the same to everybody. host: coming out, we will speak john chn usack. caller: my concern is the rhetoric from all the people talking today. i think they do not have their hand on the pulse of america. i think most of it is sensational iization. you cannot get a point of what they are pointing to an talking about. most is argumentative and has to
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do with individuals and not americans. it is about each one wanting to take the stage. we have lost in this whole of whatof campaigning we are supposed to be doing -- giving american voters an opportunity to hear and than complainher at each other which has torn down the tapestry of the american flag. that is my concern. not just issues, but the people trying to lead. i fear there and ability to lead. host: all right. frank, alabama, independent. caller: how are you doing? i just have this. my general concern is people's minds being able to change.
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b are so stuck in our ways when incomes -- we are so stuck our ways when it comes to thinking. i have another point as well. with donald trump, a lot of people think that just because he is a billionaire, he is out of the box here he is not. he says constantly that he endorses republicans and democrats, exactly what bernie sanders w says we need to stop. his mind does not change of his views of making money. he pays low wages to immigrants to make his buildings. i just heard a guy's "immigrants making nearly $100,000 per year. thatave to pay taxes on $100,000. if you are an immigrant, you cannot make $100,000 and pay taxes on it. tony, texas, independent. you are our last for this conversation. thatr: my main concern is
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it is not that the politicians do not get it and understand it. they know exactly what is going on. they are behind it all. they are not stupid. it is not that they do not -- that they are not in touch with the american people. they are directly in touch. they know exactly what they are doing. we have some very, very evil people in charge of our government. very evil people. scare and theine united states. that is because we are allowing it to come over here. host: that is tony, his top concern for 2016. when we come back, we will turn our attention to capitol hill, behind us, talking about the past year in washington, the highs and the lows with cues cusack.bob later, "mr. smith goes to prison
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." we will be right back. >> all persons having business before the honorable united states supreme court are admonished to give their attention. >> tonight on "member cases" we will look at one of the most d divisive issues to come before the supreme court. >> roe versus wade was decided in january 1973. it is a case that is controversial, that is constantly under scrutiny.
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there is a question, i suppose, whether it will ever cease to be under scrutiny. >> wanting to terminate an unwanted i can see unable to because of a state law banning abortion, and unmarried dallas carnival worker decided to be theplane of the challenged law. wanting to remain anonymous, she roe.amed jane while she had the baby and put it up for adoption, her case made it all the way to the supreme court. had gone to dallas positions, but was refused care because of texas law. she filed suit on behalf of herself and all those women who have had in the past, at the present time, or in the future would seek termination of
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pregnancy. >> we will look at the impact, then and now. with clarke forsythe and melissa murray. that is life tonight at 9:00 eastern on c-span, c-span 3, and c-span radio. for background on each case will you watch, or do your copy of the "member cases" companion book. it is available for $8.95 plus shipping at c-span.org. >> "washington journal" continues. host: back at our table this morning, bob cusack from "the hill," editor in chief. let's begin with where congress
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ended. talk about the best and worst moments in washington this past year. to get ryan was able over 150 republicans to pass this with him. guest: 150 on the dot. he voted to get 150. set the expectation to get 150 republicans. they worked hard to get it. congress was less dysfunctional than it had been. ryan said there would not be a government shutdown. he did not want to repeat the mistakes. shutdowns hurt the republican party. ryan has had a good run, no doubt about it. getics say well, you can bipartisanship if you are spending a lot of money. conservative activists were not pleased with this bill. they were not pleased with this legislation. it did get a deal, they wanted it by december 11. they got it by last friday. washington had a decent year,
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compared to the past. if you look at the last congress, arguably one of the worst ever, and probably because you had a democratic senate and a republican house and they just pointed the finger at one another. this time, republicans owned congress so they had more invested in it. mitch mcconnell pointed out, we have gotten some stuff done on education, trade, fiscal stuff. it was not easy to get this deal, but it seems like it was more of an adult conversation where pelosi and ryan were engaged. under the last speaker, speaker boehner, he was looking to leave at the and of last congress -- a little bit checked out. because eric cantor lost his primary, he stayed on. he wanted to leave congress, and it showed at times. now, we have a speaker that is very engaged. that is why paul ryan is attracting a lot of praise.
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host: let's take a look back at that press conference when john boehner said he is retiring from congress and speaker of the house. [video clip] my oh my, what a wonderful day. i used to sing that on my way to work in the morning. every day is to fight for a smaller, less costly, and more accountable government. over the last five years, our majority has advanced conservative reforms that will help our children and their children. it has become clear to me that this prolonged leadership turmoil would do irreparable harm to the institution. this morning, i report that i will resign from the speakership at the end of october. as you have often heard me say, this is not about me. it is not the people, about the
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institution. just yesterday, we witnessed the awesome sight of pope francis addressing the greatest legislative body in the world. i hope we will all heed his call to live by the golden rule. last night, i started thinking about this, and this morning, i woke up, i said my prayers, as i always do, and i decided, thing is the day i'm going to do this, a simple as that. host: wasn't as simple as that t? guest: no, it is never as simple as that in politics. boehner was planning his exit. he had to convince ryan to take his job. the house, before ryan agreed, was really in a chaotic state. they had no successor to boehner who could get the votes on the floor. on the right.ted
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he did not want the job. he put out several press releases saying he did not wanted. boehner had to put some catholic guilt on ryan to take it, and he finally did. host: he did take the job. guest: that was one of the most shocking things went kevin mccarthy bowed out of the race. that was huge. it would have been a challenge for mccarthy to get the 218 votes on the floor. i thought, at the time, he could get it. it would have been a very difficult struggle for him. he decided, i'm not going to do it. host: yet, he retained his leadership post. guest: yes, he is still majority leader. i don't know how long ryan will stay in his speakership. he seems to be enjoying at the moment, but tough jobs can wear on you. we will see what his future is. a lot of people said ryan did not want to take it because it could hurt his presidential chances down the road, but he
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no choice because, as boehner told him, you have to take this job, it is a calling, the moment is now. host: bob cusack is here to take your questions and comments about this past year in congress. what do you think were some of the highs, the lows, who had the best, the worst year. i will give you the numbers. republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents, (202) 745-8002. start time again now so we can get your take on this. mccarthy stays in the leadership. what does that do for paul ryan? theis ability to lead conservative wings of the party? guest: mccarthy and ryan are friends. they are part of the young guns with eric cantor. they formed kind of an alliance years ago. i think it helps ryan because
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ryan has not been in leadership. he was ways and means chairman. he was certainly on the presence presidential ticket in 2012, but is not as familiar with house politics and how to talk to members. i was talking to someone very smart who knows the house who basically said, ryan can talk to members about why they should vote for this bill on policy reasons, but most vote on politics. mccarthy knows that. also, ryan trusts mccarthy. i think it is a nice alliance going into 2016. they have the largest majority in decades, and want to grow it bigger. host: paul ryan promising the next year will be different. guest: we will see. he is promising that. we have heard that this will be the last omnibus, next year will be different, we will go through regular order, we are hearing it
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again, and usually it ends up in some omnibus. is just ass really terrible process, honestly. people do not get to read the bill. there have been no hearings on some of the stuff that got into law. , butsays he knows that this is the hand he was dealt so we will is true, go through appropriations. that is where it has been bottled up. we will see. honestly, there's not much on the agenda besides campaign messages. host: we will talk more about this. that go back to that moment when paul ryan, republican in wisconsin, takes the gavel as speaker. [video clip] >> pray for a deeper understanding because when you are appear, you see it so clearly, where ever you come from, wherever you believe.
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we are all in the same boat. i never thought i would be speaker. early in my life, i wanted to serve this house. i thought this place was exhilarating because here, you can make a difference. if you had a good idea, you worked hard, can make it happen. you can improve people's lives. to me, the house of representatives represents what is best in america -- the boundless opportunity to do good . let's be frank. the house is broken. we are not solving problems, we are adding to them, and i'm not interested in laying blame. we are not settling scores. we are wiping the slate clean. host: what does that mean in real terms? very: i think ryan is a
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good communicator. he has done a lot of interviews. he is someone you want to have on television. he is basically saying the way we have run the house has not worked. you look at the low congressional ratings -- certainly, you cannot argue with that. ryan is saying, we are going to do it differently, i'm going to communicate not only on the airwaves, but with democrats, he met with the congressional black caucus. they disagreed on a lot of things, but they may agree on some sentencing reform issues. i think a lot of what goes on in life with relationships certainly applies to congress. if you communicate and are constantly reaching out to people, the place is a lot easier to run. once again, ryan is a honeymoon phase. ,t lasted longer than i thought partly because he has done a lot of communicating. that is where think he has some momentum going into 2015. host: let's see what our viewers
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have to say. mary, austin, texas, a democrat. caller: good morning. i really feel, unfortunately, that we are at a time where the gop is able to use the media to distort people's reality and, they basically draw on our deepest fears. we have a lot of right-wing , and a lot of regular media, actually, who does not of peopleon the lives -- people like donald trump. they are able to spew lies. host: specifically, what are you thinking about? lies about planned parenthood, obamacare. these are organizations and
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policies that help a lot of people. yet, what you hear about them is distortions and lies. for some reason, i do not see push back on those lies. es stand.the life stan host: i think we got your point. guest: there are a lot of factors grace in the media. also, an organization puts out the "light of the year," on the campaign trail, you hear of the truth being stretched. it is the role of the media to say, is that true? the caller mentioned donald trump who said he saw thousands of muslims celebrating after 9/11. that has attracted controversy. he has stood by that. that has been something the media has focused on -- was that true, let's go back and look at it. i think that the more the media feets politicians'
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is positive. things have to be fact checked. host: she mentioned planned parenthood, which was of course a big debate in congress. in the end, the proposal did not defund a proposal to planned parenthood. andhave the videos testimony on capitol hill for hours. controversy. of course, they could not get that signed into law because the white house had threatened to veto and democrats were going to block that, but those videos were significant 2015.cal event in they said, listen, no law was broken. that is true. however, those videos were
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designed to get the public to think about abortion in a different way, to show people what goes on behind closed doors. main i think, was the purpose of it, and from a pr perspective, the group that put the videos out new what they were doing and caused quite a firestorm. host: is the debate over? guest: the house has set up a select committee to look into it headed by congresswoman blackburn. in a presidential election year, firednt to get your base up. this fires up. the fires of both bases, on the left and the right. defunding of planned parenthood, congressional leaders like brian and mcconnell want to avoid that because they know they will not win it. they might win in 2017 if they have a republican president, but they will not win it in 2017. host: we will go to washington,
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jonathan. caller: you see, the problem you will have is these politicians on newspapers, analog. this is a digital world. all of the lies come out instantly. edul ryan should be primari out. do not let him run again for anything. we have access to everything. .our lies do not work abc, nbc, all of it, it does not work. as for you, how long have you had a screen actors guild, and why? guest: i was in a pampers commercial and got in the union when i was 3-4 years old. "the hill" is nonpartisan. last election, i did not vote, i
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did not pick a side. ryan beingwritin beenried, that has brought up. one of the things that is different about ryan from other leaders, he has come out with some very controversial thensals on medicare, ripped by democrats because they say would privatize medicare. ryan has taken a lot of heat, and will continue to take keith, but has shown he has thick skin. host: we will go to georgia, michael, democrat. caller: how are you doing this morning? fromound like you are "washington times." it is all about the republicans. host: we have not gone to the democrats yet.
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we have an hour. we will get there. caller: anyway, when you were talking about congressman , he had to step down. he could not run because he said had the benghazi case brought hillary's polls down. we remember that. as reported, tell it. host: we will talk about it. guest: that was a huge mistake by kevin mccarthy when he said, look at hillary's poll numbers, they have gone down since we created the benghazi panel. had anghazi panel disastrous 2015. they had hillary clinton on capitol hill for 11 hours. going into that hearing, the committee needed news to come out of it, and they really did
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not. that is why, even conservatives, have said that the benghazi panel failed that day and basically failed in 2015. there is no doubt about it that mccarthy's comment will be replayed in 2016 a lot. why is that? democrat said, that is proof that this committee is not trying to get the truth. they are trying to just went and election -- win an election. that is why it was so damaging to mccarthy. at partt's take a look of the 11 hour hearing, hillary clinton talking about benghazi. [video clip] >> i would imagine i have thought more about what happened than all of you put together. i have lost more sleep than all of you put together. i have been racking my brain about what more could have been done, or should have been done. so, when i took responsibility, i took it as a challenge and an
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obligation to make sure, before i left, what we could learn, as i'm sure my predecessors did after beirut, nairobi, and all the other i'macks on our facilities -- sure all of them, republican and democrat alike, especially where there was loss of american life -- said, ok, what must we do better? protect the men and women that we send without weapons, without support from the military into some of the most ages places in the world? host: bob cusack, since that hearing, we have not heard much from the benghazi committee. we really have not seen many headlines from hillary clinton. guest: no.
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i think hillary clinton likes it like that. donald trump has been dominating the headlines. they are moving forward with their report, and it will be a partisan report because democrats will not go along with it. they will have a final report, but the panel did lose some credibility with that hearing. we wrote about this recently. the person who will have the final say on hillary clinton and her e-mail issue is the head of the fbi. he is republican, well respected, he served in the bush and administration, took on the bush administration. he was tapped by president obama to leave the fbi. he has not agreed with obama on some high-profile issues. he is looking into her e-mails -- we don't know exactly what they are looking into, but i will be thee finds final say. it could either lead to big problems for hillary clinton, or
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it will just be a final state, and say, maybe she did something's wrong, but did not break the law, and she will be able to finally shake that issue. host: we will go to joe, new york, and independent. what do you think? you are up, go ahead. caller: i would like you to tell thebout how you feel about cop 21. if we have a hundred 90 something countries believing in climate change, what are they doing in the house of representatives? they passed a bill that we cannot even talk about. guest: i'm not familiar with that legislation. hasously, climate change been a very partisan issue. the administration is moving forward with its regulations that republicans would love to stop. as far as the issue, i'm not familiar with it. host: this looks like it is part of the agenda for 2016, what is
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the plan? how do they undermine what the president has agreed to? guest: climate change regulations can get them, if you end them, you can get a democrat here and there that is worried about their constituents and jobs. overall, they cannot pass legislation that will be signed into law. remember, president obama tried to get climate change diedlation through, but it in the democratic led senate. now, he is trying to do it administratively. regulations on that and other regulations will be a big issue in 2016. the new president is either going to continue, or will try to repeal a lot of what obama has done administratively. of course, there are questions of legal battles on the affordable care act of what obama and the administration can
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do administratively. is it lawful? that has been a big theme of the last year. change, did the pope have any impact on the issue? he talked about a lot of different issues, but climate change was one of them. does he have an influence, going forward? guest: i think he does have an influence. .his pope is very political conservatives -- a lot of conservatives think he is a liberal pope. certainly, he has not shied away from controversy and climate change. one congressman boycotted, he did not show up for that speech, a republican from arizona. i think his words carry a lot of weight, and certainly, as this debate goes forward, he will job and when he feels like he has something he needs to say. host: it was a historic visit
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from the pope to this country. let's take a look at his speech before congress in a joint session. [video clip] >> i have no doubt that the united states and this congress have an important role to play. for courage -- implemented a culture of care and an integrated approach. time, protecting nature. [applause] host: the poster in session -- the pope's joint session addressed to congress. one of the main issues, climate change. bob cusack,ng with the best and the worst moments
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of capitol hill. we will go to michael next, florida, a democrat. caller: i want to toss this out to you in the spirit that i issueasted the -- when we brought up kevin mccarthy. also, mr. boehner. they had neurological issues. i heard it often set of mr. boehner. he was too emotional. i cannot pronounce it, and is not relevant, but a neurological issue. the same thing with mr. mccarthy. the very next day after he had some speech impediment issues, he was pulled, when it was decided he would not be able to speak to the massive, whereas he had been able to speak to the congress just fine, but apparently we would not find him
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adequate. host: not sure about these neurological conditions. after mccarthy's name was put forward, rachel maddow did a segment on her show showing a speech that he gave quickly after that on foreign policy, where a lot of people were critical of the way he behaved. guest: i think "the washington post" also wrote about that. have interviewed them both. they do not have no logical problems. boehner gets emotional from time to time, but so do many people. as far as mccarthy, he didn't take some heat for a speech here or there that could have been more clear, let's put it that way. that is why, i think, when mccarthy bowed out, that is when a lot of people went to paul ryan ryan and said, listen, we need you because he is such a
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good orator and communicator. i think that was the hierarchy of the house leadership. i do not think mccarthy stays on if there is another speaker. if he said, ok, i'm not going to run, but someone else like daniel webster -- i don't think mccarthy would have stayed on as majority leader. host: we are talking about congresses past year, 2015, the highs and lows. call in with your ideas, questions, comments. we will go to brian, new york, a republican. caller: thank you so much for taking my call. greta, you are the best. you mentioned the papal visit. something drives me so nuts with that. democrats, whenever they talk about -- whenever there is ,iscussion on abortion
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everything is separation of church and state, keep your religion away from me. not christmas, holiday -- everything is no religion. when the pope agrees with him on climate change, all of a sudden, when the pope says is a knowledgeable. it is something that infuriates caller: hello. going to get they involved in foreign policy, and specifically hearings on isis and syria and iraq and the refugee problem? and a declaration of war? authorization new of force against isis?
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onl there be any action -- will there be any action from congress on that? guest: probably not. as for is that language, they that.ot able to agree on as far as the refugees and blocking refugees that americans ave been pushing for, that is lot of things that conservatives wanted in the year and spending bill and they did not get that. gotten somet has criticism for his feelings on isis. his poll numbers on isis are not very strong. he is seen as more of a hawk stance.lary for his some analysts have said they moved to see the strategy
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a little bit faster, while generally agreeing with the strategy. national security, back at the forefront. republicans think that that will give them a big advantage at hillary clinton things her campaign -- hillary clinton's campaign thinks it will be an advantage for her. host: mcconnell saying that the senate will not act on donald trump's plan to been muslims from the country. and paul ryanell on the same day criticized donald trump's policy on muslim. that was coordinated, clearly. the staff talk over time. they try to stay out of the presidential race is certainly republicans in washington are frightened of two candidates. ted cruz and donald trump. they think if one of them is at the top, they could lose the
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senate made they could use -- the senate, they could lose a seats.house is going to be a very tricky time for republicans in washington who keep thinking that donald trump is going to fade. despite making a lot of controversial comments, and having controversial proposals, his numbers give going up. host: well congress get -- the caller asked will congress get involved in national security issues? guest: i think the strategy for 26 teen is putting together -- 6 is putting together proposals that will set up 2017. they cannot undermine the saran deal, they do not have the votes to do it. they will be talking about it a
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lot. they have any anti-american rhetoric, they are going to seize on it and a this is why we should not have done this deal. thisdent obama has said deal is just about nuclear weapons. it is not like we're going to be the best of friends on other issues. certainly, republicans are going to be talking about this deal a lot because it does resonate with the based. . and also prisoners that have been capped, americans, in iran. t, americans, in iran. host: let's look back at 2015. another visit by a foreign leader. benjamin netanyahu was invited by the speaker of the house, john boehner. this caused a lot of uproar. guest: absolutely. it was very controversial.
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john boehner has taken so much heat from the conservative base, but they loved this move. the president was not a fan, nancy pelosi was not a fan. they have said it helps them in the vote counting on the iran deal, when the republicans were trying to torpedo that deal. he came it was more of a shirts and skins game. it was one of the more controversial things that boehner did. in 2015 with the invitation both to benjamin netanyahu, and to the pub. pope. good morning. and search from the wall street -- you read an excerpt from the wall street journal about the climate change
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deal, defunding obamacare. isn't it sad, after 5, 6 years but they are still trying to undo what the democratic president has done? one other thing about kevin mccarthy. can you talk about the letter that walter jones sent out? mccarthyt was because was having an affair with one of his colleagues. guest: walter jones sent out a saying a public letter that if anyone is going to be s elected toone i the leadership, they should have no skeletons in their closet. the pastferencing controversies with bob livingston and newt gingrich during the monica lewinsky the 1990's. that letter got a lot of membersn, and certainly
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were asking mccarthy about it. mccarthy denies that can and has denied that consistently. those were the rumors that were swirling. these are politics, and when you run for leadership there will be rumors about a lot of things in washington. i think that is a problem for the gop, they want to have a more positive message rather than just unraveling everything president obama has done. ryan has said they need to do more. they need to be positive. party has a friend problem. they have had a brief problem for a long time. let's talk about obamacare for a second they said w. they said we will repeal and replace obamacare, four years rude and they have missed for years to have a replacement. they have never coalesced kind that -- behind that.
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they do not have a nominee to coalesced behind. a big year for both parties. i think the messaging is something that ryan sees as a major problem and he wants to have a positive message. we have seen that in the campaign trail too. marco rubio says we need to have more of a vision in the gop message. host: another key moment from biden15 campaign was joe choosing not to run for president. i think he was so close to getting in. the big reason why i think he wasnot get in because hillary clinton did so well in the first debate. hillary clinton had a rough summer with the e-mail
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controversy, bernie sanders was surging. little bitking any vulnerable. joe biden was talking to a lot people. he was dealing with the tragic death of his son beau. it is a massive operation, very efficient, they have the whole lore, beyond just one floor. you have fundraising here, social media here. headquarters, the i thought joe biden, if he is going to get in, he has to get in suit because organizationally he is so far behind. i think you made the right decision because hillary clinton stepped up her game. he was justnk -- too far behind in the fundraising and the campaign structure. i think joe biden will always think, what if? host: tennessee, independent line. caller: i am 45 years old.
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it has been about 30 years since i have been in a suffix class. your last caller mentioned the deal with iran and with terrorists. consider these deals treaties? why are they not fighting harder? guest: it is not a treaty, because that has to be approved by two thirds of the senate. that is a criticism that the republicans have lobbied against this because they want approval. but it is not a treaty. there is a big bone of contention, because it is not going to get two thirds of support. host: we will go to dolores in tennessee. good morning. caller: good morning. i would like to ask bob a question.
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obama said that federal workers would get a pay raise this year. i was wondering if congress was giving themselves a pay raise. quitey are, it would be disturbing because they will not raise the minimum wage for regular work hours rate -- workers. donald trump does not need to be our president. putin over ourcks own president, a kgb man who is nothing but a tirade. he takes over other countries. is that something donald trump wants to do? i will never vote for donald trump or any other republican. governmentfederal will be getting a 1.3% increase in 2016. that will apply for federal
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employees, that will not apply for congress to congress has not given itself a raise for several years, because of the anger directed at washington it is area popular for congress to give it a raise, even though some members that you have to have a place in washington and a place back home. generate a lots of -- a lot of sympathy for lawmakers. they have not given themselves a raise, and i do not see it coming until at least 2017 at the earliest. noted thateadline, it was done by executive order and goes into place in 2010. many have been pressing
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very hard, and senator local case -- including senator mikulski. she is set to retire from her seat. steve from florida, a democrat. caller: good morning. the letter that senator carlton document that otton wrote and signed with others and sent to a foreign country, the leader of iran, that so that the president was not to be trusted
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and a liar could be nearly in act of treason. but should be looked at in congress. letter got a lot of attention. lead inaken a lot of the senate against president obama. it was signed by 40 some senators, and was seen as too strong. they were on the defensive as far as the vote counting senator charles schumer is against the deal.eal -- the iran plus benjamin netanyahu's visit did help the democrats in the vote counting.
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host: call from maryland. we are listening, bill. caller: i want to tell america that there are other issues that are going on in this world that are more important that isis or to tel. who cares about isis? is income inequality that has gotten us to this situation right now. not havepeople do anything. you have the builders of this country, the african-americans, the indians, who did not have to employtions rural white americans. system,minal justice the drug system -- host: i think you will be
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interested in the answer. one of the agenda items where there is a partisan support could be criminal justice reform. guest: it is something senator paul have beennd working with democrats and at the toprick leahy of the judiciary committee. that is something the president has been interested in changing. that was put into place by president bill clinton in the 1990's, a lot of them. he has since said some of those things that they supported, he wished that he had not signed into law. that is one of the few that youn areas could get some movement in 2016. lot oft see a other areas in 2016, except for perhaps trade. deal, the tpp deal,
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senator mcconnell said we will not to deal with that anytime soon. viewerswant to show our the moment when president obama goes to capitol hill to try to convince house democrats to vote for this trade promotion of florida, the fast tracking. he is walking in the halls of congress to a closed-door meeting with his fellow democrats. he goes into that, gives the rank-and-file's argument for voting for this, and then goes to the floor and says she cannot supported. guest: that was very remarkable, and a very difficult decision that she was in. herle were trying to get position on it for weeks and months as the president was struggling to get the votes he needed. and then nancy pelosi said she does not supported. but it he same time, when she did that, and the timing of it was a close vote, but
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they knew they had the votes. at that point nancy pelosi decided i'm against this, but i am not going to be taking this legislation down. a very difficult position for her because so many democrats have just opposed this president's trade policy as well as president george w. bush's trade policy. host: looking back at 2015, the , and calling lows in with her comments and questions about this. we have time for a handful more of coal from all of you. a moment that happened outside of washington. the debate happened, lawmakers reacted to it, and that was black lives matter. guest: that was a big scene in
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2015, and unrest with law enforcement as well. black lives matter, showing up at a lot of presidential campaign rallies, really shut down a bernie sanders event early this year. we are not going to hear the end of that, and we're seeing various trials of police officers going on now. there is so much unrest, it is something that the president is trying to fix, but it is not an easy problem to fix. that on theg presidential campaign trail, where donald trump and republicans are certainly favoring more law enforcement. but we have also seen some disputes publicly between the comey, aboutmes the so-called ferguson effect, and the president on this issue. i think this is going to be one of the big themes, racial unrest, and law enforcement disputes, and what is the role of law enforcement, that is
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going to be anything in 2016. caller: i just want to say one thing. , we are doingn the battle of the alamo all over again. it is just that simple. in this those on the inside, different races, and people on the outside, same thing. my grandpappy told me something one time that i honestly believe. runnershem presidential -- politicians and bank robbers have something in common, they are just in it for the money. guest: i have never seen the anger at washington -- congress has really been popular, there have been times in history where congress has attracted more than
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a 50% approval rating, but it has been a longtime since then. i think that is an issue that senator mitch mcconnell, who hiss to preserve republican majority, made the case that we have done some things that made us function more. the anger at washington israel. argument, and the congressional ratings, it is very low. the politicians that are running for president or seizing on that. senator ted cruz is an outsider because he is taken on the republican establishment and the democrats and infuriated a lot of them. a senator, he is claims the outsider mantle. and you want that mantle because congress is rarely popular. host: we will go to kentucky, independent. caller: you talked to so much
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about maccallum, mr. mcconnell might not be elected if he ran again in kentucky. the man who was just elected governor was the man who ran against him as an independent for the senate seat. won with a black woman as his lieutenant governor. as far as immigration goes, the problem with immigration is not the influx of muslims, per se. is sharia. you differentiate between one who believes in math, and one who does not? that is the problem. when mr. trump said he proposed this ban on muslim americans entering the country, he said until they figure out what is going on up on capitol hill. guest: and we do not know when
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that is going to be. and it raised the issue of how policy.ce such a how would you have the government agencies do that? apply to muslim americans who are now overseas, and they try to come back in? it is a policy that is never going to be enacted because certainly republican leaders, the ones that are there now, would not implement this. but without a doubt, it has attracted a lot of attention. donald trump did not announce this policy on a sunday show. he actually released it. this was a very deliberate proposal and his numbers about republicans went up a little bit. host: columbia, south carolina, independent. good morning.
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do you know what percentage of the atmosphere is co2? co2? host: why do you ask? caller: i don't think anybody really knows. host: is this about climate change? ? what is your point? caller: tell me what you think it is. host: i'm trying to get your point so we can have bob cusack respond. .04%.: it is he does not believe in climate change. that: this is something they have grappled with, to say whether climate change is available to what man is doing on earth.
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-- attributable to what man is doing on earth. democratshey say the and the white house are overreacting to climate change. the science debate will continue on. republican from oklahoma, and barbara boxer are the two at the top committees that deal with it. i could not disagree more on climate change. host: brooklyn, new york, democrat. you're on the air. caller: a quick comment. whatever the issue is with abortion, that should be between a woman, the doctor and her god. the box for the people who pay their dues for society.
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,nd stop talking about abortion this country was will on immigrants. jobs, jobs, jobs. the republicans do not want to talk about jobs because they do not have answers. guest: jobs is always going to be a big issue. this election year is going to be no different. is good to be a clarity on how you create jobs and when he going to a general election, you're going to have to have a vision of a a slogan , and thatn, a slogan is something democrats says that hillary leads i dean's a littlet more of -- needs a little bit more of. after the primaries are done and we have a republican nominee, and it will most likely be
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hillary clinton for the democrats, although the bernie sanders followers will tweet me and say he will win. , she could winh all three primaries. she is going on to a strong position because of her fundraising and her numbers in southern states. does the trade debate over the transpacific partnership complicates the messaging for both democrats and republicans on jobs? guest: it does, because hillary shifted her position on trade, and specifically on the tpp deal. she has said she is now against bit, and that is something that the liberal base and the republican party is divided on. donald trump thinks this tpp deal is a terrible deal. i think it is one that they
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probably do not want to talk about because it does not unite their party. host: democrat, florida. there: i just want to say are a couple of things really positive about the voice of reason and clarity. gaining,ald trump is what you think about his voice bringing to life the purpose of americans in being kind and humble and having a clear vision? divisiveness, i do not react in fear, i have faith in the polls and people coming to their senses. who do you think will be the republican candidate? guest: as far as donald trump, he would not call himself humble. he has joked about that. a slogan.s have
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that was one of the first things for him to do. his slogan, make america great again. that got the candidates debating and talking about whether america was great. that was a victory for trump the cause you need that type of simple bumper sticker message. as far as who will win the republican nomination, that is difficult. i have never seen anything like this. there are three top contenders right now. that is donald trump, ted cruz, and marco rubio. jeb bush has been struggling. maybe he will make a comeback. his last debate was his best debate performance. but his numbers have been very poor. the establishment seems like is getting behind marco rubio.
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he needs momentum. inwill probably not win iowa. inald trump is doing well new hampshire. i think marco rubio will make a move in new hampshire, and that is hard when you have candidates like john kasich, chris christie, and jeb bush who are fighting for voters as well. they will not bow out until after new hampshire. trying to predict politics is like predicting sports. cannot do it. you have to look at those three top contenders as the favorites. this race could go on for a wild. -- while. it will not be settled anytime soon. a story about marco rubio's aloofness and the day to day grind. ready to dos as not
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the retail politics that you need to do. they didam sure not like that headline, but it happens in political journalism. he is very good on the stump. he is arguably the most consistent evader -- debater in the first a few debate. s. but donald trump does not go into diners, doing that retail politics. the joke in is i do not know i will vote for him, i have only met him two or three times. people like to meet him and ask their own questions. they have done town halls and took questions, but long donald trump's perspective he is done a lot more rallies rather than going into small places. that is tough for him to do, and it's tough for hillary clinton
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to do as well because she has so many people around her. to rope off the media, but there is a media horde that always troubles with donald trump and hillary clinton ravels with donald trump and hillary clinton. as far as marco rubio, they like his vision. but he needs to make a move in january, because he is not number one. he has to win one of the first four states to have a real shot. editor in chief of the hill, we appreciate your time, as always. will take a short break. when we come back, we will turn our attention to this book, mr. smith goes to prison. we will be right back. ♪
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[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2015] >> with congress on holiday recess the c-span networks feature a full lineup of primetime programming. tonight at 9:00 p.m. eastern on c-span our new series, landmark cases. this week it is the case roe v wade. night, the cultural divide in america. wednesday, the charleston ame church post a discussion on gun violence.
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on christmas eve, christmas at the white house. and on christmas day, bill clinton is awarded the bottom goal institute of politics leadership price -- bob dole institute of politics leadership prize. on c-spannight, two, others talk about their books on supreme court. on c-span3, tonight at 10:30 p.m. eastern we feature programs on russian spies. tuesday night at 8:00 p.m., congressional history with senator mitch mcconnell. wednesday night, the 150th anniversary of the end of the civil war. 8:00 p.m. eastern, tom brokaw on world war ii and its impact. and on christmas, friday night at 8:00 p.m., we will travel to williamsburg of the 1770's talking with historians and curators about colonial life on
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the eve of the revolution. that is just some of the programs we have this week on the c-span networks. washington journal continues. host: we are back with jeffrey smith, author of this book mr. smith goes to prison. how did you end up in prison? guest: i will try to compress it. back in 2004 i was running for congress in a 10 way primarily the front runner was a guy named russ carnahan, who's father had been governor, and mother had been a u.s. senator. put together a nice operation of about 700 volunteers. we were building momentum. about a month before election day. a man wanted to put out a dismald highlighting his attendance record in the state house. instead of telling my age that
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they should not deal with an outside party, i said i do not want to know the details. him thed should we give voting record? and i said i do not want to know. conference ands highlighted that myself. i figured the postcard would never come out. the next day the postcard he must saying the same things i had said the day before. a complaint, filed i found a false affidavit denying any knowledge of the postcard. five years later, when i was in the missouri senate, the man who did the postcard got picked up by the fence for a feds for array -- charges.array of
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they came and questioned me, and i stuck to my story. my best friend wore a wire and got me to admit to the false affidavit. host: what were the charges against you? guest: affection of justice, and then five years later standing by that. host: where did you go to prison and for how long? guest: to be clear, the false affidavit was based on the underlying charge which would been illegal coordination with a third-party, which is the kind of thing that is a little more routine thiese days in the wake of citizens united and free speech. i went to prison for a year and a day in southeast kentucky. host: what kind of prison is that? there were two prisons on
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the compound. a minimum security prison where i live, a medium security prison where i worked. that -- on loading unloading the food that we ate at the prison. host: did you serve your whole sentence? i served almost all of it, but i got off on good behavior. she gave a gift to me in that over one year is audible for a 15% reduction in your sentence. i sent 10 months -- served 10 months. en?t: she sent a message th
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yes.: prosecution of the and sentence was a message to other politicians to say if you get caught up, you better do what we want. ont: what was the reaction the first day of entering the prison system to a state senator being in prison? guest: i walked into the intake was aand a woman who heavyset woman, a nurse, jotted down some things. she asked height and weight, education level, and then she said last profession. i said state senator.
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she said, if you want to play games, you can play games all you want. we have those here who thinks they are jesus christ, see you will fit right in. there was a disbelief. not believe i didn't steal money. they asked how many millions i would s had stolen to get there. they would not believe it was postcard. a your nickname in prison? guest: i had to. senator, and white chocolate. i played a lot of basketball. prison?ur job in guest: we moved about 140,000 pounds of food every day.
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we had to move the new food to the back of the freezers, and the old stuff to the front. boxesat comes in 80 pound , and rice and sugar comes in these huge bags. in the evenings i would play basketball. most nights i would lift weights , and then jot down notes on toilet paper or scraps of paper to remember what was happening in case i wanted to write a book afterwards. host: they got you in trouble. guest: those notes it did get me in trouble. the captain, right under the warden, he is like the dean of discipline. he approached me early in my tenure when he found out i was jotting down notes, and he gave me the business and accused me of breaking prison rules. he said i was illegally conducting business in the
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prison, because he suspected as we to make money off a book. i said i was not going to make money while i was there, and nothing i was doing was illegal according to the handbook. he told me my interpretation did not matter and threw me in the hole for six months while he investigated. got myix hours later i present assignment working in the warehouse. it was seen as a good way to occupy me and where we had -- out. mear me the other guys in the warehouse were all over 200 and 50 pounds. it was a running joke on the prison yard that i was doing heavy lifting. host: when he said he would throw you in the hole, he met
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solitary confinement? guest: he did. host: i would like our viewers to call in about the criminal justice system. there seems to be bipartisan support on moving on that. we urge our viewers to call in with your questions or comments for mr. smith, a former missouri state senator. he spent almost a year and a day in prison. a fourth line this morning for those of you who have experience in the prison system, either side of it. we want to hear your story as well. the phone lines are open. moving the food, thousands of pounds of food, taught you something about how the prison system works. tell that story. host: they taught me a lot of things.
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the first thing i learned was about snitch is. about a week into my tenure -- the first day of my tenure in the warehouse, i was told i could do anything i want to do as long as i did not steal. doneded to get my work , and we would get extra food if we did not steal. i saw everyone else saran wrapping green peppers and chicken around their chest before they went home. told they were going to plant raw meat in my freezer jacket. . asked why i i was told getting caught with me was one of the worst
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offenses because of e. coli. they are all bodybuilding, and up.an help al bulk it can spoil in transit, and of theousands of members present compound. they were going to plant it because they thought i was a snitch because i was not stealing food. start stealing food so i did not face a larger consequence of being caught with meat. host: so you started stealing.
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guest: i figured if i stole bananas, green peppers, things like that, i would just get thrown in the shoe. but i would not get sent to a higher security prison. prisoners stole because they needed a hostile. .ost prisoners are destitute most people do not understand that. most prisoners do not have a penny to their name. they have all of their belongings and savings taken away because of our asset forfeiture laws. they come to prison, and have to find a way to afford the basics. deodorant, so, toothpaste, tooth brush. pricesve to buy them at that are marked up, despite the fact that their wages are incredibly low. a may $5.25 a month. it comes in to about three cents
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an hour. if you need to buy the basics, the phone calls cost about $1.50 a minute. if you would to stay in touch or have ae from home, half decent life in prison, you're going to have to find a hustle. their house was to steal food and then sell it when we got back to the yard. host: how much money could they get? guest: it is complicated. everything in prison operates through cigarettes or stamps. , connections of prisoners on the outside might why your money to a different prisoners account, as a way to purchase a large amount of goods from a prisoner who is stealing something. the way it works on the prison yard is through stamps and cigarettes, but the way that money is supplemented is one
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prisoner has a lot of money stored away somewhere on the outside. he can have his friend wire money to another prisoner who he is transacting business with. host: all of this breaks the rules of prison. what kind of culture do we have in our american prison system? guest: that is one of the main arguments of the book, that prison does not do anything to rehabilitate those people. in fact, it reinforces a lot of the tendencies of people who are incarcerated to operate outside the rules, or the mainstream economy. one of the kiwis is something we're talking about here. because prisoners are so or they are always working to develop a hustle. that has a couple of consequences. first of all, it creates an amazing capacity for ingenuity on the part of the prisoners. i saw prisoners who were running all types of businesses. there were bookies, guys running tattoo parlors, but there were also prisoners who made money
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helping to write legal briefs prisoners. the jailhouse lawyers. they were pictures who drew portraits of other prisoners children or mothers or wives that they could send home on their face or holidays -- on their birthdays or holidays. there were businesses ranging from legal to illegal. and then never guys who smuggled in contraband. it sounds like entrepreneurship. guest: it was. the most lucrative offer i got was to go and help smuggle in a duffel bag that was full of items that would carry a lot of value on the compound. i declined doing that, but after some prisoners saw me on the basketball court, they say you are very fast, you can probably get to the edge of the compound
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, and we in 45 seconds will give you several hundred dollars for doing that. i was not even the least bit tempted. host: let's to turn to our col. david in lafayette. caller: what are your plans for the future? guest: thanks for the question and for calling in. i am now a professor of public policy at the new school in new york city. i keep students getting the masters degrees in public policy. i work in missouri on affordable public housing policy. i'm an advocate for criminal justice reform. i speak around the country for the issue. t to improve conditions around the country in prisons. for: dennis on our line
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those with experience in the prison system. what was your experience? i think pretty much everything you just said pretty much summed it up. that is the way it is. it is not meant to reform were given opportunity. there were opportunities to go to school and do different things. when your main objective is surviving, i am a little white guy. it is a little different when you have gains running a prison system. i am trying to not rely -- to survive without hustling, it causes my family to go further down. i ended up leaving my family's work -- a depleting my family's work to send me money. this guy is costing me money. you have to look at it from all the aspects of what happens in
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there. you are forced to hustle. when you are forced to hustle, and make you laugh, make you cry, but the same time, it ends up pushing the family for an deeper indeeper and the hole. they feel like they have used up all the resources. they do not want to keep taking from their family. it forces you to get out with the same abilities. when the temptation comes, and you're tempted to say i can make honey and get out from forcing my family -- of course family wants to help somebody in need, but you do not want to keep taking from them. host: right. guest: i totally sympathize with what you say about prisons lack of rehabilitation. there were three courses offered in the year that i was there. one was a course in hydroponics, how to grow tomatoes in water for two weeks, because what
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could prepare you for successful reentry, better than that? course that no one paid any attention to, and there was a computer skills course offered him a one hour course. we were told to go in and sign in. and we sat at a computer, and we were ordered to push the button on the bottom right and turn the computer on. we did that and then we sat in silence for a half hour, and a half hour later, he said remember that button on the bottom right, push it again and then get the link back to your cell. we sat there for absolutely no reason. the prison could then send our sign in sheet to the federal bureau of prisons and earn a stipend for all these prisoners who had completed a computer skills course. of course, most of the geither nothing, had never worked on a
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computer on their life, and were going out totally unprepared to find a job online. host: is there any way to complain when you are in the prison system? what was the reaction to your book from the prison you were at? guest: complaining can get you in a lot of trouble. forms which you have to fill out to file a formal complaint on aco or any prison worker. the minute you start filing those coming you're are instantly tagged as someone who is troubled. but they often do is they send you to therapy. therapy means he will be put on , with yourcuffed legs and your arms, and you will go from bus to bus to bus around the country for 6, 8, 10 months from holding cell to holding cell. no one will know where you are,
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your family cannot write you, you cannot make phone calls. that is what they do to prisoners that they perceive to be instigating or causing trouble, diesel therapy. usually, people want to avoid that lifestyle. holdingyou go to a new and in a different city, there are new games that are in control, new people at you have to figure out how to fit in with. that is the central challenge in prison, just surviving. the more changes that go along with that, the harder it is to fit in. that is what happens when you complain. host: reaction to your book? ,uest: while i was incarcerated most of the prisoners were amused by it, and every time they would do something funny, they with a did you get that, senator, make sure to put that in your book. osere were a couple of c
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that would make fun of me and tell me no one cared about anything going on in prison. thankfully, we have come a long , andn the last five years people are starting to pay attention to the horrors of our prison system. host: the book is mr. smith goes to prison. smith, a former missouri state senator spent almost a year behind bars. his sentence was a year and a day. what is your behind desk is year behind bars taught him about the american prison crisis. it is part of the discussion on reform in our present system, a bipartisan discussion. with your you questions and comments for mr. smith. we will go to dylan, republican from montana. caller: thanks for following through and writing a book.
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i own a small furniture company, and i hire ex offenders, and we are public about that. i think it is something more than this owner should be doing -- that business owners should be doing. one of my workers developed becausehrenia being alone in a cell, and a lot of us could not handle that. people are spending 20 years there, and by the dozens. individuals,'s reforms that are coming across the board. -- not even just tax breaks, but focus of the to encourage business owners to hire ex offenders? a large part of the reentry that can help guys that
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are just released to fight the things that hold them back? the inability to sacrifice for the common good, and there anger and frustration? guest: a great question, james, thanks for calling. your first point, about solitary, nearly every other industrial democracy in the world has gone rid of solitary confinement. judges in this country have called it slow motion torture. you can see the effects of that in our prisons. secondly, you talk about reentry. over 650,000 people come out of our prisons every year. almost 95% of people who are in prison who arn are going to come back to society. people, to our entities, the same places they have already failed once before.
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now they have the added sick bay, of a prison record -- stigma of a prison record. they have no money, lack of training. every dollar we spend inside of presence can save us over five dollars in recidivism if we bend those dollars wisely. yet, we do that in very few prisons. it is a big problem. a good do not do job of dealing with a bigger management. with anger management inside of prisons. there was no counseling when i was incarcerated. there's a small work opportunity tax credit to employers who hire ex offenders. the energy from this is probably going to have to come from employers around the country, like i never thought i would be on national tv praising the koch
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brothers. they said they will ban the box and higher more ex offenders. -- hire more ex offenders. one company in oregon, one third of their employees are asked offenders. they are training other employees index offenders. -- employees and ask offenders ex-offenders. host: when you got out of prison, but was it like to find a job? hard, i had every advantage. i was very well educated with a phd from a great university.
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i had tons of community support. 300 people wrote letters on my behalf, they requested clemency. i suffered no serious difficult or no while incarcerated psychological trauma. advantagead every relative to most people coming out of prison. i sat around the table with the group that wanted to hire with the consultant. the last person who asked me a question on the board, why should we be the group for hiring you?
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the newspapers are going to write ugly stories about us. once you have the stench off you. that hurt. to my firstkful employer. also to the new school. they are willing to overlook my criminal background. job was a lotlary less than what you would have been offered. >> after our first phone call i said thank you so much for reaching out to me. he said, this is and pity. because had you left the senate under different circumstances i would have to offer you 20 times as much money as i'm about to offer you. as i said, i was incredibly
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lucky to find work. they reoffend, the main reason why his financial struggle. nine out of every 10 employers perform background checks. tragedy. >> you mentioned -- host: you mentioned a couple company giving jobs to ex-convicts. do they pay enough? guest: most ex-cons are going to have to live take -- going to have to take low-wage jobs. employers,h a lot of they said nobody works harder than the people fresh out of prison. they are so grateful to have the
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job, they are incredibly loyal. and they want to prove themselves. host: republican, you are on the air. caller: i was an officer and a professional counselor with the department of corrections. i hear everything you are saying and agree with most of it. i think you might find differentiations in some of the programs s what is available. i know that is funding related and that can change based on priorities within the legislature. my question is what would you say your view on the prison
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system was going in compared to coming out. you are talking about the hustle ,f the coach -- of the culture set up to reinforce this value. if you were in the house or state legislator again to -- again due to -- of yourt was some relationships with prison staff and other inmates? you asked about my views before and after. up when i was in the senate i actually worked on justice reform. i represented one of the poorest districts in the state and our district had many people who were incarcerated. one of my accomplishments i was proudest of was passing a bill
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for changed most conviction men who struggle to pay child support after being laid off from a job, changing the penalty from a felony to a misdemeanor and changing it from a crime that merited jail time to one that got an alternative sentence, where men would go to parenting classes, vocational training. i supported criminal justice reform. open.nitely had my eyes there is not a single concept you learn at business harvard -- at harvard business that you can't learn in prison. territorial management, supply chain, every one of these you can learn through the lens of
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the drug trade. are 95% of the people i have been incarcerated with. they are born capitalists. what policy would improve things? more towe have to do nurture this entrepreneurial talent inside of prisons. --re are a couple of problem a couple of programs doing that. they do an eight-month long business school course in a couple of prisons there. over the last 11 years the 10%divism rate is less than the national rate. there is a ton of potential for guys who are incarcerated to be successful entrepreneurs or employees on the outside. you asked about my relationship with -- of course, another
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policy. we have to put more in place for people coming out of prison. and sending them to a halfway house in the same community where they failed before, but the same connections, -- before, with the same connections, doesn't help anyone. you go to, the minute prison they ask you what are your skills, how can we build on the skills, so that when we put you out you do not struggle economically and you can get a gainful employment so that you never come back here? in a lot of european countries, the recidivism some -- the recidivism rate is less than a quarter of what the united states is paid there are a couple -- united states. there are a couple of correctional officers that are decent people. i apologize to those who think i ave painted with two brought
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brush. but the truth is most of them were not very nice. the one ortega who were halfway polite or respectful, if you got talking to them, if you got caught talking to them too much, you are instantly suspected of being a snitch. it was hard to have any decent relationship with one. tweet -- 's a guest: it would cost a lot of money, but it is shortsighted not to create investing in vocational -- shortsighted not to. investing in vocational training -- the rand corporation put out a study where they look at this and education systems around the nation, and it showed a 43% reduction in recidivism for
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prisoners who successfully complete high-quality education programs. that would save us billions of dollars every year and get rid of this revolving door that we are all paying for. so that is where i think we should focus our efforts. host: president obama gives pardons -- guest: he has pardoned very few people. commuting sentences since one thing. even if you commute their sentence, these guys have a stain of a criminal background when they apply for a job. it 95d like to see commuters and 95 pardon, if he believes they are worth partying. pardoning. there are thousands of federal applying for reduced
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sentences based on a directive former attorney general eric holder gave. those appeals are taking too long to get through the system, most of them may be out of the office by the time most of them are dealt with. we need more staff and more attorneys at doj to make sure those are adequately examined. joseph, you are on the air. like to tell you when you become --nted in the law, no longer they are not even legal. article one, section nine and 10 of the state legislature would pass it. and they to it all the time.
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time, it isish your over. great point.s a to reintegrates into society and be contributing members, and yet the one thing that is the most fundamental aspect of citizenship, which is voting, in many states you are not even allowed to do. ways in which the stain of a prison record hurts you, whether it is employment or housing or owning a gun. as sympathetic to that argument as i was earlier too. in no realm to a feel stronger about that than in the realm of voting. the first thing we need to do is
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to try to get them thinking like it is an american citizen of a community and get them and engaged. it teaches you how to be more engaged. caller: my question would be -- i'm sure it changed you a lot. sure it was lonely. who was the main person one that really had an effect on you.
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who is he interested a few more? who cut your curiosity? you more?erested who caught your curiosity? guest: there was the inmate supervisor, and he overheard a conversation between me and another prisoner about my former best friend who ran a wire on me. he could tell i still resented my friend. he came up to me and told me his brother-in-law had ratted him -- rattedtold me for him out. he told me for his first four years in prison he woke up every day thinking about how he was going to kill his brother-in-law.
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spent every day thinking about it and then he couldn't sleep at night, because every time he fell asleep he would have nightmares about strangling his brother-in-law. he said one day after a few realized he was going to kill himself if he didn't change. he decided he was going to forgive his brother-in-law and told me i would have to do that, because otherwise the trail would stay with me and make me a better person. that day i made an effort to do that. he was exactly right. as it was for him it has been a little bit easier than the day before. there is a tremendous amount of wisdom inside of prison. that was just one occasion.
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there are many times when perspective he had gained after doing a decade prison was valuable to me. host: what was your family's reaction when you tell them you're going to prison? guest: my mom said, didn't i tell you not to go on politics. inmom was right, she told me my very first race, this is ridiculous, you have no business running in congress, he should finish her phd. my mom's reaction was a little bit of i told you so. hosting at the time you had a girlfriend. -- host: at the time he had a girlfriend. what happened? guest: after i went to my parents house, after i found
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that my friend had been wearing the wire, i went to my parents house and told them and then went to my girlfriend's workplace. i was joking at first. probably going to have to go to prison and this is not what you signed up for. i would probably go to my house tonight and get your boxes, because you have an even packed up yet. tonighteven come home if you like. she told me that is ok, i want you to come home tonight. she -- have a four-year-old son and a two-year-old daughter. caller: i worked for a not for
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profit. for 35 years i was working for the formerly incarcerated release program. i wish i had two or three hours to speak to you. thoughts.f quick most suicides happen in solitary confinement. it is inhumane. the folks i recruited for the came outgram traumatized. i wish i had all the numbers in front of me. i realize there are some people that belong in prison. i'm talking about the not islent offenders, where it an illness and agencies. i look at the folks that are in
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prison. i just want to approach it from a standpoint with the that many people in jail and prisons. do they go on the entitlement programs? this is going to bankrupt our country because we know entitlement programs are not sustainable now. there are so many issues at stake here. the course per person is staggering. i can go about 20 different half to listen i to you this morning about what is the system -- about once the
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system gets you they don't really see. host: i'm going to have you listen to our guests response. guest: once the system gets you is a concept that ,eople have identified scholars have identified, called criminal menopause. there 50inals are years or so, they are highly unlikely to reoffend. that is true of violent offenders who may have committed a crime before they were fully enveloped neurologically. once they spent 30 years in violenced have not had in prison, the chances they will
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reoffend our infant to small -- infinitesimal. it makes absolutely no sense. one of the things we need to look at as a country is aging in and smartly releasing people back in their communities who are highly unlikely to reoffend. to come out and will eventually get social security. participate in our entitlement programs just like anywhere else. the lack of training inside the prison and lack of support, they will spend 40's, 50's, early 60's contributing to those programs. it will be the net cost of the
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country if he don't change what we do inside our prisons. -- if we don't change what we do inside our prisons. come here is a tweet yet -- a tweet -- guest: for-profit prisons enter the contracts with states, that ensure cities that should the prison be filled up to 95% for the next 20 years, 25 years, that means even if crime plummets in a community or state, even if they are sentencing reform that reduces the length of returns, that jurisdiction is going to have to figure out a way to contractually obligated to fill that no matter what. can you think of a bigger
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disincentive then contractually obligated to fill terminal this country should not allow prisons in general. we definitely should not allow counties to tie their own hands. private prison is bad, public reason is good. the last chapter of the book is entitled, see you next year. that is what this one steel would tell every prisoner, he would use a very derogatory term after that. is guys like you who remind me i'm always going to that is a you did publicly run prison. very similar to private prison. host: we will go to illinois, amy.
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caller: i am a nurse that works at a jail and a professor who'd teaches mental health nourishing . we are going to sit right in here. that is serious mental illness, that person has a delusion. we have nothing else to do with them but to put them in a padded cell. that is not -- not therapeutic for them. feeling thing that keeps them safe is doing more harm than good. -- the thing that keeps them safe is doing more harm than good. i know people coming in for drug offenses that have serious addiction issues. we see people short term.
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for say there is no need drug treatment programs because short term stay. experience, do you think people could carry on an addiction in prison? i know they can use drugs, but the serious using. guest: drugs were readily available at the prison i was at. they could get what they needed. i'm not sure it is probably not at the level where they could be doing the truck and frequently -- the drug in frequently. we should actually viewed this as a public health issue and
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have treatment facilities that we put tea -- that we put people towards. the mental health issue is real. solitary does nothing to emily rate these problems but instead exacerbates them. one thing that is important to talk about is rape inside of prisons. surveys, people are assaulted every single year. it is more than the number of people outside of prison who are raped. the way we tolerate this kind of rape culture, our attitude in society, particularly a lot of ,eople who work in corrections whatever happens to you, you probably deserve it.
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it is also incredibly myopic. who are raped come out ofison prison and disproportionately try to reclaim the manhood they believed was stolen from them in the same violent way. it has a terrible impact on public safety. the federal government isn't even enforcing the most basic tenants, which is ensuring they report the number of rapes happening every year inside a prison. we have a long way to go. >> susan is a republican in hampton, virginia. : one thing i've learned, i don't want to go to prison.
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the prison industrial complex always chuckles about it. virginia, if you have a felony you cannot work in a restaurant because of abc loss .- abc laws you can't work in a hospital setting or old folks home because you may have had this felony or that. it is negated by the same laws that the federal and state government have. >> you are exactly right. i'm not familiar with virginia state statutes. have ar states if you felony conviction you can't even be a beautician or do hair braiding. money we do spend on
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rehabilitation and vocational training is offset by these ridiculous statutes. >> we're going to take more itls about this and what taught him about america's prison crisis. that lindsey share graham has decided to suspend his presidential campaign. comes on theent same day as the deadline to remove his name from the primary ballot, a date closely watched amid speculation. we will go to kathy in albuquerque, new mexico. caller: i always watch c-span. i wish you would always run the
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show. i saw your story on book tv. i always felt the need to reach out to the people in prison, but have been kind of fearful. something within me that i , ited to reach out to them gave me such great insight. i don't know if you have anything you can offer. i still do have a strong desire. your beautiful family stuck with you. can offer me any advice as to how i can reach out to them. guest: thank you for the kind words

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