tv US House of Representatives Special Orders CSPAN April 28, 2016 7:00pm-9:01pm EDT
>> andre cote is the executive cher here at the washington hilton. you have 2,600 plus people coming over for dinner, what's it like to prepare that? it's an honor, first and foremost, but it's also a lot of fun. it's an opportunity for us to really prepare unusual foods. for a large amount of people. >> when you say unusual, what do you mean? andre: we can't go over this year's menu but once we do a taste test, the decision is usually made that evening. then our work begins for the following year. >> when do you do the taste
test? at what point? andre: usually three months, roughly three months prior to the function itself. depends on their ski squle and our schedule but we always work it out. >> chef andre, you have 23,000 square feet of kitchen, the largest kitchen in washington, d.c. does it get crowded on the night of the correspondents' dinner? andre: it is crowded. >> who is in here? andre: we have a lot of celebrities who want to be back of the house but at the same time we've got so many cooks and people working that evening, whether it be from the management teaming all the team members, we're looking at roughly 400 people that are here to assist on that evening. >> does that include servers? andre: that includes servers. >> how many people are out on the floor? andre: about 200 servers on the
loor, then mate red's -- maitre' d's that oversee the front of the house. >> and about 200 people back here then? andre: about that. >> where are you that snevpk andre: running around. we were just talking about how many steps i do and the white house correspondents' dinner is definitely the most. 24,000 steps that day. all over the place. whether it be in the pastry shop, butcher shop, the preparation of cold food area, on the hot side, working on hors d'oeuvres, making sure the secret service is ok. make sure that we're ready for them to inspect our kitchen. working backwards on a timeline to feed that many people. how much time do we need for the
steaks to go in and actually cook? so there's a lot that goes into it. >> there's a lot of high profile people that come to the hilton on a regular basis so you're probably used to that part, but where do you source your food? is that a secret? are the secret service involved in your preparation? andre: as far as the food goes, we have primarily two vendors we source most of the food through and that -- as soon as the tasting is over, i actually sit down and that's when the ordering of the food takes place. so it took place three months ago because we want to make sure there's the correct aging on the beef for the dinner that night. produce comes from anywhere from california, meat usually from colorado or idaho, somewhere in that area. vegetables, again, florida,
california, the majority of it. there's a lot that goes into it. >> what about the secret service? are they participating or keeping an eye on everything going on that night? andre: they do. and the thing with secret service is, they kind of take our lead but at the same time we take their lead. meaning that we know our employees, who should be here, who should not be here. so as far as, you know, working together, we work well together. as far as overseeing production of the food, they will walk around, inspect things, check on products, etc. when it comes time to actually serving the dinner, the president's dinner is usually picked out of the 2,700 we produce that night. >> so he's eating the same food as a random guest?
andre: they randomly select from the starter, desserts, as well as the entree. >> how far are we from the actual ballroom right now? andre: you're probably about 40 yards from the ballroom. >> are the servers taking the food from this area or from this kitchen, bringing it out to the ballroom? andre: the kitchen actually backs up to the ballroom. it's only about 10 yards from the entrance to the ballroom, which makes it convenient, but also efficient. >> chef andre, your employees here, to work at the washington hilton because of the high profile events that go on here, do they have to be especially checked, background checked? andre: i honestly couldn't answer that question. however, i do know that everybody that walks in to the kitchen once we turn it over to
the secret service, everybody is checked. what's going through the secret service line. >> what about special orders? a lot of people have food llergies, etc., gluten free. andre: in my 11 years, this is actually my 12th dinner, we have a lot of special requests. and it's challenging that night because we try to take care of so many people and when somebody comes across and says, i, i only eat things that are dark shade, ok, well right now my brain is not working. what's a dark shade? what do you mean by that? i've got somebody else that needs their food pureed. i've got special vee began diet. i would say there's probably 100 to 150 special requests that
evening. and it presents a challenge because we -- but we do the best we can. >> what if you are one of the guests in the 1,000-plus rooms here at the washington hilton and you want a grilled chicken and a bowl of soup, will you be able to get it that night? andre: they will. we'll have the restaurant kitchen and room service appropriately staffed. we'll have six cooks up there and three pantry persons up there. working and room service will probably have, probably a staff of 15 that evening. whether it's room service or ala cart or the people that like to watch, you know, there in mccullen's bar, they'll be able to order bar food, whatever they want. >> that's all done in a separate kitchsnn andre: yes, which is up ne floor, right off the lobby,
there's a restaurant and bar. >> chef an tray in the 12 years you've been doing this dinner has anything ever gone wrong or awry that you can tell us about? an tray: we've actually had a lot go wrong. part of my job and my assistant's job is to look into the future, what possibilities are there for something to go wrong? we actually take the menu and we think backwards. what happens if we break 50 plates? what happens if we forget to light a hot box? we kind of backtrack through the whole menu to make sure we try minimize those. now, we have had things like, all of a sudden an oven got tired.
then where we put a french onion soup in the oven and all of a sudden the oven wasn't working. that's when you have to use the resources in the kitchens, all the kitchens, to be able to produce the food. so what we did was use the pastry ovens, we took some up to the restaurant kitchen. we were able to minimize any exposure. >> having attended this dinner, it's very crowded in that ballroom and it is tight spaces. what's the advice that you give to servers to get through? andre: be patient. that's the biggest thing. and you know, from my standpoint, i don't see what goes on once they enter the ballroom. because i'm so busy back here. we keep working until 11:00 at night, 12:00 at night, whether it be up in the restaurant or room service orders or there's after parties that go on.
so from a kitchen standpoint, we're not closing down. we're going to -- i'll be here by 5:00 in the morning that morning, only because the anxiety is setting in. i start going through my checklist and, you know, double checking everything that i've done up to that point to make sure i'm ready. it's a long day but at the same time it's a lot of fun system of getting back to the original question with the servers, that day will be roughly 1,500 employees in our cafeteria -- employees in our cafeteria also. a lot of people only see the white house correspondents' dinner, you've got all the people that have been here all day, housekeepers working hard to turn the rooms over, the bellmen, the doormen, all the people working in the restaurant, because the restaurant, there's probably 3,000 people that day. so if you take all of that,
there's a lot more that goes into it than just the white house correspondents' dinner. it's actually planning for the cafeteria, how can we expedite service? how can we make sure we're able to feed all those employees that are working the dinner. >> 12 years that means george w. bush and barack obama have been your two presidents. have you had the chance to meet either one of them? andre: no, unfortunately. i hope one day i get a picture one with -- with one of the presidents. i think that would be nice. but no, i don't get to meet them. i have season mrs. obama walk through the kitchen quickly a couple of times. >> on her way to this event or other events? >> to other events. but that's it. >> what's your biggest worry? andre: failure. >> what kind of failure? andre: just anything that i didn't think of something that could go wrong and does go wrong.
at -- it is a high profile group. but every group here, i would say half of them are high profile system of from a chef's standpoint you're concerned from, you know, last week, two weeks ago, to groups coming in, maybe get a little less sleep with white house correspondents' dinner but you know, i don't stress over it. ou didn't know i was 90. i just walk through the process, every process, every step that we do that day, i go over 20, 30 times in hi head prior to the unction even happening. i'm re. >> in the creative process, when you say, ok for the taste test, let's try this, do you -- does
this get to stretch your wings as a chef a little bit? do you get to play a little bit coming up with the menu? andre: i think the first five years i did it it was kind of mechanical. so to speak. and as a chef i didn't, you know, push myself to be a little more creative. and i think this year, i think people will be very pleased, or more pleased, maybe, than they have been in the past with the creativity that we put forth. and i'm learning, i'm also learning as a chef. as i'm doing this for 40 years, every day i walk in here i learn something new. not a lot of people can say that but as a chef you take what you learn every day and you push yourself to try something new every day. and then the next day, ok, you're going to try for 400. we're going to try something different for 1,200 people.
then you get up to 2,00 people. and you're trying to be unique and different. that's what -- you know as a chef that you're doing your job right. >> this is president obama's last year in office, his last white house correspondents' dinner. anything to mark that odecision? andre: from my perspective, it is an honor. you know, i'm a military brat. and for me, you know, i was raised with respecting the position, no matter who it was, democrat or republican. for me it's an honor to be here, to be part of the white house correspondents' dinner. and be known as the chef that, you know, help prod deuce this meal. it truly is >> chef andre, your client is not the white house necessarily
in this case. your client is the white house correspondents' association. andre: correct. and shame on me for referring to the president. but i guess i get a little excited that he's here. the white house correspondents' dinner is, they're the nice people on the committee they want to do the best for the group, the organization. and my job is to make their job a little bit easier. even when i do the menu, what can i do, how can i do it? make their decision making process a little bit easier. >> this dinner is being held on april 30, 2016. when will planning for 2017 begin? andre rment the day after. -- andre: the day after. in all sincerity. what we do at the hotel is we get together, we discuss what
went well. what didn't go well. what we need to do, whether it be from, you know, we didn't have somebody stationed in a certain area of the hotel to direct people. peoplei not staff enough in the restaurant kitchen for the business we had for room service or the bar or the restaurant. so we go over everything the day after and then the day after that, we're actually -- we actually start planning for 2017's dinner. so it's nonstop. >> andre cote the executive chef here at the washington hilton. >> it's known as one of washington's premier events, bringing together government officials, member os they have press and hollywood stars. c-span has live coverage of the 2016 white house correspondents' dinner this saturday starting at 6:00 p.m. eastern. our live coverage from the washington hilton hotel includes
red carpet arrivals, background on the dinner and award presentations. 2,700 people are expected to attend this year's sold out dinner. larry willmore, host of "the nightly show" will headline. watch beginning saturday at 6:00 p.m. eastern live on c-span. >> earlier today, president obama participated in white house college reporter day. student journalists from universities around the country asked the president questions on college affordability, student loans and civic education. his is 40 minutes. president obama: i hear there's some hot shot journalists here. josh was speaking for me, i wanted to make sure he was getting it right. how is it going, everybody? are you guys having an interesting time here?
was josh thorough in his briefing? i heard you guys were around today so i wanted to stop by and say hello. i also have a bit of breaking news for you and then i might take some questions. i heard -- overheard josh talking about student loans, i know that's a big priority for a lot of your listeners and readers and that's one of the reasons why my administration has spent a lot of time focused on college affordability. so we expanded pell grants, let's make sure that more young people could access it. we created the pay as you earn program that ensures that people can cap the amount that they're repaying on their leans each month so young people who want to go into jobs that don't -- aren't as lucrative are still able to pursue their passions and their dreams while managing
their debt load. today i want to announce that we're aiming to enroll two million more people in pay as you earn by this time next year and you can find out how at studentloans.gov/repay. that's studentloans.gov/repay. we're also going to be making some additional announcements about how we're going to get our agencies coordinating so that as young people are managing their student loan debt, there's one stop shopping they can figure out how to do it and they can make sure that their consumer protections in terms of how they're being treated in the repayment process. while i have you here, i might as well mention a couple of other things. you may have heard there's a supreme court vacancy. for those of you who have been studying our system of government, we have three branches and one of the most important is the judiciary. and right now our supreme court
is absent one sitting member, with the passing of justice scalia. i have nominated an individual named merrick garland, currently the chief judge on the d.c. circuit court of appeals, the second most important court in the land. by all accounts he's extremely well qualified and traditionally what's happened is that the senate then exercising its constitutional duties to advise and consent will meet with the judge and then have a hearing for him and then having a -- and then have a vote. in part because of poll -- because politics have got son polarized lately, so far at least the republican leader on the senate side, mitch mcconnell, has refused to have the republican caucus meet with him and schedule an actual vote. although to their credit, there have been a number of republicans who have broken ranks and gone ahead and met with judge garland.
i mention this because i think it's important for all of you, while you're in town, and many of you who are going to end up being journalists covering important national policy, to recognize that our system only works when, even when we have big disagreements, even when there are big policy distributes, there's still a willingness to follow the rules and treat people fairly. especially those who are on the other side of the debate. that's something that's been lost a little bit in this town of late and as i said at my state of the union address, my hope is, is that despite some of the unusual rhetoric that we've been hearing during this presidential campaign, that it's young people like you who are going to restore that sense of us being able to work together and make this democracy function effectively and journalists play a critical role in that. sometimes both josh and i
probably have our disagreements with the press corps. and feel picked on or misunderstood. but the truth of the matter is, and i've said this before, what separates us in part from a lot of other countries in the world we've got this incredible free press that pokes and prods and calls into account our leaders. and that is how we can make sure that leaders accountable to the people who elect them. and that's how we make sure that you don't see major abuses of power, and when you do, that in fact the american people know about it and are able to make changes. and so you guys are going to have a critical role, those of you who end up following journalism. i hope many of you do. i want to thank the white house press corps because i understand they gave you a lot of time
today and some of the best journalists in the country operate here. i normally don't say nice things about them in front of them but i figured since they took the time to work with you today i wanted to make sure to acknowledge the great work that they are doing. all right. so with that, i'm going to take a couple of questions. all right, let's see. we'll start with that young man there in the black suit. or -- right here in the red tie. but i may get to you too. >> mr. president, it's a pleasure to meet you. my name is dan, i'm editor in hief of the "daily fargo," the second oldest college newspaper in the united states. we recently ran a student referendum to keep our presence on campus. we passed and were allowed to continue publishing and we're going to reach a historic 150
years of publication. president obama: thank you very much. -- congratulations. >> thank you very much. i'm a little nervous now. president obama: never admit you're nervous. you're doing great. >> i was wondering, would you be interested in being interviewed by our newspaper. president obama: that's a good use of your time right there. you know, i have to say that normally i coordinate carefully with my press team before we rant interviews but i am favorably disposed toward giving you a little bit of time. it may not be a really long interview but i figure, give the college newspaper a little bit of play. so, all right. young lady right here.
>> my question is, you announced the other day you'll be visiting flint, michigan, based on a letter from young girls whample you planning to do in your visit there and have you heard from he girl in response to the visit and can i take a photo with you? president obama: the photo, i can't do, because if i do then i've got a long line. i will be visiting flint. obviously since the news of the terrible things that have taken place there, the lead in the drinking water, and the potential health hazards, as well as the people who were responsible for the health and safety of those residents not carrying out their duties the way they need to, i think it's important not only for us to have responded as we have, with fema and that's the federal emergency management agency that
responds to a lot of problems like this, it's important not only that we are helping the city plan over the long term but i think it's also important for me to shine a spotlight on the fact that flint, although extreme, is not unique. that we have underinvested in some of our basic infrastructures that we rely on for public health. and hopefully it will give me a chance to speak the nation as a whole about how we need to ensure that our air is clean and water is clean and our kids are safe. and i hope i get a chance to meet that young lady as well. all right. the young man -- young man right there. >> i'm jesse from university of north texas, i have two questions for you. what is your proudest achievement you've achieved here
in these eight years and after january 20, what are your goals or plans after you leave the white house? president obama: i'm proud of a lot of stuff. providing health insurance to 20 million people who didn't have it and setting us on a path where hopefully everybody has health insurance that's affordable and high quality. i'm proud of the work we did to save the economy because right after i came in, we were in a free fall and could have experienced a worldwide depression. i'm proud of the reforms we've done on wall street to make sure that the recklessness that led to the crisis hopefully doesn't happen again. i'm proud of the work we've done in education to make sure that millions of kids who previously couldn't afford to go to college, can. and that in addition to the work 've done on student debt and reducing that, we've also been
doing things to make it -- the process of encouraging young people to go to college. easier. and you know, this is a good time for me to get a shout out to the first lady who as many of you know just this week had her annual signup getting young people to apply for the fafsa form that is the gateway for you to be able to get financial aid. she was up in new york but it was, i think 1,000 participants nationwide who are helping to let young people know, you are willing to work hard and have a vision for your future, then nothing is preventing you from getting the kind of higher education that you need. so i'm proud of all that stuff. probably the thing i'm most mainly as the
assistant to michelle obama, i've raised two daughters who are amazing and i'm really, really proud of them. and being able to do that while i l focused on my job, think, is something i'll look back on and appreciate. you know, i'm really busy right now so i'm not thinking too much about after the presidency. typically, presidents build libraries but i'm more interested in programming, not just building, and i'm very confident that a lot of the programming i do will relate to young people and how i can encourage them to get involved and serve. all right. let's see. i'm trying to alternate, boy, girl, boy, girl, just to be fair.
young lady right there in the red. >> hey. president obama: hey. >> i'm reporting for the university of mississippi and pending the supreme court's decision, will this administration take further action on immigration? president obama: as you know we took some initial steps to try to make a more rational, smarter immigration process. our immigration system has been broken for quite some time. on the one hand, you've had some serious work by our administration and previous administrations to slow the flow of undocumented workers across the border, to strengthen border security. improve how we manage the
influx of folks who come in by air and to make sure that they're not overstaying their visas and so forth. on the other hand, we also want to remind everybody, this is a nation of imgrants and immigrants, immigration has been a source of strength for our country. and that we have people here who may not have initially come here legally but have since that time put down roots, raised families, they're our neighbors, our friends, they may be in some cases, you know, seeing their sons and daughters go off to war in our country's uniform and that it doesn't make sense for us to simply pretend like we're going to send all those folks out and -- and instead we should bring them out of the shadows and give them a chance to earn egal residencey and ultimately
citizenship. we put forward a plan. part of it we were able to implement, the dream act kids who we were able to make sure were treated like the young americans that they are. we then had an additional program through administrative action that the supreme court put a stay on, or the lower courts put a stay on, and it's about to go to the supreme court. in part, the process takes a with the enerally supreme court one justice short it will be interesting to see whether or not they can come to a ruling or whether they arrive at a tie, a 4-4 tie. we don't know yet. that's pending. in the meantime, we're still implementing a number of reforms and changes to make the legal immigration system smoother, not as expensive, fairer to people, to treat families with more respect.
we have changed our priorities in terms of enforcement so that we're not deporting and separating families as much and more focused on going after criminals. and people who pose a security threat to the community. but our hands are a little bit tied on some of the bigger things until the supreme court rules. now even if we do all that, it's critically important that we still push congress to pass legislation, because my executive orders can be overturned by the next president. and the only way to have a permanent solution to this problem is for the kind of legislation to pass that we saw the senate actually pass on a bipartisan basis that would continue to strengthen border security but also give a pathway to citizenship for those who had been here for quite some time. that way we can be a nation of law and a nation of imgrants and
it's the right thing to do. i'm not optimistic about us getting the legislation done before i leave, given the makeup of this congress. but i think there's going to be a major issue in the election and people need to pay attention to it. i'm going to take two more. two more questions. let's see. you're all very good looking people, i've got to say this gentleman over here. i haven't forgotten about you over there. >> my question is about the syrian refugees. president obama: i thought you were going to ask about basketball rims. o, go ahead. >> as your pledge to take in closer, it ees gets looks like it's going to go by, do you have a plan to get more syrian refugees?
president obama: we're going to keep on pushing. part of what made this challenging is we want to make sure we can as much as possible provide the american people an assurance that everybody here has been vetted at a very high standard. as you will recall, there was a lot of emotions around our initial announcement that we should be admitting some syrian refugees. and people making claims that somehow this would be letting potential terrorists onto our shores. the truth of the matter is, is that the refugee process generally is much more rigorous in its screening and its vetting than the average tourist who comes in here. these are people who themselves have been victims of terrorism and victims of incredible violence and suffering at the
hands of the assad regime in syria. it is the right thing to do. our closest friends and alryes like canada, like germany, and other european countries as well as countries bordering syria like turkey and jordan have taken on an enormous burden. and as, you know, the most powerful nation on earth, it's important for us to do our duty as well here. our humanitarian obligation. and it's important for us to send a signal around the world that we care about these folks. so administratively, i think now we have the process to speed it up. there may be efforts on the part of congress to try to block us. but our goal is to continue to try to make the case to congress and the american people that
this is the right thing to do and we believe that we can hit those marks before the end of the year. more broadly, one of the things we're going to be doing is, with the united nations, we're going to convene at the margins of the united nations general assembly that takes place every year, we're going to try to have an international conference around how we can deal with much larger refugee flows generally. some of them as a consequence of conflict, in some cases because of droughts or other natural disasters, there are about 60 million displaced people around the world. and i've met with some of them, not just those who are fleeing areas like syria, but also in soviet asia and parts of africa and a lot of these folks are your age or younger. have the same hopes, dreams, aspirations. and have just been dealt a very
bad hand. we can't solve every problem in the world but we have to make sure that we take leadership in trying to help stabilize their lives. ok? all right. i'll take two more because i promised i would get that young man who thought i called on him. yeah, go ahead. >> thank you, mr. president, for joining us here today. i'm from the university of southern california, representing the daily trojan. in light of your pell grant announcement today it seems a central tenet of your administration is increasing access to grants. how sustainable would you say that strategy is in addressing the long-term trends of cost of college? president obama: that's a great question. it is not sustainable if the overall cost of college keeps on going up as fast as it's gone up. one of the things we have to do even as we make sure that we're provide manager access to
grants, keeping loans manageable, interest rates at a reasonable level, we still have to work with colleges and universitys to figure out new ays to reduce costs. and we've seen universities around the country begin experiments that are having some impact. i'll just give you a couple of examples. i made an announcement a while back about our initiative for making the first two years of community college free. that's something that is afordable for most states to do. and we are prepared to help with federal support. if we are able to do that, and we could just close a few loopholes that corporations currently use to avoid paying
taxes to pay for it then for a large proportion of young people who either get their primary, secondary school fregs a community college or start at a community college and then transfer to a four-year university for graduation, their costs are being cut anywhere from half to 100%. down to zero. and this is something achieveable. now congress has not moved on our proposal but what we've also seen is that there have been 27 jurisdictions around the country that have taken us up on this challenge and are doing it themselves. are figuring out ways to make this happen. so that's one example. second example, some of you, because i can tell you guys were high achieving, type a folks, unlike the kind of slacker kid that i was, some of you i suspect were taking college
credit courses while you were in high school. and what we've seen is the number of high school systems or public school systems partner with community colleges and universities so that they make arrangements, you start taking your college credits while in high school. and you extend your, what seems like high school for an extra year and when you graduate you have an associate's degree so you have the equivalent of a community college degree, when you then go to a four-year institution, you have enough credits that you can graduate in three years instead of four. that, again, by eliminating one year means that you just reduced your costs significantly. there's been discussion of how can we use technology to cut costs? are there ways in which we can take the best practices of nline learning and make that
more accessible for young people who may not have the luxury of being on a campus for four years with room and board, might have to work part time because they need to help their families or support themselves. are there ways we can make that work? and we have to be careful about that because there have been some for-profit institutions that frankly haven't done a very good job. they take the money but the young person who, you know, who is taking classes with them doesn't end up getting a degree that's useful for them getting a job and then they have problems repaying their loans, but there's no doubt that if done well, the technology potentially can reduce costs. then we're talking to colleges and universities about what are the contributors to these higher costs? and this may be sensitive to some folks but i've said this before, if you have the option of cutting your college costs in
half but your dorm rooms aren't quite as nice, or the sports facilities, or the student center or the cafeteria aren't as good is that a deal you're willing to take? can we figure out how to empower more parents and more students to demand a lower cost option that still gives you a great education but maybe doesn't have the bells and whistles to it. that's why we put forward this college report card. the idea is just, it provides you online data so that as you're selecting a college or university, that you're able to see what are the costs? what's the graduation rate? all the indicators and benchmarks of getting good value for what you're spending. and you know, this has been a long-term trend of ever-rising college costs. the good news is that through
the work we've done over the last several years, we've started to see some good trends, delinquencies, hardship deferrals, defaults on student loans have started to go in a better direction. they were skyrocketing. some of that is the improvement of the economy generally. some of that is some of the policies that we've engaged in. but we're going to have to keep on working with universitys to make sure that we're doing a smarter, better job. in order for the people who are coming behind you to be able to afford college. last question. the gentleman right there. >> thank you, mr. president. i'm from fresno city college. one thing we talked about was civic engagement and you said in the state of the union address
to not give in. a poll shows that nearly half of americans feel the elections are rigged in some way. is there any goal or plan for the administration to help revitalize the faith in democracy that is lacking? president obama: this is something i tried to do ever since i got into public office. i came into this work as a community organizer and strongly believe that our democracy only works when people participate. there are a lot of forces that feed cynicism. and there's no dispute that our democracy is not working as well as it should. i can tell you some of the reasons for that. we have set upat a system for electing state
legislatetures and members of congress that involves the drawing of district lines that are gerrymandered. for those of you who are unfamiliar with the phrase, it basically means that those who are already in power draw the mans in such a way where they can be assured that these are either going to be democratic seats or republican seats and what that's done is it's made very few seats competitive. so for example, in the last election, 2012, democrats actually cast substantially more votes in congressional elections, but ended up with substantially fewer seats. and the reason for that is, in 2010, when the census was done and redistricting of congressional and house legislative seats were drawn, republican governors and republican majorities were responsible for drawing most of
the seats. now, you know, i want to be clear. democrats aren't blameless on this either. but california, for example, has gone to a process of nonpartisan districting. the advantage there is not only do you make more seats competitive but it also means that politicians have to compete for everybody's votes because they're not in safe seats. they're not in a safely republican district or democratic district. and what that does is it means they've got to not just appeal to the extremes of their party. part of the reason we've seen polarization and gridlock here in washington is because there's been this great sorting and democrats have moved much further -- have moved left. republicans have just gone way to the right. and it's harder then to compromise because members of congress, and the same is true in state legislatures, they're
always looking over their shoulders seeing if somebody in their own party might challenge them. so then the system doesn't work. that's a big chunk of why people are cynical. they feel like their votes don't count and if you draw districts that are ironclad one party or another, then they're not entirely wrong. another reason that people are cynical is money in politic. the supreme court issued a ruling, citizens united, that allowed super p.a.c.s and very wealthy individuals to just finance all these ads you guys see on tv all the time. half the time nobody knows who is funding them. and that makes you cynical partly because most of this money is spent on negative ads. you're hearing constantly how horrible everybody is. that will make you feel bad about the political process. i'm a strong believer in, you know, finding ways in which we can make the financing of
campaigns more democratic. now we've seen some interesting work being done, you've got to give bernie sanders, for example, credit. building off some of the work i did, i in turn built off work that howard dean did. for smaller donations, grass roots donors, to be able, small contributions to allow candidates to be competitive. but i think that we don't want to leave that to chance. and that's much harder to do for members of congress who are lower profile. so they don't get the sort of viral presence that allows them to raise that kind of money to compete. we're going to have to solve money in politics. you as journalists are going to have a roll to play in reducing cynicism. it is very hard to get good stories placed. you know, people will assign you stories about what's not
working. it's very hard for you to write a story about, wow, this thing really works good. and just to take the federal government as an example, every day i've got two million people who work for the federal government, whether in our military, our law enforcement, our, you know, environmental protection, helping veterans, etc. and they are doing great work. and you rely on it in all kinds of ways, including when you check the weather because you can thank the national weather service for putting satellites up so your smart phones tell you whether to bring a a -- bring an umbrella or not, but we just take it for granted. if out of those two million employees, some person screws up somewhere, which every day you can count on somebody out of two million people probably doing something they shouldn't be doing, that's what's going to get reported on. government s keep
on its toes and accountable but one of the things we have to think about is how do we tell a story about things we do together that actually work so people don't feel so cynical overall. but look, here's the bottom line. let's take the political process , as cynical as everybody is, and everybody is always trying to come up with these radical new plans to try to fix our democracy and we need to do his, we need to do that, the truth is is that part of the reason our government doesn't work as well is because in a good presidential year, slightly more than half the people vote who are eligible. and the other half don't. and during an off-year election, when the president is not at the top of the ticket and people aren't getting as much attention, 40% of the people vote.
now, this system doesn't work if eople opt out. and the easiest cure, the simplest cure for what ails our democracy is everybody voting. it's true that there are some states that make it hard for people to vote. we're the only major democracy in the world that actively makes it hard for people to vote. and so you should be particularly in your student newspapers as you go back to your home states, you should be asking, why is it we have laws that are purposely making it harder for people to vote? purposely making it harder for young people to vote? and then there's a political agenda there. the people in power don't want things to change. they want cynicism. because obviously the existing system is frustrating as it is for everybody else, works for them. if you want to up end that,
we've got to vote. but even in those states that purposely make it harder to vote, the truth of the matter is, on your college campuses, half the folks, maybe 2/3 of the folks who don't vote, don't vote because they're just not paying attention. they don't consider it important. and they're not willing to take the 15 minutes or half-hour that it takes to make sure that you're registered and make sure you actually vote. if you care about climate change, if you care about college costs, if you care about career opportunities, you care about war and peace and refugees, you can't just complain. you've got to vote. and what's interesting is, as voting bloc, as a are the least likely to vote but
when you do vote, have the biggest impact on elections. during a presidential year, young people account for like 19% of the total vote. during an off year election, when folks aren't paying as much attention, they account for 12%. of that means that the kind candidates that get elected and the priorities that they reflect are entirely different just based on whether or not you guys are going to the polls. so don't let people tell you that what you do doesn't matter. it does. don't give away your power. that should be the main message that you deliver all the time. and it doesn't matter whether it's -- whether you're
republican, democrat, independent, whether you're on servetive on some issues and liberal on others. if you participate and take the time to learn about the issues, and take the time to turn out and your peers do, you change the country. you do. it may not happen as fast as you like but you'll change it. so i'll keep on talking about this even after i leave the presidency. this is -- you got me started, i went on a rant, didn't i? i'm counting on you guys. don't let me down. all right? don't let the country down. you guys are going to be delivering the message to your peer group that this is the greatest country on earth but only because we have great citizens who are willing to invest their time and energy and effort to become informed on the issues, to argue about it in a espectful way, and to try to collectively solve the main challenges that we face. the good news is is that there
are no challenges, as j.f.k., that man creates that man can't solve. i would add women to that. all right. good luck, guys. bye-bye. [applause] mr. earnest: i'm not going to try to top that, that doesn't happen every day. but obviously the president felt strongly enough about you being here to make some time for all of you. so thank you for taking the time to be here, i hope you go and write some good stories about it. see you guys. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2016] >> c-span's "washington journal" live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. coming up friday morning, our student cam grand prize winner, olivia hurd will join us remotely from oklahoma to discuss her grand prize winning
documentary titled "up to our necks" and she'll talk about what she learned producing the documentary. then congressman timur fi will be on to talk about mental health services and his mental health legislation moving through congress. and democrat congressman ted lieu will talk to us about the hacking of his iphone on 60 minutes and his call on the government oversight and reform committee to investigate the hack. join the discussion. on american history tv on c-span3 -- >> therefore this committee has undertaken such an investigation. its purpose is not to impair the f.b.i.'s legitimate law enforcement function but rather to evaluate domestic intelligence according to the constitution and the statutes of our land.
>> over 40 years ago, a senate select committee chaired chaired by senator church of idaho was convened to discuss the act -- to investigate the activities of the f.b.i., c.i.a.. over the next five weeks we'll look at portions of the 1975 televised hearings. saturday night at 10:00 eastern. the commission questioning william colby about illegally stored biological weapons. >> i cannot explain why that quantity was developed except that this was a collaboration that we were engaged in with the united states army and we did develop this particular weapon, you might say, as a possible -- for possible use. >> and on the civil war at 6:00. >> in 1860, the united states was 78 years old. it was not old enough to have wisdom. lee's family had been lived in virginia 225 years.
i do not think lee anguished at all over the decision he made. i think that devotion for duty came forth in 1861. his primary duty was to his family. his family had been virginians for over two centuries. the old dominion was lee's birth right. >> historian james "bud" robertson talks about robert e. lee, his ties to virginia and his campaigns throughout the state. then on road to the white house rewind, the film "private 1957 on" chronicles the presidential race. -- 00 on the -- >> his ability and foreign policy as head of state of the united states, the chief of the armed forces of the leading power in the world, very much the leading power in the free world is to think responsibly
about what one can achieve and to try and define one's policies and try to understand geopolitics in that light. >> military historian jeremy black looks at the origin os they have cold war and focuses on dwight d. eisenhower as a military man and president. for the complete american history tv weekend schedule go to c-span.org. >> coming up on c-span, defense secretary ashton carter and joint chiefs of staff chair dunford testify before a house committee on the plan to close the guantanamo bay detention center. then a senate armed services hearing on u.s. strategy to counter isis in the middle east. later, house speaker paul ryan talks to reporters at his weekly press briefing, followed by democratic leadership on lgbt issues.
tomorrow morning on capitol hill, a hearing on nuclear energy regulation and modernization. on c-span 2, a hearing on the pet medication industry. tors testified before a house committee. announcer: south carolina governor nikki haley testified on the obama administration plan to close guantanamo bay detention center and transfer some of the detainees to a military prison in trust in. she said that housing the detainees would cost her state potential jobs and new business. she was followed by state and local law-enforcement officials who testified on the potential cost and impact on local communities. this house homeland security subcommittee is about two hours.
>> the committee will come to order. the purpose of this hearing is to receive testimony on state and local perspectives regarding the impact of transferring guantanamo bay detainees to the homeland. the chair now recognizes himself for an opening statement. january 2009, president obama 13492,executive order which ordered the closure of the detention facility at guantanamo bay naval base in cuba. inr seven years later, february 2016, the administration submitted its plan to close detention facilities. although the plan is devoid of specifics, the administration has made clear that in in the united states to didn't attain an unspecified number of guantanamo bay prisoners.
i must break from the script and comment on that a little bit. the collective best judgment of the administration's top military and civilian leaders, with all due respect, military that serve the administration are bound to agree with the commander in chief. so their credibility in this regard unfortunately has to be questioned on this basis, if nothing else. and of course, civilian leaders looking to curry favor with the ad restriction are in this position. the solid,look at unbiased facts, not the appellant or the collective best judgment. moving on -- but it's time to
set the record straight. the administration has failed to seek the necessary input from stay and local law enforcement on its plan. the reason is simple. law enforcement professionals strongly oppose any plan that could endanger the citizens they are sworn to protect. last month, the major county sheriff's association, which represents sheriffs offices from our nations largest counties, wrote the president to express their opposition to the plan. i ask that this letter be included in the record. and without objection, it is so ordered. the letter states that detainees deemed too dangerous to release should not be brought to the homeland where they will pose a threat -- a threat to the local communities we serve. why would the administration ignore the advice of our state and local law enforcement professionals? just because their advice doesn't fit the administration's political narrative doesn't mean there voice should be heard.
the fact is state and local law enforcement have numerous concerns with the applications of bringing the world's most dangerous terrorists to our homeland. law enforcement officials have serious questions, which the administration's plan either failed to consider or simply did not answer. for example, what if the base requires evacuation? what if that detainees required transportation to medical facilities? and what resources are necessary for such transfers? i trip -- i visited guantanamo bay word taxpayers paid very .early for a core facility the administration has argued that taxpayers could save tens of millions of dollars by transferring these terrorists to the homeland. i would say which taxpayer? right now, all of us pay for youtanamo bay your it if move them, state-by-state,
facility by facility, it will be the taxpayers in the local locations that will bear the entire burden. but did they calculus the cost the states and local communities? they will face additional costs to the heightened threatened environment brought about by this decision and taxpayers will foot the bill. this site will eckley become a magnet for protests as well further straining the resources of the locals. we also have legal questions, such as if these terrorists are eligible for removal from immigration detention or constitutional rights. the department of justice believes that existing statutory safeguards are sufficient. and those held under the laws of war brought to the united states are under the reach bashar far from the reach of immigration laws. another major concern is that the facility would become a terrorist target it's off.
consider the propaganda -- it's selitself. anybody who thinks this is impossible suffers from a failure of imagination. release to30% of detainees having been confirmed or suspected of rejoining the fight, gitmo detainees clearly remain dangerous and want to kill americans. the facility also could become an attractive target for lone wolves and other radical islamist extremists may be inspired to perform jihad in the homeland. the american people do not want gitmo terrorists detained in their communities, their neighborhoods are down the street from the children's school. congress passed legislation that prohibits transferring gitmo detainees to the homeland and the president signed it. however, it is still moving forward with its legacy, the president that is, and the administration is still moving
forward with his legacy-driven agenda, which includes closing guantanamo bay. and it is different. it is different from the national security agenda that i think he should be focused on. despite the will of the mecca people, he is moving forward this agenda. states and localities must prepare for the possibility that this administration will seek the detainees -- seek to detainees terrorists in our communities despite the concerns of the american people. i think of and are haley for coming today. statesng and put from and local communities regarding these transfers is critical. made thernor haley trip to washington today underscores that importance. thank you again for being here, governor. i look forward to your testimony. the chair now recognizes the ranking minority member of the full committee, mr. thompson for his statement. representative thompson: thank you for holding today's hearing.
i would like to request unanimous consent to introduce statements to the record from retired major general michael and james googles. representative perry: without objection, so ordered. representative thompson: thank you, governor, for eating at this chris -- the subcommittee hearing. the united states faced the question of what to do with so-called unlawful combatants captured in military operations in afghanistan or other counterterrorism operations. thatnswer of the time military leaders seized upon was a u.s. military prison located within the guantanamo bay naval base in cuba. arrivedt 20 detainees
at guantanamo bay prison on january 11, 2002. since that time, guantanamo bay has served as a prison camp to detain dangerous individuals, to interrogate those individuals on active acts of terrorism, and to prosecute those individuals for war crimes. during the bush administration, more than 500 were released to their home countries or transferred to a third country. this month, the department of defense announced that they would transfer nine detainees to saudi arabia. the total number of individuals currently at guantanamo bay is 80. i want to make it clear that guantanamo bay has served its purpose and must be closed. closing the guantanamo bay detention facility is a national security imperative to it
continues -- it's continued operation weakens our national security by furthering the recruitment propaganda of violent extremists hindering relations with key allies and partners and draining the department of defense resources. president obama signed an executive order expressing these concerns and ordering the closing of the detention facility. closure, it may be necessary for those detainees who cannot be transferred to a third party country to be imprisoned in the united states in facilities deemed to be able to do so. today, i expect to hear concerns of the national security transferringfor suspected terrorists to the united states. some of the witnesses might say that bringing the detainees to the united states brings terrorism to our own backyards here in based on years of -- backyards.
based on years of research by the department of defense, state and homeland security, these concerns are something not supported. there is no evidence that suggest housing guantanamo detainees will bring additional attacks, tension or danger to the united states. in fact, america has a long track record of incarcerating dangerous terrorists. some of the most dangerous terrorists in the world that atve known are incarcerated u.s. maximum-security prisons, such as the super max facility in colorado. in fact, the man who tried to bring down the world trade center in 1993 and his co-conspirators have been serving multiple life sentences in super max since 1997. no one, terrorist or any criminal, has ever escaped from the super max prison. the only person charged in the 2012 terrorist attack on the u.s. compound in benghazi is currently being held in
alexandria, virginia. approximately 15 miles from where we are sitting now. in fiscal year 2015, the cost of operating guantanamo bay was approximately $445 million. in addition to these annual costs, maintaining the facility in the future would require an additional $200 million. closing the facility is expected andave between $140 million $180 million annually. the plan president obama delivered to congress represents the best and more secure way to close the prison at guantanamo bay. today, i encourage everyone to focus on the fact and not baseless fear. i look forward to your testimony and the testimony of all the witnesses in fact-based answers to my questions to that. with that, i yield back the balance of my time. otherentative perry:
members of the subcommittee are reminded that opening statements may be submitted for the record. we are pleased to have two panels of distinguished witnesses before us today. the chair will never recognize the gentleman from south carolina, mr. duncan, to introduce the first witness. representative duncan: thank you, mr. chairman. a great day in washington, just like it is a great day in south carolina because i am honored and proud to introduce my good friend governor nikki haley. first elected governor in 2010 as the 116th governor of the great state of south carolina. she is the first female and first minority governor in state history, and is currently the youngest governor serving in the nation. governor, weming served together in a south carolina general summary for six years. she has been an ardent leader in south carolina, bringing numerous jobs to the state and constantly furthering south carolina's economic develop them. i appreciate her hard work as governor and her leadership to
bring our state through some very difficult times, especially in the last 12 months. she is also no all-night from il an her, -- she is also alumni from my alma mater. i am excited to have her testify before our subcommittee and providing a governor's perspective on the supported tissue. so welcome, governor haley. thank you, mr. chairman. i yield back. representative perry: one point concern, mr.tive cat go be a led to sit on the dais and participate in this hearing. without objection, so ordered in the chair -- so ordered. the chair thanks the gentleman. the witnesses full scale will appear in the record. thank you very much. we invite all of you in south
carolina where it is 80 degrees and sunny. we hope you will come and take the time to visit soon. members of the subcommittee, thank you for the opportunity to be here to speak on this issue of national importance. thankcially want to congressman duncan and other members of the south carolina delegation for this or on this issue. -- for their support on this issue. in august last year, my office was contacted out of the blue by the department of defense to inform us that they were traveling to charleston, south carolina, to assess the naval consolidated brig for the possibility of housing guantanamo bay detainees. imagine my surprise. not only was it against federal theto transfer guantanamo trainees into the united states, but why would anyone want to put terrorists in charleston? charleston, the city we call the holy city, the city named the number one vacation spot in the country for four years in a row. in south carolina, the state
that was named the friendly estate in the country, the most patriotic state in the union. it makes zero sense. on february 23, 2016, president obama announced his plan to close guantanamo bay detention facility, currently used to house some of the deadliest terrorists in history, including the principal architect of the september 11 attacks leaked sheikh mohammed. little newontained information. it did not even name a stateside facility. instead, it referenced a department of defense's 2015 survey of 13 potential but unidentified facilities. the opening paragraph of the plan, president obama presents the three reasons for why it is a national security imperative that the united states end its mission in guantanamo bay. mayrdless of any merit that support these assertions, they
do not support the conclusion that the terrorists should be transferred to charleston, south carolina, or any other location in the united states. i know that other witnesses today will discuss specific cost and security concerns. so my testimony today will focus on three specific reasons provided by the president's plan . first, the president claimed serves as aamo bay recruitment tool for terrorists. of course it does, but does so -- but so does statements by public leaders and american values as a whole. and so certainly would a similar facility located in charleston, south carolina, leavenworth, kansas, or florence, colorado. have chosen to wage war on the united states based on ideological hatred toward the american way of life and the fundamental freedoms of which we pride ourselves. the september 11 attacks occurred before there was ever a
didtanamo bay facility, as the first world trade center bombing, the uss cole bombing, .nd numerous other attempts moving detention operations from a secure facility outside of the continental united states and into charleston will not stop the propaganda. this line of thinking is giving the terrorists too much credit and too much validity. terrorists do not need a jail to hate us. they hate us on their own. second, the president contends that the presence of the facility at guantanamo bay somehow a major impediment to our relationships with foreign nations. the governor, my principal engagement outside of the united states is admittedly on the economic development front. attracting foreign investment to my state. that being said, summing the
president's assertions are true, the question that comes to my mind is what about the detention at guantanamo bay is damaging to our relationship with foreign leaders and nation? whether the dictator -- the terrorists are detained on a military base in cuba or somewhere in the united states, they will be held under the same legal authority by the same country, in the same manner for the same reasons. why does the zip code matter? on foreignct relations in south carolina, i can tell you i am tremendously concerned. alone, werleston area have international manufacturing giants, boeing, mercedes-benz, and now volvo. we have one of the most important deep water ports on the atlantic coast. south carolina is home to the largest bmw land in the world. we have five international tire
companies. we also have ge, google, boss, dupont. i could go on and on. how i might to tell these companies that they will be sharing an address with the most heinous and dangers terrorists on earth, that the city that noy chose to call home is going to be one of the most high-profile terrorist locations in the world. i can't and i won't. finally, the president wants to talk about cost. let me first say, if there's one thing we can all agree, the federal government is absolutely defending ther people of the united states of america. of while the department defense is not immune to fiscal ways, running a military prison during an ongoing conflict should not be high analyst of cost-saving measures. i come from a state where we balance our budget.
findmise, we can help you $85 million somewhere else to cut. costs simply that, don't matter to me. you can pay the state of south carolina to host these terrorists and we wouldn't take them for any amount of money. there is no price worth the fear this reckless idea which strike in the hearts of the people of my state. there is no price worth the inevitable economic downturn it would cause. and there is no price worth watching terrorists across the ande celebrate victory rightly claim that they can dictate the military posture of what should be the most powerful nation in the world. i'd like to close with this. as the members of this committee know better than most, national security decisions should be made with one and only one consideration in mind -- what is in the best interest of the safety and security of the citizens of the united states? with serious policy issues
no easy answers underline the long-term detention and final disposition of terrorists captured during armed conflict, the location of the united states controlled military prison should not be determined based on loose perception, --imates, and 8 --year-old eight-year-old campaign pledges. last year, the people of charleston stared hate directly in the eye. we know true hate and we know what fear it can bring. again,t need to see it nor do we wish it on any other state. keep the terrorists where they are, where they belong. do not bring them to my home. for the thank you opportunity to speak here today and i look forward to your questions. representative perry: thank you, governor haley. the chair recognizes himself or five minutes of westerns. we've already spent a fair amount of time today discussing the security of occasions of
bringing guantanamo detainees to the homeland, particularly to your stay. in that vein, could you please describe for the committee members some of the south airliner specific concerns that you and law enforcement agencies under your purview would have? governor haley: as a governor, would tell you what does it do to the reputation of the state we take these detainees? in south carolina, where we have worked massively to bring made in america jobs to south carolina, what comes -- what company is going to invest in a state where they keep these heinous terrorists. they are not going to. companies look at where they are going to bring their suppliers, where they are going to bring the customers. they don't want that ruby tatian on them as they go forward. now you look at the tourism aspect of it. who was going to come vacation in a state that is now known to house these terrorists? it completely taints what we have been proud to say is the number one tourist vacation for four years in a row.
but it would do this to any other state. all of these implications are very important. and we know we are already having to stand up all of our armed bases, all of our securities because the targets right now are on servicemen and women. you are just putting another target, but now you will put it on trust in, south carolina. it's wrong to go and have states now have to deal with one more issue when we are dealing with so many is wrong. our focus now is, how do we keep our service men and women safe? because right now if i sit down and talk to my f.b.i. affiliates as well as my chief, that's who we're trying to protect because the targets are on any military people in uniform, any security in uniform. if you go and put it in a place like south carolina, we are not only going to have protest but we'll also have threats that we don't have right now. why would you move something there and cause stress on this
country when right now this country is going through so many homegrown issues on its own to turn around and add one more to it? mr. perry: just following up on that a little bit, just to set the context. of course, the detention facility in guantanamo bay is sequestered from -- there's not going to be any protest, right? nobody's flying to guantanamo bay for recreating and whatever and would be protesters at some point and of course you won't go there kind of unannounced and exercise some terrorist activity. that's just not going to happen at guantanamo bay so it's shielded by that from the geography and the place that it is. also, i just wanted to say, since you mentioned the military and of course you have a high component of military members in the state and in the area, thank you for your -- you served with your husband as well. we appreciate the -- your sacrifice in that regard. can you talk at all about the costs to local law enforcement, whether it's regarding protests, whether it's being prepared for any eventuality and not have the failure of imagination whether
or not one of these individuals would get out or someone would use the facility as a target, can you address that at all? governor haley: you know, we can talk about costs but you can't put a cost on fear. you can't put a cost on what it will do to a state. we looked at hate in the eye last year. we had to deal with that. our state is still recovering from that. it is unbelievable what it will do to the people of a state when they know hate is anywhere near them. there is no cost you can put on that. what i can tell you is we have had to stand up our armed bases. we have already had to add additional securities to our military, to our officials and everything and -- in everything and anything we do because everything in the state has to be more careful. cost to me is such a frivolous conversation because when you've been a state that knows what this is like, you never want to go back to that.
and no state should ever have to know what that fear feels like. senator perdue: have the local -- mr. perry: have the local law enforcement in collaboration with federal enforcement agencies done any cost estimates that you know of? i don't know. you said it's difficult to quantify but at some point it's going to require additional -- whether it's additional training, whether it's additional manpower, equipment, briefings, protocols, have you even begun? based on the phone call you said you got, have you even started down that road and have local law enforcement officials aware of this expressed any concern to you? governor haley: whether that be of d.p.s., whether that be our military bases or general, those are the conversations we've had. i will spend whatever it takes to help my people. whether it be law enforcement, whether it be military, whether it be tourism, whether it be economic development, every call
i've gotten has been, please don't let this happen to south carolina. representative perry: thank you. the chair recognizes mr. thompson for his five minutes of questioning. representative thompson: thank you for appearing before this committee this morning. i'll get to when my question you had any dealings with that thesed facility detainees would be transferred to? governor haley: the department of defense has had no interaction with us whatsoever outside of suddenly getting a call saying they were going to be going to the charleston naval big. that's all that we've gotten.
representative thompson: are you spending any money from taxpayers on maintenance in the naval operation? governor haley: we are trying to plan on economic development issues within that area but that has all stopped now they decided to come in. it would be extremely helpful if the department of defense would engage with us and let us know what they're doing. mr. thompson: i agree. phone call would not be enough but if they demonstrated the cost of -- whatever's involved. is that a concern of yours. governor haley: they could tell me they would house these terrorists and i would not take them. the state of south carolina does not want them. there is no amount of money that they can pay, whether it be cost or supplement that would justify those detainees coming to south carolina.
. mr. thompson: i appreciate your opinion. you referenced what happened to charleston relative to the unfortunate circumstances at mother emanuel. some of us also participated in the services and it was not a good day. that's the other ugly head of terrorism.local can you tell me who has custody of the young man charged with killing the people at mother emanuel? governor haley: is he in south carolina. representative thompson: is he in a federal facility or state or county facility? governor haley: i believe he's in a state facility.
do yountative thompson: know where? governor haley: he's in charleston? mr. thompson: the fellow that did that heinous crime is in charleston? governor haley: yes. mr. thompson: has it posed any security issues, to your knowledge, to the people of charleston? governor haley: we won't let it pose any security issues. right now what i can tell you is the constant reminder. it's a constant reminder what happened, what we have to deal with, as we have to know that he's there. no one wants him there. and right now, they're in the process of going forward with the death penalty. representative thompson: and there's no issue on my part to pursue the death penalty at all. but the fact is sometimes we have difficult jobs to do , including dealing with bad people.
as governor, you and local officials dealing with this bad person and whatever's required to make sure that that bad person is kept in a facility where he can't harm anyone, to the extent that he's prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, your oath of office and other things would allow you to extend whatever resources to guarantee the safety of the people in south carolina. and that's the point i'm trying to get at. governor haley: yes, sir. i appreciate your point, mr. thompson. our goal is that we will deal with him as we need to deal with him. that was a homegrown issue that we will, you know, absolutely deal with. we just don't want a.d. moore -- 80 more coming to charleston. dealing with one has shaken the state enough. i can't imagine what we would have to do if we had to deal with 80 of them. mr. thompson: thank you. mr. perry: the chair recognizes the gentleman, mr. duncan. mr. duncan: thank you, mr. chairman. governor haley, i apologize. the ranking member had to bring a discussion about a deranged
murderer into a discussion about guantanamo bay terrorists that are backed by global organizations known as al qaeda, isis, isil, whatever you want to term, boko haram, and the list goes on and on. there are global terrorist organizations that have a completely different mindset than individuals that are deranged and commit heinous crimes in this country. for the record, mr. chairman, the governor sent a letter to secretary of defense ash carter along with governor brownback on august 25 and there was an executive order, july, 2015, by governor haley after the chattanooga terrorist attack. i would like to submit that for the record. mr. perry: without objection, so ordered. mr. duncan: there is a school, elementary school or middle school, near the naval big, is that correct? governor haley: yes. i talked to someone yesterday and said good luck tomorrow.
he said everybody in my area is terrified what could happen. mr. duncan: we're talking about south carolinian mothers and fathers considering sending their children to a school in close proximity to some of the most wanted and dangerous terrorists in the world so thanks for pointing that out. the letter that you and governor brownback sent to ash carter, did y'all get a response on that? governor haley: i'm not aware that we got a response. i will follow up and just confirm that but i am not aware of a response. they've been very -- they handled this very much on their own and have not included us in the process. i have had conversations of governor brownback and i have made it very clear and i want it to be made very clear, any governor that has to deal with this, i will fight for them to make sure it doesn't happen in their state. this is not just about south carolina. this is about every state in the country. mr. duncan: it sounded like
-- it doesn't sound like the having anyion is dialogue with governors across the country their states are considered for the guantanamo bay terrorists? governor haley: no, sir. what we know is that already we have had to sit there and wonder what's going to happen. again, the fear that is put in every state up for who we any is up for consideration, the fear that every state has is, what's going to happen? when's it going to happen? what's the turn-around time? we don't have any answers for them. mr. duncan: wow. the administration talks about stakeholder involvement, public involvement. they denied the shores off of south carolina, georgia, north carolina and virginia in the next five-year drilling plan for energy development so that our states can play a part in the energy renaissance and energy security and they touted the fact that they talked to stakeholders. when 78% of south carolinians that were polled wanted to see our areas opened up to stakeholders they talked to were
a small group of environmentalists. here we have the administration wanting to fulfill a campaign promise and want to bring terrorists. these are not criminals. they are terrorists backed by the organizations i mentioned earlier, two states in violation of the ndaa which is a bilateral ndaa that goes back several congresses. bring these terrorists to south carolina, kansas or maybe another state without any correspondence with the governor? the governor represents 4.8 million people in south carolina. the general assembly, 124 in the house, 46 in the house represent a combined total of 4.8 million people in south carolina. the congressional delegation, seven of us, represent 4.8 million people in south carolina who overwhelmingly support your decision to stop or try to stop the administration bringing terrorists to charleston, south carolina.
so we listen to a small group of environmentalists about energy issues but he won't listen to the governor, the general assembly and the congressional delegation with regard to bringing terrorists to u.s. soil? that is alarming to me. so let me ask you this. has there been any sort of threat assessment with regard to the naval big, transferring the -- brig transferring the terrorists? i believe a terrorist on an island isolated from the main land, very difficult to get to, difficult for the terrorist organizations that are supporting these terrorists to free them, attack the island or what not, they're guarded by united states marines, by the way, has there been a threat assessment about that brig in charleston, south carolina, about how that is a possible target and how that would be handled if you are aware of? governor haley: again, we have not been given any information by the department of defense. i look at this very much like i look at my correctional facilities. you never know what's going to happen. so if one has a medical emergency, you all of a sudden
have to figure out, ok, where are they going to go? which hospital is going to be there? how will we secure them from one point to another? how do we have to handle during the point in the process? if there is a breakout or if they shut down the prisons or if they take over the prisons, which that can happen, those are all things we have to deal with now. but we're dealing with those in south carolina. never have we thought about or can we comprehend dealing with that with terrorists that have done the crimes that they've done. mr. duncan: well, thank you for your valuable leadership on this. i'd be interested to see what other congressmen would say and what their governors would say if their state was targeted for these terrorists. thank you for your leadership and for being here today. mr. chairman, i yield back. mr. perry: the chair -- governor haley: i would dare to say any governor, republican or democrat, would not want these detainees in their state. mr. perry: the chair thanks the gentleman from south carolina. the chair recognizes the gentleman from louisiana, mr. richmond. mr. richmond: let me start off
by saying, i know that mr. duncan apologized on behalf of the ranking member. i don't think the ranking member needs anybody to apologize for him but if you want to apologize that's fine. i'm sure he can speak for himself. the issue of bringing up mother emanuel and the fact that a terrorist is a terrorist is an issue that we've been raising on this side for a very long time. it doesn't matter the nationality of the perpetrator, doesn't matter their motivation. terrorism is terrorism no matter the perpetrator or the victim. so when we look at those nine people that were killed, we call it domestic terrorism. and the fact that you can hold the domestic terrorist means you have the ability to safely how a very dangerous -- house a very dangerous person who others would want to do harm to. you would agree you at least
have the ability to do it? governor haley: i will never question our military and our officers. we are totally capable, and i don't doubt them for a second that they are not able to do their job and able to do their job well. i am talking about the environment. you bring upon a state when you create that kind of fear. you send a chill factor into a state that you can't put a cost on, that you can't put a reason on, that you can't give an explanation for. i know we have the best military in the world. my military will do whatever they have to do to protect the people of south carolina. my officers will do whatever they have to to protect the people of south carolina. that's not the issue. that will never be the issue. the issue is, why would you want to bring these detainees that have done these types of terrorist acts onto american soil when you don't have to? you don't have to. i am an elected official. i had campaign promises. i know what that's about. you want to fulfill everyone.
it's in your heart and soul that you want to fill it. i believe that president obama had his intentions back in 2009 when he was going against ms. clinton that he had a reason for saying that. these are different times. we are seeing different types of terrorism. we are seeing a different level of terrorism. it is time to rethink this and understand that those people that are doing those types of acts that we send to guantanamo, we're sending them there for a reason, we're keeping them there for a reason. mr. richmond: well, let me ask you a question. in 2002 suspect terrorist was transferred to a naval brig into north carolina, same location being looked at today for some of the transfers. did his presence cause concern? did you even know he was there? i don't think you were governor then but, you know, did it create an uproar when we transferred him there?
governor haley: i know that he was there but the concern has -- you're not talking about one, and not only that, this is a different day in time than it was back then. we've seen tremendous amounts of terrorist attacks. you're looking at a time where you want to bring a different level of terrorist to south carolina. so i don't think you can compare that one detainee that we happen to have at that time compared to the others. totally different. mr. richmond: just because of the raw -- because of the size of the number? governor haley: because if you go and you bring these detainees here, now the way the element comes to the area, it will encourage more people to want and go and be in south carolina whether to protest, whether to join forces, whether to create homegrown terrorism, all of the things that governors are trying to protect them from as it is, you're creating a whole new magnet for that when you do something like that. that is the concern. we now -- i get flood reports. my state law enforcement
division. the flood reports we get are now watching all of the homegrown terrorists that we think we may be getting there that are being -- getting that are being trained overseas. and thenaer co -- are coming back. if you put these terrorists in south carolina it creates a magnet. the propaganda you claim is in guantanamo bay, you are going to move that propaganda to charleston, south carolina. mr. richmond: well, let me just say -- i'm from new orleans. tourist area, very similar to charleston. both founded because of the slave trade. i understand tourism being a base. i guess my ultimate question is, this is just a classic example of i guess all of the american territories and states saying not in my back yard. let's leave them in cuba because we don't have a responsibility over there and we don't care about how, you know, ramifications over there. so if everybody says, not in my back yard, which is basically the argument that i hear, is we
just don't want the chaos associated with housing these bad guys. governor haley: so that would imply all the governors are wrong? mr. richmond: i'm asking is that the argument, not in my back yard? governor haley: this is not me saying, oh, put it in south carolina or put it in kansas or put it in -- i don't want it going into any state in the country. this is not a not my back yard. this is the united states of america. this is an area we want to keep safe. and to bring terrorists from a place where they cannot harm anyone to an area that has populations within their states that they can harm and god forbid one error happened, one, none of us wants that on us. none of us. we can't afford that. and for what? why are we having this conversation? what is the urgency to move these detainees? i have yet to hear what the logical reasoning is. the propaganda is not true because they hate us because the
terrorists will always hate america. they hate our freedoms. they hate what we stand for. they hate that we're against terrorism. so for the tax money, d.c. has never been that stickler on cutting tax dollars. i think we could help you save some money so you can keep guantanamo bay open. when you talk about the other things that this will do, there are -- i just don't get it. and neither do any of the governors across this country understand what the urgency is to move terrorists that are in a place where we know they can't touch americans. why do we want to put them on american soil? because now we not only know if they come to american soil, what sort of rights are they now going to have? we watched the supreme court totally start to go down that slippery slope. we dealt with the habeas corpus issues. we dealt with all this. what rights will we say they have because they are on u.s. soil? no one has yet been able to answer that question and everyone governor wants to know what rights these terrorists have.
we deserve answers as governors. we deserve answers to what you are trying to do to our states and the fact that no one in the federal government will give us those answers is an unfair assumption and an unfair thought to not let the people of this country speak up because no one wants guantanamo bay in the united states. mr. richmond: mr. chairman, i see my time has expired. mr. perry: the chair thanks the gentleman. the chair recognizes the gentleman from georgia, mr. carter. mr. carter: thanks, mr. chairman. governor, thank you for being here. let me begin by saying i associate myself with your earlier testimony about this being an ill-conceived plan. i just think it's absolutely ludicrous to think that moving these prisoners to american soil could somehow improve our national security. i just don't get it. i don't understand it at all. and i can tell you, i think this is just, again, an ill-conceived plan to try to keep a campaign
promise which makes it even worse. governor, my question is this. i have the honor and the privilege of representing coastal georgia, of savannah. you mentioned in your opening testimony that charleston was the second most favorable vacation spot behind savannah and georgia was the friendliest state. i wanted to make sure we got that clear. nevertheless, tourism is extremely important in charleston, extremely important in savannah. i know it's impossible to put an economic cost, to put a number on that but can you imagine, can you just elaborate on the impact that might have on tourism? the driving force in our economy in savannah, in charleston and in new orleans. governor haley: well, send greetings to my sister state and the governor as well.
i will tell you that the costs associated, who's going to take their family? who's going to take their kids? because if you go to where the naval brig is, that's where the tourist issues are. if you want to go down to the market, look at the houses, you just as a mom, you don't take your children anywhere near where you think there could be a threat. it's the perceived idea that they don't know. so number one, tourism and conventions and all of those things would stop going to that state and that's a big part of it. secondly, you would stop having the element of tv shows. we now have "top chef" coming to south carolina. those questions are the things they ask because they don't want to be in a state that has any negativity to it. then you look at the fact even with the economic development projects that we have done in south carolina, i don't even know how i would begin to talk
to a c.e.o. about something like that. i don't know how i could do that because what people don't realize, it's not just getting a plan and having them manufacture or do work. they want a place where they can bring host, their suppliers and their customers and their executives to that area. what are you going to do to charleston when do you that? mr. carter: sure. last time i checked it was my impression that the role of the federal government was to assist you and to help the local governments -- governor haley: protect the citizens. mr. carter: absolutely. on that point, let me say this. i always say the number one responsibility of the federal government is to protect our people and our homeland. for the life of me i can't understand how this is going to do anything except the exact opposite. but on the point of the federal government and their role, it seems to me like this is going to obviously -- i'm a former mayor and a former state legislator. it's obvious this is going to push more costs and more responsibility down to the states and down to the local
communities. how are you going to deal with that? governor haley: it's one more thick we have to deal with. not only is it going to be security and it's going to be military, it's going to be planning of medical services, it's going to be planning for should something goes wrong, it has to planning for routes and things we have in place. governors have so much pressure now just in dealing with all the issues. whether it's tracking the terrorism in our state, whether it's tracking corrections and prisoners and making sure they stay in their place, this is a whole other level of threat. trying to track the cost of this, i don't know what it is but, again, even if it was zero, even if they agreed to pay us, cost is not an issue on this. this goes far beyond it. mr. carter: absolutely. i could not agree more. to the point -- you brought it up a number of times during this testimony about protesters and about the propaganda portion of it. obviously, and today we are in an immediate newscast. this is being tweeted right now,
i can assure you. the propaganda is a concern. it's got to be a concern of all of us and certainly i know it's got to be a concern of you as a governor. governor haley: i don't agree with president obama about the propaganda of guantanamo. i think wherever you move the location you are creating that same propaganda. it doesn't change anything. mr. carter: not at all. again, let me thank you for addressing this and making the points succinctly that you have it doesn't matter what state this is, it doesn't matter what city this is, we don't need this on our homeland. the number one responsibility of the federal government is to protect our homeland. not to bring these people over here. don't we understand it? that's what the people are saying. no, we don't want them over here. governor haley: i will stand side by side with any governor that has to deal with this. mr. carter: thank you, governor. thank you for your testimony. mr. perry: the chair recognizes the gentleman from georgia, mr. loudermilk. mr. loudermilk: thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, governor, for being
here. just as a side note. all of my family is from walhalla, south carolina. governor haley: we will take very good care of them. mr. loudermilk: all right. could you answer, in your opinion, why are we currently keeping the detainees at guantanamo bay instead of originally just bringing them to the u.s.? governor haley: i mean, i think if you look at what the thought process was, anyone that was involved in a terrorist act or anyone that could possibly that was in -- that could possibly do something of a terrorist attack, we put them there for a reason and that is to keep the people of the united states safe. mr. loudermilk: because they are threats to the -- governor haley: because they are absolutely threats to the american people. mr. loudermilk: the idea was to keep them off u.s. soil. in the case of escape or any other action. in fact, speaking of escapes, they do happen. in 2010 we had 2,500 escapes in the united states. in 2011, 3,100. in 2012, 2,500. in 2014, over 2,000.
so escape is something that we must be concerned about. governor haley: it's something that we deal with in south carolina and every governor deals with across the country. mr. loudermilk: mr. richmond brought up -- sorry, the ranking member brought up the case of the shooting in south carolina. that was an american citizen who was under your legal jurisdiction, correct? governor haley: that is correct. mr. loudermilk: so we would be adding more perpetrators into your state that aren't necessarily under your jurisdictional boundary? governor haley: that's exactly right. mr. loudermilk: increasing the threat -- of which we have threats in this nation. there is another aspect of this is -- is south carolina or charleston ever susceptible to natural disasters? governor haley: yes, of course. mr. loudermilk: such as hurricanes? governor haley: yes. mr. loudermilk: has the administration talked about the evacuation plan or security risk should you have to evacuate a detention facility in the case of a hurricane? governor haley: we have to do
that. if that happens we would certainly have to figure out how to do that. that creates not only more security but where do you go? what do you do with a terrorist like that? mr. loudermilk: and, of course, that would have an impact on you, not only -- not only the cost to the state but taking resources away that should be there helping citizens of south carolina to escape the disaster. governor haley: the problem is, what answer do i give to the people of south carolina? because those are the questions they're going to have. and no answer i can give them is ever going to be good enough. mr. loudermilk: there's one other area that brings a threat that i haven't heard many talk about, and that is the threat of additional terrorist attacks because you are housing known terrorists. if you recall the garland, texas, terrorist attack, that was because there was an art competition that they felt was offensive to muslims.
governor haley: if we housed anything in a state, that's going to be more of a reason to want to go to that area to do something in that area to help get that person out or to make a statement. mr. loudermilk: do you know if any detainee has ever escaped from guantanamo bay? governor haley: not that i'm aware of. mr. loudermilk: do you know if any detainee or attempted terrorist attack against a u.s. military facility at guantanamo bay? governor haley: not that i'm aware of. mr. loudermilk: what would your assessment be if there was an escape, would that person be a direct threat to citizens of the united states other than the military? governor haley: it's the whole reason they are there so that they are not.
to protect rights, freedoms, and lives of the united states citizens. mr. loudermilk: so guatemala is working. governor haley: it's been working. while we are having this conversation, just baffles me. mr. loudermilk: there are certain things this government and administration does that baffles a whole lot of people in the united states, but being baffled and being threatened, your life, liberty, security, and your family is a totally different aspect. that's what i cannot understand why we want to change something that is working and put your state at risk. i'm out of time. thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, governor.
mr. perry: the chair now recognizes the gentleman from new york, mr. katko. mr. katko: thank you, great to have you here today. i'm from syracuse, new york. not new york city, upstate new york. i, too, have family in charleston. been there many times. governor haley: beautiful areas, visit often. mr. katko: i want to get a feel from you if i may to what degree has the administration consulted with you or worked with you while evaluating the suitability of charleston for a site for their -- possibly a site for these detainees? in 2015 they did a survey, did he they work closely with you? governor haley: everything that they have done, they have done on their own. the only thing they did was call us and let us know they would be visiting charleston, which was the first we heard of to go look at the naval base.
mr. katko: are you telling me here they made no effort to get -- input from you about this possible transfer of detainees? governor haley: no. what that's done to not only me but every other governor, it's left us without any information to share with our constituents or any way to defend ourselves against the possibility of these detainees coming to our state. mr. katko: they never spoke to you at all about the potential economic costs of bringing them to charleston? governor haley: they did not. mr. katko: they talk to you at all about the possible security concerns that may emanate from bringing these detainees to charleston? governor haley: they did not. mr. katko: did they give you a heads up or input at all regarding the potential for charleston becoming a target if these detainees were put there? governor haley: they have not given us any information to provide any comfort whatsoever. mr. katko: that seems outrageous given the fact there is a wealth of information about this. i'm on the homeland security committee as a whole. and i have done a lot of work with respect to isis.
one thing's for sure is that like you said earlier there is a totally different threat dynamic now than there was 10 years ago in this country. isis and affiliated groups are radicalizing americans over the internet to do violence at home this to foment on e file and, it is something they will. i am hoping to talk with you about that. gov. haley: we welcome them talking to us, because then we would be able to tell where we are at least in the situation or if there is a naval break and we have gone no information whatsoever. mr. katko: that seems particularly outrageous to me. so it is not a maximum facility? we would have to do some things to it and i think may be the department of defense has figured that out. mr. katko: