tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN June 2, 2016 12:00am-2:01am EDT
the texas fair trade coalition, about the north american free trade agreement. naftarea often called it is often called. that does it for today's washington journal. we want to thank the city of laredo. the mayor's office and the construction workers who stopped working for us. and also the u.s. customs and operation here in washington and in the radio. toy helpful for c-span, allow us to go there and bring you the fda issued a rule that gives at regulatory authority over e-cigarettes. a panel at the american enterprise institute to look so what this means. we have a live at 10 a.m. eastern.
president obama traveled to elkhart indiana, where he talked about the 2016 campaign and the economy at a speech -- economy in a speech at concorde high school. [applause] president obama: hello everybody. [applause] hello, hello. can everybody please give kelly a big round of applause for that great introduction? [applause] it is good to be back in elkhart. [applause] great to be back at concord high school. go minutemen. i brought a couple of friends with me. your senator, joe donnelly, is here. mayor tim neese, is here. i want to congratulate them for
everyoneulate graduating tomorrow. i met a couple of the valedictorians, who seem like outstanding young ladies. my older daughter graduates next week. , ithere are any parents here hope you can give me some not to cry too much at the ceremony and embarrass her. if you have a chair, sit down, i have some stuff to say here. [applause] i'm not going to talk about the fact that my daughter leaving me is breaking my heart. i'm not here to talk about that. i'm here to talk about the economy. i don't know if you've noticed, but this is an election year.
[laughter] and it's a more colorful election season than most. it has been a little unusual. >> [indiscernible] president obama: no, i can't do that. [laughter] the constitution prohibits it, and more importantly michelle prohibits it. one of the reasons we are told this is an unusual election year is because people are anxious and uncertain about the economy. and our politics are a natural place to channel that frustration. so i wanted to come to the heartland, to the midwest, close to my hometown to talk about that anxiety, that economic anxiety and what it means.
it boils down to two points. although i'm going to take a long time making these points. number one, america's economy is not just better than it was eight years ago, it is the most strongest and durable economy in the world. [applause] point number two, we can make it even stronger and expand opportunity. to do that, we have to be honest about what the real challenges are. elkhart is a good place to have this conversation. this was the first city i visited as president. i have been in office just three weeks when i came here. it turned out to be one of the worst economic crisis of our
lifetimes. our businesses were losing 800,000 jobs a month. our auto industry was about to go under. our families were losing their savings and health insurance. as kelly pointed out they were in danger of losing their homes. and elkhart was hit harder than most. unemployment here would peak at 19.6%. that means nearly one in five people here were out of work. and i told you then that i was going to have your back, and we were going to work hard to bring this economy back. [applause] so what has happened since then? unemployment in elkhart has fallen to around 4%. [applause]
at the peak of the crisis nearly one in 10 homeowners in the state of indiana were either behind on their mortgages or in foreclosure. today is one in 30. back then only 75% of your kids graduated from high school. tomorrow 90% of them will. [applause] the auto industry had its best year ever and the rv capital of the world is doing its part. nearly 4000 rvs this year will be shipped, which will be an all-time record. so that's progress. you, fors thanks to the hard work you put in and the for yours you made families and the way you looked out for each other. we also wouldn't have come this far. elkhart would not come this far
if we hadn't made a series of smart decisions. my administration, a cooperative congress, decisions we made together early on in my administration. we decide to help the auto industry to restructure. we decided to invest in manufacturing. -- decided to invest in job training. we decided to invest in things like high-tech manufacturing and clean energy and infrastructure so that entrepreneurs would not the jobs we lost but create new and better jobs. and folks who lost work because of the housing market collapse could go back to work rebuilding america. we can see the results not just , here in elkhart but across the nation. by almost every economic measure
america is better off than when i came here. that is the truth. that's true. [applause] it's true. it's true. over the past six years our businesses have created more than 14 million jobs. that is the longest stretch of private sector growth job in our -- private sector job growth in our history. we have seen the first sustain manufacturing growth since the 1990's. we cut unemployment in half. we cut the oil we buy from foreign countries by more than him half, doubled the clean -- more than half, doubled the
clean energy we produced. for the first time ever more than 90% of the country has health insurance. [applause] in fact the poll that was out just last week, two out of three americans think their own family's financial situation is in pretty good shape. but we know a lot of people are still feeling stressed about the economic future. the pundits, they say one of the reasons the partisan parties have picked the candidates they -- no booing. we're voting. if you watch the talking heads on tv, they will say the reason folks are angry is because
nobody pays enough attention to the plight of working americans and communities like these. that is what they say. i'm the first to admit my presidency hasn't fixed everything. we've had step backs, we've had false starts. we've frankly been stuck with a congress recently that has opposed everything we try to do. that i havenow spent every single day of my presidency focused on what i can to to grow the middle class and s and boost wages and make sure that every kid in america gets the same opportunity michelle and i did. i know that communities like elkhart haven't been forgotten in my white house. the result proves that our focus has paid off. elkhart proves it. where we haven't finished the
job, where folks have good reason to feel anxious is addressing some of the longer-term trends in the economy that started long before i was elected that make working families feel less secure. these are trends that have been happening for decades now. and that we have to do more to reverse. let me be clear about what those are. despite the drop in unemployment, wages are still growing too slowly. and that makes it harder to pay for college or safer retirement. for retirement. [applause] inequality is still too high. the gap between rich and poor is bigger now than it has been in any time since the 1920's. the rise of global competition
and automation of more and more jobs, the race of technology, all these trends have left many workers behind, and they have left a few at the top collecting extraordinary wealth and influence like never before. that kind of changes our politics. so all these trends make it easy for people to feel somehow the system is raked. -- system is rigged. politiciansenty of preying on that. there are plenty of politicians preying on the frustration. i am a politician for another six months or so. but i am not running again. besides, look while i may have , won the state of indiana just
barely in 2008, i know i lost the vote in elkhart. i know i don't poll all that well in this county. i'm not here looking for votes. i'm here because i cared deeply as a citizen, to make sure we sustain and build on your communities to bring america back over the past seven years. that's one of the reasons i came here. if the economy is really what is driving this election, then it is voters like you that have to decide between -- you are going
to have to make that decision. let me be a straight as i can be about the choice of economic policies that you are going to face. i'm going to start with a story that not every republican, but most candidates have been telling. it goes something like this, and i think this is pretty fair. their basic story is america's working class, america's middle class, have been victimized by a big bloated government run by a bunch of left-wing elitists like me. and the government is taking your hard-earned tax dollars and giving the freeloaders and welfare cheats, and we are
strangling the business with regulation and this government is letting immigrants and foreigners steal whatever jobs obamacare hasn't killed yet. i'm being serious here, that's the story that's been told. foxnews orurned on listened to conservative for radio yet. but i turn them on a enough over the past 7.5 years to know i'm not exaggerating. that is the story they tell. you can hear it about every member of congress on the other side of the aisle. instead of telling you what they are for they have defined their , economic agenda by what they are against. and that's mainly being against me. and their basic message is antigovernment, anti-immigrant, anti-trade, and anti-change.
and look, a lot of people believe it. if what they were saying were , i suppose it would make sense -- and happy days would be here again. were saying is true, then just being against whatever it is might make sense. it looks -- if we are going to fix what is wrong with the economy we have to understand that. let me do some quick myth busting. and i'm going to start with the biggest myth, which is that the federal government keeps growing and growing and growing and wasting your money and giving tax dollars to people who don't deserve it. now here is the truth. you can look it up.
journalists here can do some fact checking. we spend less on domestic priorities outside of social security, medicare, and medicaid . we spend less than when ronald reagan was president. when president reagan or george w. bush held this job, our deficit got bigger. when bill clinton and i have held this job, deficits have gotten smaller. our deficits have not grown these past 7.5 years. we cut the deficit by a most 75%. moreover, there are fewer families on welfare then in the
1990's. funding has been frozen for two decades. outside for our obligation to care for the l.a. -- for the elderly and americans with disabilities, a vast majority of people who get help from federal are families of all backgrounds, who are working, striving to get back on their feet, striving to get back into sometimes class, and their kids need temporary help with food stamps when their mom or dad is between jobs. these kids did not cause the financial crisis, these kids aren't spinning us into a bankruptcy. by the way, neither is obamacare. i'm just giving facts here.
i signed the affordable care act our businesses have created jobs every single month. including those who had health --urance, magically dramatically. slowing theally rate at which health care costs were going up. employer-based premiums grew by an average of 8% per year, that means you are paying that much more every year for health insurance. last year they grew by 4%. half as fast as they were growing. that doesn't mean you are happy about the 4%. but it wasn't eight. today the average families
health insurance premium is $2600 less than it would have been if it had been going up at that pace before obama care. most hoosiers who shopped around for obamacare on healthcare.gov, for the millions of americans who buy on healthcare.gov, they get tax credit to pay for. there hasn't been a double-digit percentage hike. i want to bust this myth of crazy liberal government spending. government spending is not what is squeezing the middle class. myth number two is the notion
that my administration has kill jobs through overregulation. back in the 60's and 70's government was adding all kinds of regulations. rules for protecting workers, rules for protecting the environment. these regulations didn't crush the economic growth that the -- that took place in the 60's and 70's and they are not crushing economic growth now. i've issued fewer regulations that my predecessor. i've issued fewer executive orders than any two-term president since ulysses s. grant. that is a long time ago. [applause] the regulations that we have issued, to protect their errors -- to protect our air and , to protect our families from being cheated when buying a house, those rules have benefited more than they cost. here is myth number three.
other countries are killing us on trade. it is true if a lot of -- it is true that a lot of supporters of trade deals in the past sometimes have oversold all the good we are going to do for the economy. the truth is the benefit trade is usually widely spread. it is one of the reasons lie you can buy that big flatscreen tv for a couple hundred dollars. and why the cost of basic necessities has gone down. some parts of the economy like the agricultural sector or tech sector has done well with trade. some sectors or communities have been hurt by foreign competition. sometimesso true is the pain of a plant closing here --america when you know plant closing here in america magnifies when other countries
are cheating. they are unfairly subsidizing their business to undercut our business. a lot of the worst violators -- they don't have trade deals with us at all. here is what we have done over the past seven years. we have brought other trade cases for more other countries for cheating than anyone else. every case that has been decided, america has one. won.s one thing -- has that is what we have done. making sure we have a level playing field. companies and export days work higher wages. -- companies that export pay workers higher wages than those that don't export. anybody who says that somehow willing us off from trade bring jobs back aren't telling the truth. most of the manufacturing jobs we have lost over the past decade, they weren't the result of trade deals.
they were the result of technology and automation that lets businesses make stuff with fewer workers. plant go into a an auto these days now they need 1000 , workers to produce the same number of cars, just because they are robots and machines who replaced a lot of the work. that is true in office by the way. tellers -- baked about think tellers. now you have atm machines. you can't put technology back in a box anymore than you can cut ourselves off in the global supply chain. i guarantee you some of those parts came from someplace else. then we sell them back to other parts in the world. no matter how many terrorists were threatening to slap on other countries goods, no matter how many no matter how many -- no matter how many trade wars were say they're going to put in place. independent economists say a trade were would trigger another
recession and cost millions of jobs. when you hear something friend -- somebody threaten to cut off trade and say that a standing up for american workers, that is not true. here's the fourth myth, that immigrants are taking all of our jobs. let's look at the numbers. right now the number of people trying to cross our border illegally is near its lowest level in 40 years. it is near its lowest level in 40 years. it was lower than before i came into office, lower than during ronald reagan's time. it is true that new immigrant sometimes compete for services and construction jobs. but they also start about 30% of all business in america. [applause]
everybody thinks that immigrants come here and they are getting all this stuff. immigrants pay a lot more in taxes than they receive in services. most importantly immigrants are the reason wages haven't gone up for middle-class families. those decisions are made in the boardrooms of companies where top ceos are getting paid more than 300 times the income of the average workers. [applause] so deporting 11 million immigrants, not only is that a fantasy, though it cost taxpayers billions of dollars and tear families apart, and would logistically be impossible. it wouldn't do anything to help the middle class.
what would help us if we fix our immigration system the way i propose, everybody plays by the rules. we have strong border security. but we also are making sure families are still here -- make sure the families that have been here 10 years, 20 years, they are out of the shadows, paying taxes. that which regard deficits further. degrade ourd deficits further. we just need a congress that is going to make it happen. here is my main point, the primary story that republicans have been telling about the economy is not supported by the facts. it's just not. they repeat it a lot. but it is not supported by the facts.
but they say it anyway. it has worked to get them votes. at least that the congressional level. by telling hard-working middle-class families that the reason they are getting squeezed is because some moochers at the bottom of the income ladder, because of minorities and because of immigrants or because of employees or because of feminists, because of poor folks who aren't willing to work, they have been able to promote policies and protect special interests and those at the very top of the economic pyramid. [applause] that's just the truth. i hope you don't mind me being blunt about this. that i have been listening to this stuff for a while now.
watchm concerned when i the direction of our politics. we have been hearing this story for decades. tales about welfare queens, talking about the 47%, it is the story that is broadcast every day on some cable news stations. on right-wing radio. it is pumped all across america and right here. are hearing that story all the time, you start believing it. bigs no wonder people think government is the problem. no wonder public support for unions is so low. think thepeople deficit has gone up. a lot of americans think reverse discrimination is as big a problem against minorities.
the typical hispanic woman makes -- there are only a handful of women running fortune 500 companies. that is the story that has been told. since i first came here, we have to challenge the assumption behind this economic story. [applause] and the reason is, it has ended up dividing americans who actually have common economic interests and should be working together for a better deal. it has made people cynical about government and kept working families from pushing to advance economic challenges in a realistic way.
families of all races and all backgrounds deserve higher wages. families of all races and all wages deserve decent health care and retirement. every child in this country deserves an education that lets them dream bigger than the circumstances under which they were born. [applause] in today's economy, we cannot put up walls around america. we're not going to roundup 11 million people or put technology back in a box. we are not going to rip away hard-earned rights of women, minorities, and american with disabilities, so that they can
better participate in the workplace. these are permanent pictures and our economy. taking them back will not help us. if we are going to transform our politics so that they are actually responsive to working families, and growing the middle class, then we have to stop pitting working americans against each other. everyone needs to do their fair share and play by the same set of rules. and that is the vision that made progress possible these last seven years. that is what will lead us forward now. this is not a state of the union address, i already gave my last one. i want everyone to have a fair
shot of opportunity in this economy. you have heard these things before but it is worth repeating because they are true. number one, let's get wages rising faster. [applause] here is the good news. wages are actually growing at a rate of 3% so far this year. working americans are finally getting a bigger piece of the pie, but we have to accelerate that. that is why my administration took new action to help millions of workers finally collect the overtime pay they have earned. that will help. [applause] but we should also raise the minimum wage so that someone is working full time they are not living in poverty.
some states and the cities have done it, but we need a national law. we should make sure women get equal pay for equal work. [applause] that is something we can all agree on. that should not be a partisan issue. republicans have daughters, too. they should not want them to be paid less than somebodies boy for doing the same job. if you care about working families getting a better paycheck, that is a weird choice for you right there. we also need to give workers a bigger voice and the economy. one of the reason wages have not grown faster over the last
couple of decades is because some politicians, some businesses, some laws, have undermined the ability of workers to bargain for a better deal. and that needs to change. we always talk about the good old days. in the good old days 50 years ago, more than one in four american workers belonged to a union. [applause] one in four. the reason all those manufacturing jobs paid well was because folks were unionized. they not only negotiated for good benefits and wages, they had a pension plan that they
could count on. it used to be one in former members of the union, today it is one in 10. and it is not a coincidence that as union membership shrinks, inequality grew, and wages stagnated, and workers got a smaller share of the economic pie. i just want everybody to remember this. a lot of the good manufacturing jobs that everybody misses, those were union jobs. [applause] it is great to get all riled up about wages and worker standards and other countries, but let's get riled up about that stuff here,too. america should not be changing our laws to make it harder for workers to organize, we should change the laws to make it easier, and encourage new forms
of worker organization to give them more of a voice and a say in the economy. by the way, there are a lot of terrific business leaders who have figured out that doing right by their workers is good for the workers and for their bottom line. it means they have more customers, their community is doing better. there are plenty of business owners here who florist throughout the recession. so we should lift up the good corporate citizens like that so that more businesses across america follow their lead. that is priority number one, getting wages to grow faster. priority number two, we need to better prepare our children and workers for the high-tech jobs of the future. we know early childhood education works.
and we should invest in smart ways of doing it across the country, especially because childcare costs take a huge chunk of the family budget. we know that we have to make college more affordable, and job training more available. one way to do that is provide two years of community college for free for every responsible students. there are mayors and governors already doing good work on these issues across party lines. they have shown the way. now we need congress to do the same. number 3, 1 of the reasons wages grew so quickly in the 60's and 70's is because we had a government that put people to work building highways and airports, and investing in research and development.
it led to countless new discoveries and innovations. it educated a new generation of workers with public colleges where tuition was low, plus the g.i. bill. too often, republicans in congress block investments like these for no other reason than the cult of small government they keep repeating. it has been a drag on the economy. it made us recover slower than we should have. it has been a drag on jobs and wages, and it is penny wise and pound foolish. you take in less tax dollars, but would be better off putting people to work and bringing in more money, the economy gets stronger.
the deficits actually go down. we should be making smarter investments. fourth, we have to make it easier for working americans to save for retirement or bounce back from lost jobs. the only one -- those in congress have a pretty good deal. that is what obamacare is all about. it filled in the gaps so that if you lost your job or when back-to-school or started a business, you could go and compare and buy affordable coverage and get a tax credit for it. by the way, it would work even better if we had governors and legislators. and, expand medicaid, that helped more than 300,000. we need fewer folks in congress decide with special interest, we need to lower health care costs.
give us the funding to fight challenges like zika and the opioid epidemic. those are things we could get done that would relieve a lot of worry for a lot of families. then we have to tackle retirement security. that is something that keeps a lot of people up and night. that is why we have taken action already to make it easier for more workers to stay with their jobs, to make sure that you -- when you do said, it is not in wall street's best interest, but your best interest. a lot of americans do not have retirement savings. even if they have an account set up, they don't have enough money at the end of the month to put into it.
they are barely making the bills. that is why social security is more important than ever. we cannot afford to weaken social security, we should be strengthening social security. not only do we need to strengthen it, it is time we finally made social security more generous and increase the benefits so that today's retirees and future generations get the dignified retirement that they have earned. [applause] in we could start paying for it by asking the wealthiest americans to contribute a little bit more. i can afford it. a fifth way to make the new economy work for everybody is to make sure trade works for us and not against us. again, walling ourselves off from other countries does not work. tough talk is not going to do it. here is what will make a difference. making sure other countries raise of their labor and environmental standards to the levels that we set. that is what we did with the transpacific partnership.
we negotiated with 11 other countries. if you do not like it, it overhaul the with stronger labor and environmental standards, so they cannot undercut us as easily. if you want china to set the rules for the 21st century, and they are trying, we can make sure we set the rules. if you want to help china, -- if you want to help america, you need to pass the trade deal. it will cut taxes other countries put on our products. it raises other countries standards two hours. that is how we secure better wages for our workers and compete on a level playing field. and on a level playing field,
america wins every time. i'm going to make one last suggestion, make sure the economy works for everybody by strengthening and not weakening the rules they keep wall street in check, and goes after folks who avoid paying their fair share of taxes. [applause] as for the financial crisis, we passed the top is wall street reforms in history. we passed the toughest wall street reforms in history. by the way, the bank bailouts everyone was mad about, they had to pay back every done, and with interest. and we passed laws to make sure nothing like that would happen again. and they are making a difference. the biggest banks have to carry twice the amount of capital as they did before the crisis. that makes another crisis less likely.
we of new tools to guard against another too big to fail situation. we have already secured more than $10 billion for families who were cheated by irresponsible lenders or irresponsible credit card practices. and guess what? ever since we passed this thing, the big banks, working with a lot of members of congress on every side of the aisle, they have teamed up to try to roll back these rules every single year. every single year they have been trying to roll them back. the republican nominee for president has already said he will dismantle all the rules that we have. that is crazy. [applause] sometimes i just don't get it. [laughter] how it is that somebody could propose that we weaken regulations on wall street.
have we really forgotten what just happened eight years ago? it has not been that long ago. and because of their reckless behavior, and the notion that you would vote for anybody who would now allow them to go back to doing the same stuff that almost broke our economy's back, makes no sense. i don't care whether you are republican, democrat, or independent. why would you do that? [applause] less oversight on wall street would only make another crisis more likely. letting credit card companies write their own rules will hurt working families.
it sure as heck would not make the middle class more secure. how can you say you are for the middle-class and want to tear down these rules? they try to avoid paying taxes in america. we have cracked down on tax cheats trying to hide their wealth in offshore accounts. you don't get to avoid paying your taxes, so why should they? [applause] but i have to say, the folks on the other side of the aisle have opposed our efforts to close these loopholes. how do they explain it? when big corporations and wealthy individuals do not pay their fair share of taxes, and by the way, a lot of people do -- but there are a lot of folks who don't.
when they don't pay their fair share of taxes, and it means either you are paying more, or it means we don't have enough revenue to support things like rebuilding our roads or funding public universities, which means tuition goes up. and then you are trying to figure out a pay for your kids education. we should of close these loopholes a long time ago, and lord knows i have tried every year in my budget. we should use the savings we get from them paying their fair share to give tax breaks that would actually help working
families pay for child care. or help you send kids to college, or save for retirement. the point is, if we want a strong middle class, we have to support that. middle-class families have paid lower federal income rates during my presidency, then any other time since the 1950's. that is the truth, look at up. [applause] but the wealthiest americans are still paying far lower rates than they used to. when i ran for office, i said we reversed the tax cuts but by the previous president, for wealthy individuals. when the economy was booming and we ran a surplus with clinton, they said it would be disaster and would go into recession, we did not. but today, even as the top 1% is doing better than ever, the republican nominee for president would give the top 1/10 of 1% a bigger tax cut then the 120 million american households at
the bottom. it would explode our deficit by nearly $10 trillion. i am not making this up. you can look at the math. that will not bring jobs back. that is not fighting for the american middle class. that will not help us win. that will not make your life better, that will help people like him. [applause] that is the truth. so you have a choice to make. between more or lasts inequality.
between stacking the deck for the folks already doing great, or making sure everyone has a chance to succeed. that is the economic choice you face, that is what is at stake in this election. two very different visions for our economy. i hope i have broken it down for you. now, let me say this. i understand that not everybody votes based on their economic interests. not everybody votes based on just the economy. we are more than just a matter of dollars and cents. some folks care very deeply about our amendment rights, national security, or they are worried about terrorism.
they may think we have not done a right thing on any of those issues. and that republicans have a better answer. we could have that debate, that is fine. those are all issues very worthy of debate. but if what you care about in this election is your pocketbook, if what you are concerned about is who will look out for the interests of working to old and grow the middle class, if that is what you are concerned about, if what you are concerned about is the economy, the debate is not even close. one half would lead to lower wages, cut investments in things like education, weaken the safety net, it would take people off health insurance, and it would allow china to write the rules for the global economy.
they would have the rules to protect our air and water. it would allow -- it would cut taxes for the wealthiest americans. those are the facts. and i know it sounds like a strange agenda for politicians claiming to care about you and working families, but those are their plans. you can find it on the website. when i hear working families thinking about voting for those plans, then i want to have an intervention. [laughter] [applause] i want you to take a look at what you are talking about here. and if you tell me, mr. president, you may be right, but i disapprove of what democrats stand for on gay-rights -- then i am fine, i hear you.
the economy is not everything. if you tell me, you may be right, but i believe as a matter of principal that governments should be small, and they should be able to keep what they have. you're making a philosophical argument, i got you. but don't think that this agenda is actually going to help you. it is not designed to help you. the evidence of the last 30 years, not to mention common sense, should tell you that their answers to our challenges are no answers at all. [applause] fortunately, there is another
pass that leads to more jobs and higher wages and better benefits, and a stronger safety net, and a fairer tax code, and a bigger voice for workers, and trade on our terms. and it would make a real difference for the prospects of working families, and would grow the middle class. that is the choice you face. the ideas i have laid out today, i want to be clear. they will not solve every problem or make everyone financially secure overnight. we are still going to be facing global competition. trying to make sure all our kids are ready, that is a 20 year project. we will still have to make sure we are paying for social security, medicaid, medicare. there were still be a lot of issues out there. but the agenda i am putting forward will point us in the right direction.
and the one thing i can promise you is that if we turn against each other, based on divisions of race or religion, if we fall for a bunch of okie-doke just because it sounds funny, or the tweets are provocative, then we are not going to build on the progress that we started. if we get cynical and vote our fears, or for we don't vote at all, we will not build on the progress we have started to read we have got to come together -- we have started. we have got to come together around our common values. our faith in hard work, responsibility, our belief in opportunity for everybody.
we have to assume the best in each other, not the worst. we have to remember that sometimes, we all fall on hard times. and it is part of our job as a community of americans to help folks up when they fall, because whatever differences, we all live in this country. we all care about our children's futures. and that is what makes us great. that is what makes us progress and become better persons. because we believe in each other, that is what is going to get us through our toughest moments, that is how we know things are better around the bend. there will be setbacks, but we know that our journey is not finished. and we know that with steady, persistent, collective effort, we can deliver a brighter day for our children and our children's children.
academy in colorado springs, colorado. we will bring alive to you at noon eastern. >> c-span's washington journal, live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. on thursday, where live in laredo, texas, on the u.s.-mexico border to talk about trade issues affecting the region in the country. we discussed the flow and volume of trade across the laredo order. also texas congressman henry cuellar joins us to talk about how trade benefits laredo and the country. for --e state director looks at how the trade deal moves jobs from southern texas to mexico and how that hurts mexicans as well. be sure to watch washington journal, live from laredo, texas, beginning at 7:00 a.m. eastern on thursday.
join the discussion. >> the heritage foundation looks at how a departure from the eu would impact relations with the u.s. and europe. this is about an hour and 10 minutes. [applause] >> thank you, everyone, for joining us on this beautiful morning to discuss this important issue about the future relationship of britain with the european nation. for americans who believe in the idea of economic freedom, direct elections diffusion of power and , transparent and good use of taxpayer money, power and decision-making brought down to the lowest level possible, many developments we are seeing in europe should come as a shock and concern. the european union, an organization that started out in the 1950's, has morphed into a
super organization that touches on almost every aspect of life across europe. eu laws and regulations are increasingly viewed as unnecessary and burdensome. let me give you an example. there are 70 words in the lord's prayer. 200 71 in the gettysburg address and 313 words in the 10 commandments. but the european regulation number 1284, laying down the size of hazelnuts in a shell is 2900 words long. during the amount of time when social media and globalization and the internet and mass communication and powered individuals, the eu is doing the opposite by bringing power and centralizing it to the top. and this goes against the natural state of affairs. the key decision-makers are unaccountable to the national
governments and to the people. as steve hilton, a top adviser to the british probe -- british prime minister said, the only thing you need to know about the european union is that it has three presidents, none of whom are elected. the united kingdom is the fifth world largest economy. it has a nuclear deterrence, a permanent seat at the un security council, is a member of the commonwealth of nations. trades more outside the eu than it does in the eu. it has a special relationship with the united states and with the community. even so, parliaments and courts are not the supreme law of the land. they cannot signheir own free trade deals and they cannot control their own borders. we would never allow this in the usa so why would we want to support something like this for
the closest ally? discussing these issues today, we have a distinguished panel. our first speaker is dr. victoria coates, currently serving as the national security advisor for senator ted cruz. she is a cultural historian who received her phd from the university of pennsylvania, specializing in italian renaissance studies. in 2007, she became the director of research for donald rumsfeld and provided editorial support and content analysis for the new york times bestseller "known and unknown." she is a senior fellow at the commonwealth foundation. she is a consulting curator at the cleveland museum of art.
her latest book is "the history of democracy and 10 works of art." victoria? victoria coates: thank you. thank you to all of my friends here at heritage. it is wonderful to be participating in these events. this is a critical issue for us on both sides of the pond. i am glad to have this opportunity today. i want to start my remarks with a minor sidebar. i like to address president obama's recent trip to london, but first, i want to mention one of his comments that was not related to the brexit issue. but rather to a issue that took place after he became president. -- it had been loaned to george w. bush after 9/11. it was reported that president obama was sending it packing and replaced it with abraham lincoln. art is a personal thing and each
president has the prerogative to surround themselves with objects they find inspiring, but what was interesting to me was the white house response. the first was out of reach the communications director writing a fact check blog. posts that it hadn't been returned but that the churchill had been moved to the resident. he declared the whole thing a ridiculous claim. the story persisted and here is where it is valuable to have an art historian on staff. there were actually two sir winston's and one had been returned to the british embassy. mr. pfeiffer updated his blog post with the record -- with the explanation that the first one was being worked on. by the time mr. obama came to office, the work was done, making the second-best redundant.
the notion that it had been returned because it was not wanted was "an urban legend." it persisted, due to a tendency to try to rewrite history that he found personally distasteful or uncomfortable. churchill, with his association with the british empire might have seemed out of place in obama's oval office. my boss, senator cruz, raise the issue in a speech saying that one of the first acts he did upon being elected was sending churchill's bust back to the u.k., and i think that foreshadowed everything to come for the next six years. a statement that earned him two pinocchio's, who judge that while the white house aide might
have recognized the symbolic significance, it was not one that may have risen to the president who was preoccupied at the time with wings like the financial crisis. finally, however, on be trip to london in april, obama addressed it and told reporters that he had indeed personally directed the removal of sir winston and his replacement by martin luther king on the grounds that it was appropriate for an american president to have a bust of an american in his office. and that "there are only so many busts you can have before it starts to look a little cluttered in there." i think this episode is illustrative on the approach of an administration that speaks in symbolism. clearly, the president and his aides knew perfectly well that the return and replacement of
the churchill bust marked a significant shift from the bush era approach and the special relationship with the united kingdom. where they got into trouble was the not owning up to the change in policy. which brings me to the topic today. the referendum on leaving fifth european union that will be coming before the british people on june 23. mr. obama made his remarks on the churchill bust during his trip that was supposed to sway the british people that brexit would be a bad thing. it would damage their economy. he went as far as to say that if they left the union, it would go to the back of the queue for trade deals.
this is the core of the policy shift, represented by the return of churchill's bust. as he has demonstrated again and again, obama prioritizes -- for him, the notion that the brits might choose to retain their freedom and protect economic prosperity by withdrawing is fundamentally unfair to the other nations who are dependent on the union. the future of europe is in brussels, into which the states should be absorbed, rendering any special relationship between the united states and great britain obsolete. it is astounding to me that an american president who, one month earlier, had been standing next to castro, would be so
eager to override the actual sovereign rights that the british people have to determine their own future. but what compounds that is that brexit is in the best interest of britain and the united states. europe is a continent, not a country. i think it is worth restating here, the 28 members of the eu are widely disparate, in both economic strengths and culture. the two arenas the eu proposes to dominate. forcing nations to stay, both great britain and greece, to conform to the norms dictated for brussels is an ill-fated project. but the notion of abandoning it is being condemned. the president of the european commission went so far as to say in march that the eurosceptics should visit the military cemeteries of world war ii to
learn the error of their ways. here we have the crux of the matter. the european union was conceived in 1948 when the continent was reeling from the global conflict. the devastation was unimaginable. to prevent this from happening again was a priority. so the process to bring the individual countries of europe into a single union was initiated. fast forwarding 70 years, the big news is that there has not been a thorough world war -- a third world war. -- for that was not a case of european members fighting one another. while europe faces a real danger from an increasingly aggressive russia and from the radical islamic terrorists, the threat
that the eu was designed to counter no longer exists. this is not an attempt to minimize the trauma of the world wars or to see just no such thing could happen again. but it is to propose that we should not be prepacked -- be preoccupied with fighting the last one. this is closely tied to american security. the two issues that are fueling breaks it are simple that we understand. economic security and immigration. opponents of brexit plan economic madness for britain, you only certain disaster would be remaining in the eu, which is turning out to be nothing more or less than an economic suicide pact. if the united states can salvage
one independent, strong, independent partner from the eu, we might consider that an opportunity. the eu has been an active proponent of the open borders that have enabled unchecked migrants coming from the middle east that have resulted in a significant radicalized islam problem. elected conservative governments pledge to counter such progress have been nullified. the fact of the matter is that this is a security problem. a most significant security threat that europe currently faces. and given the eu policies, individual countries have an obligation to their citizens to confront it. the united states has benefited from a collective european union but the purpose of nato was never to dissolve individual states into one that to provide them a venue for communication and cooperation. moving forward, that might be
the more productive model for the eu, as then in the current incarnation, it gives greater risks than if promises security. i don't blame our british friends for having second thoughts of the project. thank you. [applause] luke coffey: thank you. our next speaker will be dr. ted bromund. he studies and writes on anglo-american relations, the u.s.'s leadership role in the organizations and entreaties. he is a senior research fellow in the heritage foundation's margaret thatcher center for freedom. he previously served nine years as an associate director of yale
university's international security studies, a center dedicated to the study of diplomatic history and strategy. he was a lecturer in history and youhe was a lecturer in history and from 2004, in international affairs for the master of arts program. he is a prolific writer and has published hundreds of articles in numerous publications. he received his doctorate in history in 1999 from yale. his thesis on britain's first application to the economic community, relevant to the discussion we are having today won be dissertation prize from the british politics group. he holds two masters degrees from yale as well as a bachelor's degree. ted bromund: thank you. it is a pleasure to be here. to talk, for once, about the subject of my research. i have waited 25 years for this moment. my dissertation is relevant, go
buy your copy now. i'm not going to talk about my dissertation. but what i'm going to do is provide a historical overview of american policy for europe, talk a little bit about the cold war era and the ways in which the eu, for a while, and its predecessor, the way those were part of america's cold war strategy. and then what happened at the end of the cold war and how the train ran off the tracks. let me start by saying that since the end of world war ii, u.s. policy towards europe has drifted without a lot of deliberate thought, there he far from the original premises in the late 1940's. it really accelerated at the end of the cold war.
at the same time, europe felt the change. my contention today is that if we want to get back to proper policies, we need to understand history, understand u.s. policy in the 19 40's-19 60's and get back to a u.s. policy that speaks to goals we did achieve successfully in europe during those years. let me start after world war ii. in 1945, it was widely accepted in the united states and europe that u.s. forces were not going to remain in europe for very long after victory over not see germany. it would be a matter of months, they be your two. it soon becomes obvious as the cold war kicks off that the permanent or semipermanent.s. security goal in europe was going to have to be undertaken.
that leads to the creation of the nato alliance. at the same time, the u.s. realizes that the european state, and here we mean the western european state, were far weaker -- socially weaker, politically weaker and economically weaker after world war ii that the u.s. had expected. it turned out that they couldn't stand on their own right away. if we left right away, the whole place would fall apart. so this leads rapidly again to the advancement of the u.s. reconstruction efforts in primarily western europe, demise in the marshall plan. in the marshall plan and nato, they have the same fundamental goal. they are concerned about an actual soviet invasion of western europe. but what is more significant is that american diagnosis is that
europeans have lost confidence. the real threat isn't soviet invasion, it is an internal european collapse. that might come as a result of concerns about security, hence the need for nato. partly to stop the soviets but also to prop up the europeans to give them confidence. or as a result of the political plan -- there is the marshall plan. all of this stems from a successful and thoughtful american diagnosis of the causes of the great depression, the causes of the rise of the nazis and the cause of world war ii. the american concern is, don't let american economic security go down the drain, because when they go down the drain, it will lead to radicalism and bad things happen. and ultimately, the american army has to get involved. that is a reasonable diagnosis. so what are the american remedies? well, in the best sense of the
word, -- free trade. one of the american diagnosis is that, your nations are too walled up economically, you should trade war with each other. you will be more prosperous and it will be good politically. the short-term reconstruction -- the world bank -- it began as a short-term reconstruction program in europe. there is debt forgiveness on a very large scale. there is the international monetary fund which was intended to provide short-term currency problems. the u.s. places in enormous emphasis on german regionalism, making germany a federal state. reducing centralized power of berlin, making germany a little bit like the united states with strong states and republicans. and a strong u.s. emphasis on multilateralism on the
political, economic and social level. these are intended to rebuild the european state system. two free fortify france, britain, germany in a federal structure, italy, and the other smaller states in europe. this is not a program of wiping out the states, it is a program of rebuilding. i am large, this program is extremely successful. nato works, european confidence is fortified. the marshall plan is successful. european economies do recover and retain political confidence. they are not invaded by the soviets. they are not overtaken by domestic radicalism. one other part of this american
agenda is the support for emerging ideas about the european integration, centered on the coal and steel community in the 1950's. the coal and steel community is a franchise, the idea really is to restrain germany, to tie in the german institution before it gets too powerful. that is the predecessor of today's eu, and is part of a much larger program that is a liberal, multilateral, multi-state fortified program. fast-forward to 1991. we get through the end of the cold war. the u.s. decides that hey, what we did after 1945, we can now do. we can reduce our exposure to europe. we can start bringing people home. because look, we won the cold war in europe.
what does this lead the united states to do? it leads the united states to begin to outsource most of its policies to the european union. the european union becomes a vehicle for many, although not all, american policies in europe, because as we decrease our interest in europe, we can pivot to asia or the middle east, the european union becomes our representative, as it were. at the same time, the european union decides they can step on the gas pedal. during the cold war, the european union doesn't get very far down the road of integration because you need those strong nationstates if you are going to keep peoples loyalty during the cold war, and actually win. germans might fight for germany, italian might fight for italy.
brits will fight for britain. but they will not fight for europe. some of you may know what winston churchill called the idea of a european army in 1953 in a letter to president eisenhower. he called it a "sludgy amalgam." if we want a nato force, it has to be a series of national forces, not a european force. after the cold war is over, all of the cold war imperatives seemed to dissipate. so the eu steps on the gas pedal and integration goes faster and deeper, aside from the moment when the u.s. is outsourcing more of its european policies
into the european union. when this process creates instability, the euro, or the large-scale of immigration and migration into europe, the eu answer is simple. more europe. what do we need when the euro causes problems? we need a higher level of financial tax integration into brussels. what happens when immigration and migration become a problem? the european union needs to take full control of everyone's borders to solve the problem. the answer is always more and more europe. we have now reached a point where this process has become self-perpetuating and self destroying. the more europe demands to solve problems, the more problems it creates. the more problems it creates, the more it demands more problem to solve -- it demands more power to solve problems it has failed to address in the past. the united states has lost sight
of our goals in europe. what are the goals? i don't think there have changed since 1945. we have the same basic interests in europe. above all, peace. we want the european continent to be peaceful. our instrument for that has always been nato. since the late 1940's, the american security instrument to a short piece in europe, both to defend it against external threats and to shore up europe politically has been the nato alliance. so the eu is not an answer -- the foremost american goal is peace. as a contribution to peace, we want prosperity.
this stems from the american diagnosis that the great depression was because of nazis was because of world war ii. where are we now? we are now backing the euro which is bad economics. right? the lesson we learned in world war ii is that bad economics don't make good politics. what are we backing in europe? we are backing a currency that can only be maintained by creating extremely high levels of unemployment and low level of economic activity in most of the mediterranean countries. we are delivering the adopting a we need and that economic strategy. are we following the lesson that we have learned? no, we are not. we are ducting the opposite. we are deliberately empowering bad economics and we are getting bad politics as a result, not a surprise. our third interest in europe is democracy.
i would echo what victoria said. it is -- to national level politicians. it protrudes deeply into the states, it generates hostility in some ways that i find completely understandable and in ways i find less desirable. above all, the european union is not the answer to the problem of european democracy, in part because it is supernatural -- super national, but ultimately, because if you look around europe today, and you believe that some european political trends are concerning, i have news for you. if the european union is secure for political extremism, how come the political union has
advanced further and further at people have become more concerned about the state of european politics? i would submit that the answer here is not more eu, the answer here is less eu. as we have had more eu, we have had more problems. if the u.s. continues to base its policy on the european union, and i think most americans support the eu, it will continue to see more economic strain which is inherent in the euro. it will continue to see a weaker european-u.s. transatlantic security link. all of these developments will undermine nato. i don't think any of these things are in the interest of the nations in europe and they are not in the interest of the united states either. the true interests of the united states are the american ideas that help to save western europe
after 1945 and save eastern europe after 1989, the ideas of economic freedom, multilateral and cooperation toward security and prosperity and support for a democratic national government. that was the basis of the american strategy after 1945 and it worked. and do you know what? it can work again today if we have the courage -- and it doesn't take very much courage -- to return to things that worked in the past and not continue to go down the foolish road that we have increasingly followed. thank you. [applause] luke coffey: thank you for those clear and forceful remarks. our final speaker is dr. nile gardiner. he is the director of the margaret thatcher center for freedom at the heritage
foundation. he has worked in the heart of the washington policy world for more than a decade and is the leading egg that -- the leading expert on policy towards europe. he has testified before congress on several occasions and has advised the executive branch of the united states government on a range of issues related to u.s. foreign-policy in the transatlantic alliance. before joining heritage, he served as an aid to margaret thatcher and advised her on a number of international policy issues. working in her private office, he assisted her with the final book. "strategies for a changing world." he has a bachelors and masters degree in modern history from oxford university. after he gives his remarks, we will have time for some questions. you might want to start thinking about those now.
nile gardiner: thank you very much. my views on brexit are very clear. i believe firmly that great britain is better off outside the european union. and that brexit is not only good for the european union, but also for great britain and america. i will be outlining my remarks for why i believe that is the case. i will talk a little bit about margaret thatcher's view on brexit to set the record straight. i like to think of the eu as the modern version of the titanic. [laughter] nile gardiner: on a glide path towards a massive iceberg. and the british people on june 23 have the opportunity to jump onto a lifeboat.
and i think many british people will choose to get onto the lifeboat. the latest opinion polls in the u.k. published yesterday show the brexit camp now has a slightly over the remaining side. what you are seeing in britain at the moment is project fear -- the project launched by the british government in favor of britain staying inside the european union. beginning to think -- because i think the british public are thinking very carefully about their future in europe. and all of the scaremongering that is being projected by downing street and by the european commission and by a host of multinational institutions -- all of this fear mongering is being largely rejected by the british public.
i think the mess that is being projected by downing street is like an episode of "the walking dead." if britain leaves the eu, they will face the apocalypse. everyone will be forced to eat each other. that is the level of the argument. it is absolutely staggering, the belief that britain, the world's fifth-largest economy, one of the biggest military powers on the face of the earth, the idea that britain cannot survive outside the european union. i think it is ludicrous. it is my view that written, a nation that has been a global power for years, will survive outside the european union and it will thrive outside of the
european union. the eu, at the moment, has tied britain down. it is shackled to a declining entity, and self-determination and sovereignty matter in the world today. and without a doubt, americans would never accept the kind of sub nationalism that the british people have to and your -- have to endure at this time. the central bank of the americas -- the pan-american court of justice in mexico city. most americans would reject the idea that the u.s. should relinquish control of the borders or have their court overruled by foreign judges.
you know, this is exactly the scenario that is being faced by the british people and by people across europe. if britain doesn't vote to leave the eu on june 23, i'm sure this will just be the tip of the iceberg in terms of those in europe who will follow suit. i would expect to see a wave of referendums across many european countries. i would expect to see others following britain leaving the eu. without a doubt, the eu exposes an economic burden on great britain. as the former mayor of london noted in the telegraph a couple of days ago, it eu legislation costs british citizens 600 million pounds week. and great britain is no longer a
truly sovereign nation. the british think tank has said the most expensive regulations costs -- figures on a host of british institutions have put out figures with regard to the tremendous burden and cost of the eu regulation. only 6% of british companies trade with the eu but 100% of them have to comply with eu laws and regulations. there is a sharp contrast between the large number of british business leaders, and especially the small businesses that have come out in favor of brexit, in contrast to the vast array of multinational banks. they are campaigning for britain to stay inside the european
union. there is a disconnect between the british grassroots and the international political elites who are warning the british people about their own future, if they dare step outside the european union. the eu is in economic decline, since 2008. u.s. gdp has increased by 13%, the eu gdp has increased by 3%. the eu is a graveyard of low growth. the only continent with lower growth is antarctica. at the same time, britain is not in a position to control its own borders. in 2015, 270,000 people immigrated to the u.k. from the eu. that is the same size as a city such as oxford. that is a staggering level of integration into the u.k. and
the british people are opposed to the idea that they have no say over levels of immigration from europe. there is a fundamental lack of democratic consent here with regard to immigration. i believe strongly that the united states, as victoria mentioned earlier, stands to benefit from brexit. a britain that is free, a great britain that is sovereign and can make its own decisions, will be a far stronger allied force of the united states. president obama was absolutely wrong to intervene in the british state. i would describe the intervention as a slap in the face of the british people. he comes over to america's closest ally on the
international stage and tells them that if they dare leave the european union, they will be at the back of the queue for a free trade deal. this is an extraordinary intervention by a u.s. president, not only giving the wrong advice, but also speaking in a condescending tone towards a very close friend and ally. needless to say, the intervention backfired. i think most british people rejected the idea that president obama should be lecturing the british people on how they should be voting in their own referendum. i have no doubt, that britain would be at the front of the queue for a u.s.-u.k. free trade deal post brexit. if you look at the depth and size of the u.s.-u.k. financial relationship, it is the largest by investment relationships in
the world. the united states has $5 trillion of assets in the united kingdom. that represents 22% of total u.s. corporate assets abroad. this is a huge amount at stake here for both the u.s. and u.k. economies. the u.s. has free trade agreements with 20 countries across the world. it even has agreements with nicaragua and morocco, and i would have thought that a free trade agreement signed with great britain would be a no-brainer. and i think the next president, regardless of who it will be, is highly likely to support a free trade deal with america's closest friend and partner on the international stage. there will be momentum on capitol hill for that as well. no doubt that will be
threatened. and the european union, with its attempts to create a superstate, has been damaging in many respects to the special relationship and to the bilateral relationship between the united states and great britain. we should be under no illusions that the eu commission is attempting to create a european union army. an excellent expose last week -- it would only be revealed after the referendum. around june 24, quite a coincidence. i recommend that article to anyone who is interested. into the eu plans into build and eu army as a competitor to nato.
it is nato and the broader transatlantic alliance that guarantees -- it does not quake in its booth at the thought of a european army. it is afraid of american power in europe, afraid of nato power, and i believe that nato will be significantly strengthened with great britain outside of the european union. without a doubt, the united states needs to reassess the entire approach. the u.s. has many decades backed in european projects, this is a 1950's -- a very outdated -- and the united states needs to support economic freedom in europe.
all of the things that the american people cherish and hold dear in their hearts, what is good for america is good for europe, which is certainly the view of my former boss, margaret thatcher. there have been a number of mischievous articles suggesting that margaret thatcher would be opposed to brexit today. i can say, based on my own conversations with the iron lady over the years, that were she alive today, she would be fighting tooth and nail for british sovereignty and supporting the british exit from the european union. she first wrote about this in her book, and always, she was years ahead of her time on this issue. i would like to conclude with a quote by margaret thatcher. which i think encapsulates the failure of the european project and why the british people need
to reassert their sovereignty. to quote "such an unnecessary and irrational project as building a european superstate was ever embarked upon will see in future years to be the greatest folly." thank you. [applause] luke coffey: thank you for those remarks. we have some time for questions. we have a microphone, raise your hand and if i call on you, identify yourself and any organizational affiliation. and please wait for the microphone. i will go over here first. >> the center of principles and politics, i am an intern. a question for nile gardiner. why, if, as you said, margaret
thatcher would be opposed -- or would be in favor of brexit, why is the current conservative effort for them saying in the union? how did they get so off-track? [laughter] luke coffey: putting it lightly. nile gardiner: an excellent question. i should point out that david cameron was interviewed soon after she passed away and he was asked whether he was a thatcherite. and he said no. and david cameron doesn't see himself as someone in the thatcher vein. david cameron represents a very
toferent vision of that margaret thatcher. within the british government, there is a deep divide. several cabinet ministers are campaigning for brexit and you have a number of jr. ministers as well. roughly half of conservative mps have indicated they support a brexit. two thirds or 70% of the conservative party members support brexit. i would argue that david cameron is out of touch with his own party, and whatever the outcome of the referendum, i would expect the next prime minister or leader of the conservative party, and by default, that person will become the prime minister after david cameron has promised to step down before the 2020 election, the next leader will undoubtedly be a brexit supporter. it that is the mood of the party. it is very hard to see someone taking the reins of the
conservative party and believing we should stay in the european union. because such a cabinet would not be voted for by the grassroots of the party. but certainly, the conservative party remains very divided over this, but you have david cameron basically uniting with the left, siding with the labour party. siding with brussels and president obama, and every single entity on the face of the earth and all of britain, a very large chunk of the people, going against him. and i think they will prevail on june 23. sending a very clear message. luke coffey: the gentleman over here to my left. in a white shirt? >> good morning.
michael, i was the president of the european-american business unit. after dealing with the eu for a decade, i understand some of what you are saying. it is very difficult to get a transatlantic cooperation on commercial issues. my question is, if the u.k. leaves the eu, will the scottish nationalist party have a reason to stay in the eu and have another referendum, which would divide against the u.k.? luke coffey: actually, if i may, at on this one even though i am the moderator -- it is important to note that the scottish nationalists published a political manifesto this year. they had local elections this year in scotland and in the manifesto there was no commitment or pledge to have another referendum.
and the idea -- another independence referendum. and the idea of the brexit referendum was well known. so if they wanted to go down this road, they could have snuck this into the party manifesto and they would have had a mandate from the people to have a referendum in the event of brexit. but they chose not to go down that road. in my opinion, this is part of the "project fear," clear if the british people vote to leave, the nations of the united kingdom, great britain and northern ireland, they will want to leave and join the eu -- i think it is smoke and mirrors. nile gardiner: briefly, and that is a very good question, if these are scottish people who decided to leave the kingdom, they would have to apply to join
the european union. they would also have to apply to join nato, if they wish to join. and the spanish have indicated -- so be scots would be completely out of the eu and nato if they decided to vote to leave the united kingdom. you raise a good point about how 90% of scots in opinion polls wish to remain part of the european union and euro skepticism is more powerful in england than in scotland. but i think that for the scots, a departure from the united kingdom would have far-reaching ramifications for them on a whole host of issues.
and if there was another scottish referendum, even if britain votes to leave, i would think that based on current projections, the scots would choose to remain part of the united kingdom. ted bromund: let me offer a few comments. i agree with nile gardiner. there was a good book written explaining how scotland sovereignty disappeared and the european union euro filed scotland appeared. something very fundamental has changed there. and those people who are looking for a good subject might think about that one. there is an a salient point that no one has mentioned -- the scottish independence at the time of the scottish referendum were 100 percent based on the idea that oil was going to have a permanently high and stable price in the world market. that
has proven to be untrue. right now, north sea oil is not making a lot of money. and it is a declining asset. scotland, the independence at this point will have to hike taxes a lot or it will have to cut spending rapidly. i know which option i would prefer that it will have to go down one of the roads after the sizable and permanent increase in the world price of oil. so how do you make this work, economically? that is a question which the snp didn't have a convincing answer to at the time of the scottish referendum, and any answer they did have is less convincing at this point. luke coffey: on a final point, a few years ago there was an economist issue which had two articles in it which i thought was lovely. the first one was on scottish independence. and they said if people wanted independence and governing
themselves, you can't say no. then you turn the page and you read the column on written and europe, and they say britain must actually stay in the european union. it is unthinkable, under any conditions. and you are like, well, ok. if you are in favor of scottish independence -- personally, i am skeptical, but if that is the way you went intellectually, that argument does not apply to the brexit vote? i don't get a good answer for that one. luke coffey: the gentleman in the black shirt? poor choice of words. [laughter] >> incidentally, i am from scotland. i have to mention that during the last general election referendum, party leaders had a debate.
they happened to blunder into that thing. they were talking, the leaders were being asked question about the eu, and she rattled off -- she is very patronizing -- she went on autopilot trying to lecture and in the middle of her answer, she realize what she was saying. she actually said, well, just because you don't like the european union, it isn't appropriate to behave like a petulant child. better together was the campaign slogan for staying in the u.k. and she suddenly realized that she had used those words and she had this stumble and then started talking -- i digress. on an entirely different point, there is one word that creates a lot of discussion with the
brexit issue for a large number of people in england. and turkey doesn't only and turkey not only represent a failure of the eu to deal with a serious threat, or a bully, or somebody that is prepared to do whatever they want to do to further their agenda, and the eu is incapable of doing anything on the southern borders by turkey. not only does it present that, but presents a serious imminence in the jump of immigration numbers and resources if turkey were to receive membership to the eu. so it is less said, then it should be, but it is something that informs a lot of people thinking as to why brexit possibly has to happen. because i count myself as