tv Washington Journal Representative Jim Banks R-IN CSPAN March 22, 2017 8:02am-8:35am EDT
where are you going to do things to bring more unity because there's a lot of chaos going on in the world? what will you do to fix it? >> my name is nicholas rogers, a senior here majoring in broadcast journalism. one of the main issues i like to see the president actually take on his relationships between minorities and law enforcement. how you go about creating a more special bond between minorities and those in charge. >> hello, my name is sarah. i'm an education major here at morgan state university. what i want more than anything from the congress is education, money for education. i from park heights in west baltimore. there's a lot of bars, crime, a lot of violence, but there's not a lot of education. currently 1000 teachers were just laid off. as a future teacher, i would
like to see more money spent on education, especially for children of color. >> voices from the road on c-span. announcer: "washington journal" continues. host: joining us now for the first time at our desk is freshman congressman jim banks, republican from indiana. last week he introduced legislation to authorize the use of military force against the islamic state in iraq and syria. since we are clearly already using military force against isis, explain what this legislation is and why we ge needed. guest: good morning, john. great to be with you. this resolution was introduced on the same side with senator tom young also from indiana. he's a veteran as well. he's a marine and served. i serve as a navy reserve officer. just two years ago, i served in
afghanistan. what i learned from senator young as i dug into the issue is that the last time we passed an authorization of military force was in 2002 against iraq. prior to that in 2001, we passed umf naming al qaeda and the perpetrators of 9/11. since then, we've not passed an aumf declaration on isis because isis did not exist backed in 2001-2002. this is twofold. it would elevate the conversation and give congress the opportunity to step up and fill the gap in the role that congress plays in declaring war and elevating the issue on capitol hill to talk about what we can do to appropriately address the threats we face from isis and give the
administration and the president to do more and give more resources and cut through some of the distractions that have occurred among some of the legal scholars who argue that because isis is not named thatose early aumf's the views may not be lawful. host: has a lack of aumf kept our military planners being able from doing what they want to do? guest: maybe not necessarily. there are some scholars who suggest that the detainees at gitmo might be unlawful if they are a part of isis. you cut into some of the legal issues and really those are distractions that prevent the president from carrying out the literally white isis off the map. this president has done more in 60 days in office to address the threat we face in isis the prior
president did in his eight years. i give the president a great deal of credit for charging general mattis with coming up with a true plan to address the issue. i think as part of that congress plays a role and should play a role in debating and passing a new authorization of military force. debates seem to be hung up on what restrictions congress wants to include in the legislation could wha. what restrictions would you put in the debate on the fight against isis? congress would give the opportunity to explore what options exist. as part of the aumf, dive more deeply into those issues. i serve on the armed services committee and believe deeply that the congress should have a debate on what it would take to address the threat that we face in isis and give the of
ministration more resources. host: talk about that debate. where would you begin? what would you personally want to see? obviously in the larger discussion that congress is going to have. guest: just some plea to take the first step to name isis as a target in an aumf will go a long way to exploring the options we have an giving the president and his administration the backing, tools, and resources they need to fight the fight. it also gives our troops a true sense that this country backs them up in the fight against isis as well. as someone who recently served, i'm the most recently deployed member of congress, serving in afghanistan less than two years ago. i know the morale among our troops is low around the world wherever they are serving. this debate if we passed a resolution naming isis, it would give our troops a sense that our country backs them up in this
that and give them a sense the administration and the congress as well are behind them and whatever it will take to address the threat. host: speaking of the trump administration, representatives from 68 countries and the fight against the islamic state will converge in washington today for a two-day summit to discuss strategy and the road ahead. what would you like to see come out of that discussion? guest: more of a collaborative effort among our partnering countries. i serve at a nato headquarters base and served alongside leaders from dozens of other countries committed throughout nato and addressing the threats that we face in afghanistan and rebuilding the security and that nation. that is what it is going to take in this fight as well, a collaborative partnership with nations around the world who also recognized the threat that we face in isis. this is an unconventional threat that we face. it will take a partnership, a strong partnership with other nations. it also takes a commitment from a new president in our own
country to our partnering countries and allies around the world that we are in this fight with them and we are willing to step up to the plate and work alongside them to do whatever it takes. host: the phones are open if you want to talk to congressman jim banks, republican from indiana. he is with us for about the next 20 minutes or so. let's get to the calls. james is a republican. good morning. caller: good morning. i would like to ask a question to the congressman. the question i would like to ask is -- i'm a military veteran. i spent over 30 years in the vietnam, started in grenada, been in every campaign since then. this is my question. we are talking about building up the military forces. at what expense? we look at our world right now and you've got individuals looking at our president
literally as a joke. a president trump says he is going to add $54 billion to the military, but look at what is taking away. he is taking away meals on wheels, things that will actually work for people here. let me tell you something. isis is not an individual. isis is an ideology. the way that they are in iraq with president bush or dick cheney and the rest of his cronies, all right they said we have a war on terrorism. how are you going to fight that? that's like saying let's go fight sunshine and bring it back. host: thanks for the questions. guest: thank you, james, for that question. thank you for your service to our country as well. this president has called for about a 3% increase in military spending. some of us, myself included, believe that is not nearly enough to get our military back on its feet, to make her military strong again to
confront the threats that we face. ae testimony we hear on weekly basis before the armed services committee would suggest that each of the branches in our military have a long ways to go, years to go to get back on their feet, even with substantial increases in spending. you hear testimony from the navy that half of the aircraft cannot even fly marines, that they testify that they have to take parts from museums and salvage those parts to use it on their technology to get their technology to work, , veryombat brigades few are prepared and capable to go to war at a moments notice. and then you just oppose that with the threats that we face around the world, most notably today with north korea and the threats we face with other countries around the world, as well as the rise of isis. you realize that we do not have
a choice other than rebuilding this military, adding a substantial amount of further funding to grow the military again. host: can i just clarify? i thought you said 3% increase. guest: the president's budget would call for a 3% increase from president obama's budget last year, which some of us believe is not nearly far enough. host: let's go to luis in virginia. then when it could -- good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. i think this whole isis business is an ideology. you are not going to win it with guns. what is happening with this country when we now have a president who may be indicted for colluding with russia in our election? russia is a serious danger to this country. i think it is being ignored. i think the whole emphasis on isis is only to distract people.
10% towards a military? what is that going to do toward spending in this country come into our infrastructure, to the care, to the feeding of people in this country and other countries? that is about our ideology. how do we care for those less fortunate? and the vitriol toward immigrants in our country is appalling to me. those are things that are about the core of who we are and i'm very upset by all this. host: thanks. guest: thank you for your call. i agree that the threats that we face from russia are significant. the threats that we face in north korea, iran are significant as well. again, the testimony we hear on a weekly basis for the house armed services committee leaves me as a freshman member of congress on capitol hill for 11 weeks leaves me deeply concerned and startled at the weakened state of the amerco military they to face the threats --
american military today to face the threats from those countries i mentioned, but also the rise of isis and the proliferation of isis around the world. you're right. isis is an ideology, but it's a dangerous ideology that continues to spread. with the threats that we face from isis, we see them around the world but also threats at home. this president has taken those threats seriously and has ordered the department of defense to take those threats. seriously. i look forward as a member of congress to hearing those plans and addressing those in the future debates on capitol hill as well. host: in congress about 11 weeks, and your biggest vote scheduled to come up on the amerco health care act. where you stand on that health care legislation? aest: i have admitted as republican that this piece of legislation is a far cry from the repeal of obamacare i had
dreamed of voting for as a conservative candidate last year. when i measured the american health care act versus obamacare, i've determined it is substantially better than what we have with obamacare, which is literally collapsing in on itself with rising premiums impacting americans and crippling the economy all over the country. evaluate the republican plan and determined and $1 trillion in tax cuts a block grant options for states is a significant entitlement reform that i am in favor of as a former state lawmaker in indiana, i see the ability of states like my own to be able to do more with less if they have that flexibility to do so. work requirements of giving states an opportunity to apply work requirements to recipients of medicaid as well. there are conservative principles rooted in the bill, but i admit it does not go far enough to eliminate the
regulatory framework that obamacare brought about that has done a great deal of damage as well. host: you have met with president trump about this at the white house. what was his cell to you to try to get you on board? guest: th i met with the president last friday. i serve on the steering committee of the republican study committee, a 10 member board of that group, the largest conservative caucus on capitol hill. we met with the president to lay out a number of items that we suggested and ask for his support. he was fully willing to support each of those changes, which included the full block grant option for states, the work requirement component, and the cap on the ability of states that didn't expect medicaid fromventing them expanding medicaid and gaining them in the interim.
we expanded pro-life protections in the bill, which was a broader subject that the president supported moving forward. those changes when a long way to earning my support. tomorrow,or the vote even when we vote on the bill. we still believe this piece of legislation could go much eliminate the regulatory framework of obamacare that it doesn't yet do. i still have determined that it is far better than what we have with obamacare today. host: mike is waiting, independent. good morning. caller: good morning, gentlemen. our whole me that mission is misguided. that we are fighting not soldiers, not warriors, but criminals. the whole notion of the global war on terror confers on these criminals the inappropriate
title of soldier. our military is the inappropriate tool in my view. we spend more than the seven next countries combined. this is the longest war in american history just to take one tiny part of it. that now despite the fact the u.s. has spent more than $8.5 billion to battle narcotics in afghanistan, opium production has reached an all-time high. it strikes me that a whole different approach needs to be taken to fight isis and the other islamist nutballs. they are not warriors, not soldiers, but criminals. be whole approach needs to of law enforcement rather than the u.s. moto military could guest i. i appreciate the sentiment. yesterday we heard from madeleine albright and stephen
hadley. we talked about america's role in the world. one of the topics i had the opportunity to exchange with both of those guests before our committee was the role of the state department, our diplomatic efforts in the larger national security debate. that is one area where i've been critical of the president's proposed budget and cuts the foreign military financing and other diplomatic efforts that help us to support our allies around the world and also help us to support changing the behavior of other countries around the world through some of the important programs that we have at the state department that works hand in glove with the department of defense as well. point, this is an unconventional war, unique time in our nations history where we confront an enemy that will take much more than the conventional war efforts of the past to wipe isis off the map.
that is why i applaud the president for taking the threat charging his military leadership with looking for a new strategy to confront the war that we face with isis. i also believe again that the authorization of military force resolution is an important opportunity on capitol hill to elevate this debate and have a debate in the congress over what it will take to get that done. host: let's head to albuquerque. since he is waiting. good morning. you know, my husband was in the military for 23 years. he started and korea. he retired and never asked for anything of the country. he needed his pension. i'm so sick and tired of everybody trying to blame our president. met about obama when he with fidel castro? he met with the one from
.enezuela, the one from iran maybe he was asking for something. he learned a good lesson from that when he got the book from chavez. the countries and to get together and not fight each other. my son is gone now and i think him for what he did for me and my children. i think for what he tried to do for my country. thank you very much. guest: cynthia, thank you so much for your husband's service and your service as his spouse as well. your larger point, this is the beginning of a new administration. i'm a freshman member of congress. i never view my role as working for the president. i'm part of an independent branch of government and that means there will be times of
agreement and disagreement with the new president and his administration. that creates a healthy balance of government. as i've said many times before him and my first 11 weeks on capitol hill, there is never a dull moment with this new administration and with the new congress. i look forward to what we can a cop was in the next couple of years ahead. host: patrick and south pennsylvania am a good morning. -- patrick in south pennsylvania come a good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. i totally agree with the proposition that we have to annihilate isis. i've actually been -- i'm old enough to for 40 years read the newspaper i've read dozens of books in the middle east. i'm really familiar with the events there. we have been told by diversity is a great strength. syria is probably the most diverse country in the world. there are shiite muslims, kurds,
armenians, greeks, there's orthodox christians, there's theolics, and then there's dictator assad. and that half of the population is the sunni muslims. all the other groups support a ssad. all those other groups are terrified of the sunni muslims. not all sunni muslims are qaeda.ts, or isis, or al all al qaeda and all isis are sunni muslims. the sunni muslims are also in iraq. they are the saddam people. they control that government . they are the rebels. there difficult people in iraq
at this point. is also sunniia muslim. bombers in 9/11 were from saudi arabia. we ought to be cool operating with russia and sit -- anderated with russia supporting the syrians of cleaning their country of jihadists. we should be ashamed of ourselves because we have been arming various jihadi groups. the truth is that no matter what the rebels call themselves, the winners are going to be the jihadists, isis, or al qaeda. syria will become a terrorist state. host: congressman? those i appreciate sentiments and there is no question that our country has made mistakes in the years passed that have led us to this point we are at today.
that means it is so much more important that this administration gets off to a good start and addressing the threats that we face. i appreciate and applaud the new president and his administration for taking the threat that we face an ice is far more seriously, i believe, than the previous administration. host: to the question, do you think united states should be working more with russia in syria against isis? guest: i think that's a part of the debate. i cannot answer that question today. that is a larger discussion and i know this administration has been somewhat more friendly to the proposition of working with russia to address the threats that we face with isis than before. an interesting proposition that we should continue to have that discussion. host: columbia, illinois, tony is a democrat. good morning. caller: how are you doing? host: go ahead. caller: congressman, i've a
question for you. they are going to raise the military budget, but are they going to start the draft again? they're putting $54 billion in the military, so you will have to have the manpower to maintain it or run it or operate it. has this been discussed at all, starting the draft again? i'm a vietnam era veteran. i didn't think the draft was such a good idea then and i do not think it will be a good idea now, but i don't see a way you can get around it. that's my only question. thank you, gentlemen. guest: thank you for your service once again. it is humbling to me to hear from so many veterans like you as we tackle the important issues on capitol hill. to your larger question, much of that funding is going to go toward technology, repairing and rebuilding the base of our military. when you hear testimony once again from each of the branches about their antiquated technology and their ability to
put the best technology in the hands of the troops abroad and those in peter, if you're like me, you become deeply concerned that we are holding our troops back from fulfilling the mission they have at hand. that doesn't mean as well that we won't need new men and women to step up and serve. i'm a strong proponent of a voluntary military force. so far, there hasn't been a serious discussion as an 11 week freshman member of congress, just being here for 11 weeks. i'm not aware of any serious conversation or debate about bringing back the draft. i'm not sure that we need to. do larger discussion is how we rebuild the military and make it mighty and strong again? a lot of that will be with replacing and updating a lot of antiquated technology. host: hot springs, arkansas is next. dean is a republican.
caller: i'm also a veteran. i'm a veteran of the cold war and desert storm shield and a veteran of the yugoslavian conflict. i was united nations peacekeeper over there. i've seen the degrading of the military from the reagan era all the way to the clinton era, ok? with obama, it might even worse. from the people who have called, we have dealt with -- the united states have dealt with an ideology three times in american history -- not see as an, japan communism.japan, and it takes military force to destroy an ideology and then takes a political force and an occupational force to create a new country, ok? i've seen soldiers actually being kicked out of the military and put on welfare by president clinton. my question to you, mr.
congressman, is we used a fight on two fronts. we had a military that was strong enough. i'm talking army, navy, air force, and marines to fight on two fronts by ourselves. i've seen the decline in the military by substituting military soldiers for civilians driving trucks. those drivers are saying no, we're not going into combat zones. are you going to rebuild the military with all military forces? are you going to subcontractor military out and declined it even more? because as a veteran, that weakens our military completely when you've got people -- look at benghazi, ok? benghazi was a farce. there whople over needed military help, but our president wouldn't even allow
our military to go over there. when i was in yugoslavia, we had backup force. but of course, president clinton said we could not even add a bullet to our rifle without his personal permission. wet: running out of time -- want to give commerce meant banks a chance to respond. guest: i'm fairly bipartisan in my blame of why the military is at the weakened state it is that today. apply the reasons i would bipartisan blame is because of the budget control act, the sequestration, the effects of that over the past seven years that have weakened the military. that was brought about by president obama, but democrats and republicans, that put us in the perilous state that we have been in and preventing funding from going to the military to build it back up and make it strong again. to your larger point, i'm not the commander in chief. i'm a number of congress. my role on the armed services committee is to debate an
advocate for ways we can strengthen the military, rebuild it, grow it, and much of that would be done through funding through the appropriations process on capitol hill. just a couple of weeks ago, we pass an appropriations bill to fund the military for the rest of the fiscal year and get out of the dangerous cycle of continuing resolution funding of the military where we only apply a few months of funding at a time to rebuild the military. we will need to fund it for a longer term, in this case for the last fiscal year. and we will fund it for following fiscal years as well. host: we are running out of time, but we did hear from a lot of veterans today. i want to give you a chance in our last minute or so to talk about another bill you introduced the cycle to allow veterans to be buried closer to home. can you explain what that is and why it is needed? guest: it's a fairly simple matter. currently the federal government and the v.a. will only fund to send the body of a deceased
veteran to a national cemetery. this bill would allow for funding to send them closer to home to state veterans cemeteries as well. it is simply funding matter. at large though, are veterans in this country get a raw deal in so many areas. whether it's the bureaucratic or dysfunctional nature of the v.a. or some of the smaller yet significant matters like the burial issue we just talked about. my work on the veterans committee is significant as well. hopefully being a part of a congress that gets to the bottom of how we can reform the v.a. and make u in a system that works for the veteran population. host: appreciate the time. come back down the road. up next on "washington journal," for 25 minutes, it's open phones. we want to your thoughts on any public policy issue you want to discuss, including those key stories on capitol hill -- the
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