tv Washington Journal Jason Altmire Tom Davis CSPAN April 6, 2018 4:11pm-5:04pm EDT
said, tim i love you but i am not going to pray. he asked if i would sit there with him while he did. he sat there and he prayed for him by name. there are not very many people who do that. >> watch afterwords. next week, facebook ceo, mark zuckerberg, will testify before house and senate committees. tuesday at 2:00 eastern. wednesday, 10:00 western. c-span3ve coverage on and c-span.org and listen live on the c-span radio app. >> we are back with our next
conversation. is it possible to make government more effective and less artisan. -- partisan. former representative from pennsylvania serve from 2007-2013 and tom davis, a former republican from virginia. they do both for being here. -- thank you both for being here. what is the group? what is your aim? >> there are a lot of folks around the country that are working on civility and politics trying to reduce partisan ship. we are trying to bring all of those good ideas together to talk about what is politically realistic and what we can do together to bring stability to our political discourse. i think everybody would. that we are heading and we are becoming more polarized by the day. we are bringing all party
affiliations together to talk about what we can do to make it better. mr. davis, what is the motivation? >> we spent a good about of our careers in congress and we look back and wanted to be effective. today, it is not very effective here whether it is getting appropriation bills out or government agencies not being able to work, not addressing key problems because of partisan gridlock or whatever, at the end of the day, we are a country down it on compromise. it is a balance of powers. we have devolved now into a parliamentary behavior. it is a balance of power system that does not work. host: you started there in 1995? used to have liberal and conservative democrats. you started to get a combination
of three thanks. back then, -- things. it is gerrymandering, residential patterns, voting rights. the new media where most of the people get information off of internet, is exceptionally high. a lot of stuff coming across their that has no basis in fact. the money has moved away from the political parties out to the winks in super pac's -- wings in super pac's. it is unintended but it is what has happened. is anesident's party appendage of the executive branch. the minority party is no longer the minority party, they are the opposition party. . host: what was your experience when you serve and do you think it is worse now after you are no longer there?
guest: i think it is getting worse. politicallyd a tossup district, half democrat, have republican. everything i did, i knew i was going to make half of the group unhappy. the primary group is affecting the process in this country. the people who show up in a low primary, are the folks in the political extremes. if you are a candidate running for office in that system, if you want to win and keep your seat, you have to appeal to those people on the political french. if we could have -- fringe. if we could have a more open primary, a system where our people were allowed to vote. i think if you're running for office in that system, you have to appeal to everybody. if you go in and only appeal to your narrow base, you are going
to lose. host: how do you go about opening up the system? guest: they have done it in california, louisiana has a similar system. if you look at what they did in california, it has changed the politics of both sacramento and their congressional delegation here in washington dc. they also did it in tandem with reform of the generic -- gerrymandering system. now they have an independent commission that draws a line's. california has a referendum process but for the states i do not allow that, it is very difficult to get members of a state legislator who want to be members of congress someday to vote against their own self interest which would be opening up the primary. it is difficult. host: but the view were considered moderate -- both of you were considered moderate. they had larger numbers back then. explain first of all who -- to viewers who do not know, explain
their influence. >> the blue dogs were a much more conservative and moderate democratic group in the party caucus. they were certainly not part of the progressive movement. they were democrats, they identified with working people and the like but on some of these social issues, it was all over the line. they were a pretty eclectic group of people that do not identify with the progressive wing. morether group was moderate on social and economic issues. generally, they come from more swing states. what happens in these wave elections is that they just get wiped out. they get wiped out because they are from the swing districts. we have a saying in politics that liberals and conservatives have passion, moderates avenue lives. the end result -- moderates have lives. the people who tend to be more
extreme end up bringing those passionate people into the fold winning the primaries and bringing up politics into washington and it is a no holds when,e went, you lose -- -- win, you lose kind of attitude. america livest of their lives and worries about their kids and work. political on the extremes are working on campaigns and influencing the political process. host: if you open up the primaries, what is going to influences people to come and vote? guest: you have encourage some of course but independence in a lot of states are not allowed to participate in primaries. in florida where one quarter of the electorate as no party affiliation, they are not allowed to decide who is the candidate and primaries.
i think if everybody was in the same primaries and everyone had to appeal of -- across the political spectrum, you would have a much more moderate result of candidates. >> this could eventually, lead to the demise of parties and that has its own price but we know what has happened today is just not working. you look at the dysfunction of congress. it is just not there. the senate is just a department of personnel. all they are doing is confirming people to judgeships. there is a huge backlog. it is 30 hour per nominee and it is just not working. starts october 1. the last time congress passed the appropriation bills on time was 1996. we only did it that your because we shut the government down twice the year before. host: both sides just came together recently to pass an omnibus.
>> for a fiscal year that started october 1. these agencies have been operating since october 1 not knowing whether budget is. for the year halfway through the year, they finally get their budget and have to spend. it is kind of use it or lose it. it just gets wasted. it is very inefficient. host: and not very popular among the american people either. their sock on capitol hill that republicans would come back because they are hearing that their voters are not happy. now, they are thinking maybe we try to cut some of the money that we agreed to spend. they need nine democratic votes in the senate to get that done. it is just not going to happen. i just a lot of votes because that is just how you get through. for, i had totood
vote against on that bill to try to help save the economy at that point. i remember one member in the back room saying, we need this to pass. if you cannot take a tough vote, what are you doing here? it means going back and explaining that this is a complicated patchwork of quilts of issues but at the end of the day, you have a duty to get things done. bill,atest appropriation like you said has a little bit more money to it, and you are still six most like. -- months late. host: you talk a little bit about how people get their news. a recent poll shows that 77% of americans think that major news outlets report fake news. it is up from 64% one year ago. does that concern you?
guest: it is of great concern. we could spend an hour talk about how people's minds are already made up. they decide whether the you is and then go out and listen. instead of using the ability to seek knowledge, we only use it to reinforce what we already believe. if you go on social media right now, you see people on both the left and right who put in their twitter profile that they probably block everyone who has a different point of view. that is not healthy. those other people that participate in our elections and campaign process and that is the major issue. host: the president is attacking the media and telling the american people that whatever they report is fake. fake news is in the eye of the beholder quite frankly. you can watch these different
stations and different newspapers and people want to get there worldviews out and fake news tends to be in the eye of the beholder at this point. for better or for worse, it is part of the little process now. it has been going on for some time. host: you do not hold him responsible? >> i do not think donald trump is the cause of the problem. i think he is the manifestation of a much larger problem. if you watch a lot of these cable network shows, they are a pervasive worldview that all of their commentators buy into that a lot of americans do not. the end result is people find what they want to hear. there was a survey done on media choices based on party affiliations and what you found
is that there were 13 different once named. republicans had four and democrats had nine. there was no overlap. they get news from different sources and have completely different worldviews as a result. host: let's see what our viewers think. is it possible for the government to be or effective -- more effective? paired morning c-span let -- c-span. i disagree with one of your speakers about donald trump. i think everything starts from the top. this man is truly toxic in his rhetoric and the things he says. in saying that, we need to look at several things. look at the senate majority leader and paul ryan on the other side. they are actually saying
nothing. the senate majority leader, he said that he knows that in november, it is going to be a category 3, 4, 5 paired i disagree. i think it is going to be a sin on me. -- tsunami. democrats will like them out. eradicate what president trump had in his arsenal. he still has veto power and the ability to do executive orders which she has been doing left and right. foray not be a choice democrats when they do take the house and senate but then they are going to have to impeach him. thear as coming together, senate should be at donald trump's office every single day when he says the stuff that is
not bipartisan. host: let's start with that caller saying it starts with president trump and he is being toxic. as members of congress and the republican leadership should be standing up to him. obviously, we know what side the color comes from. from.ler comes let us understand the perspective and you could probably find another viewer that looks at this completely differently. i have my views and jason has his views. i do not know what is going to happen in november but starting with bush, obama took it to more extremes, and now trump even more. lose control of congress, you rule by executive order and regulation. that is what president obama did. the last six years, it was basically executive action and
regulation. strupp is fully repealing the sinks. what you do with a pen -- trump is solely repealing these things. trump is doing the same kind of thing. congress is just irrelevant to the same. you take the senate back and maybe he does not get cabinet positions. that is no way to run a government paired the way to run a government is to come together. you find good people, find people in the middle. judges now have their own litmus test and it has gotten out of hand. it keeps getting worse. it keeps escalating. there are no more guardrails to political behavior. he may have escalated it to some extent but it keeps getting worse.
now behavior gets awarded on cable news and it makes it online. democrat got up and said republican health care plans let seniors died. in the past, these kind of things would not have been allowed. that behavior gets rewarded today. host: let me go back to the you live from -- lie moment. guest: there are certain things that should not be allowed on congress. state of the unit, that is the president's time to address the unit. if you like it you can stand -- union. host: let me ask you both to put your political hats on. you are the former chair of the republican campaign committee. you say you do not know how it will turn out in november but what does it look like to you
for the men term -- midterm elections. is a caller said, it could be category 3, four, or five. we know that they are facing some stiff resistance. exceptions is a campaign chairman's. i know something about elections. democrats have three things going for them. number one, you have another -- a number of republican voters who are strictly motivated for trump. votersf trouble -- obama came out just for a obama. that is just voter behavior. party isarder -- generally, more intense. we saw this in the virginia elections assign. democrats are intense and republicans not so much. the third factor is that you have a lot of independent voters
who vote for general elections but not the primaries. they tend to use midterm elections to put a check on the president. those are powerful forces when you put it together in a host: pick up seats but not necessarily take back the house. guest: there is no question the republicans are going to have a tough midyear matter who is president. guest: i was part of two different waves. democrats retook the congress after being out of power for 12 years. i survived the 2010 wave as a .emocrat in pennsylvania, five democratic congressman lost their seats. across the country, 63 lost their seats. i understand how this works. there is clearly that type of wave building in the country. as tom says come you have this
historic off year election for a new president, often losing up to three dozen seats just because of that. then you have the intensity gap, the fact that democrats are much more enthusiastic about the upcoming election, and you have the people who were excited about president trump, his name is not on the ballot, so they are not as motivated to show up. if you look at what's happening in the country, it is clear a wave is building. we had a state like pennsylvania, which has redrawn their seats since the last election, florida has also redrawn seats so they have more competitive races. if you look at the way gerrymandering has held the republican majority in, that is starting to crumble because of the combination of these things. i expect the democrats to have a big year. host: jerry is in tampa. independent. welcome to the conversation. caller: good morning. idea, whyprimary would republicans what democrats
and independents to pick who their nominee is? i would like to see that extended to sports. i would love to see the buccaneers be able to pick the quarterback of the opposition. i'm not sure about the very thing -- open primary thing. guest: each state gets to design their own election laws. you run on the ballot as a republican or democrat but the people that get the most votes and that going. you end up in some districts with two republicans, two democrats, but if you end up in a runoff with two democrats in a democratic district, which happens, republicans matter, independents matter, and they get a say in the electric. november, in about three fourths of the congressional districts, is just a formality. because of the way the lines are drawn, voters are taken out of the equation in november. i don't think that's appropriate.
that deprives a lot of americans from having their voices heard. we are still experimenting, there are upsides and downsides to this. maybe hard-core republicans or democrats may not like the system because they want to pick their own candidates, and i understand that. but because politics has gotten so out of whack, washington state is also included, they are looking at ways to make democracy work. how would you get your former colleagues to go along with this when they have safe seats? guest: that is the problem. the folks benefiting from the current system will not be interested in changing it to make their elections more vulnerable. areuld say tom and i, we talking about the effectiveness and civility in government, so we have our own opinion on these things. i'm not suggesting that what we are talking about will be the view of the commission itself. but with regard to open
primaries, we are talking about a system where all the candidates are in the same primary, not a democrat crossing over to vote in the republican primary to pick the weaker nominee so their party benefits. if you are running for office, all the candidates, greens, libertarians, reform party, all in the same primary. registeredgible voters show up to vote, regardless of party affiliation. host: we are talking with you done your former members of congress. jason altmire served pennsylvania from 2007 22013. tom davis, republican from virginia, served from 1995 to 2008. now both are cochairing this center on effective governance. can you make capitol hill, that building behind us, more effective and less partisan? we will keep taking your phone calls this morning. let's hear from connecticut, a
democrat, bob. caller: good morning. i would like to hear opinion expressed on the value of term limits. it seems to me the most reasonable legislators we are hearing from these days are those that opted not to run for reelection. they are much more lot to much more sensitive to the other side. limitesident has a term for a very good reason. i wonder what would happen if we had extended term limits for legislators? guest: this is interesting. tom and i have not talked about that. we have both written separate books on polarization. when you do the research, sometimes it changes your opinion on some issues. for term limits, that is one of the things that happens. when you look at the impact of term limits in states. there are constitutional limits
to term limits at the federal level. it does not work. at the next job they will have as a lobbyist. it empowers career lobbyists. people go for short-term success. that means leave the future planning out. make me look good right now. let the fallout be someone else's problem. term limits accident work the way they are intended. when you replace a member of congress or state legislature by somebody who is more politically extreme than who they were, it leads to greater polarization. term limits are ineffective. undefeated, not indicted. that was my own term limit. it was my time to do something else. i enjoyed my time in congress. certainly productive. i agree with jason.
you lose a lot of historical knowledge when you start rotating people through. that means empowering staff and lobbyists. it is going to take a constitutional amendment. the courts have spoken on that. i don't believe the states are getting better outcomes. in some cases, you're getting more gridlock. host: what are both of you doing now that you have left congress? guest: health care is my profession. when i wrote my book six months ago, i left my job. i have spent six months traveling the country talking about these issues. beforei was an executive heading to congress. i am now an executive again with delight. keith in's hear from ohio. independent. caller: good morning.
i just have one question. i would like to know the downside and possibly the upsides of what our government would look like and our society as a whole if there was no republican or democratic party, everybody just got elected according to the issues. voted --ve, you get lie, you get voted right back up. guest: there are challenges to that. the problem is a lot of people are low information voters. if you show up to the polls, having an r or d next to the name gives you some sense of where they might be on some issues. if everyone has the same message come than that is one thing, but everyone has different points of view. i think your party affiliation gives the voter a little idea of where you're coming from. guest: the parties were not
really envisioned in the constitution. it was later during washington's farewell address that they about parties. tools. are organizing they are a very important part of being able to get things organized, but too much of a good thing is not necessarily a good thing. that is what we have found with hyper partisanship. there is a balance that has just gotten out of kilt. host: we talked about open primaries and the media. what are some recommendations from other recommendations you have? guest: one of the things we have talked about is nonpartisan gerrymandering so politicians are not choosing their voters.
that doesn't solve the single party district issue because residential sorting patterns, voting rights tend to group people together in safe districts. i think the fastest thing backess can do is to bring project destinations or earmarks. then everybody has skin in the game. it doesn't cost a penny. it is how money is allocated. it is not somebody in the bureaucracy allocating it. voters have some outlet to show their disapproval. now, you don't have that outlet. frankly, it is a constitutional responsibility of the congress and the house where money bills originate. you had a republican congress giving over to the obama administration the power to designate projects. host: congressman, you
referenced your book. divide,he partisan which i wrote with a democratic campaign chairman. we talked about how things got so out of kilter. host: what are your recommendations from mr. ohlmeyer -- altmire? host: there are -- guest: there are a series of recommendations, campaign finance reform can the money in our politics. if you study the voting patterns of members of congress, you find they aligned much more closely to the people they get money from then their constituents. that influence his and the way you think about your job. the supreme court has equated money with free speech. it is difficult to reform that process. you have long-term issues like
civics education. the american people are woefully undereducated on the way government operates. that is something that would benefit from changing. you have institutional reforms in congress like the filibuster rule in the senate and the way the house leadership is selected. , theentions gerrymandering systemic causes. is there a way we can temper the partisanship and encourage people to an alternative point of view when people are thinking about entertainment? book dead center is the one you wrote on partisan issues. caller: thank you for letting citizens speak on national television and letting idealistic people like your guests on. are gentlemenif
-- aware of the new starters ofose herders in honor teddy roosevelt. think the congressional bipartisan working group could be a new power center and guide congress through 2018. governor hickenlooper of colorado and -- are working together. tellingletters to them the to provide power to bipartisan working group for the government when it goes into chaos this year. organize the bipartisan working group to be a power center. what is your reaction? host: my reaction is very good. charlie daniels is leaving
congress, but he is one of the more able members we had in the house. he was the subcommittee chairman on appropriations. we recognize this is a very diverse country. when you start legislating cutting one group out altogether, you get the kind of anger we saw this last election. i don't think that is healthy for democracy. i don't think it gives lasting power to the kind of loss that are passed -- laws that are passed. i don't think it is healthy. we need to restore civility and the ability to reach across the aisle. host: i get asked all the time when i speak about these issues, why is there so much partisanship in washington? the answer is simple. we elect partisans. we elect people who are
accountable to the political extremes. there are people in congress who still want to work together and would love to cross the aisle and do compromise legislation. the problem is compromise has become a dirty word in washington. you are punished for working with the other side. they will run a primary against you. your incentive is to stay with your own team and criticize the other side. that is not a formula for success. host: delray beach, florida, you are next. caller: this has been a great conversation. you got a great answer about term limits. i would answer to your last statement, i don't think it is just voting partisans. i have seen memor many representatives and members on both sides, they like to call it evolving, but they do a 360 when it is expedient for an upcoming election.
davis, i think you never come mr. trump is simply an expression of what is going on. i am going to take issue because as an independent i lean conservative, believe in less government, but the idea that there is equal partisanship in the media, that somehow fox news is equal to the rest of the media information, and i was no fan of barack obama, but if he bent over and picked up a piece of paper, it was heckling news. conversely, donald trump cannot breathe and without doing something wrong. when you have hyper partisanship, the regular media, even c-span, i get it all the time, i can tell what left-leaning voters are on c-span. the vitriol against donald trump is something i have never witnessed in my life.
i think it is interesting to see members that i have watched, how human nature has taken over in congress. i will hang up and see if you would like to respond. thank you. guest: thank you. i think those are appropriate comments. i understand her view on that. i think a lot of people would agree. in my neighborhood, we put a -- trump sign in our yard, it would have been akin to a hate crime. 4% of a city where he got the vote. people were making up their own trumps science. it is easy to say i am right, and the other side is wrong. i can defend my views and feel comfortable with it. as analysts, we are trying to look at both sides, not necessarily equally, but both
sides have different points of view. we have not learned how to homogenize those and bring a country together. instead we keep getting ready and blue. we talked about reasons for that, the diverse media models, -- thet time way campaigns are financed. until you tackle these issues, you will not get through to the major problems. guest: i would criticize people for talking about president trump as their model for polarization. president trump is unique. we have never had a president like this who behaves the way he behaves. you cannot make reform options based on what president trump is doing. a candidate cannot run on his message expecting the same result. he is different. he is a reality television star.
he behaves in the way we have never seen politicians act. we are talking about the greater issues of the congressional polarization, the partisan divide and what we can do to bring people back together. president trump is a different circumstance. host: can the two sides be forced to come together on legislation when the pressure is not a from the outside and it is grassroots? i think about the march for our lives rally, the kids in parkland organizing that march in washington. if there is enough groundswell, when you take an issue like gun legislation where the two sides can't seem to agree on something to be done, can that pressure make a difference? experts cameonomic washen the economy
winding down, they said it would bring the entire economy down. we finally got it together, and it was unpopular to this day. host: what happened after the first vote? guest: the market plunged like 700 points in half an hour. we got the idea that things would unravel quickly if we did not do it right. the gun issue is far more complex week is there are two different americas who see the gun issue differently. this is an issue where it is not who is most popular, it is an intensity issue. intensity has particularly been with gun owners. i say that as someone who has been supported a background checks. intensity has been with gun owners. they feel this is the first step going after it. it doesn't help when you have retired supreme court justices
saying you need to get rid of the second amendment. guest: the way this applies to congress is we have 435 seats in the house. no one represents the same constituency. it would frustrate me when we would have these wave issues in a swing district. we would have issues like guns or immigrations, and people that at national polls and try to extrapolate that to my district. you should be on this side of the issue because i see what is happening in the country. it doesn't always work that way in individual districts. members of congress represent their own constituencies. the point of view of that constituency might be different from the nation as a whole. host: let's hear from allen, a democrat. you are on the air. caller: right now, the democrats cannot protect their insurance. trump and the republicans are
just steamrolling along. had lewandowski cursed out a senator, jackie spears. that doesn't sound like someone who wants to play nice in the sandbox. the other thing is the parkland shooting, if we had 17 people killed in afghanistan, general bone spurs would have been telling us how we could do it better. we had 17 kids killed on american soil. nobody should have that kind of gun. guest: i would say with regard to parkland, we had 17 students in that tragic incident, but it is a problem that has been building in the country. the anger and the motivation of the people who marched a couple weeks ago is because of the continuing series of these incidents around the country and
our continuing inability to do anything about it. it has been building over time. this is probably the tipping point the country has been waiting for. guest: i don't know if it is a tipping point or not. if the election was tomorrow, it would be an issue in the campaign. in november whether it is an issue depends on if there is still more incidents. i will give you an example of issues, when i would cast a vote that the handgun control might like, i did not pick up anything on the left, i lost support on the right. the behavior of getting out of your partisan box and jumping over is generally not rewarded by the electorate. host: we go to a caller, republican. schumer, they are not doing a good job in washington.
i would like you to internet question. over the weekend, nancy pelosi was in israel. that 17 men, women, and children in pakistan were killed by israeli soldiers. code like for you to -- i would for that.o answer every politician in america is silent. here is your chance. host: are you referring to a recent incident? caller: the slaughter and killing of palestinians over the holiday weekend. host: ok. mr. altmire. guest: i am familiar with the incident. this is something we have seen time and again in the middle east. that is why israel is seen as an important issue for the country.
i don't agree with the caller that it was not handled appropriately in the media. i can understand the frustration that exists with the continuing inability to get peace. host: he brought up leadership. let's start with your party, the democratic party. does the party need new leadership on capitol hill? nancy pelosi and chuck schumer, should they be replaced by younger members? guest: i have been clear about this. i did not support speaker pelosi when she was campaigning for her seat again. i am a fan of speaker pelosi. she works harder than anybody in the country to support candidates and issues she believes in. i believe it is time for a change. there are a lot of young and upcoming people within the democratic caucus, and i think the country has used speaker policies politics -- pelosi's
undermineto democrats running across the country. guest: if you're are talking about electoral outcomes, not good, but legislative outcomes, nancy pelosi has been one of the more successful leaderships we had. health care, i would not devoted four, but you have cap and trade,. frank, infrastructure rally alongmocrats the way. speaker pelosi was one of the speakers we had. host: how does speaker ryan compare? guest: he has had a more raucous caucus. it is a great leader, but you need followers.
because of the media and everything else, any of these members who are responsive to what they are hearing on media are more responsive to that than what they are hearing from their speaker. as for chuck schumer, we don't agree on a lot of things, but he is one of the stable leaders we have had. he is in the minority. he knows how to block and tackle well. host: senator schumer and congresswoman pelosi deal with the same issues that republican leaders do with, but they are able to keep their members in line. tough andonnell's experience. with very few exceptions, it takes 60 votes. chuck schumer has nine votes that republicans have to get. it is going to be a high ante.
the difficulty that schumer has is even if you agree with president trump, you have to go back to a democratic base and justify why you are working with donald trump. republicans have to give up to get democrats to come over. host: ron, independent. caller: good morning. thank you. the 19th amendment addresses all of these issues you are discussing. the 19th amendment is the crowd sourced constitutional amendment written by the people online. we have come up with solutions for all these things. it implements term limits, requires voter participation, exit term limits work if you implement them along with -- actually term limits work if you withment them along anticorruption measures. it limits the income of
congressman to the average income of their constituents while they are in office and for some time after. host: let's take that. guest: i think it is clear you have a pretty hard time getting people to run for office, while the people. not that people necessarily do it for the money, certainly there are well accomplished people financially, but saying you are going to limit their income in that way after office, you will get a hard time having quality people run. host: when you are talking about a congressman representing hawaii or california, they are living in different places. guest: we had to recruit members, and we had solid people, attorney generals, people who did not want to disrupt their family, their careers to put it on hold by
coming here. the idea was people would spend a few terms and go out and do something else. that is what the founders and -- en some have made itvisioned. a career -- the founders envisioned. some have made it a career. thisreciate attempts like as people try to come up with other ideas. i don't think all of them work. may make it of them worse. it is a dialogue we need to have. there has to be recognition of the fact that things are not working the way the founders had envisioned. i think we are getting about 40% efficiency out of our system of government. countriespeting with across the world that make instantaneous decisions, make
them quickly, stand behind them. it is tough to compete with that. host: let's get one last phone call. peggy a new york, a democrat. caller: good morning. i was wondering if your guests favor the abolition of the electoral college? it is a must like the fix is in, negating one man, one vote. ,hen the u.s. signs treaties every four years we get a new person in, and we break them as if the treaty never mattered got it is the person power that matters. guest: the problem is treaties are very hard to break. most of these are not treaties anymore. most of these are executive agreements. a treaty will require a tougher vote in congress. treaty, it would
be much harder to break. the way they work through it is it is an executive agreement. we are seeing less and less going back to the traditional role of doing absolute treaties take two thirds of the senate. you cannot get two thirds. things are way too controversial. guest: take two thirds of the senate. i would understand why a democrat from new york would be frustrated by the electoral college given what we had in 2016 and 2000. we have had examples where the popular vote did not equate with the person winning presidency. i would oppose getting rid of the electoral college. the founding fathers created a balance in the way it operates with the house and senate. rhode island has the same number of senators as texas. the electoral college is the same issue. you want to give voice to the
smaller states, the agrarian states. if you do away with the electoral college, you change that balance. host: for our viewers that want to do more on how to make this country less partisan, go to thepresidency.org. thank markxt week, facebook ceo zuckerberg will testify before senate and house committees on facebook's handling of that information and data privacy. tuesday, at 2:15 p.m. in a joint hearing. and on wednesday at 10 :00 on c-span3, before the house energy and, committee. watch live coverage on c-span3 and c-span.org and listen live with the free c-span radio app. >>