tv Washington This Week CSPAN July 21, 2019 5:12pm-6:01pm EDT
he talked about high -- why he wants special counsel miller to appear before his committee. want the american people to hear directly from him what his investigation found. the attorney general and others have spent the last few months, lying to the american people about what the investigation found. they said it found no collusion and no obstruction and exonerated the president. all three of those statements are not true. it found a great deal of collusion and a great deal of obstruction of obstruction of justice by the president. it refused to exonerate the president. it's important for the american people to hear directly what the facts are. president who has violated the law six ways from sunday. if anyone else had been accused of what the president had done, they would have been indicted. haveimportant that we not
a lawless administration and president. people see where we at and what we are doing. joined for a preview of next week's robert mueller. kyle, remind us of how we got to this point. kyle: democrats have been trying to get special counsel bob mueller in front of them to talk about his report for months. there was a lot of closed-door agotiations to finally secure painstakingly thought over, limited hearing with him in public. they think that hearing directly from mueller will help the american people understand the nuances in his report in ways they haven't at this point. >> they said that they could also have other effects, also on democrats, wanting to put forward impeachment efforts. how so?
how will they affect these? when realtors -- report came out, he talked about a progression of 80 something impeachmentlled for against the president. its not nearly enough to get over the finish line or even justify it. a lot of the components -- proponents of impeachment say , moreg from mueller people will see the movie then the book to understand what he found in terms of the president's campaign and his efforts to obstruct the investigation. >> we were supposed to have these hearings last week. what was the reason for the delay? kyle: this is an inside the capital problem. you have two committees that will sit down with mueller and
the judiciary committee, each of them had been planned to do it for four hours. the judiciary committee was upset because they had for members. they decided to delay a week standard -- extended to three hours. 60 lawmakers asking questions in that time. the extended time, it is conceivable. if they are rigid about time restrictions, and there are a lot of reasons why, if mueller goes on long, he is not known for his verbosity. you could see a problem of running against the clock. >> you mentioned the carefulness
with which lawmakers have been trying to approach this and limit it. goes, are there any plans for lawmakers to be hearing from either mueller or his deputies? kyle: there was an initial plan to hear from mueller deputies while he was speaking in public. those plans have been shelved. the justice department made clear they didn't want mueller deputies appearing before congress. that may be subject to further fighting between congress and the executive branch later. gets the public portion and they will see what they get out of him. >> we have been learning about the approach that democrats and republicans are planning to take. can you lay that out? kyle: on the judiciary committee in particular, the democrats want mueller to talk about his thought process behind
the obstruction of justice evidence he compiled. the whole ballgame is for mueller to capture whether he would have charged president trump with obstruction or there is not a technical prohibition within the justice department. if they say anything that approximates that, that means they wanted out of this hearing. the republicans will underscore their long-term complaints that mueller's team is biased and they had an agenda. they will zoom in on that. they want to hammer on all of those things. congress as closely as they do, what are you curious to see as they approach next week? kyle: bob mueller has not testified in front of congress in six years. when he did, he was the fbi
director and had a friendly audience. witheringdles that pressure he is under, and whether he wants to tell people stuff that was not necessarily way, if in a digestible he is motivated, we may learn more than we think we will. >> kyle cheney. reporting at politico. thanks for the insight. on "newsmakers," representative from washington democrat -- shares democratic coalition and the committee on the modernization of congress talks about his legislative priorities. newsmakers today at 6:00 on c-span. you can watch online or listen on our free radio app. watch c-span on monday for immoral services honoring the late supreme court justice john
paul stevens. ' casket justice stevens arrived at the supreme court where a private sarah -- ceremony will take place. the lie and repose and paying of respects. watch live coverage monday on c-span.org, or listen with the c-span radio app. >> joining us from los angeles this morning is the president of the national association of immigration judges. let's begin with what your association is. how many members? we are the official union and .rganization we speak on behalf of the judges for immigration. we speak with the public and our
representatives on the hill. >> how did you become an immigration judge? law school.ed from i have been with the justice department my entire career. i wasto my appointment, an assistant u.s. attorney in los angeles. clerk in as a law 1990. -- 1996. >> who oversees immigration in this country? >> it's a great question. most people don't understand this problem of having an immigration corner -- court in a law -- law enforcement agency. they are rare. we are seeing them in the justice department -- department accountable. on a daily basis, describe what the job is. what are you doing as an immigration judge? >> right now, we have over
900,000 pending cases for 400 judges. our judges here a wide variety of cases. same, in courthe morning and afternoon, hearing cases, often times in large volume because they need to go through some poor luminary steps. depending on where the person is, sometimes they are at detention facilities, they could be listening to bond requests as well as regular cases. other judges are handling cases, and they can have upwards of four or 5000 cases pending on their docket. scheduled three or four years in advance. told theyometimes be
have to schedule cases of 50 people or 70 people for a four hour session. >> you could be going through how many cases in one day? may be 50 or 60 cases per day. i've had some colleagues that had to go through 80, 90 or 100 cases in a day. this is deeper luminary faces. migrantsthe different that show up in immigration court. jurisdiction of the court covers anyone the government believes is in the united states without permission or has done something that requires them to be removed or seeking to enter without permission. states be in the united
for years having entered with a visa. you can of individuals who have been here without status. you can have individuals who are apprehended at the border. we have unaccompanied children on the docket. we have children who have competency issues. we have people who don't know what is happening in court. it is a range of types of individuals and cases we hear. someone who has been here from one day or someone who has been here for 50 years. someone seeking asylum to someone engaged in serious criminal activity. >> who is arguing for each side? cases,lar to criminal each one is initiated by a
charging document filed by the department of homeland security. where theument is government establishes their case. they lay out their facts and charts. when the two parties come before us, one of the parties is always an attorney from the department of homeland security, particularly immigration and customs enforcement. >> what about for those seeking cetera.r a visa, et >> one of the common misconceptions is that while the government, in the they are not considered criminal. those at the court are entitled to court lawyers.
individuals do have a right to be represented by in attorney. throughen have to go various discussions about the rights and responsibilities in which we explain the individuals can get counsel, but it has to be their own responsibility and on their own dime. it cannot be an expense of the government. how do they give representation? how often do you see a migrant in your court without representation? >> it's not unusual to have represented -- individuals represent themselves. it really depends on the type of case. who are in detention facilities have a much less chance of securing counsel. i don't have the specific numbers. a much higher percentage of 50% ofuals, as high as
the individuals will not be able to retain counsel. in the context of the non-detained cases, where individuals have been in the community or have never been taken into custody. the likelihood of getting counsel is much higher. in california or new york, the coastal cities or states, where there is greater access to nonprofit organizations or pro bono organizations, we have a much higher level of representation. have a hardery time securing representation in rural areas. it's all a matter of being able to financially afford in attorney. many people cannot. of this does it cost to process somebody -- how much
does it? cost to process somebody? -- how much does it cost to process somebody? >> i don't have the numbers, but it could be in the tens of thousands depending on the complexity of the case. >> we want to get our viewers involved. in a few minutes, the house will come in for a pro forma session. it will be short. they will be coming in and we will go to the floor for that brief session. return.will for folks that want to call in, dial in now. people the wait time for coming to immigration court? how long can this process take?
>> it depends. for the individuals in our in new york docket, or los angeles or san francisco, it is not unusual to have 4000 or 5000 cases, which means the case that may come before them today and will be ready for trial will not be scheduled until sometime in 2022 or three -- 2023. effort to makef sure that individual is given much quicker access. who handle the detained dockets have a smaller docket. they may have a few hundred cases. they make an effort to ensure the individuals are provided the opportunity to get their case within a short period of time. rather within a couple of months worth more than that.
depends on how the docket is and how we people are being detained. >> for those people who may not have a trial for two hiking for -- 42-4here do they go years -- for 2-4 years, where do they go? >> until recently, all of the non-detained dockets met the person was in the u.s. in awaiting trial. recently, the government started the migrant protection program that requires the individual to remain in mexico while they are going through their case. individual says the would be best over the border for their hearing then returned to mexico where they would wait for their next one, often several months away. >> when someone is awaiting their trial, they have typically
been allowed to stay in the u.s. however, the new policy on asylum-seekers, what is happening? >> in those instances where individuals are part of the , thent protection program individuals are given a document to come to the border for their hearing. bussed into the court and presented with a court and judge. the cases rescheduled for an opportunity to secure counsel or prepare an application or get the witnesses or whatever. the individual is given a reset notice and homeland security takes the individual back and takes them to the border and releases the individual to outside the united states. they are excited to remain in mexico until the next hearing
that same triggers procedure of coming back to the border. the airport into the court for their hearing. >> hank in jonesboro, georgia. know whetherke to , to thehe u.n. laws judges use those laws to abide by? our obligations are to the obligations to secure protections for individuals seeking persecution. it is codified through the immigration and nationality act. honoring the international obligations through domestic law. those are called our asylum laws. we do have to honor those and follow the law when allowing individuals to pursue
applications for asylum or withholding of removal and protection against torture. >> billy in brooklyn. democrat. want toop and trump build a border wall to keep the so-called illegals out. they want people to come in legally. they have a problem with legal immigration, too. tom cotton and immigration hardliners, when they tried to propose copperheads of immigration reform, the proposed reducing the number of legal green cards by half. as judges, we don't comment. it's not appropriate for judges to comment on substantive law or those policy considerations. is the can explain impact of those positions on the court or the impact of what we
are dealing with currently. at this point, i can't answer that. >> why is there the backlog you were describing? you alluded to it initially when you asked about immigration court and where it is situated. if you look at immigration court, it was formed out of the former immigration internationalization service in the department of justice. we have remained within the doj throughout our time. -- presentedented significant problems for the court and has been a primary contributor to the backlog. we are a court that is run by a prosecutor. every administration has used the court in various ways in terms of advancement of the prosecutorial or executive branch policies. we started out by being ignored. we were considered a traditional law enforcement, we didn't get
enough funding. there was one factor to having a backlog. up people andng identifying people but we don't have enough resources to be able to process them. over time, what became even more difficult was the court was used as the messaging tool. with the previous administration, they were constantly -- take -- started the constant shuffling of our dockets. individuals who are recently apprehended, such as children or adults with children were in front of the line in spite of the hundreds of thousands of cases waiting in line to go through the process. have had a we continued reshuffling of the dockets. we started out with 2017, sending a third of our judges to the border in a show of force to say we are here to process cases.
border,t just go to the often not having enough cases to hear. we have been told we had to deal with these "family unity cases. the that his previous demonstrations' adoptive children cases we did -- process with a deadline. that is being put in front of judges to deal as a priority case. and yet we are told everything else is a priority case. combine that with the lack of resources we have had. court, weh we are a are not treated as a court when the agency administers the court. we have judges that do not have sufficient clerks. we don't have enough clerks to handle the thousands of cases our judges are being asked to hear. we don't have enough office space. we don't have enough courtroom space. we don't have enough law clerks. the agency has taken a drastic step and reduced our access to
interpreters. 85% of the individuals that appear before the court do not speak english as their primary language. the courtmbent upon to make sure we provide interpreters. because of the problems with the where the court has been administered, the agency is out of money. they are an permitting policy furtheringhat are the backlog because of introducing delays into the system and limiting access to interpreters. to make matters worse, the andcy has introduced quotas deadlines on judges. what needs tooyed be a judge, because now it is introducing a personal financial stake for the judge to hold his or her job into the decisions the judge has to make. a lot of the time, judges are spending time to keep track of excel spreadsheets,
to figure out what they are doing on every case and it is compromising their ability to focus on the case. seeing a much greater emphasis on enforcement as well. in the previous initiation, or another times, we would have some level of metering of cases prosecutorialof discretion. we are not seeing that. these all contribute to a backlog that is ever-growing. these are increased resources we have been given. we grew by 100 judges. 168 have been hired in the last two fiscal years. that, we have gone from 600,000 to 900,000.
that is from that fundamental flaw of having a court system that is within a law enforcement agency. we believe it is important that before we do anything else, it is to remove the immigration court from the department of justice. we need to secure the independence a court needs. similar to what we have done with the tax and bankruptcy court and giving it the independence so it can run like a court and function like a court and bring the efficiency and appropriate protections for the party. to kathy in oklahoma, republican. >> two quick questions. why would you have to have a hearing or a trial for someone who is caught dead to rights crossing the border. they are not claiming their innocent. if you call someone in your
yard, they would be sent away. they wouldn't get to stay on your land until they had a hearing. do they stay and why are there hearings when there is no disputing they are there illegally? question, the children that come here, i feel safari for them -- so sorry for them. they cannot make the decision legally to leave their home country. a guardian or parent was taking care of them. agreementre not some worked out with these countries that they will send them back to determine who the. or guardian was? children should not be locked up. they have to do something with them. regarding the first question in terms of procedures that are afforded to individuals seeking the -- beingrom removed from the u.s., under
law, congress has provided for these removal proceedings. the questions of whether someone in the united states -- is a united states citizen or national, that is something that should be determined by an independent arbiter. is whether theon person is in the united states or sneaking into the united states illegally. it is one of those issues that congress has determined. it needs to be decided by a judge. obviously, a question of whether someone should stay in the united states, regardless of that initial violation of the law or regardless of the current position of being without authority, part of what we talked about earlier in terms of the international commitment under our treaty obligation to protect individuals who are under prosecution or are trying
to figure out if congress should be given the opportunity to ask to stay in the u.s. in spite of currently being without status or in violation of that. when you get those questions, they are pretty cap requires a party to be able to present their side. as americans, part of protecting our constitution and principles is to make sure that, when there are these types of questions, that the person and parties should be able to go to a neutral judge and present their case in our judicial principles. congress has determined it to be appropriate, without is constitutional and statutory rights and obligations.
in response to the unaccompanied children, we don't comment on what the policy should be. happens inon what terms of the impact on judges. what we have seen with unaccompanied juveniles, the docket which i've handled myself for the past 10 years, often when childrens have at least one parent who is in the u.s.. in many instances, the parent has left the child with a grandparent or an extended family in their home country in order to be able to support them and their family. as things develop and there are issues in the home country, often times relating to game -- gang violence, family problems, then the child is brought to the u.s..
about 70% of the individuals of the children have a. lori close family member in the u.s. withare then reunited their parents in the u.s. and allowed to proceed through the court proceedings to determine whether they should remain or not as to the question about policy changes, i can't comment. >> we will go to linda in minnesota. i think i should have hung up, because you touched my question already. about how the trump administration is trying to get rid of translators in the courts. wondering how that can be legal. we are stripping away their right to talk.
thank you for what you do. to not have an interpreter? >> part of the mission of a meaningful opportunity to be present is an opportunity to understand what is happening. providing interpreters is a key part of ensuring that we provide that meaningful or fundamentally fair hearing. the issues of the interpreter has been there is a key interest into providing there is in person interpreters versus forcing a judge to have things whicher interpreters, means, imagine they have 50 cases for a three hour time period. you have a few minutes to address a case. having an in person interpreter present means there is someone there who will be able to translate what is happening and
be present and see what is and have an expedition reliableg and we will interpretation. we are now at the beck and call of a customer service line and to drop everything, call a customer service line, explain what is looking for, wait for somebody to secure a telephonic interpreter. usually that is someone on their cell phone. now there are reception issues. our technology is not up to speed. it is difficult to understand or hear each other. we have spent a lot of time repeating what we have to say. we can't do simultaneous translation. that doubles the time it takes for a hearing. timeudge just doesn't have s thatable to do the case
were scheduled. it just adds frustration. those are some of the challenges we are facing. the resources we have been provided are not available. -- cannoterstand understand why you would hire so many judges and not anticipate there would be a greater need for interpreters and the cost associated. good morning. question and comment. my comment is about the correlation between international affairs budget and immigration. a strong there is correlation between the two.
our international affairs budget national security of our population abroad. he believe an increase and that would decrease the immigration backlog -- do you believe an increase in that would decrease the immigration backlog? > i don't have expertise in that area. i can't comment on proposed legislative changes. i know that is something that has been experiments with in the past. i understand some of it is being discussed currently. why don't some of those women in congress, the art solving andhing, go up there alternate a month at a time and help take care of those babies if they are worried about them. if i was a mother, i wouldn't send my child on a trip like that. a baby that had to have diapers. i don't understand why her
mother would send her child on a trip like that. >> i wanted to ask a couple of hypotheticals. what legislation do you have to go to the nearest country and do the same and not come to our border and apply for asylum. courtriminal comes into and tries to sue for restitution to be made whole because he wasn't paid by his terminal partner, what with the court to? last time i checked, you don't reward criminals for the benefits of their criminal behavior. on the second issue, under our current law, if congress has
allotted for what our certain waivers, and certain indices -- in certain instances, they consider the nature of the crime in the number of years and other equities on the individual that is decided that, depending on the crime, the person would still have the opportunity to request asylum. it would be at the discretion of the judge and a weighing of the evidence. part of that has to be considered in conjunction with our international obligations. dashed, undernda asylum law, granting of asylum to individuals for certain types therimes, depending on other obligations, for example, the protection against torture, we have an obligation to protect individuals regardless of their
criminal activity or criminal conviction. if we find it is more likely than not the person will be tortured in their home country. it doesn't mean we provide status. it's not a path to citizenship. it's a protection from being sent to a country that you find likely to be tortured. it's a matter of how congress has decided in what way the individual person sees the benefit that they are seeking. 1996, aalso say that in major overhaul of immigration law. in that, congress expanded the definition of what is called an aggravated felony. in that provision, there is close to 50 different types and categories of criminal activity that would subject someone to be considered and aggregated --
aggravated felon. from theare prohibited benefits you would want under other immigration and nationality act with rare exceptions. >> jared in georgia, republican. >> i was wondering if there was some way to prioritize the process so that daca and the people who have been here are on the back. you take care of those people. >> i can't answer that directly. it's asking me to make a policy recommendation. what the collar has asked for is what would be considered a prosecutorial discretion.
part of the considerations of what you would have done, so you can figure out the priorities in which you would think the people should be processed. once the person is put into removal proceedings, then it should be based on the particular facts and a particular law applied to that case. in the previous administration, we saw that on a much larger scale. given to this priority focus on individuals with serious criminal activity. administration, everything is considered prosecutorial priority. we are not seeing any real distinguishing between those. having said that, we do
constantly see the shuffling of our docket. that as a messaging tool between families. >> anthony in maryland, a democrat. judgeould like to ask a -- the judge. anddoesn't the judiciary congress and law enforcement put rules together -- we know this can't be solved at one time. the courts are impacted by some new people -- so many people. it seems like gradually, some laws should be made to limit the people coming in and to move
some people out. i feel that there is not enough being done by the government working together to eliminate the problem. . >> to extent that i could comment, i would say that the immigration court is neither in the article one or three part of our constitution. article one is courts created by the legislative branch. article three is the course within the judiciary branch. that is the fundamental problem the immigration court is facing. we are in a law enforcement branch. we don't have true independence that a court needs. to ensure that we don't have these types of logistical and docket management issues.
in terms of how congress can work together with the department of homeland security or department of justice, there's not much of, don other than we are working seriously to educate our representatives on the hill and the community at of thexplaining one largest problems of why we are where we are is because the immigration court did not follow the principles of our american doctrine. we need to become independent be treated ass to judges and exercise their expertise before we can begin to address the backlog. we hope that individuals recognize this is not a right or left side. it's a fundamental american principal. to protect our country and american people by removing the court from the justice
department. giving it that independence. so then it can effectively process those cases. good morning. i don't think the general public realizes the underfunding that the court system has had for decades. it is compounded throughout the decades to what it is now. theuestion is, with credible fear from central america with the gang related what is the status on whether credible fear could be treated to the gang-related atrocities yet echo -- atrocities? >> credible fear is a separate procedure from the traditional immigration court cases.
what happens is that congress in 1986 created an expedited removal process for individuals to appear at the border or i at -- apprehended at the border without proper documents. however, because of our obligation on international law to provide protections for individuals seeking protection from persecution, we created what is called the credible fear. even though the person is found to be without documents and has ordered to been removed expeditiously at the border, there is process to ask them to stay based on that fear. credible fear standards require that the asylum officer listening to the person to determine whether they have a credible fear. do they have a reasonable likelihood of being able to show that if they are giving the opportunity to go to court, do showinge a chance of
that they are eligible under asylum law? every case is different. just because someone is coming from any particular country or fling gang-related violence, that doesn't mean they are qualified or not qualified. you have to look at the facts of that case. that is what the process is intended to do. if they are able to pass that andible fear, convincing asylum officer or immigration judge, they're given the opportunity to gain the full axis of the rights and responsibilities before court. if it does not have the credible fear review, then the government is free to remove them immediately. judge, to think>> the the president of the national association of immigration judges. appreciate the conversation. >> thank you for having me.
>> c-span's "washington journal," live everyday with the news and policy issues that impact you. coming up, we preview the week ahead with noah bierman, white house reporter for the los angeles times and a congressional reporter for the wall street journal. ben friedman, policy director for defense priorities on the latest tensions between the u.s. and iran. we should watch c-span's washington journal, live at 7:00 eastern, monday morning. be sure to watch the discussion. >> here's a look at what is ahead. newsmakers is next. congressman derek kilmer, and the chair of the committee of modernization of congress talks about his edge later priorities. of the news coverage splashdown and recovery of the apollo 11 astronauts after returning from the moon. after that, son of floor speeches commemorating the 50th anniversary of the moon mission.
at 8:00, q&a with political scientist and human ginsburg, author of "what washington gets wrong: the unelected officials who run government and their misconceptions about the american people." greta: this week on newsmakers, congressman derek kilmer, the chair of the new democrat coalition. thank you, sir, for being with us. rep. kilmer: great to be with you. greta: we also have scott wong, a congressional reporter with the hill, and kate ackley for cq roll call. describe for our viewers what the new democrat coalition is. rep. kilmer: it is a group of members, democratic members in the house who are forward-looking, pro-innovation, pro-economic growth. there are a lot of new members but that is not why we are called the new democrats. in fact, of the 40 seats that