tv Washington Journal 08212019 CSPAN August 21, 2019 7:00am-10:04am EDT
jersey and with the -- and with the florida and pennsylvania delegations are doing. the congressional management foundation's ♪ host: this is the "washington journal" for august 21. members of congress are back in their districts and states hearing from their constituents on issues important to them weather it be the economy, immigration, health care, or other topics. maybe you attended a town hall and told them directly what your issues are, but if you haven't, what would you have them focus on? that will be the focus of today's program as we hear from you on the top issue or issues for your member of congress. here is how you can let us know. if you want to call us and tell us those issues, 202-748-8000
for republicans. 202-748-8001 for democrats and independents, 202-748-8002. if you want to post on social media, you can do so at it or @cspanwj and on our -- you can orso at twitter at @cspanwj our facebook page, facebook.com/cspan. some of the topics being discussed at those meetings. if you go to the website wglt .com, a forum held by rodney davis. infrastructure was one of the top issues. the representative from illinois's 13th district is pushing for passage of the federal highway bill. about 80% of the construction project on the interstates that may back you up in traffic for a federal taxd for by
dollars. we will reauthorize the highway bill, adding that he does not believe in a federal gas tax paying for infrastructure. the story says he was not not specific in proposing ways for .- to pay for improvements going to new jersey, frank pallone, the democrat from that state addressing folks on an august 15 town hall meeting. several discussions taking place during that forum adding it was in the first 200 days he said he -- lower health care and prescription drug costs and robo calls. he introduced a bill to transform the nation's infrastructure. to pass any bill in a divided government, one must have support from both parties.
40% of what the house of representatives does. those are forms that took place maybe you can give us a call and tell us what you think those .ssues should be you can call us and let us know. republicans, 202-748-8001. democrats, 202-748-8000. independents, 202-748-8002. you can post on social media. it is twitter at @cspanwj. facebook is facebook.com/cspan. it was on the program yesterday we had david wasserman. he talked about some of the town halls taking praise across -- place across the united states. [video clip]
>> there is a lot of conversation about the issues being discussed at the presidential level. democrats have to be careful headed into 2022 remembering why they won the majority. i interviewed dozens of democrats who ran in the most competitive districts in the country and they weren't talking about trump very much. they weren't talking about russia or impeachment, they were talking about republican votes in 2017 to repeal and replace aca, including provisions on pre-existing conditions. they were talking about the republican tax bill, particularly the changes made to deduction. to the extent democrats get caught up in some of the issues
that have moved the party to the left in the presidential race, you have heard presidential candidates talk about decriminalizing border crossings, that could really put a lot of these freshman democrats in a bind in a close reelection race. >> what about the issue of gun control? >> democrats are going to be talking a lot about background checks, particularly in suburban districts and that is one issue where i think republicans have a problem because expanding background checks is still not a winning message in a republican primary and yet, it is something that enjoys strong public support in marginal and competitive districts. of thosecould be one topics, maybe you will add your own to the mix as you tell us
your top issue for your member of congress. 202-748-8001 for republicans. democrats, 202-748-8000. and independents, 202-748-8002. samantha starts us off in washington, d.c. if there is a top issue, what would it be? caller: my top issue as a republican is the sanity of the president and what has happened to our party because it does not seem that we are embracing what america is about and what we are supposed to be. asm concerned it is almost though we have turned the white with -- i say this tongue-in-cheek, into a loose cannon that does anything and everything that violates our constitution and we blame the constitution every time you turn around. we, as a party, have thrown it
out the window and i am concerned about that because when people wake up, we are no longer a party. we are like a cult of people being lost in time to destroy this country. host: if that is the case, how would you like your member to address it? how would you like those on capitol hill to address these concerns? caller: i would like them to address everything from gun control to what is happening with so-called tax cuts and what is happening with this vicious immigration policy they have junior to take over in the white house, that stephen miller. he is insane. host: we will go to matt in new york. caller: good morning, pedro.
kind of puzzled by that last so-called republican. sounded like a typical -- hello? host: you are on. what is your top issue for congress? caller: i would like my congressman to really publicly bring out the hypocrisy of the democrat party that they have had lately because of the issue withree speech israel where the squad feels like their right to speech has been impugned. the parkers he -- the hypocrisy of it is unimaginable because member from a visiting the usa because of alleged right-wing ties. are sof the democrats big on free speech, then i would like to see them condemn every
college that bars a conservative speaker on their campus. that will never happen because that would interfere with left-wing indoctrination happening to the kids these days. host: why do you think it is up thosegress to address issues and tell me, specifically, who your representative is and if you address these issues with that person? aller: my representative is part of the bipartisan committee fromy to address issues new york and he is a good congressman, but fighting an uphill battle. congress could actually address denying federal research funds to universities that do that type of thing and
deny pell grants. student loans, anything to anybody that would go to a university that denies conservatives the right to speak on a campus. it is ridiculous what has been happening. host: that is matt in new york telling us his top issue for his representative from our independent line in brooklyn, robert, you are next up. caller: my main issue is impeachment. specifically, i think the person who is most guilty of obstruction of got -- justice nowadays is nancy pelosi because justice demanded months and months ago that a vote of impeachment be taken against trump. she is an accessory after the fact to every act of obstruction of justice of trump and every act of conspiracy with the
russians. host: have you had a chance to talk with your representative about this topic of impeachment? caller: no, i haven't. host: what would you like to see? would you like to see an impeachment vote or taking up the articles of impeachment take place once the house comes back in september? anler: they ought to have impeachment vote. impeachment is not a process, it is a single event, specifically a vote in congress. it is equivalent to an indictment in a criminal case. host why this issue over a of other issues perhaps that could be talked with by members of congress? caller: you mean why it is the most important issue? host: right. robert, go ahead. caller: excuse me? host: why is it the most
important issue to you? caller: because all the other issues are subordinate to it. as long as trump is the head of the republican party, we are not going to get anything done -- good done. host: during the course of the morning, we will show you some of the town halls that took place across the united states with members of congress. one of those topics was impeachment and came up with representative stephen lynch. democrat from massachusetts serves the eighth district. here is what he had to say. [video clip] >> if we proceed right now, right this minute on impeachment lose in the we will senate. we will impeach him in the house, it will go to a trial in the senate. of 100y is made up
politicians, 100 senators. we know we will lose because the jury has said we will lose. let me finish. they have told us, we will vote against impeachment. we will vote to acquit the president. you want impeachment in the house, send it to the senate where they will acquit him and say he did nothing wrong and he will go into the election against the democratic challenger and you will have given him 4 more years as president of the united states. .ou will put him in office think about what the supreme court will look like with 4 more years of donald trump. that will be nothing when the
senate acquits him. you are helping him. he begs you to try to impeach him. he has the votes. it is not like we are going objective jury, unless we have something smoking on him. the republican senators who are his jury have said we will vote to acquit him. i am not making it up, they have said it. i will do anything to make sure he does not get 4 more years, that is my position. i will do everything possible in my power to make sure he does not get 4 more years and what you are asking for is to help the president get reelected and i am not into that. host: we will hear more perspectives from these town halls. decatur, georgia, independent
line. good morning. caller: my top issue is gun control. always sell usts fear. most people killed by guns is either a friend or family member. of arms,itution speaks it does not say guns, nuclear arms, tanks, airplanes, it says arms. a knife is arms. host: have you had a chance to talk with your representative about this and specifically, what would you tell them? what would you like to see done when it comes to guns? caller: just like you have to get your drivers license, you should have to get your gun license.
you should have to take a test, you should have to get insurance on your gun. everything you have to go through with a driver's license. a permit. what is wrong with that? host: kim is next in charlotte, north carolina. line for democrats. of concernmain topic is climate. every other topic has no value until we take care of this. we are at end time. it is wild to watch the change in the temperatures and everything going on. if these guys don't put a price on carbon and try to mitigate what is going on, i am not sure what is going to happen. host: how does your rep is in a divorce senator -- what is their approach to climate change, -- representative or senator -- what is their approach to climate change? nine.: i am in district
senator tillis does come out and publicly acknowledge there is climate issues and that something needs to be done. burr has not addressed it. i know there is a bipartisan bill in the house of 763resentatives currently, hr addressing it and there has been like four other bills in the last month coming out. these guys have got to get together. if it is not bipartisan, it won't stick. it needs to stay and it needs to be a real solution and if you go on the world bank website, there is carbon pricing going on globally and with border controls, if we don't jump on board, we will be paying for it anyways.
in charlotte kim talking about climate change for her representatives. she mentioned an election taking place, early voting open for that. dan mccready faces dan bishop and jeff scott and alan smith. 2013ady ran in the election. for both parties, the special election is considered a harbinger of 2020. that is why outside groups have spent millions on the race. from mark, democrats line. you are next up on your top issue for congress and your member of congress. caller: good morning and thank you for c-span. i want to reiterate what kim from north carolina said. issue isimportant climate change across the board.
if we destroy the planet, what else matters? all the petty infighting republicans and democrats do will be so meaningless in the future when we are having a hard time breathing. i believe we should have very firm regulations, we should have electric cars, solar and wind energy only, there is so many things we can do, the science is there and members of congress keep fighting and it is pathetic. host: do your members that represent you hold the same views you do when it comes to climate? aller: i know i have democrat representation, which i am glad about, but i believe they can be stronger. i have written to my congressman and i have heard back from him supports doingly
things for climate change. oillieve when you have an guy, head of the epa, it is really a joke. we have a climate denier running the country. i am appalled. host: when you said you heard from josh gottheimer, was it a letter from his office? how did that work? caller: i wrote him a letter and received a letter in return. congressman gottheimer is doing a good job and i understand he has an uphill battle. host: mark talking about climate change as his issue. we will hear from maryland, independent line. william is next. iller: as a father of 3, think the number one issue is the division we have. if you talk to those congressmen and congresswomen, i think they are rolling over in their graves.
they have us completely divided on what i call the 7 issues. it is the 6gs and 1 c. guns, justment, , give out,estation and climate. the middle class is disappearing, the school system siteing eviscerated and we and go back and forth. all of these main issues fit under the umbrella of the division we have created. we can continue to talk about all these issues and they are all great issues. they need to be on the table. unfortunately, as we get further and further apart and fingers get pointed, the division keeps getting bigger and bigger. how do you think is the
best way for members to address this division? caller: i am not sure i have that answer. i have had conversations with my friends. at some point there needs to be meeting back in the center to understand if you look at our history, they came to the center. our media is now quite different. i think our media has to be looked at as well. people turn on the news -- i have heard people on the side say there is no side say there is no way we have ever been swayed by any russians. if you climb up 10,000 feet and look down, we know there are 6000 trolls in several countries, including russia, that played a part in our media. you have the media completely divided and it is the same on the left. one side will say the right is a little worse than the other, but i think we have to look at the
media and the way it is being bought up and used to divide us and that is something i think will have to be a part of our conversation, that we cannot have the false information. it is on both sides. i hear republicans quite a bit say it is only on the democrat side, it is not. while i may believe the sway is slightly larger on one side, i try to find myself in the middle realizing we don't need to have a two party system. the fact we have a two party system and bernie has to run democratic to find his foothold is a sign to everybody that if the other gets in and does things it makes it harder for years side, that is an issue in our democracy and we should be shaking hands in the middle. host: that is william talking about this division. john mccain, the wife of mccain, the senator from arizona
writing a profile of her husband in the pages of the washington post talking about division and civility. americans can learn from him. john was a passionate partisan, but a statesman, too. sometimes all government can manage is modest progress on the toughest problems, muddling through rather than embracing sweeping change. muddling through seems quite an achievement in these difficult times. when congress returns from its august recess, i hope veteran members, many of who my husband was proud to call friends and the ones that can test the ideas of the day, i hope they will fight for their beliefs and enjoy the contest. i hope they leave their minds open to the possibility of compromise and hearts open to the possibility and joys of unexpected friendships. top issues.
your member of congress specifically. on our facebook page, about 400 people responding. here is some of their responses. this is sean saying no red flags, secure our border, get rid of sanctuary cities. congress needs to stop trying to become the be all, end all for all issues. steve rogers says secure our southern border, reform immigration laws, and resolve our illegal occupation issue and dave says his topics are three, education, health care, and our earth. let's go to michael in florida, democrats line. caller: good morning. important thing i think we all have been dealing with. first of all, mr. trump promised this is going to be the greatest
job producing president in u.s. history. trade practices that are basically something we cannot contend with and one is he has put taxes on foreign imports. there has been a 25% tariff placed on goods from china and --ico and the nest thing in the long run, we have got to eat, too. in retaliation, what has china done? they slapped tariffs on us. mexico said the same thing. these are important things to the farmers. they are handicapped to a certain extent and you have to china has done
that is affecting this. host: the message to congress then? what is that message, specifically? caller: help the american farmers, get them back to where they can earn their living and maintain their property and their livelihood and not having to sell out to the bigger .armers right now, the farmers are hurting, but some farmers are basically getting wiped out. host: jp morgan in analyzing how much these trade and tariffs could cost the american consumer, $100,000 a year -- 70% of the u.s. economy has been shielded from tariffs, but that is about to change with 10% levies on $300 billion on chinese imports. raisedming tariffs are
as the president has warned, consumer cost could go up to as many as $1500 a year. maybe trade is the top issue for your member of congress, maybe it is other issues we have heard about. threel calls for all hours. michiganr from tina in . tina, republican line. good morning. caller: maryland. host: maryland. i apologize. caller: my top issue is not on the agendas of democrats or republicans. my top issue is i have a question for congress. i would like to know if there on the americans, -- which
protects the elderly. my question is how can a county commissioner get away with not abiding by that law when it was a supreme court decision? host: you are going to have to educate our viewers on the background of your concern so they can understand where you are coming from. can you do that? caller: yes. i am dealing with folks that live in a park. it has become a community with cottages. there is going to be actuallytely 70 people evicted by the county commissioners because when they bought their home 33 years ago, which their law has been on the books for 33 years and never enforced. however, they are using that law to put out veterans, disabled,
and elderly out of a park when theye land, bought, they bought recreational land. by there never told settlement. this land is out -- 6 years outnd of the -- 6 months out of the --r, is very decision .pecific and adds all elderly these people have nowhere to go. there are no shelters, nothing. host: have you talk to your member of congress about this? caller: i have, i have tried to.
it is difficult. i have written so many people, social services, the state medicare director, the governor it has been an ongoing two-year battle and these people will be put out. -- supreme court host: that is tina talking about her top issue for members of congress. we will go to new york next. pat.ll hear from issue withtop opiates would be the addiction crisis in the united thems and i would hold
accountable. -- it is directly result of congress' negotiating with lobbyists. would hold them responsible. host: have you talked to a member about this? caller: i haven't. paul tonko is my congressman and entergyeoccupied with and climate change. as serious as this addiction crisis is, why would i have to talk to him? why isn't it slapping him in the face? you don't hear that much about it. all you hear about is impeachment. host: if that is the case, what -- how would you like congress
to address this issue? caller: tighten up regulatory laws on pharmaceutical companies. the import of pharmaceutical products, opiates, fentanyl, it is out of control. it puts an incredible strain on health care services. it is unbelievable, it is overwhelming. how can they not be taking this more serious? host: frank is next. good morning in charleston. ourer: joe cunningham is representative from the first congressional district. he unseated mark sanford and one of the things that helped him get elected is his pledge to stop war prevent offshore drilling. i hope he follows through on that. he gained support of a lot of republicans because of that pledge. change,ard to climate
charleston is basically at sealevel. gets in the streets of charleston downtown, especially in restaurant and downtown areas. as a conservative independent, if i try to have a discussion with a republican about climate change, they look at you like you are a raving lunatic. you could turn a blind eye all you want. it may be a naturally occurring phenomenon, i don't know. --igration, we have to get if you want programs funded, you have to know where they are and
are there. i talked to lindsey graham about -- i don't know why and i mentioned this in emails -- if people live more than 60 miles away, i would issue them health gets instead of trying to help. campaign-finance reform, quickly -- host: we have done this for 35 minutes, that is the focus of .ur conversation
republicans, 202-748-8001. democrats, 202-748-8000. and independents, 202-748-8002. our twitter feed is @cspanwj. our facebook page, facebook.com/cspan. jefferson township, this is william. caller: republican line. good morning. good morning -- caller: good morning. my major concern is abortion. i will not vote for a congressman who is pro-abortion. what they can do for it is they could defund planned parenthood. the major number of abortions in the united states are done by them and reverse roe v. wade. my second concern is the debt. trillion into debt. the interest on that debt is phenomenal. it is phenomenal.
i have never gone into debt in my whole life. this country is a bad example to the young people growing up by the debt they take on and they are putting it on the backs of young people. i would not want to be a young person today. to tim int's go michigan, democrats line. host: you are on. caller: i would like to see a concerted effort by the up the solar rev panel issue and make it cheaper. host: why does this concern you? caller: it would help with our economy and our ecological position in the world.
it would make electricity cheaper and people can afford them. solar panels are very expensive. host: do you have a sense your representative or senator thinks like you do? caller: i would hope so. i have called washington numerous times. host: who is your representative? caller: debbie dingell. host: on our independent line, we will hear from todd in north carolina. in todd,is is david north carolina. caller: we have a bunch of capitalists gaming the socialist entities in our government for their profit. gaming county employees residents for their grant money and they feed on innocent -- if theying to
keep a caseload, they get grant money. and a cost out here to school college kids so they can have this caseload in the court. governmentderal stepped out of the school system , we don't need state rights, we need citizens rights again because these states are abusing people, causing these bad actors in this nation because they are unchecked. i reported them for harassing and trying to abduct my child and the only thing that happened was more stuff against me. they tried to,
abductor my child. they say i cannot go on field trips with my child and they take my kid from school, social security. it has hit -- hurt my son's domestic tranquility trying to defend off human traffickers. host: we have had several issue -- people talk about the issue of immigration. this is representative mark in california talked about congress, their role in tackling the topic of illegal immigration . [video clip] wewe have 11 million people estimate here who are undocumented. if we had a rational conversation, we would admit it is good that with 3% unemployment, we need to have immigration just like we need
workers when the industrial revolution happened and my forebears came to work here for not much money. there are efforts to fix it on a bipartisan level. stigmatizes people for a problem congress created. we need to do what we have done before and have debates no longer how -- no matter how angry people are where we fix situation.tion what is happening at the border, we should all be appalled that. [applause] provide more infrastructure and help to people who are working there trying to do their job. there are some who are not and we need to spend more money in their countries of origin, which we have responsibility for.
[applause] much of the effort we put into going after the drug cartels .oved home.stay home. the vast majority of them, just like us, we have a great quality of life and we are thankful for that. ofy are also having impacts climate change -- people who live off the sale of climate -- coffee beans, it does not work anymore. we have a very large problem. in souths is shelley carolina, republican line. these: i am tired of telephone providers who are not when people are
able to hijack telephone numbers and call and very annoying and at very inconvenient times sometime. i had one man call me three times because he thought i had .alled him i don't know what can be done. host: this must happen a lot if this is going to be a main issue for your member of congress, i suspect. caller: i have had phone calls from myself. i don't know how they do that. i don't think they said anything. host: have you had a chance to talk to your members of -- member of congress about this issue? caller: i sent lindsey graham an issue. yesterday when i was about to take a nap, this guy calls me
and does not say anything. the third time he does and said something and i said do you think i called you? he said yes. i said, sorry, you have been spoofed. cannot lay down to take a nap without somebody calling you. host: if you go to our issue at c-span.org, the senate recently held a hearing taking a look at robo calls. people getting these calls from their home. if you are interested in that hearing, maybe other related issues. type in the term illegal robo call in the search box and there hearing. david is next, david in los angeles. caller: my top issue is border
crisis and unfair treatment with children. it is an unacceptable situation. people believe our president is abusing --d trump is it is an awful situation. we are the nation that has respect for human values. line forc is next, democrats. caller: thank you, america. i would like to address the concept of the unmerciful servant. in america, we have a lot to be thankful for and we have a lot
to be forgiven for. inple are calling complaining about the debt and all this stuff without mercy and compassion and not thinking about all the benefits we have received as an individual, as a country. when it comes to giving mercy to somebody else, they refused to. these are top issues for their representatives. christiansy call as doing this and when they go to their onlysentative, concern about taking something away from somebody they have received their own self. doing this, they make themselves clear -- it is very unmerciful.
for your top issue of your member, what would it be? caller: the concept of jubilee that has been passed by the pope for everybody in this country, everybody from congress down to the supreme court to recognize debt relief for each individual, if you knew you had the right to apply for all your debt relief, would you not claim it? let's hear from michael in alabama. leave the president alone because he is doing a good job. host: we will also ask you folks at home to make sure you turn down your television sets so we can have a good conversation,
the help of the states to protect the election system. they had a commission at one time to help the states to for -- to protect their voting machines and they expanded that, one of the first things that happened during the trump administration. host: the three you listed that deal with election security, why is that a top issue for you and congressour member of addressed it? my member of congress thinks and that do no wrong is what we have to deal with, at
least in our area. host: let's go to pam in burlington, north carolina. hello. caller: i have two that are pretty much equal in importance, control and i gun am concerned the president keeps changing his mind or someone is changing his mind for him when parkland happened and now again. with mental health, he keeps talking about mental health. administration defunded mental health, which made it he made it easier for
people with mental health to purchase guns. security, which is me.ly scaring with mitch mcconnell not putting the house bills that have passed bipartisan through the senate angers me and i did call on the republican line, but i am going on.e independent from now i think with foreign and --rything, host: a story today in many of the papers, white house spokesman saying president trump had a discussion with the head
of the nra concerning universal background checks. the president retreating on background checks saying the president said on tuesday his supporters are supporters in a constitutional right to bear arms. they call it a slippery slope and all of a sudden things get taken away. we are not going to let that happen. one of the town halls that took lace across the united states, representative steve king talking about issues of gun control and red flag laws on top of that. here is what he had to say. [video clip] >> whatever happens with gun control, it must be constitutional. to think of all the heat i had taken if somebody would have red flagged me by now.
he is under federal charge for assault and that is the right thing to do, enforce the law. i am not here to complain, because it is the law, try to watch it. imagine what happens when first of all, within the communities, there is a divorce. it is usually not going to be the husband -- his guns will be gone and he has no due process to get them right, there is no hearing, no psychiatric proposal that i see. -- if theyus into can take away your second amendment rights arbitrarily at the suggestion of an individual, may be a family member or neighbor or whatever the
affiliation may be, they can take away freedom of speech and property rights and a jury trial -- jury of your peers. all these things written into the entireendment -- amendment can be taken away if they can take away any part of it. that is why our founders put in -- host: some facebook comments this morning on the top issues for those posting for their member of congress. charles jackson off facebook saying the foremost issue for my congresswoman is what can we do to curb the incidence of gun violence in this country? jeff short saying when it comes to issues, term limits, less congressional vacation time and benefits and adding border wall and border security to the mix. health care, education, gun
control, climate change, economic inequality, getting big money out of politics and steve o'dell saying it is to remove infringements on the second amendment. democrats line is next. alex in maryland. caller: i am a veteran. my issue is veterans. about not talking veterans with the v.a. choice. what about v.a. and forcing veterans employment? i had three government jobs and they hired me and there were no accommodations. they get you in there and retention. veterans issues and having veterans pursue schools in transition. i am not hearing anything. host: i will ask you what i asked several.
who represents you and have you address this issue with that person? caller: i went to the congressman in maryland. i am waiting on feedback. they have a veterans liaison and that was about three months ago. they said they are working on it and future calls will be expected or emailed. at least i made that call. i do a lot of events trying to veterans involved. host: when you called the office, who was that representative and what was the interaction like? the marylands congressman and the liaison said he will put it on his list of things to do in future town hall meetings, so they invited me for future meetings. no one-on-one meetings, but trying to get help for veterans, they said they will notate it.
everyone wants to notate and document, but i don't see anything being done. host: are you the type of person that attends town halls? caller: yes. i have been in the federal government capacity as a new employee -- i was interviewed in a local paper and doing things that basically showcase a veteran being hired, but i believe they used me, they did not talk about my struggles after i got hired. if you hire a veteran who is disabled -- i have a disability. when you have a visible disability, sometimes people think you are not disabled. i was the face of saying they hired me, federal government agency, but i wasn't able to say what about my 8 months of unemployment with no accommodation? it is two-faced. hiring me and trying to explain my point.
host: from alan in pennsylvania. i think i am saying it correctly on our independent line. hello. caller: good morning. i think the previous caller hit on a lot of the things i would be very concerned about for veterans. my big issue i have contacted my congressman about is the multiple deployments of our military. i think the residue of that is we have so many people, so many veterans having mental problems when they come back, certainly physical problems and i think we should be bringing more of our people back, not having them deployed to places we cannot win. that is primarily my call this morning. host: what was the response you got when you mentioned that issue to your representative? i am really echoing the
previous caller. it seems like they are going to put it on their list of things to do, but never gets done. host: this is alan in pennsylvania, talking about those issues, including deployments of our u.s. military. republican line from tennessee, raymond. hello. caller: good morning. his is i've been listening a while and this morning strikes me about something i want to talk about. the people want to comment on trump's rhetoric. as human beings we all have character flaws. and one of the things that to be honest, i didn't vote 2016,
shame on me. people were like hey, you know, hillary or trump. and i was like, you know, how can you pick the lesser of two evils, so i didn't vote, shame on me. but 2020, i'm going to vote for trump because i see he's been trying to do the best he can with his hands tied behind his back. the lady talked earlier about something that the house passed, so-called bipartisanshiply and the senate pushed back. well, the house is not bipartisan, it's also known as predominantly democratic. -- the the stuff -- stuff that's coming out of the house recently with certain individuals, you know, obviously the senate i'm pretty sure would want to reject that because they haven't been coming with legitimate, logical
bills. but, you know, being a veteran myself, and i currently work i the government again, work to v.a. but can't tell you which one, but i see there's a lot of stuff within the v.a. that are being implemented across the nation and yet there's still a lot of deficiencies and it's like how can we have this deficiency in this facility and that facility if these improvements have been going about so far, how come these directors of these facilities aren't saying hey, look, what did you do to make it so successful for that program on your campus, how can i implement it here on my campus? there's a lot of benefits that i see are given to veterans for their spouses for employment and i see none military people
working for the v.a. and getting their spouses in and taking away work from those family members that need that work and so forth. a few things i want to talk about. host: raymond, i have to put it out there, veterans issues on top of that. that's just a sample of calls we're taking from you when it comes to top issues for members of congress. some of the calls in this hour, the callers had a chance to address these issues directly with their representative, maybe that includes you. some have attended town halls we've been showing you the first hour and maybe you've done as well and want to give your experience there. but when it comes to issues you want your members of congress to address. we'll take the calls the next two hours and during the time talk to reporters who have been covering the town halls from parts of the united states and get their perspective in as well. can you do so by calling
202-748-8001 for republicans 8000 for democrats and independents, 202-748-8002. if you want to post at our twitter, you can or go to our facebook page. larry starts out the second hour, democrats line, larry, hello. caller: how are you doing? thanks for taking my call. i think the biggest issue is all the lies that come from the highest office in the land. why do the congressmen put up with it? the biggest one i hear so far, is who is paying for the wall, mexico? i don't think we've gotten money from mexico yet. i'm a lot like john wayne in the cowboys movie, it don't matter what you did or whatever, but he just couldn't stand a liar.
host: who is your member of congress first and foremost and what should they do about it specifically? caller: i don't know. i'm just fed up with all the lies there coming out of the highest office in the land. host: alabama is next. john, democrats line from alabama. hello. caller: hey, how are you doing? host: fine, thank you. go ahead. caller: i want to make a comment to all the congress members. they talk about health care, why don't you get rid of the co-pay and deductibles. i've been working all these years, i pay right at $180 a week for insurance and then every time i go to the doctor, i got to pay $25. i've been having car insurance for the last 20 years paying every month, why i dot to pay a deductible? if you want to help the american people, help get rid
of the deductible. thank you. host: have you had a chance to talk directly with your congress person about that? caller: yes -- no, i haven't had a direct chance to talk to him. because it's hard to get in touch with the congressman. every time you call up there, it's busy and you can't get in touch with the senators, you know. they talk about health insurance, why don't they get rid of the co-pay? if you pay every week for health insurance, why do you have to pay a co-pay to go to the doctor? host: dave is next in brooklyn, new york, independent line, hi. caller: hi, how are you doing? i appreciate everything, all the calls that called in to propose. but the truth of the matter is it we don't get rid of trump, none of the proposals are going to get signed. that's just a fact. i mean, i understand everybody wants to propose a green new deal. and once the green new deal -- i understand we're trying to
deal with climate change but trump is in office. we've -- he's not going to sign the bill. why are we worried about all these proposals from the democrats when we know the truth of the matter is the person in office or even mitch mcconnell is not even going to put the bill up on the floor, why are we wasting our time on that. get rid of trump and then we start making deals. host: specifically what would you like congress to do when it comes to the president of the united states? caller: well, to be honest with you, i think we need to get rid of this impeachment. it's a waste of time. we know it's going to divide the country. of course mitch mcconnell is not putting it on the floor. we need to get rid of impeachment and keep investigating and that's it. i'm very patient, i have the patience to wait. keep investigating. the more you bring out, the more we expose this man. that's the truth. host: you're saying hold off on impeachment proceedings all together. caller: yes. just don't bring -- because the
more you say impeachment you get him excited and he keeps talking about this and it just divides the country. we have a great leader. nancy pelosi is doing a great job. first of all, she helped elect the democrat. she made obama a great president, too. she passed all his bills so we have aate leader leading the democratic party. they keep making it so difficult if her to manage. so let her do what she does. host: dave in brooklyn, new york, talking about matters of impeachment saying hold off on those things until more investigation is done. again, a couple of people commenting on the impeachment process this morning. joining us to start the conversation about generally what republicans and democrats have been talking about. emily cop of -- emily kopp of "roll call." as far as impeachment is
concerned, how are democrats and republicans addressing that in their home districts? emily: we're seeing a lot of the freshmen who flip republican districts in 2018 being pressed by democratic voters to stop slow walking impeachment. the polling on this is a little bit all over the place but it indicates that while a major of voters don't support impeachment, a majority of democratic voters do. yeah, we're seeing a lot of really animated town halls with democratic freshmen taking questions from constituents who want to see movement on this faster and are not satisfied with the ongoing investigations. host: as far as a specific democrat, your story addresses some of those town halls and the topic of impeachment. what stands out as far as the
freshmen or the democrats you profiled in that piece? >> i think new jersey representative is really interesting. he promised s -- voters he would hold a lot of town halls and be accountable to them. his district is really competitive. so he's gotten so many questions on impeachment and been steadfast and not voicing support for impeachment that it's become a bit of a joke, when constituents ask about it, you hear laughs. ut yeah, he's been steadfast in particularring with the leadership and he has acknowledged, you know, it hasn't happened as fast as i would like, but he's not there yet. host: we'll dig deeper with andy kim in another phone call in a few minutes. when if comes to the republican side, generally, what have republicans been addressing at these town halls?
erin: they've really been confronted about gun violence, the august recess was punctuated by three mass shootings and constituents want answers on whether president trump's rhetoric means nationalist rhetoric, they want answers on assault weapons and background checks. and we know from an internal memo that was accidentally leaked to the press that the republican caucus' strategy on this has been to deflect to some measures that they worked on regarding background checks when they were in power last ongress and also to argue that leftist violence is also a problem but we know from statistics from the anti-defamation league but
that's not the case, the problem really is far right wing violence, white supremacist violence. it's been interesting to see them have to answer to constituents on those issues. host: one of the other things you profile aside from the matter of guns is the matter of rhetoric that comes from the white house. can you elaborate? guest: sure. like i said, i think a lot of constituents especially in these competitive districts are confronting republicans about why they voted against a resolution to condemn president trump's racist tweeted directed at four congresswomen who are women of color and they point out that trump has referred to mmigrants as an invasion which mirrors the manifesto of the el paso shooter. nd they're concerned about how
president trump might be emboldening hateful people to violence. we know the f.b.i. director's testimony to the senate judiciary committee last month huge problem and the majority of the domestic terrorism cases they investigated last year dealt with white supremacist violence, so yeah. host: the democratic side before we let you go, the issue of gun patrol matters, how generally have democrats taken on that issue? emily: so they are putting pressure on the senate to take up hr-8 which would expand background checks. the house judiciary committee under jerry nadler also plans to take up a trio of gun control bills when the congress
reconvenes in early september in order to exert more pressure on republicans to take action on this. host: emily kopp who reports for "roll call." can you find her stories looking at the town hall meetings with republicans and democrats at rollcall.com. from matthew in new york, republican line, thanks for waiting. go ahead with your top issue for your member of congress. caller: thank you for taking my call. when it comes to foreign policy, one of the things that matters the most is what we want from other countries. our country gets the label as an unfaithful country that doesn't keep its promises. it is not the right way immigrants want their country to be seen. us there's a national secret of counsel -- inaudible] and trump's racial treats are
harmful and cause international problems. as for foreign policy, i should state we really have complicated the situation here and as you know, when the awelcomes is near. do we have any kind of program help those nominees and could we have been elected or not? host: have you talked to your member specifically about this issue? matthew? how have you talked to your member of congress specifically about this issue of foreign policy? caller: i don't talk to them directly but i think our foreign policy has to be changed and i think we have to focus on that issue because our country is labeled as a country that does not keep its promises to any country's health. host: john in new york, democrats line. you're n.e.c. top issue for your member of
congress. caller: hi, good morning. i've been pretty active for several years visiting veterans in the veterans house near me. and they're very frustrated with the fact seniority care and they had to speak up about it. but all i got out of it was retaliation. i've contacted my congressman and senators about it and i didn't get anywhere, you know. host: when you say you didn't get anywhere, elaborate on that, how did that conversation go? caller: like the last call i got, oh, they're going to look into it. nd turned out that nothing happened. they passed the buck. they passed it on over. go see this other guy or that counselor or something else. nothing in the evidence about
it. i said look, if you don't believe me, go send somebody down there and ee these conditions these people are living in. but still, best of luck. host: republican line from pittsburgh, pennsylvania. we'll hear from george. george in pittsburgh. hello. caller: hello. i think the top issue is not even being addressed is profit. how profits have taken life's first place and the whole constitution of the united states is suffer. we need to take responsibility for what we agreed on as a country. host: what do you mean by that? caller: well, lincoln as a republican, you know, i'm like the party of lincoln, you know, like get everybody in there to tart voting on a sheer equal
level, or republicanned have kids out of labor. this is life-changing and improving progress for what they always are talking about people or human beings, there's no progress in that. but the social contract is our process and we agree together to keep life first above any one him cause. but the face of hatred, which is white people because of outrageous fortunes, power and all types of isms that they ran has totally destroyed america or the social contract, people's agreement to keep life first. host: how does this become an ssue of congress then?
host: the issue in congress is remove anything that -- where it works against the people's self interests to keep life first. they need to do that. host: where should that start specifically? caller: profit. you can't have people work against their own self-interests. and that is a profit issue right there. host: ok. william is next in connecticut. democrats line. caller: hello. host: hi. caller: my main concern is the gerrymandering and in terms of supreme court decision. and the current thing is residents protecting -- [inaudible] as well. but i have a part of the solution for handling the gerrymandering decision.
one would be that each state would determine how many residents that they have in their states. and then after they do that, that would determine how many congressmen or centers would have. then instead of having people run in certain districts, you'd just a general state election. they can determine where the democrats going to represent and where the republicans are going to represent as congressmen and senators when they get down there in washington. so that way the bobby issueses can't rave you enough and the tech people for their special needs because maybe the next election, a person will have a different district. host: have you had a chance to address these ideas with your congress person? caller: my congress person is
mr. joe courtney. and to tell you the truth, i tried a number of times to call there and also tried to call my senator chris murphy but generally, i mean, that may not sound so good but i think i would make up better trying to hit the numbers in the lotto to get a response back because they say call me, we'll call you back but nobody has ever called me back. host: so as far as do you think that joe courtney shares your views when it comes to ideas of gerrymandering? them is k he may use how much they have hurt the electorate and not particularly in connecticut because there's not going to be gerrymandering
up here. this is lifpk aye -- this is basically -- the democrats basically run this state up here. it won't have the same effect as the democratic parties in south washe and so on and fourth like that. but i think me would agree it's been veryfulful to people, period. host: talking about issues of gerrymandering and the perspectives he brings and how you can reverse or at least affect the process or the condition of gerrymandering across the state. in ohio, republican line. rich, good morning. caller: good morning. great discussions there. it seems like we have a lot of with the space race. the other one we forget about that is to do that.
i think in the battle of the budgets and all that, how much good we can do by taking the top 20 expensive diseases and attack them. and when we solve one, we take the money to the next one or out of the 20, something will break. but take that money that you save and drive it in the next one. remembering on polio, they weren't sure they had enough steel for the iron lungs if it had went the wrong way. when they come up with things half the price and twice the quality, they should move to the head of the line when we try to decide what to do in budgets or health care or whatever it is. i'll hang up and listen to your answers. host: how did diseases and tackling diseases rise to the top of that list of yours? caller: because when we solve polio, we're coming around to land that thing and stop the disease all around the world. .
we saved a lot money not doing it that way and we'd be so far behind the eight-ball if we didn't break that one. so these top diseases really change our selector of being able to lean in the next one and the next one if we don't waste the money when we start saving. i'll hang up and listen to your answers. host: one more question, have you had a chance to address your representative on this issue of diseases and tackling diseases. caller: yep, at the right time. host: have you had a chance to talk with him already on these topics. caller: yes, uh-huh. host: how did he respond? caller: trying to get through the battle like in the space race, what do you put ahead of what? all good things to do and then you've got to pick one and put ahead of the other. but the end result is you start saving and solving more just like when a football game, just when you get those couple scores you have to elbow them
to get to the next one. part of it is we waste money when we win and find something to spend the money on and don't regenerate it into the next one. thanks. host: thank you. let's hear from don in south carolina in sumter, democrats line. hi. caller: good morning, pedro. my first concern is with impeachment, of course, impeachment. the house of representatives needs to impeach trump and send him over to the senate. i had two concerns, i know the senate will never prosecute but that doesn't matter to me, the two things that concern me are first that i want on record every individual in congress that has voted to support trump who is a facist and is trying to destroy my republic and
secondly, if everyone thinks the 2020 election is going to be an uncontested election, you know, trump is already demonstrating, look what he said in new hampshire, he's not going to accept the results of an election that does not put him in. the facts won't matter. the only way we're going to get him out is through impeachment. host: back to impeachment, how do your representatives and senators stand on this issue? caller: i talked to jim clyburn and also i contacted the judicial committee head and all that and they're all for it. it's nancy pelosi thinks this election will get him out. and she's wrong. host: that's don in south carolina. we heard earlier in the program on stephen lynch on topics of impeachment. another town hall that took lace featured kathy rogers and
serves the direct and was asked about the samueler report. >> there [video] >> there was not obstruction of justice leading to impeachment. impeachment offense is a criminal offense and would be the case for any president. that is the standard you want to apply to any president and that standard has not been reached. we spent two years and millions of dollars and was not conclusive. i have supported legislation. we passed the election security act last year that was to enhance penalties when there is a foreign government that is involved in our elections, because we all agree our elections are foundational to our democratic republic and i have to have confidence that the elections are fair and secure. we're not going to have the
peaceful transfer of power if we don't have confidence in our elections. and so the election security act was signed into law last year. and we need to look at other ways -- we're continuing to look at how do we make sure our elections are secure? host: that's representative kathy mcmorris rodgers, washington state, a republican. earlier on you heard from the department on the topic of impeachment. that could be one of the topics that comes up when it comes to your top issue for the member of congress that you have. we will devote the program for the similar topic and make your thoughts known, if you want to -83000 for -748 democrats and 202-748-8002 for independents and 202-748-8001 for republicans. amy rosenberg reports for the
philadelphia "enquirer" and did a recent story looking at andy kim of new jersey and the topic of impeachment and joins us via skype. good morning to you. guest: good morning. host: can you set up the context of the town hall and how impeachment played into the discussion? guest: andy kim beat a republican in the midterms. he flipped that seat, tom mcarthur, a trump alive republican in new jersey, tom mcarthur held one town hall where he had been criticized pretty harshly over health care and never held a town hall after that. and andy kim said i'm holing a lot of town halls and kept that promise. this was the 10th town hall. a firehouse in burlington township, new jersey, suburb of philadelphia. he held one before where he had a lot of questions about impeachment but the feeling he had going to this was that town
all and after robert newlier testified and thought it would be of interest to the district. he started out talking about the economy and he's very concerned about the indicator as a possible recession. there's poverty in the district he talked about, 18,000 hungry children. he talked about guns, another issue that's of a concern to him and his two young children. but the first question and repeatedly after that came back to impeachment. there was a lot of concern in this town hall. just kind of general concern about what are we going to do about the situation and so by the end of it, i think andy kim basically said, you know, i hear you. he's not come out formally for impeachment proceedings. host: because of the position he takes, was he asked about that by those constituents why he hasn't taken that position and if so, what was the interchange there? guest: yeah, you know, he generally supports the investigations.
he basically has the same position now he had a year ago during the campaign, which is let the process play out. he saidso, i think he was frusty someoneachment because -- one of the constituent said we need a clean slate. he said do something. impeachment is the solution. slate.s no clean there is issues that he wants to focus on now, in the future, regardless of what happens with impeachment or elections. he is trying to focus on local issues. the economy is of concern to him. military issues and issues affecting military spouses. there were other questions.
there were questions about gun legislation. there were questions about climate change. a district hard hit by hurricane sandy. there were questions about affordable housing. the requested -- this one question about reparations. there were other questions. it repeatedly came back to, what are we going to do and why won't stance. a firmer host: there's a quote, i know you are angry but i want to nature we understand impeachment will not wish away a lot of the problems we face. tost: he is in congress focus on issues where as he put it the rubber meets the road. he feels like he can make a difference. he can talk about his frustrations with this toxic climate in washington. he is one who believes in collaboration and returning across -- reaching across the aisle. he wants to have a meeting with people of all parties.
started to talk about the general climate in washington. there was a lot of frustration in the audience. i did not get the sense that this that -- that these were activists. they weren't people on twitter. to get himm helped elected. one woman said she wanted a clean slate. whata general sense of, are we doing about the situation in washington? the guy wants to talk about specific issues. his feeling is, the clean slate -- even if you tried for a clean slate, then what? the issues he has to work on after the election or after any impeachment proceedings. anything. minimize impeachment is a decision like going to war. he doesdoes not see --
not see a need to take a stance for impeachment proceedings. his district is right down the middle. democrats in burlington county, he won by a very slim margin. his district represents a lot of different viewpoints. this is who we wants in the campaign as well. he did not want to take a stand during the campaign, now he feels like investigations are proceeding. host: as far as reelection efforts, is he currently undergoing that, and how are these issues impacting that? guest: his campaign could not have been closer. basically they played to a draw on election night and it was decided days later with mail in ballots. there was a lot of activism that helped push them over the edge just barely. campaign, he was pretrade
as a policy liberal. now he has aligned in a more modeler -- moderate way. the republicans, they have a isal republican official who contemplating running against him. it is going to be another tight election. that heyou would say wants to represent everyone in the district. there are a lot of specific issues to the district. a lot of seniors, military, retired military, military spouses. he is concerned with very specific that she has worked to get money for overpass leading .o the joint base retail issues that affect people. his bigger issues are climate change, the economy, guns. which were an issue in the town hall, but i think repeatedly the questions came back to
impeachment. what are we doing about the situation in washington? it was a general kind of question. there was not a lot of specifics about impeachment. there was one question about election security. election officials literally carrying the cartridges from one place to another on election night. he wanted to know, is that at risk? is there some risk of it being hacked? it was a general what are we doing about the situation. there was a general feeling that -- is an option that people wanted him to explore. i saw last night another freshman representative -- people came with signs and were chanting about -- urging her to support impeachment. she is also very middle-of-the-road freshman democrat. who flipped a seat.
, similarly tos representative kim. host: this is amy rosenberg. she writes for the philadelphia inquirer. her story appeared on the website around august 14. you can read it and others of her writing. thank you for your time. thank you for the perspective. guest: thank you. host: again, we are going to continue taking your calls on your top issues for congress. it might be issues of impeachment, it might be other issues. you can call and let us know. maine, independent line. go ahead. george, you are on the phone, good morning. george, good morning. from the main? .k, we will go to ralph ralph, go ahead. caller: the reason i am calling is i think they should call in the national guard in all the
cities that are having gun problems and take every car and pull it over and if they have guns in the car they are not supposed to -- if they are doing everything legal like they are supposed to -- you should not have to, but we have got to do something. we can't have a guy pull up alongside of you and shoot you through the window. it is ridiculous. that is the approach you want congress to consider when it comes to the issue of guns? caller: it is something to think about. we have to do something. dealers --he wherever they buy it at, it has got to be transferred -- -- as long is everything slagle there's nothing to worry about. if you have a permit to carry a gun, no problem. do it on the streets. host: ok. we will hear from richard in
massachusetts. caller: good morning. things is -- about once a month i call him and there are two women in particular, their mailboxes are perpetually filled and they never return a call. called -- one particular time. i was at a political dinner. there were 125 of us. we were in tables of eight. the subject of drug abuse came up. just about every person in that son, daughter, grandson, or someone they worked with die from an overdose of drugs. killing the cream of the
crop. it is killing people under 30. the ones we should be protecting. i call up on different subjects, and they are usually important. .llegal aliens massachusetts has over 100 95,000 illegal aliens. over $108 billion a year. it cost the average household $880 a year per household. lot ofs an awful important issues. and they are worried about name-calling, and they are worried about foolishness. awaynly way to square it is to bring in term limits. int: ok, that is restricted
massachusetts. john is next in port orange, florida. caller: good morning. thank you for this forum. talk about the immigration issue and specifically our policy of zero tolerance. i believe that zero-tolerance is another way of saying intolerance. if you look that up in the dictionary, intolerance is a psychological disorder. our government is being t of people that they should be showing love to. more love andhad less intolerance, we would have more success in finding ways to defeat this issue. host: how would you like congress, or specifically your representative to respond to the issue?
caller: with love rather than hate. with inclusion rather than division. people -- weng have divided this whole country. this is clearly a divide and conquer strategy. president, whos is intolerant of its own people. everybody. include if you can only represent a -- his job is to represent all the american people. not just 40%, or 38%. he needs to include everybody in this discussion. host: john in port orange, florida talking about immigration. -- heard from mark to sunday the topic he brought up on his town hall. let's hear from scott perry, republican of pennsylvania. he serves the 10th district.
one of the topics of a recent town hall of his was illegal immigration. >> [video clip] tax dollars6 your going to support illegal foreign nationals living in pennsylvania. 1.3 billion. you wonder why you have a property tax problem? there is part of it right there. invite and take in more immigrants in the united states than any other country in the world. over one million people a year. more than any other country in the world. all we are asking is that people respect our loss, come through the ports of entry, and i'll bide by rule. there are a lot of people that are abiding by the rules, and they are being disrespected by letting other people just walk past them and go to the front of the line for employment.
taxes going to it is appropriate, but wholesale abuse of our taxes -- i cannot support. [indiscernible] i don't support the status quo. i didn't ask you that, asked you about the children being killed at the border. >> they are being cared for as best we can under the circumstances. finish.u will let me it was never set up for 5000 people a day to come in between the ports of entry. our system was set up for people to come through the ports of entry so that we can determine if they were coming legally or not. 30% of children that are coming over are being trafficked.
host: on our republican line we will hear from michael in maryland. go ahead. caller: thanks for having me. i think one of the most important things to talk about is this woman omar. she had made statements a few months ago about the power of the israeli lobby in america. i think that should be investigated with the same scrutiny they used to investigate trump collusion. they have such a rep on our -- they have such a grip on our policy, they should investigate that. it is an important issue if a foreign country has so much say over our congress. if we go to work, you know? i think that is one of the most important things to talk about right now. i think it is more important than immigration. getting to the root of the
problem. we have got to slow down things at the border, but if they want to stop gun violence i think another good thing is that -- start listening to the will of the majority, and not the will of the minority. we should not have the minority impose their will on the .ajority thank you for having me. is in tennessee, republican line. you are on, go ahead. i was calling about all of this money they spend to try to impeach trump. all of this money they are spending over there where they are getting -- representatives senators and congressmen are getting good medicine. good doctors. all of that stuff. but what are they doing for the old people? all of this money they are spending they could take care of the people that worked all their lives.
and can't be took care of because congress and the house are blowing the money trying to find out something that is stupid instead of trying to work together to make our world better. host: when it comes to the focus on older americans, what should congress focus on? caller: they should focus on people took care of. that they can get their medicines without having to do without a meal. to get the -- to get their medicines, they have to go without a meal because when they take the medicine they skip a meal or skip a day of medicine so they can get their food. but, who cares? ain't none of them even ever address the elderly. not a senator nor the congressmen address the elderly.
host: have you had a chance to talk to your representative specifically about this issue? caller: now, i haven't. i did not figure it would do any good. with pelosi up there trying to be in charge and running her mouth. stuff. to care women's we are sitting here -- couldn't get our medicine. what good is it going to do for us to say anything? host: ok. rosemary in pennsylvania is next. i think it is scranton, pennsylvania. caller: correct. i just wanted to go back to impeachment. nadler representative should drop it. we are having an election in 2020, whether it is senator warren or paris that is going to go up in front of trump. i do not think impeachment is the right way. it was 12 democrats on mueller
steam, and they could not find russian collusion. there was no crime. september when the horowitz report is released, --gress will look into how , are all inthe dnc this to undo an election. host: that is rosemary in scranton, pennsylvania talking about impeachment. florida story in the phoenix talks about florida pot democratic -- florida's democratic issues and how the delegation is responding. mitch berry wrote the story. he joins us via skype. good morning. guest: good morning. what arguments were presented in terms of impeachment to the delegation? what were the responses? guest: the momentum has died ine as best as i can tell
terms of democratic activists who were pushing for this. when ted deutch came out a few weeks ago and said that he was for that, that was considered a major move. for a long time, we had one impeachmentpport of that was stemming from the orlando area. and then we had powell from south florida come out. in then deutsche came out the first week of august. and then we had the shootings in el paso and dayton. -- theanged in terms of action of representatives to talk more about doing stuff. they are not talking a whole lot about impeachment in some of these town halls. they are focusing on guns and trying to push mitch mcconnell to come back to d.c. and pass expanded background checks.
which of course is not going to happen. at least not until september. momentum, which has never been strong, has dissipated. side oflustrate the gun what is going on. what are you hearing? what is being said to representatives? give us specifics. guest: they are responding. a saw last week there was national event in terms of gun control events. members debbie wasserman schultz and ted deutch held rallies pushing for aggressive gun control members. murphy from orlando also was talking like that. the republican delegation here basically -- in february when we had the background checks bill, the two of them the democrats pass, there were republicans who
voted for those. two of them are from the -- delegation. support of subn -- of expanding background checks. buchanan sent a letter to mitch mcconnell immediately after the el paso and dayton shootings calling for mcconnell to bring that up in september. -- who served in afghanistan, is against assault weapons. he is a rare republican to talk like that. he is against the red flag laws, which seem to be the thing that is gaining momentum with republicans. take -- acourse would lot of law enforcement to take away guns from people who work -- who are considered to be a danger to themselves. both of them are u.s. senators, rick scott and marco rubio have
-- have of red flag come out in support of red flag legislation. happened, it was the first time in a generation some of the legislature here past gun control measures not all. -- on thatething level, red flag laws seem to be something that most republicans i have seen are in support of. democrats want much more. they have been talking a lot about that. host: from what you are hearing from representatives, how does that reflect in the districts they serve? do they go along with what the senator or representatives? districts you are seeing in support -- there are only a few real competitive districts. the folks you are seeing their are all -- the democrats are doing that in terms of st.
petersburg, he has also been very strong on talking about work gun control. that used to be a very close district. saying -- with three did -- you're not seeing too many members of congress go against the delegation. we are very divided here. we have got 14 republicans, 13 democrats. for the first time in over a century, republican senators after rick scott defeated bill nelson last fall. theirill be going out of way in terms of where we expect the state to be on issues like guns, which are controversial in florida. we may have our -- next year on band assault weapons, that would
be a battle royal if that gets on the ballot in terms of but we will see happening politically. it is pretty much divided along where -- are at. host: because you are in florida, in a general sense this immigration come up with these discussions? that ted --, ad member of the freedom caucus, he has been talking about a worker program. [indiscernible] we have been hearing about issues at the border, and various other things going on. southas been big here in florida. homestead, where up until recently we had a couple hundred children, migrant children being held. we saw the democrats have their
debate in miami. several candidates come down -- right now there is nobody down there right now. they are reports that using that again in the fall. he is talking about worker programs. i have not seen too much itcussion about this issue he is talking to producers and constituents, he wants to get a nationally verified log going. he wants to make sure that there is basically, you put something out there and try to get american workers. if they are not going to come around, you can get migrants to get these jobs. that is a very different tone be are seeing in our state government which has been stridently anti-immigration in tallahassee. nationally, members of congress
it has not been an issue. members of congress are talking about health care, maybe not as intensely as they were. republicans are threatening to dismantle the affordable care act. issues, --n veterans from st. petersburg met on el paso county met tocan -- and they talk with veterans about issues like suicide, and health care issues. is a very big military community in the tampa bay area . thatis something congressman crist and young talked about monday. what you arely,
hearing about these topics, how does it compare or contrast with the newly minted governor desanto's? he came in and essentially said -- the freedom caucus and was a strident campaign last fall against andrew gillum. he won barely by a little over half of a percent. measures, he has got surprisingly high marks because he had that she has not been as overtly conservative as rick scott was. but he has been pretty conservative. he has thatis where federal perspective on immigration and why states here -- when we passed an anti-sanctuary state bill, it is considered harsh. here.divisive overall, i think he has got some
of the strongest poll ratings in the country for a new governor. the expectations were that he would be coming again -- coming in stridently conservative. is a center-right state. certainly tallahassee is. it is following along -- pretty much has not had -- .here is a lot going on certainly in florida politics. he is a tough surrogate of president trump. that can't be dismissed in terms of trump consistently coming .own here prognosticators were telling me that trump has to win florida to win the election. say --s is, some would [indiscernible] it is an interesting ride so
far. host: tell us about the florida phoenix. guest: the organization's been around for a little over a year. we cover policy oriented stories here. we encourage people to read it. ont: mitch perry who reports matters of politics for the florida phoenix. you can find his story at floridaphoenix.com. of washingtonhour journal, we are going to talk to you about the top issues for your member of congress. you have heard a lot of topics discussed this morning. you can add yours to the mix by giving us a call. (202) 748-8001 four republicans. (202) 748-8000 free democrats. , (202) 748-8002 . several people posting on pace book -- facebook.
done is whatyer they put on facebook this morning michael schroeder said tax the rich, term limits for congress and to end the war. throwing people in jail for victimless crimes, keeping high taxes and being the world police are top issues for him. says when it comes to a top issue that they would bring up to a member of congress, mandatory voter id laws. you can compare, contrast, give us thoughts on social media and phone lines. allentown, pennsylvania, democrats line, thanks for calling. tell us about the top issue you have your member of congress. top issue i had, and i wrote senator pat cooney about this, is that i considered and have been large about for the trump's --ars, about what i view as trump's inability
in being theency president. i am alarmed that a president can call people names, something that i did not do after the sixth grade. he is noted that taking advice from his foreign-policy advisers on many occasions. and i wrote senator pat toomey about this. cannot be somebody who has the ability to act as a president should. what can be done? and i received the most insulting letter back. and the letter gave me a civics lesson, and eighth grade civics lesson on impeachment. he did not once address my concerns, nor my question. and i think c-span should be
aware of that. kathy int is allentown, pennsylvania. we will go to west virginia next, mark from call will -- caldwell. a reallyhanks for interesting show today. i have to say i echo a lot of your colors. it goes to show how many critical issues there are facing this nation, and also the world, but if the government of we the people, by the people, and for the people is to survive, we have to have bipartisan support and allow a vote, my friend mitch, on election security. most of the other problems i think can be taken care of if people heed the words of mahatma gandhi -- every man's need but not every man's greed. host: independent line, steve is next in burnett, texas. caller: i just wanted to mention something.
i think the biggest issue is all , rushght-wing lies limbaugh and all those. it affects everything. it affects the way people think. it affects -- like let me give you an example. for example, say, immigration, they will say democrats want all borders open, but that is not true. the only problem with all of it tothat if you say we need ,hange a line, they will say "your interfering with freedom of speech." host: why is the topic an issue for congress? caller: i don't know how anyone else could do a thing to change it except them. be they can figure it out. i don't know how to stop it. host: how would you see it
changed if you were to address this with a member of congress? caller: i suppose maybe they could do something to, you know, make them tell the truth. i don't know what. i don't have any answers. sorry. host: bob in tennessee, republican line. caller: i think congress should work with the president for the better of our nation. let's open the battlefields back up. hold on. caller.u are still on, go ahead. what did you mean by that last statement, though? caller: i mean we can't settle nothing. simple. we try to, and then nothing happens. you know, we just stay ripped apart with one another. i mean, this president is doing the best he can. there is no man can take what this guy has took. i give him all the credit in the
world. for you toop issue address the congress is more cooperation with the president? that is what you would like to see? caller: right. and what is he doing so bad? trying to get jobs back to this country? i mean, what policies has he done that has really hurt? all the christians love the ideal that he opened the embassy up in jerusalem. and if you said something, i'm sorry. i did not hear what you said. your point. howard in north carolina, democrats line, salisbury. caller: top of the morning. i see congress as trying their best to do what they can do, that you have a president in there that say one thing and do another. you had a caller that said something about omar, when she said something about all the benjamin's, and they need to do an investigation. it seems to me that sometimes people forget the one who is really causing the problems to
the jewish people are the all right, the neo-nazis. the peoplethey are going into synagogues and shooting the people and killing the people, going to concerts and killing the people, going to schools and killing the people. you want to investigate a woman for saying all about the benjamin's, that i do not hear many white people saying we need to kick the neo-nazis and the clan group -- the klan group out. this would be a better place if we did investigations on these radical groups. host: massachusetts is next, jackie from weare. independent line. caller: thank you, i am a first time caller. i am calling with my concern about gun violence. be gun there should control. i recently emailed my senator, senator markey. and one of the bills on the is gun violence prevention
research. i think that is crazy. i don't think there needs to be research. i think there needs to be action. namely, some bills that will stop the violence. host: do you think congress will do anything on these issues of gun control? caller: well, i have done a little googling, and there is over 100 bills right now that sinceut out there january, and nothing is being done, as we all know. nothing is going to the senate. alreadyapologize if you mention this, but have you heard specifically from your representative and senator on these issues? --ler: yes, he did get mac back to me in and email. i'm sure it is his staff, not
him. is thisg he said research act, and i don't think we need to research what needs to be done. i think we all know what should be done. i would say background checks number one. perhaps a weight period. -- a wait period. and we definitely need a ban on assault weapons. talkingat is jackie about her experience talking to her legislators on issues of guns. -- a democrat and california serves the 24th district. a recent town hall on a variety of topics. came uphe topics that was the effort to keep guns away from certain people. >> i don't think anybody is trying to disarm you. [applause] all the laws that are being promulgated or that i have
supported, or others that are being considered by the house, and hopefully the senate takes them up, are an extra tool that helps us root out individuals that have no place owning or purchasing guns. felons. as long as you are not a felon, know this. as long as you are not displaying that you are a danger to yourself or others, you are good to go. but if you have -- if you have been a domestic abuser, if you have -- [applause] , ifou have violent felonies you are a danger to yourself or others, you are the person that these laws will target, no other law-abiding citizen. [applause] you can take the message that
those are already in effect, so why didn't it stop them before? no law is a panacea. these are all little tools that just help prevent a little bit more. it's -- it's wrong to say that any of these laws are going to absolutely prevent a shooting, but together they make things a little safer. host: this is from bismarck, north dakota, independent line. david, good morning. caller: you know what they need to do with this, with gun laws? just use some common sense. years, all the shells i could have in my gun is five. that guy who had killed all the kids in sandy pope would only
,ave been allowed five bullets he would not have killed probably any of those kids, as he had to use a magazine or two to go through the bulletproof glass. its use some common sense. i don't know how long it is going to take, at this country is not going to put up with this slaughter of people for no reason whatsoever. assault weapons should be banned. i remember back 25 years ago they were banned, and folks brought them back. there is absolutely no excuse for anybody to carry an assault weapon. host: have you had a chance to talk with your representative or senator about these issues? caller: i will whenever i see them. i certainly will. , if it is ok to carry an assault weapon, it is ok to carry a nuclear bomb or a hand grenade. what is the difference?
that thes the thing second amendment is to protect yourself, i am sure there are people, if it was allowed, they would carry hand grenades on their belt. host: david in north dakota. again, for the program this morning, we are talking about top issues you have for your member of congress. you can continue to call us in this hour. four republicans. r democrats.01 fo you can post on twitter and facebook. we will post these at the top -- we will take these calls until the top of the hour. we have been talking about town halls and interactions between members of congress and their constituents. running us to cover the pennsylvania delegation is the washington bureau chief for "the pittsburgh post-gazette," daniel noir, joining us by a skype. guest: thank you for having me
on. host: your recent story has the headline "washington clears out in august, but lawmaker work continues." give us a sense of what is going on in pennsylvania districts. what interactions and topics are coming up? what members of congress do back home is a few categories. you brought up the town hall. that is a big part of the august recess. schedule aome and big room in a local community people with microphones ask members of whatever is on their mind. i was at one last night for congressman conor lamb. people were asking him from abortion to gun control. host: let me do this for you.
we are going to try to get you on a better connection, or get you on the phone. get to you in just a couple -- we will get back to daniel moore either by skype or by phone, whatever makes best sense. until then, we will hear from john in new hampshire, republican line, in berlin. go ahead. your top issue for congress. toler: thank you for getting my call. my first issue about gun control somebodyofficer and who knows something about the constitution -- i studied it in school -- this issue really aboutto educate people the fact that the second amendment is to protect your family, the right of self-defense, the right of self-defense, and the right of a person to protect himself and his family from two radical government. and this government is in trouble. that is what it is all about.
there is too much ignorance out there in the general public about what our god-given rights are. i am saying that a nut that is a danger to himself or to others is not a responsible citizen that should have access to a gun. also, a felon is not a productive citizen, a law-abiding citizen, and should not have access to a gun, simply put. now, when it comes to social security, i am tired of hearing about how they are going to .educe it in 2021 to 70% and they want to do away with it. we hear all this baloney about how congress and the government is running out of money, yet they never run out of money for welfare, for weapons, for bombs, for what they want to get done. it, and neither
should the american public. i think we need to let these people know. come, folks, to march on washington if need be, and protest and let them know what we think. is john in berlin, new hampshire, joining us on the line. joining us also, daniel moore of the "pittsburgh post-gazette." we'll start with the start -- what have congressional meetings been like back in pennsylvania? guest: like i was saying, there are a wide range of issues people in pennsylvania care about. certainly, speaking to the topic some of your colors have been calling in about -- the gun legislation has been one of the biggest issues here. people on both sides of the issue -- people who are afraid that there is going to be gun legislation that affects their ownership of firearms, and there and want who show up
representatives to pursue assault weapons bans and background checks and other policies. ad of course there is potential that house democrats come back from recess early to push through some more legislation. that is a direct response to interacting with constituents, i think. i think that is part of the point of the august recess, is for members of congress to come back and meet with constituents and hear from them directly. when baked things happen during the august recess, and members are in town hall meetings, that can actually have an influence on their viewpoint and can shift views on big issues. host: you mentioned guns. what about the topic of impeachment? has that been a team from things you have heard or at least covered when it comes to these temples? guest: -- host: when it comes to these town halls? guest: yes, i was at a town hall
for cumbersome conor lamb, representing the pittsburgh suburbs, less night. there were people wearing andeach trump" shirts pressuring the congressman to support impeachment proceedings. it is something he has not been willing to do yet, and he has not joined the hundred or so democrats that signed onto that. i imagined the house democrats that have not signed onto that are probably hearing a lot from their constituents on that topic. far as mr. lamb's experience, representative lamb, when he said he was not on board, what was the reaction from those in attendance? guest: there were some people pressuring him on impeachment more than others. town halls that everyone comes with their issue. people who wanted him to support impeachment were pretty angry. they sat down and shook their heads and could not see any
compromise on that issue. there are people who wanted to talk about medicare for all, which is something else mr. lamb has been hesitant to support. other moderate democrats have been hesitant to sign on to that. people were very angry and could not see any middle ground there. like i said, these things, these meetings and town halls, can actually influence a congressperson's stance on an issue. it will be interesting to see what happens when congress comes back to washington in september. host: one of the town halls you profiled was mike doyle, democrat of pennsylvania. he looked at the topic of climate change. guest: he did, and that is dother thing lawmakers during the recess. the kind of pull out issues they really care about. 's perspective, it was framed as more of an
expert panel on climate change. he brought in some local professors and people who know a lot about the science. they come in and they give their testimony. and mike doyle shared some of his things that had been going on in washington, and the things he cares about. and then there are questions from the audience. kind of pet issues, things that members of congress care about, they can talk about those specifically. what about the senators from pennsylvania? what have they been like? a much interaction are they having back home with the constituents? definitely, senator bob casey of pennsylvania keeps a very busy schedule. be in moreseems to than a dozen counties of the state, in all corners of the state. senator pat toomey, republican of pennsylvania, has been very outspoken on the issue of background checks, to your point
about gun control being a big during the recess. he came out the first week after the shootings in el paso and dayton and push his background check legislation with joe democrat of west virginia. he has been very vocal and outspoken on that topic. moore covers the delegations of pennsylvania for "the pittsburgh post-gazette." talking about members of congress on the august recess. post-n find his work at gazette.com. guest: thanks for having me on. host: we will go back to calls. republican line in beachwood, ohio. thanks for calling. talkr: i would like to about the russian collusion for a second. whether you like donald trump or you think he is the devil, what fox news has been reporting for a number of years about the dossier, about this being a set
up, and about the new inspector general's report coming out -- my problem is the media. have "the new york times," "the washington post," and mass media that did not want to cover these facts. "the new york times" as an example, with the best reporters out there, the best facilities, that do not want to follow facts, we are all in trouble. host: let me ask you how that translates for a top issue of congress, which we are talking to our folks about. what is the top issue the congress should address? caller: what congress should address? most of these people in congress basically knew what the facts toe years ago, and just want continue pushing their narrative. that is my problem with congress. and i am sorry if i have nothing else for you.
have a nice day. host: sean in lakeland, florida, independent line. good morning. sean in lakeland, hello? caller: yes, sir? host: you are on. go ahead. caller: i wanted to talk about facts, you know, and history. we got this thing where america has always had violence. americans are violent people. i honestly believe if it was any other demographic doing these mass killings, something would have been done. but since the 1940's -- i looked this up. killings aress done by white males. this kind of ties into this immigration thing, because america,th history,
besides being violent -- that labels.ays had somebody has to be capitalized on. if you are going to capitalize on someone, it is the low man. host: what should congress do? caller: they could start by enforcing the law on the books. it is specifically said if you hire someone that is illegal, you lose your business license. i called in and spoke with a congressman a couple of months ago and i asked him that question, right? what are you going to do? he punted that all the way down the field. they do not want to do anything. the way the capitalist system is set up, they can do anything.
if they get rid of all the cheap labor and actually had to pay everybody $15 plus an hour, the economy would crash and the system won't work. the only way we got to where we are now is because of slave labor. the slave made america what it is. host: we will leave it there. charli in indiana, democrats line. caller: hello. my biggest concern about my congressman is that he is just so unavailable. a recess, ihere is call his office to find out if there will be a townhall meeting. -- always host: who is your congressman? caller: trey hollingsworth, and he is not even from indiana. he is from tennessee. he and his wealthy father looked around and tried to find a house he could possibly win, and the found this in indiana.
bit,led the office quite a and i tell them my concerns, and they say that is fine, and i say , do you not want my contact information or my name? i feel like they are not even writing it down. i am a visually impaired individual, so i am unable to email him, because on his website there is one of those funny little picture things you are supposed to solve. well, i can't do that. i have asked him about this five or six times, to please change that so their website would be accessible to everyone, and that has not happened either. it is very frustrating. call the've said you office frequently. aside from accessibility, what is the top issue you call about? caller: gun control is a big one. .lso, impeachment stand up to this president. we just don't hear anything from him, and it is just quite frustrating. int: that is charli
bloomington, indiana, talking about issues of access. dallas, texas, republican line, we will hear from pat. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i guess i am irritated about impeachment. first of all, the mueller report did not find that trump or his campaign was in a conspiracy with russia. as far as obstruction, mueller said he did not find any crime. if it was too close to the election, they would not take it up, and the senate would not convict him. ,s far as that being an issue as far as i am concerned, it is a nonissue. i thank you for taking my call. your did you call
representatives are senators about the impeachment question and the mueller report? caller: sure i have. host: what was the response? caller: well, they are in agreement with me, because my senators are ted cruz and senator cornyn. my representative in congress is also a republican. he is new and i am not exactly sure of his name. i have not contacted him. thatt get real irritated it keeps coming up, as it is not going to happen, and he has not -- if theing to be general public, the public that vote in 2020, if they think it is a big issue, he won't get real life. that is my comment. pat from dallas, texas. this is maxwell from powhatan,
virginia. caller: good morning, pedro. the thing i would like to see done is the constitution updated , that qualifications be filed for the president of the united states. they should have an fbi background check and a cia check for top-secret clearance. not to give them the clearance, but to be able to say there is would notthis person be able to pass that clearance. it really worries me that you could have a leader from the united states that i guarantee you would not pass the cia clearance test. host: that is maxwell, last call for the segment, but we will continue with the topic of how congress does when it comes to engagement with constituents, with brett finch, the president
and ceo of the congressional management foundation. topicl talk about that when "washington journal" continues after this. ♪ ♪ >> saturday on booktv at 7:00 p.m. eastern, in "our women on the ground," a look at the challenges female arab and middle eastern journalists have while reporting. toall the authors were able push through whatever barriers they have an right honestly about their deepest struggles -- and write honestly about their deepest struggles. it is such a raw and honest account of grief and loss. it also reflects the state of the arab world today. this is an uplifting book. eastern, at 7:45 p.m.
a princeton university professor on race, gender, and class in america. her most recent book is "breeze: a letter to my son." >> the reality is i have to arm them not simply with a set of skills and intellectual tools that allow them to flourish in values,and ethics and but also a way to make sense of the hostility that they encounter every day from people istimes whose responsibility to treat them as community members. bozell on his book "unmasked: big media's war against trump." all -- >> all modicum of decency has been cast aside, not from donald trump to his opponents,
but from his opponents to him. they call him far worse things. they are attempting to do far worse to him than what they accuse him of doing to them. they have no right, none. >> watch booktv every weekend on c-span two. "washington journal" continues. host: this is brad fitch, president and ceo of the congressional management foundation, here to talk about engagement. how does congress do it, these august periods engaging with constituents? guest: a lot of people are of the impression that when congress goes to recess they are out playing kickball. the congress has to response abilities, legislative and representational. during the august or made recess, they are fulfilling that .art of that job they are engaging with citizens and their constituents in a variety of ways. they could be town hall
meetings, one on one meetings, sessions on a particular topic. you heard the one member of congress who was focused on climate change. it is a great opportunity and this is where members of congress recharge. this is what they like doing. they would rather be in their districts talking with constituents than talking to their colleagues in washington. only time theyhe get prime time with their constituency? guest: the house schedule changed dramatically in 2011 one took over. cantor they took a poll of the members of the house of representatives and asked, what do you like and not like about how the operations ran crist and mark the greatest complaint with the uncertainty in the schedule. you might have a vote on a friday, you might not. is recess going to start next week? they instituted a calendar which the democrats have now adopted since their takeover. they have more recesses and there is more certainty in the schedule. they not only have more recesses during may, march, easter -- you
also have occasional fridays and mondays when they will have three day week in washington and four days back home. that gives members of congress and their staffs the opportunity to schedule advance on those fridays and mondays. we have seen reporting from congressional offices, an increase in the amount and quality of interactions they are having since 2011. that what are other ways members of congress could improve interaction with the constituency? like to see them leverage technology more. a town hall great, but largely symbolic. you can get 20 or 30 people at the average townhall meeting. one person doing this well is a congressman of california, one of the winners of our democracy award for transparency and accountability, in part because he live streams his term for meetings and events and interacts on social media as well. you could be at a town hall meeting with cumbersome and disarming -- with the congressman and ask questions by facebook and he will take it.
that allows him to be more transparent to tens of thousands of his constituents as opposed to 10 or 20. host: direct interaction -- is that an issue? guest: ideally you would want a member of congress to have a one-on-one meeting with all some hundred thousand constituents they have in the house of representatives, but that is not physically possible. the technology makes it easier for constituents. our research shows the public likes it. frankly, they like the anonymity sometimes. i don't have to be seen at a townhall meeting. in social media or a live streaming environment -- the citizens like the convenience and the little bit of the anonymity. that the wrote in part basic principle is that members are using technology wisely to reach tens of thousands of constituents. legislator can only meet a fraction of their district, but
through technology, they can reach large numbers. is this by facebook, by other means? guest: in the last 10 years, technology has changed significantly. first, telephone council meetings are terrific. telephoneeople knock town halls. we did significant research in 2017, and they are just like regular town hall meetings. hoc series ofd questions. the only difference is you cannot yell at a lawmaker, which i know some people want to do, but not usually a good part of the democratic dialogue. they started using telephone town halls area house members can on average get 6000 people into a telephone town hall. increasingly, there are technologies available for online town halls, where the experience can be more robust. the member of congress can percent video, powerpoint slides. there are citizens participating in an online environment. another cool thing about it is it is very quick.
when you are logging into an online townhall meeting, you can do it like that. if you are trying to call out to 20,000 constituents, that might take the phone company 20 minutes to get through. there is gratification for the constituent that they are right in an environment with a member of congress. people stay longer. they are voting with their feet. it will stay longer on the call. that is a much more robust interaction between citizen and congress. host: we are talking about engagement between constituents and congress with bradford fitch. if you want to ask him questions, it is (202) 748-2002 for republicans, (202) 748-2001 for democrats, and for -- pendents guest: we try to improve the operations of the individual office by giving them best practices on how to interact with citizens, and we also train
citizens through associations and nonprofits to have better understanding, relationships, and and considerations with congress. hopefully as a result, congress works a little better. host: what is the most common complaint a congressperson hears about this type of interaction? guest: it was very much along the lines of what we heard in the last half hour. they do not feel that congress is listening to them. sometimes that is a valid point in the congress does not do a very good job of communicating that they are listening. here is the irony. they really are listening. when we ask what are the most important factors in making a decision, listening to constituents is usually listed as the number one answer. the problem is there are a lot of lawyers, and they like to fill up a lot of their responses legalese andnd legislative research. that is not what the constituent really wants. they want to understand and hear
that they had been hurt. we did one survey and asks the public, if your member of congress did not vote your way, but communicated to you that they were listening to you, something like 80% of the american public would be ok with that. i think that is a really important message for congress to hear. they do not have to say yes to everybody, but they do have to say i am listening to everybody. constituent engagement -- guest: you are looking at their entire district operations, about 45% of a congressional staff. there is an office full time interacting with constituents, or someone in the legislative operation that is helping manage all the constituent communications that are coming in. the average number of communications have continued to go up. the average house office will get 50,000 to 60,000 emails from their constituents in a given
year. an office can get 150,000 in a year. that is extraordinary. that is the challenge congress is facing. they have seen no increase in personnel to answer the mail since 1978. host: is there a sense that a person would probably feel like if i really wanted to get my my congressperson, i have to call the washington, d.c. office rather than the district office? offices arehe usually set up to collect constituent communications, whether it is district, d.c., and the same with email. if you want to make sure your voice is heard, speak with your own voice. if you get a message from an association or nonprofit or a cause you believe in and they're asking you to contact congress, personalize it. tell your story. talk about the impact on your community. this shows significantly more impact on lawmakers, and they generally want to hear from
their constituents. gauge ofthat as a public opinion. members of congress are the best pollsters in the world. if they get the answer wrong, they lose their job. that is a real incentive for them to stay in touch with their constituents. host: our first call comes from don and huxley, iowa, republican line. good morning. go ahead. caller: hello. guest: good morning. caller: yes, this is don from iowa. host: what is your question? caller: first of all, talk about the gun situation. democrats have put forth the wrong deal. they want to get rid of guns altogether. just before heat started war. he went and confiscated all the guns. the guns are there to protect us, our family, period. i want to talk about something else, the conscious --
conscience. the rhetoric that is going back and forth is because of something that is called a conscience. conscience what that said. the meaning of the conscience is the ability to know right from wrong, period. host: ok, thanks. a commentctually had on the gun issue, because one of the frustrations that the gun control community has is that you often see this public polls showing that there is public support for certain measures , and forward in congress members of congress have not followed those polls. research centers did a survey looking at both people in the gun control community and the second amendment rights community, and they ask the question -- have you done the following in the last few years, contributed to a nonprofit organization related to your cause, contacted your member of
congress -- a series of civic engagement. i a three to one margin, second amendment supporters are more likely to have engaged in that activity. lamentable as it sounds, the reality is members of congress are being responsive to those constituents who are actively engaging them. not set up bywas the gallup organization. they are not simply supposed to put their finger to the wind and decide if a paul says this i am going to do that. if we had that, we would not need a congress. we would just need really good pollsters. they are supposed to interpret. i interviewed a member of congress specifically about the nra for a book about citizen engagement. his reply was it has nothing to do with political contributions. it is whether i think they can mobilize people. in the gun control debate, there is still a significant differential on the citizen engagement side. i have actually seen -- i was sitting in a senate office when there was a boat coming up on the gun debate after sandy hook,
and i coincidentally happened to be there. the phones were ringing off the hook and there was nobody calling in favor of a ban on assault weapons or on background checks. it was all from people who are in favor of second amendment rights. i think that is a very important lesson to people who want to engage their lawmakers. if they do contact their lawmakers, by and large, they are going to listen and pay attention. california, independent line. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. for mr.ome questions fitch. first, you are a very fast talker. second, i want to know who supports you, how you are paid, who your supporters are. with regards to my representative, he was elected , and his only platform was based on sanctuary cities,
amnesty for all, pathway to citizenship for all illegal immigrants, and i am very opposed to that. i think california has become a total mess. watch recently- got a big election fraud case against teleport you. and i am very concerned about this. i listened to a snippet of his he reallyence and the talking other than speak of both parties, "illegal immigrants contribute to the society and we need them." guest: first, i will slow down, so thank you for that advice. secondly, i applaud you for participating in a telephone town hall meeting and being engaged. i think that is the first step citizens need to do.
stay engaged and keep your member of congress accountable. frankly, that is your job in our democracy. to answer your question about the funding of the congressional management foundation, we are a 501(c)(3) charity. we get our funding from a variety of sources. we do not have an earmark. we are not chartered out of congress. we work on a fee for service basis. individual offices or the institution will hire us occasionally to do work. are funded by foundations, associations, and nonprofits who want to access our research. they range from the garden variety, from environmentalists to companies to trade associations. florida, democrats line. caller: my question is can anyone contact mitch mcconnell who want present the gun-control bills? guest: i will try to tackle
that, mary. the people of kentucky -- i often get questions, frustrated constituents. you asked me what are some of the frustrations people have. they are frustrated they can't contact members of congress who cannot represent them, from another state, or a committee chairman, or in this case the leadership. unfortunately, your complaint is with mr. madison, mr. hamilton, and mr. washington. we are in a representative democracy, a republic, not a parliament. members represent their constituents. kentucky, youm can contact your representatives and your senators, and senator mcconnell is certainly, from all i have heard, responsive to his constituents of kentucky. he would not have been in if you wasis long not. i do run into people who are frustrated. but that is, good or bad, the
way our democracy is set up. filtering out non-constituents -- people will complain that they have to enter a zip code and address to get on him l through, and they have filters filtering out non-constituents. we have always had these filters on capitol hill. i just used to call them interns. when i interned on capitol hill in the summer of 1983, that is what i did. i looked at the address. i looked it up. we put it in a pile for the letter to be answered. our constituent, we stamped it "referred" and went down the hall to the member of congress. a contact about military benefits. i received a form letter letting me know how much he appreciated veterans. guest: the form letter. they do not get a direct personal response to the issue
they are engaging in. that surprises me a little bit because usually members are a little attentive to those types of medications that come in. people are specifically looking for benefits, or they feel there has been a miss justice, injustices happen. we are looking now in the house of representatives, incoming email ranging around 23 -- 23 million to 25 million communications. each office in the house has two or three people trying to manage that. that is part of the problem. they feel they are forced to reply with a form email. we are now examining better ways, 20 -- 21st century ways for congress and citizens to a more robust -- this is a system that was invented in the 1970's and 1980's, and clearly it is not working. host: in kansas, republican line.
you are on with our guest, bradford fitch. caller: i want to know are you paid with basically tax-free money? it is a tax-exempt foundation? guest: we are a 501(c)(3), so we don't pay taxes. we are a nonpartisan organization, so we do not take a public stance on issues. to be fair, we have taken only a few positions on public policy issues. one of them, we took out a position last year in favor of paying interns. he also took out a very controversial position this year in saying that members of congress should be paid more. they had a pay freeze since 2011, i believe. byy have lost buying power 16%. we did take a policy position we think we should pay our public anvants and ongoing -- ongoing decent wage. caller: my question is on the call in town halls.
i quit listening to them because i felt that the questions were -- they were asking him were scripted, meaning he was only answering questions he wanted to answer. anything controversial never seemed to come up, and i was getting disgusted with it, so i quit listening to them, because i figured they were just scripted. mike kelly, republican, pennsylvania. host: hold on, our guest has a question. hast: i was led to ask who never of congress is. i know congressman kelly tried to have a robust telephone townhall meeting schedule, and it -- we researched and found by and large they are like regular townhall meetings. i know it may sound scripted, but that is because the constituent has written down the question and want to frankly not sound stupid in front of thousands of people. but by and large members of
congress are simply taking the questions as they come. they might batch them in categories to make them a little more interesting. about the complaint telephone townhall's, i think members of congress frankly need to improve a little bit in the communications skills, pedro. they seem to be very sort of oriented toward the policy angle too much. they are policy wonks. i get it. that is why they went to congress. that is their job. but they should be more free to discuss the humanity and the value systems than the motivations -- and the motivations that drive them as public service. host: part-time halls usually free-for-all or confined to certain things? guest: they are both. the ones confined to particular topics are usually better, and may provide information in advance. there have been town halls on have been crisis that very successful in the sense that they have been able to
discuss very difficult issues in their communities, and that has been successful. the ones that do happen that are -- it is because the member of congress likes that interaction. unfortunately, in the last two to three years, the number of in person town halls have gone down because many groups have turned them into protest opportunities and have interfered with their neighbor's ability to talk to members of congress. that they are still there and people would be shocked at how toile -- how few people go town hall meetings. a senator last year or so had a townhall meeting, one guy came, and they talked about net neutrality for 45 minutes. if you do take the time to go to a townhall meeting with a member of congress, you might have a robust conversation with your elected official. host: joseph, hello. caller: good morning. my question is i tried calling some of the congressman, and mr. fitch, ims. mr.
appreciate your explaining that covers people are interested in constituents more. i tried to email people in l.a. because we were traveling to visito visit their -- there. i was ignored. you explain that carter thicke people are interested in their constituents, but i am interested in seeing what the congressperson or staff has to say about their district, which i know countries people are very proud of their district. going to hollywood and everything like that. what i want to know where to go eat. what art objects they have in their district to visit. it is out of the ordinary to be able to use a congressperson in that factor from another state. could you explain to me why -- what better way to communicate to get this kind of information that most people won't ever get
to see things that they are very proud of? for, iswhat my call is to get some answers about that. what am i doing wrong? guest: that is great, joseph. you brought me back to my days .orking on capitol hill what most americans don't realize is that people do view their congressperson as a full-service provider, everything from tour guide to restaurant critic. and we got them all. i tell you, if you contact the district office, not the washington office, the district office of a member of congress and say you are going to be visiting that district, it is tough because you are not a constituent and they are both legally and morally obliged to focus on their constituents. the district call offices and just say i am going to be in the district and need some advice -- the respondent may not be able to help you, because it is usually a young intern or a staff assistant, so it is a bit of a challenge. it does demonstrate the
full-service perspective that most americans do not realize congress does try to provide. most of them are complicated problems -- immigration issues. i am being deported. i am losing my house. it is heart wrenching. you would be amazed at the herculean things that congressional offices can do to help people in those situations. host: from falls church, virginia, randy, republican line. ready from falls church, go ahead. caller: yes, sir. i worked on the hill a couple times. the first member i worked for, a onublican -- he allowed us constituent inquiries -- back then, it was snail mail, and it evolved into emails. we could call the constituent and have a conversation with them. i lived on the hill, so i would go in on saturday and just call
constituents. they talked about if they were concerned about, say, oil prices. the next thing you know, you are talking about the weather or traffic. and they would just be ecstatic to just get a phone call rather than a letter. guest: randy, you are preaching to the choir, and i am so glad to hear that. the member of congress was ahead of his time and that is a best practice we advocate for and encourage congressional offices to pick up the phone and call. it is more human. it is even more efficient. if you look at the mail processing in congressional offices, i think that is terrific. i also commend you for going in on saturdays. you are bringing me back here. i spent a lot of weekends on capitol hill working the office, the holidays as well. you would find yourself in the office. randy raises another interesting point of a constituent engagement. most americans think we are going to be interacting not with a member of congress but with the staff of congress, and they
sometimes feel that that is being pushed off. as you heard in randy's case, sometimes they feel they are getting that extra special treatment. i talked to one of his aides, and he listens to me. most of those interactions that constituents or staff have with constituents are going to be reported back to the member of congress. host: from new jersey, port monmouth, independent line. caller: good morning, pedro. thank you for taking my call. mr. fitch, i have attended many townhall meetings by my members of congress. i have found that the longer they are serving in congress, they take time in coming back to the district. they would rather stay in washington. i will give you an example. i am a member of the disabled american veterans. every february, we would go to washington to contact our members of congress. .ne was senator bill bradley i have setup up a meeting with
his scheduler a month before. on thedown to the office appointed day at the appointed time, only to be told that senator bradley is back in new jersey and will not be back until a tuesday or wednesday. only to find out that senator bradley was in his office with lobbyists from the airline industry. i have also attended townhall socials regarding security and how to save it. i asked a direct question. seniors sitting behind me more interested in coffee and doughnuts, not even answering questions. wet: apologies for this, but have to leave it there. we will let our guest respond. guest: i think that andrew you kind of got the experience of what the united states senate is like. unlike the house, they do not have a senate schedule and you can literally find things changing on a moments notice,
and that is a challenge for constituents, and a frustration. it is not but it is not, frankly, a show of disrespect. it is unfortunately the way the united states senate works. you can have a quorum call and a member of the senate has to be responsive and do that part of their legislative duties. but i assure you, andrew, they fulfillingrather be their constituent duties. the program it for today. another show comes your way at 7:00 tomorrow morning. we will see you then. ♪
>> washington journal mugs are available at c-span's new online store. nstore.org, check out the washington journal lugs, and see all of our new c-span products. leader chuckority schumer reacting to president trump's remarks about jewish voters. my fellow american jews, particularly those who support donald trump, when he uses a trope that's been used against the jewish people for centuries with dire consequences, he is encouraging -- wittingly or unwittingly -- anti-semites throughout the country and the world. enough. president trump said the other day that jews who vote democrat show either a great lack of knowledge or great disloyalty. president trump delivers remarks today in little, kentucky. we will have live coverage of that starting at 2:00 p.m.
eastern. also today, foreign-policy scholars talk about president trump's policy towards iran. that will be from the hudson institute in about an hour on c-span. also tonight, a conversation on climate change. --ew our scientists are a little bit unencumbered by some of the restraints they felt in the past to make this change. >> attribution science, which is seeing the fingerprints of climate change on events, has moved along in the past few years. feww years ago, our -- a days ago, our colleagues put out a piece on the european heatwave, saying that climate change made this more likely. i think we are past the point where we are seeing these heat waves, droughts, big fires out west where i came from, so
climate change is here and it is in our face. entirecan watch this event on climate change tonight at 8:00 eastern, here on c-span. and reminder, you can follow our programs online at c-span.org and listen on the free c-span radio app. with taxa discussion professionals on the future of the irs, including taxpayer advocacy, modernization efforts, and tax enforcement. and donfrom nina olson fort. the new york city bar association is the host of this event. >> thank you for coming out tonight. it is an exciting time at the internal revenue service. as i mentioned, our commissioner is coming up on his one-year anniversary. we've got a lot of new people at 1111 constitution avenue. the ir h