tv PBS News Hour PBS December 11, 2018 3:00pm-4:01pm PST
captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> woodruff: good evening. i'm judy woodruff. on the newshour tonight: >> i'm going to shut it down for border security. >> but we believe you shouldn't shut it down. >> woodruff: an extraordinary exchange in the oval office. president trump spars with nancy pelosi and chuck schumer over a government shutdown and funding the border wall. then, the trump administration proposes to rolls back clean water rules designed to protect streams and wetlands. and, we go behind the scenes of a new broadway play offering a gunique look at the daunt realities of raising a bi-racial child. >> there was so much about theve play that i'd seen or heard before, that i thought, "yes, this has to be part of our country's theatrical tradition.l
>> woodruf that and more, on tonight's pbs newshour. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> kevin. >>evin! >> kevin? >> advice for life. life well-planned. learn more at raymondjames.com. >> bnsf railway. >> consumer cellular. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions: >> this program was made possible by the corporation forc puroadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs
station from viewers like you. thank you. >> woodruff: a televised tussle over a border wall. president trump got into itop today with thewo congressional democrats, nancy pelosi and chuck schumer. the fight may push the federal government closer to a shutdown later this month. congressional correspondent lisa desjardins begins our coverage. >> 20 times, you have called for shutting down government. >> desjardins: welcome to divided gornment in the era of trump. the president, as he has done before, opened a tense- stakes and traditionally private meeting to the cameras. >> i'd like to not to see a government closing, shutting down. >> desjardins: but never before ha- we seen this kind of re time look at negotiations between branches of government, with president trump looking to
press his case for billions in funding for a border wall. >> we need border security. the walls part of border curity. you can't have very good border security without the wall. >> that's absolutely not te. that is a political promise. border security is a way to effectively honor our responsibility-- >> and the experts say you can do border security without a wall, which is wasteful and doesn't solve the problem. >> it totally solves the problem-- >> desjardins: and democrats looking to highlight mr. trump's threat to partially shut down government over this. >> one thing we can agree on, we shouldn't shut down the government over a dispute, and that's what you want. >> yes, if we don't get what we nt one way or the other, whether it's to you or a military, i will shut down the government. t and i am proshut down the government for border security, wuck, because the people in this country dont criminals and people that have lots of problems and pouring into our country. so i will take the mantel, i
will be the one to shut it down. i'm not going to blame you for it, the last time you shut it down, itidn't work. i will take the mantle of shutting down, and i'm going to shut it down for border security. >> but we believe you shouldn't shut it down. >> desjardins: congress has a long to-do list before thede december 2line to pass a budget. but the most stubborn block on that goal is the president's demand for a wall along the u.s.-mexico border. or the next spending bill he wants $5 billionhe wall. democrats currently are offering $1.3 billion, not for the wall, but for border security. but the real math problem is about votes. any funding bill needs support of democrats in the sete, led by chuck schumer. but house democratic leader pelosi questioned if mr. trums plan even has enough republican support in the house. >> if i needed the votes for a
wall in the house, i'd have them in one session. >> well then, go do it. >> it doesn't help because we need ten democrats in the nate. >> don't put it on the senate. put it on the negotiating. >> let me ask you this.do and we'rg this in a very friendly manner. it doesn't help for me to take a vote in the house, where isiill win with the republicans... >> you will not win. no it doesn't help to take that vote, because i'going to get the vote in the senate. i need ten senators. that's the problem. >> mr. predent, you have the white house. you have the senate. >> i have the white house; theis white housone. and the house will give me the vote if i wanted it. i can' because i need ten votes from chuck. >> let me just say one thing: the fact is, you don't have the votes in the house. ur nancy, i do. we need border secy. >> let's take the vote and we'll find out. >> nancy, nancy. we need border security. >> of course we do. >> dsjardins: and the politic are even more complicated. as democrats prepare to take over the house of representatives, pelosi is vng to be speaker of the house, though she has yet to clearly clinch all the votes needed. president trump seemed to nod to that, evoking fast response.o >> i aow that nancy's in a situation where it's not easy
for her to talk right now, and i understand that. and i fully understand that. we're going to have a good discussion, and we're going to nte what happens. >> mr. presimr. president, please don't characterize the strength that i bring to this meeting, as the leader of the house democrats who just won a big victory. >> elections have consequences, mr. president. >> desjardins: while few republicans echoed thees ent's shutdown push, they did charge that democrats are not serious about border security. senate majority leader mitch mcconnell reacted: >> it would be truly bizarre for them to decide they prefer a partial government shutdown to reasonable funding for national security. i would ems as through their party is more committed to political spite for the president, than to the public interest. >> desjardins: mr. schumer and ms. losi reconvened outside the white house after their white house meeting: >> the bottom line is simple, the president made clear that he
tints a shutdown. if he sticks to hion for a $5 billion wall, he will get no wall and he will get a shutdown. >> desjardins: that shutdown would impact about auarter of u.s. government agencies, including the state department, u.s.d.a., it would mean the closure of national parks and would mean fced time off for thousands of u.s. federal >> woodruff: and lisa joins me now, along with our white house correspondent yamiche alndor. hello to both of you. i think we've just been watching a white house meeting that went off the rai. yamiche, how do you understand that the president was so willing to air his strong differences with democrats in front of the-- the public, the american people? >> well, the president wanted to make his positn cristal clear, and he wanted transparency. he wanted to look strong before cameras. and this is a president who understands the media. he understands those moments are going to be played over and over again, and he was hoping he could puouh hard and he cld then come out on top and look
like he was someone fighting hard for bder security. of course, what he got instead was democrattings who were pushing back just as hard. i think the y moment was when he was talking to nancy pelosi, and mocking her, almost saying,y "loo're not speaker of the house yet, and you can't bend ." instead of being candid, nancy pelosi said, guess what, we had a big elevictory, and that went to the president's heart and i think the president is feeling a litoe woundedght as he thinks about how this t coverage-- hs really affects his white house. >> woodruff: lisa, what was the reaction from the capitol from republicans and democrats? >> there's plenty of it. let's start with republicans. interesting, judy, there's only one republican i've spoken to on the hill, lindsay graham who is on the sidehe president in everything he is saying. graham is saying, yes, heuld talk about the shutdown. it is worth it. otherwise, judy, republicans, very on a spectrum i would say ranges from stoic observation o the fact that the president operates like this often. two, those who are openly
uncomfortable with the prekisidt blame as a republican for a potential shutdown at christmas. they also admit he's someone who operates outside of space and tie politically so perhaps this is a case where the base is haplepy, unc. democrats, judy, they think this is a win universally for them. but, however, they have to make some real strategic decisions coming off the-- that they think resident talked about owning a shutdown. that's what they wanted out of this meeting, and thegot it. d woodruff: yamiche, we noted the president sa would be proud to own a shutdown. we understand his thinking and is he willing at all to consider compromise? id the prt thinks a government shutdown will help him politically. he is not willing tback down from all the sourcing that i've been able to gather today. the president has been pitting americans against imm today he said over and over again, immigrants are going to bring drugs to this. count they are going to be criminals. he said, "they're going to bring diseases to this countryr so this is asident that is
hoping if he takes jobs from thousands of people and shuts down the government th can do it in the name of pitting americans versus immigrants. and thists something tha worked at times during the midterm. you think of what he said in florida during the midterms and this idea that he ran that ad that was deemed almost too racist for both fox news and cnn and other networks to really put on their networks. so what you have is a dent who is doubling down on his strategy and hoping that this politil bet is going to p off. >> woodruff: and, lisa, i know ou've been doing some reporting on withether there's room-- if there's any room for apmpromise around the citol. what are you hearing? >> well, think about the strange situation we're in, jeweled nepargument is ove $3.5 billion which is a fraction of 1% of the fetal ral budget. seats really mostly a symbolic battle. we also heard th president perhaps tip off what many people, both parties think, would be the pivot point here-- what defines wall fng. today in this meeting he said,
"wall funding is important." and thi he stopped and sad, but let's say border security funding is important." so if the money goes to something like fenci cyber technology, those are the kinds of things that democrats are happy to pay ferr and vy likely, i think, to increase the funding for. one re thing, judy-- one x.factor next week. already members of ess are leaving town for good. i spoke to one member who took her final vote today. so it's not clear who would even be voting on this bill. and i also think to the president's assertion that he has the votes to pass, $5ll n in wall funding, it is not clear he does and speaker ryan himself would not directly say if the republicans have those votes in the house. so that's another problem for the president. >> woodruff: lease there was significant movement and announcement fromelitch mccothat he is willing to put criminal justice reform up for a vote. tell us just quickly what happened there. >> this could me very quickly. this is historic reform on criminal justice.
it does deal some with sentencing. ing it not as far as many democrats would like to go, but it is farther than we've seen ngress to go than ever before. expect it to move fast and expect us to talk about it more on this show. >> woodruff: all right, lisa desjardins, and yamiche alcindor, watching all these important things. thank you all, thank you both very much. and now for the republicans' point of view from the capitol is representative doug collins fr i georgia. also the house republican conferenpr vice chair. entative collins, thank you so much for joining us. we heard the president said today he's proud to own a government shutdow are congressional republicans proud to own the shutdown if it happens?th >> let's fram the way the president did. when he was confronted by chuck schumer who didn't want responsibility for putting american citize below a caravan and immigrants who were willinto go under and over walls, he said i'm willing to
have the argumutt aboho is being what here in he said i'm putting american citizens first. i'm putting security first. i'm putting the willingness to negotiate and find a deal. and mr.'chumer said were not going any further. we made our last remarks. the president said i'll have this argument, but chuhu r, like he did back in january, he has to realize he's putting americans below folreks who rying to basically break into this country. >> woodruff: what about your own vie though, congressman collins, do you think a government shutdown-- that it' worth a government shutdown to get $5 billion-- whatever the president is asking for, for a border wall? >> i think it's a time for us to come to this table and say we need aious discussion about this issue. we've punted on this one for a while. we've talked about this before. this is one piece about what is broken about our imigrati system. you cannot have a fix, whether it be issues of daca, issues of guest workers, issues of othwe thinneed in our immigration system that are viable, legal functions without hato deal
with how we handle our security. this has bece an important part. unfortunately, we have had a discussion on one or the other bunot both. i think this is something that is now time to have. it provides a discussion int to jum off to. nobody would say the best way t do this would do a shutdown. but at some point in time we have to come up to the reality these are deadlines that need to be met and if they're n met, the president is saying we need have this discussion now. >> woodruff: even if it ans a shutdown? >> at some point i think that's what we're lea tdi i don't think anybody wants that. let's remember, this is the first round of them sitng down. this is the first round of president who is a negotiator, who is a deal, who put things out there. look, everybody wants to have a clock somewhere. they want to have a clock saying h.the shutdown is so muc it's the way, unfortunately, this town has learned to operate. i'm ready o see us break out o this and have honest discussions about issues and i think the president laid that on the tabte y. and it was sort of interesting when you saw that mr. schumer was the one willing to negotiate while miss pelosi was wanting to move the cameras out.
that's not transparency. >> woodruff: let me ask you about what the president is saying. he's saying he wantaise wall. he wants $5 billion, give or take, for that wall. the democrats are now saying and we did an iewnter with steny hoyer, saying he thinks there could be movement on money-- in other words, for border security-- but not for a wall. would that be acceptable toss congnal republicans? >> i think the president has made his-- yod u know, we nthe wall. we need that security. this is about borr security. let's keep it where it's at. if that's the wall part of it, if that's the other functions of it, 're glad to see mr. hoyer is willing to come to the table and discuss the fact that security is needed. at this point in time i think what we need to focus on ishe we're inphase where it's time to fix this, it's time for the president-- as he has dontoe y-- to say here's my negotiating point. where do we go from re? if the democrats come to the table and say, no, we're not going to do that. and if miss pelosi is worried
about her position, are we're not going at it from a positione of th from either side. we need make sure the president, who has made it clear what he wants we're standing behind him. we have done in the house. and it's time for the sentoate decide who they're going to support as well. >> woodruff: do i hear you sayinghis is all the democratics' doing? the president doesn't bear responsibility forwhat transpired today? >> how many times have the media said we would love to know what goes on behind closed doors. why don't you tell us. and what was really interesting for me today is the president this is not something that's normal. this president likes to talk about it. he likes to have it out in public. what i noticed was interesting, as we discussed this, these are valid things to discuss. once the press left, they had more discussions about that. what was interesting to me they discussed this back and forth tt at a certaine there were some-- mispelosi in particular-- saying shouldn't we have this off caalra? there arays negotiations that need to be in private. those are things. but i think laying out the pframework of wheties are was important in this part.
and i think the president was right for that. t >> woodruff: inking of the musical "hamilton" and the song "i want to be in the room where it happened." but just very quickly, do you see compromise comg here? >> i think there's room for an opening. the president has always been one-- i mean, it's sort of been his trademark throughout his career-- it's the art of the deal, ying to find that way forward to make sure that we set-- his first commitment was always to bordeurity and americans and making sure we have what we need to then fixbl the other prs. i think there is room here. i think we're going to see the administration work toward this. i know the folks on capitol hill are willing to work toward that. we need to make sure we're putting thamerican people first. i believe the president is. it's now time for congress to get on in its negotiations. >> woodruff: reppist doug collins, thank you very much. >> always good to sud you, y, take ca >> woodruff: as we just heard, for the democrats' perspective, i spoke a short time ago to maryland cgressman steny hoyer. he's nancy pelosi's deputy, and the incoming majority leader.ov we wen where things go
from here, after today's oval office meeting. >> he likes theater. he likes playing for the camera. and very difficult to have any serious negotiations when you're, in effect, speaking to millions opef ople as opposed to just the president or the person you'reegotiating with. but it's a-- it's a tactic of his, and i think itt particularly productive. >> woodruff: it looks as if this is at an impasse in the last minute. is that what's gn now? >> well, it appears to be. you know, the president has said last year, he's repeated thi year, and he repeated three times today how he would be proud to shut down the government, that he was looking forwar and he would shut downtown government. and if he didn't get what he wanted, he would shut downtown government. i thawk that'fully unfortunate for a president of the united states, who is responsible for thexecutive department, saying, "i'm going to shut dun down government if i
don't get exactly what i want." none of exus gettly what we want, and shutting down the government should not be anal rnative. and as a matter of fact, i think almost every republican leader has urged the president not to shut down the government. we are prepared to fund border security. we blieve in border security. we need to make our country safe. what we don'telieve in is that the wall that the president propos to build, which he said was going to be paid for by the mexiovernment, we don't believe that's a very effective tool. and as a matter ofthact, we thine are a lot of republicans who share that view. so it is very-- unfortunately. >> woodruff: if i could disrupt intrupt. there is a significant gap between what the president is5 asking for, billion. democrats are saying 1.s billion. democrats have a responsibility here, too, as you said, botsih s. why not give more in order to reach an agreement? >> well, i think, frkly, if we had those discussions about
"give me some more money," if that would be focused on border security and making sure the border is secure-- i mean, he sent thousands of troops to the border to make it secure, which was very, very costly. so i think that would be a discussion we could hav but leader schumer and leader pelosi made it very cle that the wais not an option that we're going to vote for. now, he-- his party controls the house of representatives. it controls the united states senate. and if they can pass it, fine. that's-- they're in the majority. fut if they can't pass it, or i we can't pass something, then we need to compromise. >> woodruff: i do want o quote something that leader pelo said in a report back to colleagues at the capitol after the meeting. it's been reported she was talking about the president. he said it's like a "manhood thing for him, as if manhood could ever be associ
him."with end quote. were you there when this was said? >> i was not there, judy. i didn'tear that quote. >> woodruff: if she said this, is this the kinf thing do you think affects the working between democrats and president? >> well, i think there's nobody who uses rhetoric in a harsher way than the president of the united states and makes it more difficulto reach compromise, frankly, than prest ent trump. aving said that, hopefully, this is bigger than nancy or bigger than the preside. this is talking about the united states government staying operative, serving the american people, staying on guard for the people's safety and service. and we ought not-- we ought not to get into that rhetoric. what weute to get into iyou said he can't pass this bill because he can't get enough votes in the senate. i agree with that. that's correct. he's correct on that point.
therefore, he wants something, and it's necessary for him to compromise. he says he wants something to keep the borders sec fure. we ar that. i'm sure we will agree to addional-- additions to the budget to better secure the borders. what we don't believe is the ll is good policy. and it won't work.d perts make that point to us. and, therefore, we are prepared to compromise on money, but we're not prepared to compromise the end that he wants to seek. and if he had the votes, he could do it.ve he doesn't the votes. he needs to compromise. >> woodruff: house minority whip representative steny hoyerc thank you veryh. >> thank you very much, judy. >> woodruff: in the day's other aws, the u.s. senate pass farm bill worth $867 billion over ten years, after months oat stalled negons. it includes billions for farm subsidies, and it reauthorizes conservation program
but, it also rejects stricter limits on food stamps. the house could vote as soon as tomorrow. the environmental prection agency called today for rolling back federal ptections for thousands of waterways and wetlands. farmers, developers and energy companies had sought the move. envinmental groups condemned it. it is aimed at obama-era rulesat that g expanded the reach of the "clean water act." we will have the details, later in the program. in charlottesville, virginia, a jury recommended a life sentence, plus 419 years, for a man who killed a counter- protester and injured dozens at a white supremacist rally.el james was convicted last week of first-degree murder. he drove a car into a crowd at the 2017 rally. the mother of heather heyer, the protester who was killed, spoke outside the courtroom today. >> i'm kind of running throughou 50 different emotions all at once.in bottomis: justice has him
where he nds to be, and my ughter is still not here. and the other survivors still have their wounds to deal with. so we've all been damaged permanently, but we do survive, do move forward. >> woodruff: a judge will issue the final sentence aara hearing in. british prime minister theresa may began a mission today to rescue her brexit deal i parliament. it faces strong opposition over a so-called "backstop" provision that could leave britain subject to european union customs rules indefinitely. may sought reassurances on that point today, from dutch, german and e.u. leaders. james mates of independent television news reports. >> reporter: stop three on a frantic, some might say even a desperate, diplomatic dash across europe. in a parallel universe, this evening, she wld have been celebrating victory in parliament and a triumphant,or rly brexit. instead, she is now pleading with leaders in brussels for something, anything, they caner
giveo stave off e miliation. >> whatever outcu want. whatever relationship you want with europe in the future.s ther deal available that doesn't have a backstop in it. but we don't want the backstop bto be used, and we want certain that it is only temporary. >> reporter: at crack of dawn peis morning, prime minister mark rutte had jon his bike and peddled over to meet her. it's fair to say no one had quite been expecting to be dealing with brexit again today. the greeting from perhaps asitain's most sympathetic ally on the continentarm, but little was on offer. "well, you can't refuse someone a cup of coffee," said the country's foreign minister, rather pointedly. by lunchtime, it was berlin, and a red carpet hastily rolled out by theerman chancellor angela merkel. the message from the germans as relayed through their europe bnister: it's good to tal they definitely won't be open to negotiations. at the european parliament in
strausburg, almost word for word the same from the commission president. >> there is no room whatsoever for renegotiation. but of course, there is room, if used intelligently, there is room to give further clarification. >> reporter: if the british strategy is once again to try to win concessions in other european capitals that they have failed to win in brussels, it's likely to be met with the same failure as it's done throughout this two-year brexit deal when they all meet together in a single room in the summit on thursday, mrs. may seems certain to face once more a e.u.-27 speaking with a single voice. >> woodruff: that report from james mates of independent television news. in france, a gunman killed atfo leas people and wounded 11 near a world-renowned christmas market in strasbourg. ambulances rushed to the scene and police spread out guoking for than. they identified him as a possible extremist wit
criminal record. thedunited states today retu three revered church bells to the philippines, 117 years after they were seized during the philippine-american war. they were taken from a church in balangiga in 1901, after llagers killed 48 americ soldiers. the u.s. army killed thousands of filipinos in retaliation. today, a u.s. military cargo plane unloaded the bronze bells at a base in manila.th u.s. ambassador there said it closes a "painful chapter." >> the bells of balangiga are now home in the philippines, where they belong. secretary lorenzana, please take igem to the people of bala to the church of san lorenzo. may they ring in peace and bear testament to the ties and values which bind our two great nations for generations to come. >> woodruff: the u.s. captured the philippines in 1898, during the spanish-american war, but filipinos fought for
independence for sevore years. the country gained independence finally in 194 a canadian judge granted bail today to meng wanzhou, chief financial officer of chinesent tech guawei. she now faces possible extradition to the.s. for allegedly violating sanctions on t an. the judge set bail.5 million and ordered meng to asurrender her passport aee to electronic monitoring. meanwhile, canadian officials confirmed that a formedian diplomat has been detained in beijing, appently in retaliation. and, back in this country, wall street had another see-saw day. in the end, the dow jones industrial average lost 53 points to close at 24,370. the nasdaq rose 11 points, and the s&p 500 slipped one point. still to come on the newshour: the c.e.o. of google faces congressional questions about privacy and its relations with china.
the e.p.a. moves to drastically roll back water pollution regulations. how the department of education aims to correct paperwork errors that left teachers with thousands in debt. and, a look behind the scenes of a new play about the challenges of raising a biracial child in america. he >> woodruff: foretter part of a year, lawmakers have been waiting for a chance to question the head they've done with facebook and other tech giants. but google's c.e.ohas eluded that moment until today, when as john yang reports, he d a grilling on capitol hill >> yang: when the house judiciary committee finally had a chance to question google c.e.o. sundar pichai, lawmakers from both parties quickly hit him with a wave of criticism. from the right: allegations of
anti-conservative bias affecting google's seah results. and from the left: questns about the tech giant's commitment to stopping foreign misinformation and hate speech. in his opening statement, pichai quickly fought back against accusations of bias. >> i lead this company without political bias, and work to ensure that our products continue to operate that way. to do otherwise would be against our core principles and our business interests. >> yang: but republicans weren't buying it. steve chabot of ohio described looking up articles: >> i googled "american healthcare act."
virtuay every article was an attack on our bill. it wasn't until the third orag fourthyou would find anything remotely good about our bill. how do you explain this appareng bias on 's part against conservative points of view, against conservative policies? >> what is important here is, wo use a robust mlogy to reflect what is being said about any given topic, at any particular time. >> yang: committee chairman bob goodtte pushed pichai about the way google handles political ads. television and radio statilis must give cal candidates their lowest ad rates, but internet advertising is not subject tohose rules. >> should competing political candidates be charged the same effective adates to reach prospective voters? >> our advertising products ar built without any bias, and the rates are comparative, set by a live auction process. >> reporter: pichai seemed to struggle at times to persuade lawmakers. for their part, democrats had their own line of questioning. eric swalwell of california e focused orts to stop misinformation.
>> mr. pichai, part of russia's attack our democracy in 2016, it used ads on your platform, on's facebolatform, on twitter's platform. and money was provided in rubles and from russian add. what has google done to make sure this doesn't happen again? >> we did see limited improper actity and learned from that have been very transparent in our findings. >> yang: pichai downplayed bipartan concerns that google is exploring ways to re-enter the chinese market. the company is working on a search engine that would portedly allow for chine censorship of the web. >> are any employees having product meetings currently on this chinese project? >> we have undertaken internal effort, but right now, therare no plans to launch a search service in china. >> yang: privacy concerns were also very much on the mindspof lawmakers,ially apps that allow location tracking. ted poe is a republican from texas. >> so google knows that i am moving over there.
it's not a trick question. you know, you make $100 millio a year. you ought to be able to answer that question. does google know, through this phone, that i am moving over there and sitting next to mr. johnson? >> i wouldn't be able to answer without looking at theone. >> you can't say yes >> not without knowing more details, sir. >> yang: the hearing ends a year in which lawmakers have scrutinized several of the big tech giants, and indications are, it appears that will continue next year. for the pbs newshour, i'm john yang. >> woodruff: the trump administration propoe biggest rollback today in water protection since the clean water act was passed in 1972.ed the move woulde safeguards to millions of acres of wetlands, and thousands of streams asell. this follows an expansion of water regulations under
president obama that w hugely controversial. raunder the prior administtion, the government expanded the type of waterways that fall under federaprotection to include smaller streams and tributaries that feed into larger bodies of water. farmers, ranchers and developers say that resulted in essentially a deral land grab. the new rules will limit oversight substantiay, so that it will protect large bodies of water, the rivers that drain into them and arby wetlands. environmentalists are responding that this is a big blow against cln water. coral davenport has been following the latest developments for the "new york times" and joins me now. welcome so, coral, remind us what were the expanded regulations under president obama. >> so the obama regulation, it was called "waters of the u.s.," would have extended federal protections bond just these large bodies of water to pretty much every wetland, to all
streams, to streams that didn't run year round, and it would have required the users of land around that water to-- it would have put lot of restrictions on what they could do with that land. it would have created new restrictions on using chertmica, feizers, and pesticides for farmers and land developer because those things, of course, can run off into the water bodies. it would have created g mitations on certain kinds of plowthat farmers could do, how deeply they could plow, what kind o crops they could plow. it would require farmers to get permits from the e.p.a. to use their land in certain ways. so farmers, rural land owners, real estopate devs, all of them kind of said, "look this is-- this puts ag bi, you know, burden, federal regulation on how we do business." >> woodruff: so environmentalists liked it but there was a lot of push-back.
so what exactly is the trump administration doing? how much of all that are they pulling back? >> so the new tru it's proposed trump replacement water rule would keep iplace federal protection for major bodies of water like the chesapeake bay or mississippi river. ll covered. so are the major rivers that drain into it. and as you mentioned before, large wetlands that are directly adjacent to these large bodies of water so a wetland that is, you know, right next a beach on the atlantic ocean would be protected. stripped awa federal protection, are millions and millions of acres of wetlands that don'ta meet tht criteria. and many of these smaller streams that don't run year round be that sort of fill up when there's a rainfall, dry upo nothose are subject to federal protections anymore. >> woodruff: and so, the folks who were critical of what happened under preside obama, what are they saying right now? >> they are overjoyed. you know, farmers and lurl land owners who also, of crse, make
up president trump's political base, this is exactly what they askeanfor. they said, "we feel like now we can do what we want with our land. we don't have to gohe federal government and ask for permission of." so they g exactly what they asked for, and they're really happy. >> woodruff: now,vi nmentalists, coming from a different perspective, they are saying not only is this a rollback of what presidt obama did, but it's taking it back to what both presidents bush hadh done underr administrations. how do you explain that? >> yeah, so something the first president bush in particular doesn't get a lot of credit for is he did pass a lot of environmentalist initiatives. and hd-e campaighe was an avid fisherman, and he pmpaigned on protecting wetlands, and h in place some policies that were designed l make sure that, specifically, that there was noss of wetlands protection. and that policy was sort of further strengthened by his son, president george w. bush. this strips away all of those
protections. >> woodruff: so including what happened rgder geoh.w. bush and his son. >> yes, and obama. so it's a vy significant rollback that lifts federal protections, particularly on wetlands. you know, back to what it was t mon 20 years ago. >> woodruff: so what happens now? proposal. what happens next? >> right. so this is a proposal. it's open for public comment f 60 days. the trump administration will then take that publicnt com under consideration. it could revise or make changes to the ru . and at sopoint next year, they are expected to then issue a and then it's done. and then i would expect the moment that it's copleted, probably in the first half of 2019, we will start to see major lawsuits on behalf of vironmental groups, states, you know, groups saying, "this is going to lead to majorut pon of wetlands and waterways." >> woodruff: and you were telling us thtre ump administration expects that to
happen. do they expect they can win in court? >> they absolutely do.o but the timinthis rule is not accidental. the expectization they want to, you know, put out the final rule in 201ws9. ts get filed then. first it will go to a federal court. and thexpectation is that it will go before the supreme court some time in 2020, and this administration very much wants that to happen during the first term of president trump. they want to be able to-- this administration wants to be able to be the ones to defend this in front of the supreme court. buhathere is an expectationt this current supreme court, now with justiceselected by president trump and a conservative leaning,,ou kn there is a confidence that they will uphold this rollback, and a lot of other similar environmental rollbacks that we've seen. >> woodruff: interesting that they're thinking it through. >> yes. >> woodruff: to 2020. >> the timing, the timinab timis lutely a part of the think. >> woodruff: coral davenport
with the "new york times." thank you so much. >> great to be here. >> woodruff: across the country, teachers have been protesting for better working conditions and better pay. teaching still ranks among the lowest-paid professions in america. back in 2007, the department of education launched a program too help offset th of college or graduate school for teachers. but, as william brangham reports, that program instead turned into an economic trap.t it's p our weekly education series, "making the grade."he >> brangham:rogram is called the "teach grant program," and the idea was simple. teachers get a grant to pay for college or graduate school, andg in exc they agree to teach for four years in places where they're needed. but according to an investigation by national public radio earlier this year, some inflexible rules turned those
free grants into very costly loans. thousands of tchers suddenly found themselves facing potentially ruinous debt. one of the npr reporters on that series, cory turner, joins me now with an update to their reporting. corey, thank you so much for being here. before we get to the update, explain a little bit more whats e idea behind the teach grant program? >>ure. i mean, when congress passed and created this pogram, the intentions were good. the point was to try to get mreo young, talented teachers into schools that ed the most, low-income schools. so what the progr did was to offer federal grants to aspiring teachers to help pay for college or a master's degree. and in return, these teachers promised to do a couple of things: to tea a high-needs subject like math or science in a school that rves lots o low-income family. and they'd have to do it for four years the trick is there was one
requirement that has really caused a lotf the trouble, and that was the teachers ao had to prove they were doing this every year by submitting paperwork. >> brangham: and, roughly how bige these grants? >> so, we're talking about, a generally, f year, roughly $4,000. we talked to a lot of teachers, some got 1 or 2. we talked to several teachers who got 4. so we're talking $16,000. but once they're converted then from grants to loans, interest is added on. so oftentimes, teachers would s,nd themselves suddenly instead of grahey would be in debt to the education department $20,000. >> brangham: so you featured one teacher in tennessee, kaitlyn mccullum, who had this, took out ese grants, which unbeknownst to her turned into grants. tell us about her. tell us what happened with her. >> kaitlyn lives in columnia,
tennessee, and she had a problem that thousands of teachers had which is, as iaid, wh this paperwork it had to be sent in often time. often it was due, though, in the ddle of summer, when principals who have to sign it are away on vacation. the paperwork was really fairly complicated. we even found an int from the ed department where they called it complicated and confusing. sometimeses reminderses to fill it out were sent to the wrong address. kaitlyn, when she d the paperwork, she faxed it from her sceol. the loanvicing company said they never got it. she mailed it in, but the mailed in py arrived several days late. she appealed. she even got her principal to write her a letter saying, "we faxed this paperwork in on time," but these rules arely renflexible. they always have been. the program has been in place for a decade, ando her appeal was denied, and suddenly she found herself indebtedded more00 than $20
and she's been in forbearance, because she and her husband who-- u know, they're rule followers. he used to be a teacher, too. they're doing their best.th just couldn't afford to pay this back. so they went intforbearance. we said in our story, they even sold their house because they did the math. they couldn't afford it. they downsized, even though they have a 19-month-old, because they wanted toe able toy this back. >> brangham: let's listen to a little bit of how she described the feeling of this debt. >> >> brangham: your reporting showed that this was really-- real opened the floodgates of teachers all over the country complaining about this happening to them. and the department of ed promised that they were going to fix it. what did they do? yes, so the department of ed has offered a number of different fixz here for teachers like kaitlyn-- again, she had to
serve four years. ey all do she made it three years filing her paperwork. she got converted in her last year. tehers like kaitlyn, as long as they can prove retroactively that they met the teachingen requir of the program, regardless of what happened with the paperwork, they will bmade whole. if they paid interest, the ed a departmesures us the interest will also be refunded. we shuld also say teachers who can maybe only prove retroactively one, two, or three years of service, as long as there is still time for them, they can get back on trck and potentially be made whole as we o. so a coupdays another as we-- as we learned this news, mt reg partner, chris arnold, and i, we actually calledll kaitlyn mc up because we wanted to share the news. she was the first teacher we called. ( crying )
is>> brangham: that reall wonderful-- wonderful outcome to all of your good, hard journalismho for teachersre curious how they might proceed, where do they go? what do they do? >> first, ey need to be patient. the education department is still ironing out the details of this fix. they have assured us they will post them on their website by january-- by the end of january. i think the best thing to do t would go to our website npr.org/teachgrant. in our latest story we actually 'rve a link to the ed department page where thgoing to post all of this information. we also encourage teachers, if you want to go through this reconsideration process, share your story with us. there is a link in our story fur to do that as well. we'd love to hear from you and follow you as guthihroughs process. >> brangham: all right, cory
turner of national public radio, than>>you so much. hank you. >> woodruff: a new play broadway is drawing lots of attention this winter, and not just because of its famous leading star. it's a new drama that explores big issues about race, class, criminal justice and what it's like to raise a black son in america. jeffrey brown has a look at the intense story of "american son." >> brown: 4:00 a.m. the waiting room of a miami police station. a storm raging outside. >> jamal, dammit, where are you? i've been calling you four times, now five.n' you text me back? call me. >> brown: as the psoy, "american " opens, kendra ellis-connor
is desperately seeking news of her missing 18-year-old son, jamal.re >> t almost like a cage element, it's this room that we're trapped in. trapped in the nightmare of the play. wn: kerry washington pla kendra, a psychology professor, and a mother who's long lived with the fear of the dangers facing young blacktoen in americy. >> grow up! >> brown: washington is best- known for her role as e political fixer olivia pope in the long-running tv series, "scandal." she's also known for her off- camera activism, speaking out on violence against women and other issues. talking with her recently at the famed sardi's restaurant on broadway, washington said she felt a need to take on the role after reading the script by playwright christopher demos- brown. >> i know kendras. i've been a version of kendra. but i've never seen her, you know, in our canon. there was so much about the play
that i'd never seen or heard before, that i thought, "yes, this has to be part of our country's theatrical tradition." >> brown: co-star steven pasquale, who plays kendra's estranged husband, scott, an ghf.b.i. agent, also sees - than-usual stakes in this play. >> in america, i want to be doing work that sparks a nversation politically, you know, because i think we're on the wrong track. and i think this pla all the right and hard questions ofw everyone sees it. >> brown: "american son" unfold all in one spaom in the police station. it's a story of anger and pain now all-too-familiar. there's been a confrontation
between a young black man and police. something bad, very bad, may anve happened. as in this early scene between kendra and a young officer played by jeremy jordan, the racial divide isver- present. >> do you have a black son? >> oh, are we really going there? >> we've been there a while. "we've been there a while." >> brown: "we've been there." that's what you're saying. it's always there, we don't often talk about it. >> that's right, that's right. and i think thplay is such a great opportunity to be able to e lk about it. this thing with dience where you can really hear kind of the white audience, and you can hear the african american oe identifying audience, at times. because people laugh at different things, and the way that the character ol is- writte
>> brown: we never see jamal, of course. s >> we don't, but he belo everyone. we actually are reminded that in him, we all have a place in this story, of this american son. >> brown: it's a complicated place, though. with an interracial marriage that's fallen apart, husband and wife broug together out of concern for their son, but tangled in oldensions. >> the play can't succeed if you don't believe that the marriage s real. >> and good, at some point. >> yeah, good for a long time. and that the wheels come off when dealing with this issue of how to parent a child, a biracial child, in america. >> brown: also here, as we learn more about jamal and the events of that night: the values of both black and blue lives. we won't give away more here. the play is directed by tony award-winning brdway and film director kenny leon, with a s,ominent team of producer including shonda rhimes, a top
tv producer, of "scandal" d other series. reviews so far have been mixed, with some critics praising the performances and timeliness, while others have cited weaknesi in theng and structure. for these two actors, though, "american son" taps something more personal. s, i've been working on and off broadway for 20 yend broadway is really changing, and it's scary to me the direction it's goibe. it tends tore family- friendly, it tends to be a lot more, sort of "light," and so to be in something that feels like a serious piece of work, that asks serious questio a serious venue, feels really t.portant to a theater art >> brown: in the bio in the playbill, it says ctor, producer, and activist." do they go tether for you? are they all of a piece? >> i've always found a very organic connection between the work that i do as an actor, ando th that i do as an activist.
i think probably because our jobs involve stepping into somebody else's shoes, and and that exercise of is what leads to greater empathy, and respect for humanity. that respect for humanity comes with the desire to make the world a better place for all. >> brown: "american son" is scheduled to run through january 27 for the pbs newshour, i'm jeffrey brown on broadway. >> woodruff: finally tonight, author margaret atwood has just announced she's writing a sequel to her blockbuster novel "the hamaid's tale." in this preview from "that moment when," newshour's weekly facebook watch show, atwoodbo speaks her parameters for writing the original wor >> the rule that i set miles for the "the handmaid's tale" is nothing goes in this that
doesn't have a precedent somewhere in history or in re rl light now. and typically, they'd like to get theirds hann the labors of democracy, and then cancel them or subvert them. hitler was elected, but that was kind of it for elections. >> i've heard you say that before, that there had toe a precedent for everything, that this had to be within the human smorgasbord of things to do. >> that's right. >> why was that an important rule for you? >> becau i wasn't writing science fiction fantasy. i was writing spulative fiction like "1984." i made it a rule for myself that i wasn't going to make stuff up. >> woodruff: find all episodes of "that moment when" on facebook, @thatmomentwhenshow. and that is the newshour for tonight. i'm judy woodruff. join us online, and again right here tomorrow evening. k r all of us at the
pbs newshour, thu, and we'll see you soon. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> bnsf railway. >> consumer cellulin. >>ancial services firm raymond james. >> the ford foundation.wi working th visionaries on the frontlines of social change worldwide. >> carnegie corporation of new york. supporting iovations in education, democratic engagement, and the advancement of international peace and security. at carnegie.org. >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions and individuals. >>
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