tv Washington Week PBS July 6, 2019 1:30am-2:00am PDT
robert: president trump once again takes on immigration. but censusns quest remain unanswered. i'm robert costa. welcome to "washington week." ♪ >> president trump pays trite to the military and calls for unity following a week ofov controvers his fourth of july plans. president trump: we areopne chasing one dream and oneen magnifdestiny. >> washington remains divided and on edge about the 2020 census. and the president fights to include a citizenship question. president trump: i this very important to find out if someone is a citizen as opposed to an illegal. >> this as a federal watchdogsh es a light on troubling conditions at the border. an protesters call for my grant
detention centers to be st down. the consequences of questions and answered, next. ♪ >> this is "washington week." funding is provided by -- ♪ >> so happy. >> oh. >> whatever they went through they went through together. >> welcome, >> life well plan seesmed what a raymond jamesci fin advisor can do for you. >> babel, a real-life ro conversationam that teach nuss languages such as spanish, french, german and more.
available as an app or online. more information on babel.com. >> additional fundi is provided by kyu and patricia yuen, committed to bridging d culturferences in our communities. the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. >> oncemgain, f washington, moderator robert cost tasm robert: thank you for joining us on this july 4 holiday weekend. the trump administration pushed ahead wits census efforts on friday which have alarmed advocates for migrants and rallied his political base. but the inclusion of a citizenship question remains unsettled. the latest move coming dis after president trump broke with his administration's lawyers and urged a standoff came in a friday filing in a maryland court where justice department administration is pursuing a citizenship
question. resident trump also told reporters that he's considering an executive order to tag on that citizenship question even as the census is now being printed. president trump: we an add an addition on. we c start the printing now and maybe do an addendum after we get a positiveio dec we're working on a lot of things including an executive order. robert: ginning me, peter baker r "the new york times." am nana was, nationalpo corrent for the pbs news hour. shawna thomas, f vice news. and brian bennett, white house correspondent for "time" peter, we have the census here of paper, it's a piece but also a broader debate about the country, about its future. y does it mat her peter: it sounds like the wonkiest debate in washington st i whether one question
should be on a piece of paper. why is it fundamental? it's about power and money. the reason it'sbout power and money is because we divide america up into disicts based on this district of columbia yumet. paced on how people respond to thissen. -- to ts census. whether eff more money or less money depends on how many people are said to live in your community. some people won't answer the --e won't answer census because they're afraid of the citizenship question. the president said for the first time something very relegaling, for the first time he seemed to acknowledge that he wants bcitizenship to be theis for redistricting. right now it's based on total population. how many people live in a community, whether citizenor not. he seemed to suggest that he thinks it ought to be based on citizenship. which would radically change the balance of pow for the this country. robert: am in a, you report -- alm in a, you report on -- amna,
you report on thever day. peter said how this would stop some people participating in the census. amna: i think the possibility of a question like this which we haven't had since 1950 in this country tsaoed a little discontent, some fear, some well, there's always been a little bit of that among recently arrived immigrants. aboutngaging with feder authorities. how is this going to be used. there was a lot of that when this was raised particularly because of the anti-imgrant language the presidentan on, campaigned on, and has continued. some are saying even though the cestion may or may not be added to thesus, the damage may be done. wople who may be legally here, not just people are here as undocumented residents, people who are legally here, maybe seeking citizenship, may be a little reluctant to participate anyway.
ship even the plaintiffs in their filings the last couple of days mentioned this thing about if the president tweets what he tweeted out where they h to revorse course and say we are going to try to get the question in, thld c just from a media perspective cause more fear in those copmunities. will start to believe, even if the question isn't on that piece ofha paper, they think it's there. that -- even that can have a chilling effect on our ability to count the entire becountry. : and the census experts have said that. >> what they did is theymp ed it to what's known as the american community survey, something that goes out every year and does a portion, like a small mini census that uses prgorithms and math and things i don't understand tect how many people are out there they th put a citizenship question on there. compare that data, and say we think the reason less people respond here ishi because of question. robert: why is the president
doing this brian you s down with president trump in the oval office for a "time" c magazineer story. is this all about 2020, seizing on his signature issue? brian: there's definitely a political element to this.re thedent does best with his base and supporters when he looks like he's fighting for issues that he campaigned on. one of the signaturessues is more restrictive immigration policies. and king which fight looking like he's going to take every step he possibly can to get this question on the census, he's showing his base he's willing to fight for what he campaigned o that polls very well. it also keeps the issue in the headlines which his campaign is using toecruit new people and bud up their voter roles. robert: what about the executive border idea? chief justice roberts said they need a better rationale to get the court's support. e president is talking about executive action. is that a reality, legally and
politically? peter: i'm not surehy it would be different if the president signed the order as opposed to his cabinet, except it does make a difference in terms of time, the administrative process. there are things the commerce department, the census bureau have to go throw add the question that might not be apublic fble the psident signs executive order. if they get a quick ruling from the supreme cou , the argument would be they could move faster off his order. it als presumably imputes his power more rm. goes directly to the president's article ii power under the constitution, which he's chiefc of the eve branch, not the commerce secretary, not the census bureau that might give it more authority with justices who carecu about eve authority. shawna: they will go to court again. they'retill in court without it. even if he has an techtive order, someone will sue thavepl at happens with almost all his executive orders. they may fast track it. ckthey fast t this because the government said it needed to
start printing in july. robert: you say they'll keep sue, in pa this is because critics of the president's position say the rationale has been underscored by scored ed from computer files from a republicanhe strategist, late thomas hoffler who died last summ. his estranged daughter found hard drives who said if republicans moved on the census in this w way itld help them politically. last feeling aamong the president's critics who are in court that the -- shaw: it's for discriminatory purposes. that is how they feel. justice john robts didn't allow -- basically, the government has already said, or e courts have sor of said we don't totally know if we agree with that rationale. that's not why john roberts sent this back. but it does seem the judge in e can go now is saying w into scory about whether it is discriminatory or not. that's already part of the case. robert: you look at the citizenship question, it was
included 50, 60 years ago in the census beau in the whole document. what do we know about why it was taken off?th e's reporting from nbc that it was because they wanted to make sure people marties pated. amna: that's right. the goal -- to peter's point originally, this how we figure out where the mungos. erever the mungo the power follows. america is a completely different country today than it was back 1 in0678 they recognized that and decide participation was more important thanermining citizenship at the time. that's why the a.c.s. filled in the blanks on some of the citizenship questions. i don't want to get lost in the conversation that the administration's original rationale for i putting that the case they publicly stated from the commerce secretary o down was this will help us enforce the voting rights act. that's why we're including this. we want to protect minorities. robert the chi justice said that was contrived. s commerretary wilbur ross is he on thin ice with president
trump? peter: president trump was asked that and the president said no, he's comfortable with wilbur ross. robert: do you believe that? peter: i don't believe it. i think this causes a rift between the two of them, they've been at odds before when wilbur ross came up with some bad line headline for trump. this creates another strain. i'm sure there's a feeling from trump that wilbur ross could haveiven many different explanations for why they were going forward with this question. one that would hold up bet for the court. robert: wasn't he just following the law? boip trying to -- brian: trying to find something that wouldtand up for the court. it seemed transparent on its face. didn't need, you know, the lost files from theepublican consultant to understand that there is aal potenartisan motivation here. both parties try to game the system as best they can forct redistg exercises, we're
about to have a once a decade countil that influence -- influence who controls the districts an rewrites the t districts f next 10 years. of course a lot is at stake here. robert: what can democrats do? what are the option here? shawna: there is some talk, though i don't think thisould get through the senate that you could actually maybe write a law an say the desenall census doesn't include the citizenship question. but short of that, this is going to have to play out in courts. robert: let's stick with immigration. a report by the hseeland rity department inspector general warned of dangerous overcrowding at detention cent thore southern border. new york congresswoman alexandria ocasio cortez and other democratic lawmakers visited o detenti centers in texas this week and talked about the lack of food and showers and rents being separated -- separated from their children. >> there's abuse in these facilities. there's abuse. this is them on their best havior and they put them in a
oom with no running water. robert: president trump defended the border patrol on friday. president trump:orher patrol did not train to be doctors and nurses and janitorth 's not what they trained to be. they trained to be border patrol. that's what they're they're ding a phenomenal job. robert: does the i.g.'s report back up yr reporting amna? you've been at these. amna: 100%. what they were able to publish in pictures is what i saw on ths ground, i in detention centers in arizona earlier this ye h. what i'vrd from border patrol and other sources along the border too. while n this way for a and getting worse. i think what's most striking and i've covered immigration here for many years and also in oer countries. i've seen how it's handled, especially whenug eff r populations streaming across borders in unprecedented wave the language and mission statement coming from the highest lyels has v little to do with how to protect people and better process an serveem
it has everything to do with trying to keep people out. and not sen ang the funds resources where they're needed you hear that from border patrol too you hear the president echoing their concerns, this is not my job. we're using operational budget erto buy di and baby formula and kids' clothing to give to these people and they are not resourced for it. these detention centers are not built for this, it's not getting any better. robert: what's with t mixed messages on this front from the president? a few days ago he said the detention center would be a deterrent from people coming to the country. now he calls them nice. boip he wants -- brian: he wants them to be a deterrent. resident trump came into office they wanted to try to hold people longer. this pviously when families came into the country and were full enters they'd be released with a court orter to appear. so now they're just packing people into these detention centers and the conditions we have seen are terrible and
unhealthy. so whas the president doing? he has one policy which is acy pof deterrence. he's hoping that people will get a message to not come. which if y look at the numbers is not working. and then on the other side, he doesn't want to get blamed for it. so he says t's been a long pattern of doing. this but nothing on the scale trump administration. shawna: a lot ofry people to make the comparison to what happened in1014, 23 in the obama administration and a lot of unaccompanied minors. some of those the pictures we see now look like those pictu bus the obama administration was like, ok, one they were slapped down when it comes to holding people too long. need to send money to central america, we have to figure something out there. d two, they weren't putting in policies that made it worse. so part of the problem here, c.b.p. is not designed to hold people for more than 72 hours. part of the problem especially with children is that h.h.s.
secilities they're supto go to are overwhelmed as well. part of the reason they're overwhelmed go because the rnment has made it, even though this is starting to change, a little harder for sponstors actually like claim these kids. so then that causes a backup at well. as robert: the house judiciary and oversight committees anouned arings into these detention centers next week. will theee administration pressure about the centers? robert: i think they feel pressure but there's two sides of'rressure. if y working at the d.h.s., the pressure you've been feeling the last few months is from the president to be tougher, not softer. lld while this is obviously an optics problem as s a humanitarian problem and a problem on the ground with real people, ifou're looking at whether you're going to keep your job with d.h.s., the ticket to success s far has not been telling the president no we can't do that. no, we need to do something different. that's been the path out the door. so i think that it's going to be a rough couple of weekers in people who are d trying tol with this issue. money son the way.
d by the been appro president and by congress. it'll take a while until it starts cycli throughystem. in the meantime you'll see more of these pictures, more of this debate. robert: will people keep coming up from central america? you were on the veans way la border for pbs news hour, what's driving them to come here at t?this mom amna: that's a very specific situatio the country has been in a fee fall for years. i was on the brazilian side of the border where they've started to receive, in the lastwo years, a record number of imgrants. very different country, veryt differircumstances but i will say. this it was remarkable to see the difference in huh the brazilian government which bouy all a, etwo leaders considerimilar, he's considered the trump of the tropics, but they have understooded -- they have fund anntire effort there to say ok uric folks are fleeing something that isegimate, we understand you are going to come here regardless. we're going to do the best job we can in receiving you and
processing you humanely things asatimple as having available for people at their wis. c.b.p. dot have that. we don't have that in the u.s. and doesn't look like we'llave at any time soon. robert: beyond the issues of my grans come, there are new tengs on socia media. pro publy ka found a facebook page, they were joking about deaths, offensive photos of representative ocasio cortez. the acting second retear of d.h.s. called it disturbing and inexe. but there are all these issues from the census to the facebook posts to what's happening on the ground tat are inflaming the situation. amna: and it just points to the division that currently is in. this count shawna: i think the c.b.p. posts, it's one of those where you know that they didn't intend for that to become blic. it is improper. but also, i will say, they're
rmunder an es amount of pressure and it seemed a little bit like offensively blowing off steam. which all of us have done at some point or another. but -- it underscores the amount of pressure these people are under. robert: despite the on again, off again rain crowds gathered on the national mall on the fourth of july to hear presi trump pay tribute to american acheements since the revolution. the speech came after a week of debate over the military presence at the event and the r way taxpaye funds were used. president trump: as long a we stay true to our founders, as long as we remember our great history, as long as we never, ever stop fighting for a better future, then there will be nothing that america can can not do. [appuse] robert: as "the washington post" architecture critic philip kenicut t-noted the mall is fundamentally a kisk ratherhan milita space, centered with
the monoyoument to president lincoln. the president gave a standard, patrioti speech on theourth of july. but it was preceded by a lot o debate over those tanks on the mall, the military's wvolvement. wh the white house's plan all along? robert: president trump wanted a military parade. he wanted to take a holiday and have some sortf commemoration of the american military. i was theren france in 2017 when president trump sat on and saw the bastille day parade. orr two hoirssthaw etanks and militarytions come by. and he absolutely loved it and wanted to do something like that here. what was interesting was the way that the president -- was the way president tmp, two things, one, he didn't do what we all d expected him which was to politicize the speech. he's done that before on formal occasions where he attacked litical enemies or did other things that were beyond the ual decorum for situations
like that. e other thing that was interesting though was he was able to still make himself the center of the event. so at bastille day you didn't have the french president narrating the entire event. in tuas son, you had president trump speaking for nearly an hour, narrating thes historie this different militaryranches and when there were flyovers talking about them. he was still able to ke himself the cent over a military parade. robert: the nationalark rvice had to divert over $2 million in fees to support this and we're trying to figure out how much the pentagon spent. does the administration pay a cost or because of the i wayt unfolded without much drama in his rhetoric, does itade away? amna: the lack of transparency is nothing new. so how much we learn about where the money camerom, what was spent, may come out in the weeks t was ow but w unsurprising about the entire
event was that of a the titles that president trump holds in his office, command for the h chief been the one that he's really, really embraced. and for trump, the american narrative that hetells and t he runs on and that he constantly sort of very publicly has always revolved around the military. yesor it's a part of his constituency as well but it is or him the story of american power. it's american might and american strength and that's what we saw last night. robert: i thought about you, pete e, you ask asked the president about t g-20 about western liberalism. what did you learn about the president through this snevpbt as a student of thepresidency? peter: i think in some way it's what we learn t abrselves. think this is -- to borrow shawna's point about who we are and divisions in america'r if y a trump supporter you say what's wrong with this? it was the president sporte celebrating. he didn't ask for re-election
vote, zrnt a maga hat on he talked about our culturalil history, c rights leaders suffragist, and military.ng what's w with that? if you're not somebody that saworts president trump you like north korea reducks. you saw a -- redux. hi you saw som the president had to make it about himself, a narcissistic exercise. shawna: i found it interesting especially as a television news producer that he wanted the backdrop of the lincoln memoriad and n't get that because he put people behind him.-- and tha i was curious about why they did that. if you want to be the cter of attention and want to tell this american story, you want to be compared to abraham lincoln. so it ended up being, i think, just kind of another normal o fourthf july day and in some ways because all of this led up
to, all of this consternation about what does this mean? what is he doing? why is he celebrating tanks and things like that? an then he ended up actually being presidential yesterday. so he won all on all tse levels. in the leadup and also in nail, being kind of boring. robert: i feel like we had a strong day on friday at the white house because of jobs you were ins. brian: strong jobs numbers came out after a couple of months where jobs numbers seemed to be softening. they'll bin out tto trumpet that and trumpet the economy, an issue he loves to step on even when his aisors tell him not to talk about it. robert: does it mean the trade war is other or at least the fears about it ruining the economy or hurting the economy? ri it may embolden him on the china talks. he was worried about a softening economy might have made him offer more concession os or accept less than he was demanding. now he may feel like he's got win at his back. all three markets had record dak
this is there were some signs on the horizon. the trade deficit is up, not down. but for the most part he's feeling ood about the economy. robert: he's feeling good about the economy. but justin ammash of michigan, we'll get to this more in the webcast, he left the republican party. shawna: he did. justin ammash, a tea partyier, said the republicans are not siing their job they need to keep the pnt in check. robert: we'll talk about that more. up next on the washington week extra, we'll discuss the debates and hoth're influencing the race for the democratic debates. watch every friday. i'm robert cost tark enjoy the weekend. [captioning performed by the captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visincicap.org] ♪
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