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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  October 8, 2013 8:00pm-10:01pm EDT

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the darling limit so we can borrow more money to fund government but to address the underlying problem and that is the fact that we have 17 trillion-dollar debt that continues to grow at 600, $700 billion a year. we continue to have a chronically high unemployment rate. we continue to have a labor horse a workforce that is historically low levels in other words the number of people working today as a percentage of those who could work is at the lowest level that it's been in 35 years. we have a sluggish economy that's growing at the one to 2% range. we have to take him pay for most americans that has gone down since the president took office by $3700. we need to get middle-class americans back to work, come middle-class americans earning more in being able to provide for their families increasing family household income to take him pay in this country and the way to do that is to get the economy growing and expanding it again. the other way to do that i would
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argue is to get spending in washington under control so that we are are not up their borrowing more and more money all the time and war of our country's assets and resources can be deployed towards things that would yield a return that will put more people to work that will grow the economy and expand their standard of living in the quality of life for the people across this country. time is short. the clock is running. time is wasting. we need to get this done. in the near term except the nine bills that are sitting here in the senate that have been passed by the house that would put a lot of these services and programs that impact people that have been expressed so many times by my colleagues on the other side of the aisle they would put funding back in place for those and secondly let's get together, the president's democrats and republicans here in washington d.c. to talk about not only raising the debt limit but what we are going to do to address the underlying debt.
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>> you senators thune and other senators from earlier today the senate back tomorrow 10 times a day. the house is in session but they did a short while ago passed two bills. one would create a bipartisan group of houses that lawmakers to seek an agreement on spending issues. the other bill would provide funding to pay the salaries of all quote central federal employees passing in the u.s. house. again the house, the senate coming in tomorrow 10:30. it's likely we'll hear more about janet yellen. the news reports say she will be named as the next federal reserve chairman. here's the tweeting of afp. they said obama to nominate yellen as federal served chief saying that will happen tomorrow afternoon at 3:00 eastern. president obama today spoke to reporters for about an hour and 10 minutes. the reporting of "the new york times" after the news conference the headline saying that obama will negotiate once gop thread
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ends. they say president obama intensified his pressure on republicans with a hastily scheduled news conference calling on them to fund and reopen government and raise the nation's borrowing limit as the federal shutdown enters its second week. we will show you the president's comments in just a bit. reaction on capitol hill on the republican side or moral call say republicans say obama underestimates their resolve is the debt default nears. republicans weren't serious about a debt default think again. while democrats refuse to negotiate over the continuing resolution in the debt limit apparently assuming the gop will eventually cave. house republicans insist they are repaired to bring borrowing authority to a screeching hault. quote i can assure you it's not posturing. it's not a political place of phil gingrey of georgia. gingrey said republicans were absolutely prepared to lose the house to extract concessions on the cr and the debt limit and he said the white house is missing the determination of the
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republican party. the debt limit certainly was part of the president's comments earlier today. the president speaking for special after the president spoke we got reaction from house speaker john boehner. here's what he had to say. >> good afternoon everyone. as you well know i had a phonecall with the president of the united states this morning. i will say it was a pleasant conversation although i have to say i was disappointed that the president refuses to negotiate. when it comes to the issue of funding our government the houses passed for bills. for bills to fund our government and provide fairness to the american people under obamacare. each of those for bills was rejected by the united states senate. under the constitution and our system of government we asked that they sit down and have a conversation with us about funding the government and keeping it open and providing for the american people under
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obamacare. they refuse to do it. over the last 30 years dozens of times there've been negotiations over funding our government. all of those negotiations over the last 30 years have resulted in significant policy changes. i would remind you that the president of the united states and i sat down in the spring of 2011 to negotiate a funding bill for the government from march all the way through september. during that negotiation there were all kinds of policy considerations and if you recall the opportunity scholarships for kids here in d.c. was in fact restored into law. so the president's position that we are not going to sit down and talk to you until you surrender is just not sustainable. it's not our system of government. when it comes to the debt limit i agree with the president. we should pay our bills.
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i didn't come here to shut down the government and i certainly didn't come here to default on their debt. but when it comes to the debt limit again over the last 40 years, 27 times the debt limit has been used to carry significant policy changes that would in fact reduce spending and put us on a saner fiscal path. president reagan's sat down with tip o'neill and the 1980s. president bush in 1991 to andrews air force base and got into a long debate and a negotiation with democrats here in congress. bill clinton went through this three times in the 1990s. president obama and i sat down in 2011 and had a serious negotiation and while the president today suggested that i walked away from the deal i would have to remind him that i was in the oval office along with the majority leader eric cantor when we in fact have an
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agreement that two days later the president walked away from. there was in fact another negotiation and 2011 that resulted in really the largest deficit reduction bill we have seen in the last 30 years. but in 2010 democrats controlled the congress and president obama was in the white house what happened was a group of moderate democrats in the house wouldn't agree to raise the debt limit without the negotiation. so there was a negotiation then amongst democrats over raising the debt ceiling. the long and short of it is there is going be in negotiation here. we can't raise the debt ceiling without doing something about what is driving us to borrow more money and to live beyond their means. the idea that we can continue to spend money that we don't have and give the bill to our kids and our grandkids would be wrong. this isn't about me and frankly it's not about republicans.
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this is about saving the future for our kids and their grandkids and the only way this is going to happen is to in fact have a conversation. it's time to have that conversation. not next week, gannott next month. the conversation off to start today and i'm hopeful that whether it's the president or democrat leaders here in congress we can begin that conversation. >> mr. speaker can you tell us what military families who have just been denied death benefits to the shutdown? >> last week the congress passed it a a pay our military benefits act. we gave broad authority to the department of defense to pay all kinds of bills including this and frankly i think it's disgraceful that they are withholding these benefits. again tomorrow the house is going to ask specifically on this and i hope the president will sign it. >> mr. speaker --
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[inaudible] what happens in all candor if it's 11:59 on the 17th and- >> at times like this the american people expect their leaders to sit down and have a conversation. i want the conversation to occur now. >> the president said he would negotiate. the president said today if there is unconditional surrender by republicans he will sit down and talk to us. that's not the way our government works. thanks everybody. >> speaker john boehner in the shorter half of dueling conferences at capitol hill from 4:30 eastern an hour after president obama had a much longer news conference at the white house but an observation from "national journal" on both of of the news conference is as
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the headline says obama and boehner explained one another shut down positions. but dueling press conference today the speaker of the house and president of united states that a lot of similar things. is that they were open to negotiation. both blame the other side for the current shut down in the debt ceiling crisis and both agreed the debt ceiling should be raised. the key distinction was this. john boehner was one that made the point that the debt ceiling was fair game to use in the negotiations and president obama was the one that said the debt ceiling can't be taken hostage. president obama began speaking this afternoon at 2:00 in a statement to the press. it took an hour plus of questions in the briefing room at the white house. >> good afternoon everybody. i am in good to take your questions so i will try to be brief. this morning i had a chance to speak with speaker boehner and i
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told them what i have been saying publicly that i am happy to talk with him and other republicans about anything. not just issues i think are important but also issues that they think are important. but, i also told him that having such a conversation, talks and negotiations should require hanging for for the threats of the government shut down our economic chaos over the heads of the american people. think about it this way. the american people to not get to demand a ransom for doing their jobs. you don't get a chance to call your bank and say i am not going to pay my mortgage this month unless you throw in a new car and an x-box. if you are in negotiations around eyeing somebody's house you don't get to say well, let's talk about the price i'm going to pay and if you don't get me the price and i'm going to burn down your house. that is not how negotiations work. that is not how it happens in
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business. it's not how it happens in private life. in the same way members of congress and the house republicans in particular don't get to demand ransom in exchange for doing their jobs. two of their very basic jobs are passing a budget and making sure that america is paying its bills. they don't also get to say you know, unless you give me what the voters rejected in the last election i'm going to cause a recession. that's not how it works. no american president would deal with a foreign leader like this. most of you would not deal with either co-workers or business associates in this fashion and we shouldn't be dealing this way here in washington. i have heard republicans suggest that this is reasonable, that this is entirely appropriate. as i've said before imagine if a democratic democratic congress threatened to crash the global con man is a republican
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president agreed to gun background checks or immigration reform. i think it's fair to say republicans would not think that was appropriate. so let's lift these threats from our families and our businesses and let's get down to order. it's not like this is a new position that i'm taking here. i had speaker boehner and the other leaders and just last week either my chief of staff or i have had serious conversations on the budget with republicans more than 20 times since march. so we have been talking all kinds of business. what we haven't been able to get our serious positions from the republicans that would allow us to actually resolve some core differences. and they have decided to run out the clock until there is a government shut down or the possibility of default thinking that it would give them more leverage. that is not my characterization.
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they have said it themselves. that was their strategy from the start. and that is not how our government is supposed to run. it's not just me by the way who has taken the position that we are willing to have conversations about anything. the senate democrats have asked to sit down with house republicans in hash out a budget but it been rejected by the house republicans 19 times. at the beginning of this year's speaker boehner said what we want is regular order and a series -- serious budget process. the senate should pass a bill and the how should pass a bill and then the committee comes together and they hash out their differences and send the bill to the president. that's exactly what democrats did. except somewhere along the way house republicans decided they wouldn't appoint people to the committee to try to negotiate. and 19 times they rejected that.
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so even after all that the democrats in the senate still passed it budget that effectively reflects republican priorities at republican budget levels just to keep the government open. and the house republicans couldn't do that either. the point is i think not only the white house but also the democrats in the senate and demo? in the house have shown more than ample willingness to talk about any issues that republicans are concerned about. but we can't do it if the entire basis of the republican strategy is we are going to shut down government and cause economic chaos if we don't get 100% of what we want. my suggestion to the speaker has been and will continue to be stop the excuses and let's take a vote in the house. let's end the shut down right
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now. let's put people back to work. there are enough reasonable republicans and democrats in the house who are willing to float yes on a budget that the senate has already passed. that vote could take place today and the shutdown would be over. serious negotiations could precede around every item in the budget. now, as soon as congress votes to reopen the government it's also got to vote to meet her country's commitments and pay our bills, raise the debt ceiling because as reckless as a government shut down is the economic shut down caused by america defaulting would be dramatically worse. i want to talk about this for a minute because even though people can see and feel the effects of the government shut down their our ready experiencing it right now, there are still people out there who don't believe that default is a real thing.
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we have been hearing that from some republicans in congress, that default would not be a big deal. so let me explain this. if congress refuses to raise what's called the debt ceiling america would not be able to meet all of our financial obligations for the first time in 225 years. and because it's called raising the debt ceiling i think a lot of americans think it's raising our debt. it is not raising our debt. this does not add a dime to our debt. it simply says you pay for what congress has already authorized america to purchase, whether that's the greatest military in the world or veterans benefits or social security. whatever it is that congress has already authorized, what this does is make sure that we can pay those bills.
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now the last time that the tea party republicans flirted with the idea default two years ago markets plunged, business and consumer confidence plunged. america's credit rating was downgraded for the first time and a decision to actually go through with it, to actually permit default according to many ceos and economists would be and i'm quoting here would be insane, catastrophic chaos and warren buffett likened the default to a nuclear bomb, a weapon too horrible to use. it would disrupt markets. it would undermine the world's confidence in america is the bedrock of the global economy into my permanently increase our borrowing costs which of course ironically would mean that it would be more expensive for us to service what did we do have and it would add to our deficit and debt, not decrease it.
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there's nothing fiscally responsible about that. preventing this should be simple. as i said raising the debt ceiling is a lousy name which is why members of congress in both parties don't like to vote on it because it makes them vulnerable in political campaigns. but it does not increase our debt. it does not allow for a single dime of increased spending. all it does is allow the treasury department to pay for what congress has already spent. but as i said it's always a tough vote. people don't like doing it although it has been done 45 times since ronald reagan took office. nobody in the past is never seriously threatened to breach the debt ceiling until the last two years. this is the creditworthiness of the united states that we are talking about. this is our word. this is our good name. this is real.
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a government shut down billions of american space and convenience or outright hardship in an economic shut down every american could see their 401(k)s and home values fall. the borrowing costs for mortgages and student loans rise and there would be a significant risk of a very deep recession at a time when we are still climbing our way out of the worst recession in our lifetimes you know the american people have already thought too hard and too long to come back from one crisis only to see a handful of more extreme republicans in the house of representatives precipitate another one. now the good news is over the past three and a half years our businesses have created 7.5 million new jobs. our housing work is healing. since i took office the deficit is coming down faster than at any time in the last 50 years. america is poised to become the
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number one energy producer in the world this year. this year for the first time in a very long time we are producing more oil than we are importing. so we have got a lot of good things going for us but the uncertainty caused by just one week of this nonsense so far has caused businesses to reconsider spending and hiring. you have seen consumer confidence plunged to the lowest level since 2008. you have seen of of the mortgages held up by thousands of homebuyers who aren't sure about the economic situation of their print all this adds to our deficit. it doesn't subtract from it. so we can afford these manufactured crises every few months. as i said this one isn't even about deficits and spending or budgets. our deficit is falling in and the fastest pace in years. it is their budget. democrats are willing to put
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those on to make sure the government was open while negotiations took place for longer-term budget. and what has happened -- the way we got to this point was one thing and one thing only and that was republican obsession with dismantling the affordable care act in denying health care to millions of people. that law ironically is moving forward. so most americans democrats and republicans agree that health care should not have anything to do with keeping our government open or paying our bills on time which is why i will sit down and work with anyone of any party, not only to talk about the budget, i'll talk about ways to improve the health care system. i will talk about ways we can shrink their long-term deficits. i will also want to talk about how we are going to help the middle class strength in early childhood education and improve our infrastructure and research
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and development. there'll whole bunch of things i want to talk about in terms of how were going to make sure everyone is getting a fair shake in this shake in this society and their economies growing in a broad-based way in building our middle-class. by the way of anybody doubts my sincerity but that i put forward proposals in my budget to reform entitlement programs for the long-haul and reform our tax code in the way that will close loopholes for the wealthiest and lower rates for corporaticorporati ons. these were originally republican proposals. i don't believe any party has a monopoly on good ideas. so have shown myself willing to go more than halfway in these conversations and if reasonable republicans want to talk about these things again i'm ready to head up to the hill and tried. i will even spring for dinner again. but i'm not going to do it until the more extreme parts of the republican party stop forcing
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john boehner to issue threats about our economy. we can't make extortion routine as part of our democracy. democracy does not function this way. and this is not just for me. it's also for my successors in office. whatever party they are from they shouldn't have to pay a ransom either for congress doing its basic job. we have got to put a stop to it. the last point i will make. already this week i had to miss a critical meeting in asia to promote american jobs and businesses. and although as long as we get this fixed that's not long-term damage to it whenever we do these things it hurts our credibility around the world. it makes it look like we don't have our acts together. and that's not something we should welcome. the greatest nation on earth shouldn't have to get permission from a few irresponsible members of congress every couple of months just to keep the
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government open or to prevent an economic catastrophe so let's pass a budget and let's end this government shut down. let's pay our bills and let's avert an economic shut down. let's drop the gimmicks and put aside what's good for any particulaparticula r party and let's focus on what's good for the american people because they know we have got a lot of work to do come to all right? so with that let me take a couple of questions and i will start with julie pace of ap. >> obviously and if congress does pass the clean cr and clean debt ceiling billows may just be short-term measures. if that happens does your offer to negotiate with them on issues like health care and spending spending and deficit reduction still stand in the intervening weeks if they pass the measures that are just perhaps six weeks or two months long? >> absolutely. i mean what i've said is that i will talk about anything. what will happen is we won't agree on everything. i mean the truth is that the parties are pretty divided on a
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whole bunch of big issues right now. everybody understands that and by the way voters are divided a lot of those issues too and i recognize there are some house members, republican house members where i got clobbered in the last election. and you know they don't get politically rewarded a lot for being seen as negotiating with me. and that makes it harder for divided government to come together. but i'm willing to work through all those issues. the only thing that our democracy can't afford is a situation where one side says and less i get my way and only my way, unless they get concessions before we even start having a serious give-and-take, i will threaten to shut down the government or i will threaten to
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not pay america's bills. so you know i will not eliminate any topic of conversation. and i have shown myself willing to engage all the parties involved, every leader on any issue. >> and out of place though matter how long the timeframe is on the debt ceiling bills that they would -- be the only thing i would say is we are not going to pay a ransom for america paying its bills. that's something that should be nonnegotiable and everybody should agree on that. everybody should say one of the most valuable things we have is america's creditworthiness. this is not something we should even come close to fooling around with. so when i read people saying this wouldn't be a big deal, we should test it out.
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let's take default out for a spin and see how it rides and i say, imagine in your private life if you decided that i'm not going to pay my mortgage for a month or two. first first of all you are not saving money by not paying your mortgage. you are just a deadbeat. and you can anticipate that will hurt your credit, which means that in addition to the debt electors calling you were going to have trouble borrowing in the future. and if you are able to borrow in the future you're going to have to borrow at a higher rate. well what's true for individuals is also true for nation's, even the most powerful nation on earth. and if we are creating an atmosphere in which people are not sure whether or not we pay our bills on time then that will have a severe long-term impact on our economy and on america's
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standard of living. that is not something that we should even be in a conversation about. that is not something that we should be using as leverage. okay. giuliana goldman. >> you laid out the economic consequences of the default but if we work it to that point would you prioritize and pay bondholders first to maintain a semblance of credit rather than social security recipients or military servicemen and women? how would you go ahead and make that determination? i am going to continue to be very hopeful that congress does not put us in that position. and i think if people understand what the consequences are they will set that potential scenario aside.
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i do know that there have been some who have said that if we just paid bondholders, if we just pay people who have bought treasury bills that we really won't be in default because those interest payments will be made. and to them combat what i have have to remind have to remind the mess we have got a lot of other applications not just people to pay treasury bills. we have senior citizens were counting on their social security checks arriving on time. we have veterans who are disabled who are counting on their benefits. we have companies who are doing business for our government and for our military that have payrolls that they have to meet and if they do not get paid on time they may have to lay off workers. ..
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>> i'm going to look at you and say, you know what, this person is not trustworthy and then they will charge a higher interest rate and that is what will happen to you if you made those decisions. the same is true for the federal government. the we are exploring all contingencies and i know that secretary jack lew, the secretary of treasury will appear before congress on tuesday and he can address some of the additional details about that. but let me be clear that no
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option is good in that scenario. there is no silver bullet, no magic wand that allows us to wish away and for the first time in our history, not being able to pay her bills on time. i hear people downplaying the consequences of that and i think that's really responsible and i'm happy to walk any of them exactly through riot is irresponsible. and it is particularly interesting coming from republicans who claim to be tamed the business. there is not one who didn't say it was a big deal. you go anywhere from wall street to main street and you ask a ceo about small business and why the government isn't paying its
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bills on time and they will tell you that it's a big deal and it would hurt. that is the worst part of it. this is not complicated piece of business and there is no reason why if in fact republicans are serious about wanting to negotiate and have a conversation and want to talk, there's no reason why you have to have that threat looming over the conversation. i mean, the only reason that the republicans had held out like this on negotiations up until last week or so is because they thought it was a big enough deal that they would force unilateral concessions out of democrats and out of me and they said so. and they basically said the president is still responsible that it we just hold our breath and say we are going to threaten dufault, we won't have to give anything in return.
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again, that is not my account of the situation. you can read statements from republicans in the last several months of who said this explicitly. and so for them to say that wouldn't be a big deal if it happens, that is not how they have been active in the last couple of months. and if it's not a big deal, then they should be making sure that the full faith of the credit of the united states is upheld. questions? >> mr. president, speaker boehner said what assurances can you give about a shutdown command i'm concerned about and how will you demonstrate your preferred method may do harm to the nation in the end to . >> well, you make an important point, which is what we are
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asking of the republicans right now is to keep the government open at funding levels that the democrats think are very harmful to the economy and an adequate make sure that the economy is growing faster and more people are put back to work and the middle class is growing. we are willing to pass at least a short-term budget that opens up the government at current funding levels and it doesn't even address what has been done because the question of sequestration. now, what would eliminate sequestration commonest meat cleaver approach, to make sure that we are adequately funding the basic medical research and head start programs and a whole
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range of things that have been really hard hit this year. but we recognize that there are going to have to be some compromises between the democratic position in the republican position. in the meantime we shouldn't hurt things worse by shutting down the government and let me just give you a specific example. because of sequestration, because of the meat cleaver cuts that have been taking place over the course of this year, thousands of families have lost head start slots for their children and parents have been scrambling, trying to figure out how can i find some decent quality childcare for my kids. and the government shutdown means that several thousand more will lose their slots. and if we vote today were the
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next day in the house of representatives to go ahead and reopen government, at least there was an additional several thousand people that will be spared the difficulties of trying to scramble and figure out where your kids are going to be when you're trying to go to work. but it doesn't solve the broader problems and we are going to have real negotiations and they would say let's solve the bigger problems in those hurt by sequester. the democrats are not making that demand right now. we understand that there will have to be some give and take and what we are saying is do not hurt more people while we are trying to resolve these differences. let's at least make sure that we keep the lights on while they are having these conversations. >> and your question? >> you talked about accountability around the world
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that this impasse has caused and i'm wondering what you are telling foreign creditors in china and japan work on this in and asking about the united states avoiding defaulting on its debt. >> i won't disclose any specific conversations, but my message is that the united states has always paid its bills and will do so again. and i think that they are not just looking at what i say, but what congress does end that ultimately is up to speaker john boehner. this will not get a result. we will knock on the creditors until they see speaker john boehner call up a bill that reopens the government and authorizes the secretary of the treasury to pay our bills on time and until they see that, there will be a cloud over the u.s. economic credibility.
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but it is not one from which we cannot recover. we have been through this before. every country, every democracy in particular has tussles over the budget and i think most leaders understand and they have been through it in a democracy and what you haven't seen before, from the vantage point of a lot of world leaders and the notion that congress might blow the whole thing up if they don't get their way. and that does take notice and keep in mind that we have been here before and we saw what happened and the assumption was that americans must have learned their lessons and their would-be budget conflicts but nobody again would threaten the possibility that we would befall. when they hear members of the senate and congress saying that
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maybe the default wouldn't be that bad, i bet that makes them nervous. it makes me nervous. it should make the american people nervous. because that is irresponsible. it is out of touch with reality. it is based on a flawed analysis of how the economy works. you cannot pay some bills and not others and think that somehow the fact you're paying some bills protects you from a loss of credit worthiness and that is not what happens in our own personal lives and i don't know that's how people think that that is how it works for the united states government. >> and what about our emergency situations with jack lew? >> jack lew has made sure that we have done this over the past several months, but at certain points those emergency powers run out and the clock is
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ticking. and i do worry that republicans and also some democrats may think that we have a bunch of other rabbits in our hat and there comes a point in which is the treasury cannot sell treasury bills, we do not have enough money coming in to pay all of our bills on time. it's very straightforward. and i know that there has been some discussion about my powers under the 14th amendment to ignore the debt ceiling law and setting aside the legal analysis, what matters is if you start having a situation in which there is legal controversy that the u.s. treasury authority to issue debt, the damage would be done even if it was
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constitutional because people would not be sure and they would be tied up in litigation for a long time. that's what make people nervous. so a lot of the strategies about the president could rule out a big coin or he can resort to other constitutional measure, what people ignore is that ultimately what matters is the people that are buying treasury bills, what do they think we met and i will despoil it down in very personal terms. if you are buying a house and you're not sure whether the seller has a title to the house, you're going to be pretty nervous about buying it. and at minimum you would want to have a much cheaper price to buy that house because he wouldn't be sure whether or not you could go with that again. most of us would walk would
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estimate how much we like the house, we take ourselves that the last thing i want to find out after i bought it is that i don't actually own it. the same is true on buying treasury bills with the u.s. government and here i am, what the supreme court has decided that these aren't valid. this includes obligating u.s. government for payment. i'm going to be stressed. and if i do purchase them, when we asked for the premium. there are no magic bullet and commonsensical head about the fact that i know there are votes, i believe, to take this drama off the table, and speaker boehner says, put it on the
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floor come and see what happens, and at minimum, let every member of congress be on record. let them vote to keep the government open or not. and they can determine where they stand and defend that their constituents. and let them vote on whether or not america should pay their bills or not. if these folks believe that it's not that big of a deal, let them vote now and that will be useful information to have. if we fail and you end up defaulting, voters should know who voted not pay her bills. so they can be responsible for the consequences that come with it. >> thank you, mr. president, you mentioned the supreme court starting at the campaign finance that picks up where citizens united left off. and it is devastating to the
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public interest. >> in this case going even further than citizens united. essentially they would say that anything goes and there are no rules in terms of how to finance the campaign. there are democracies that function this way were you can basically have millionaires and billionaires bankrolling however they want in some places undisclosed and what means is that ordinary americans are shut out of the process and democrats are not entirely innocent of this. i had to raise a lot of money for my campaign. and there is nobody who operates in politics is perfectly clean hands on this issue, but what is clear is that all it should bind
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ourselves to some rules that say that the people who vote for should be real and more so than someone who is spending $10 million of his collected. because we do not know what their interests are. i continue to believe that citizens united contributed to some of the problems we are having in washington right now. and there's a big bankroll and they have a whole bunch of members of congressman congressmen who will privately tell you that i know that this is unreasonable, and we are going on with a particularly extremist agenda that will be challenged from the right. and the threats are very explicit. so they toe the line.
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that is part of why we have seen a breakdown of normal routine business done here in washington on behalf of the american people. and all of you know it. i'm not telling you anything you don't know. it's very explicit. a big chunk of the republican party right now are in districts where there are no competition and those folks are much more worried about a tea party challenger than they are about a democrat or were going after independent vote. in that environment, it's a lot harder for them to compromise. and i blandly? >> this week the president has visited several of the countries that you were going to visit and
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he has also taken a big role after two regional summits both of which your administration has made a pretty big priority as part of the broader asian scene. does china benefit and then also more broadly, you said in general that this hurts the reputation of the united states overseas and are there specific things you can point you where you have already seen some damage. one thing that occurs to me is the trade deal that you try to do in asia and leaders today announced that they still want to wrap it up but they no longer want to rabbit by the end of this year. have you been there and do you think that you could have gotten that additional push? >> i think that's a great example. and we didn't know, but it didn't help that i wasn't there to make sure that we went ahead and close a trade deal that would open up markets and create jobs for the united states and
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make sure that countries were trading fairly with us in the most dynamic fastest-growing market in the world. i should have been there. i can tell you because i had to apologize to some of the host countries that they understood that the most important thing i can do for them and the most important thing i could do for the bilateral relationship of the reputation is make sure that we reopen our government. i don't think it's going to be doing lasting damage, if we deal with this the way that we should, then, you know, folks around the world will attribute this to the usual messy process of american democracy, but it doesn't do lasting damage. in the short term, i would
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characterize it as missed opportunities. we continue to be the one indispensable nation and their countries across asia welcomed our pivot because they want to admire our economy and they will admire entrepreneurs and they know that their growth is going to be contingent upon working with us and they care about the security environment that we maintain, help maintain, the freedom of navigation that is so important to them. it's not as if they have other places to go, they want us to be there and they want to work with us. but in each of these big meetings that we have around the world, a lot of business gets done and in the same way that the ceo of a company wants to close a deal by phone, one a
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look at someone i die as to why it's important to shake hands on the deal. and the same is true with respect to world leaders and the irony irony is that our team is probably due more to organize a lot of these multilateral forms and set the agenda than anyone. and we engage more in china, for example, in setting the agenda and it's almost like me not showing up to my own party. i think it creates a sense of concern on the part of other leaders and as long as we get through this, they will understand that and we will be able to, i believe, still get these deals done. we can't do it every three months, right? and back in the '90s we had a
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government shutdown and that happened one time and after that, the republican party and mr. newt gingrich realize that this is not a sensible way to do business and we should not engage in brinksmanship likeness they started having a serious conversation with president clinton and they got some things that they wanted and they had to give the democrats something that the democrats wanted. but they took on a sense of normal democratic process and here we already went through this once back in 2011 and then last year after my election, we went through something similar with the so-called fiscal cliff. were republicans negotiate about taxes despite the fact that taxes actually went up anyway.
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even though they refused to negotiate and they have gotten some things from us that they wanted if they had been willing to engage on normal negotiations and we have to stop repeating this pattern and none of i know the american people are tired of that. to all the american people, i apologize that you have to go through this stuff every three months, it seems like. lord knows that i am tired of it. but at some point, we have to kind of break these habits and get back to the point where everyone understands that in negotiations there is give and take and you do not hold people hostage or engage in ransom to get 100% of your way and you don't suggest that somehow a
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health care those were to destroy the republic a degree in social the social scheme. if you disagree with certain aspects, tell us what you agree with and let us work on it. that is a good thing to be concerned with, but don't pretend as if america is going bankrupt and we are being cut in half. that is what the american people expect. it is stability, common sense, compromise, those are not dirty words and there's nothing wrong with them. and, you know, i think that this is very important, and the american people understand that i have flaws, michelle will tell you. one of them is not that i am unwilling to compromise.
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and i have been willing to compromise my entire political career. and i do not believe that i have the answers to everything and that it's my way or the highway. but i'm not going to reach a basic principle that would weekend the presidency and change our democracy and do great damage to the ordinary people just to go along with what the house republicans are talking about. >> asking specifically about china. i'm wondering what it says. >> you know, we are there right now, we are working towards it. in the sense that there are areas where we have differences and they can present their point of view and not get as much push back as if i were there, although secretary of state john kerry is there and i'm sure he's
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doing a great job. but i'm sure that the cooperation with china is not a zero-sum game and there are areas where we disagree. on trade in particular, here is an area where we are trying to raise standards, for example, the internet and intellectual property protection which is sometimes a big problem if we can get a trade deal with all the other countries in asia that saving up to protect peoples property and that will help us in our negotiations. richard mcgregor? >> think you. >> going back to the characterization, what legal liabilities had he seen and what is your legal advice with the credit issue? >> richard, what i'm going to do is let jacklin, secretary of the treasury, make a formal
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presentation on thursday before the senate committee. because this is obviously sensitive enough and i think people will be paying close enough attention that details count and i think prepared remarks from secretary jack lew on that topic would probably be more appropriate. but as i indicated before, we plan for every contingency and so obviously the worst case scenario, there are things that we would try to do. but i will repeat that i don't think any option is good. >> thank you. >> mr. president, i'm wondering if you could talk about the budget process. in the past you have negotiated along with the debt ceiling in 2009 and 2010 and a debt ceiling increase the pay as you go reform and fiscal commission, the republicans today are
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talking about another committee working out our differences over the next few weeks. is that something that you could talk about on the side, something that would be format for taking this deal? >> here is the thing. i know that speaker boehner has talked about setting up a new process or a super committee or what have you. but the leaders work through whatever processes they want. either you're having good faith negotiations in the give-and-take or you're not. there is already a process in place called the budget committee that could come together right now, democrats have been asking to bring them
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together and make a determination of how much the government will be spending next year and the appropriations committee go through the list and here's how much we will be spending for education and that is a process that has worked reasonably well for the last 50 years. i don't know that we need to set a new committee for a process like that and move forward. but what has changed for what seems to be motivated the idea that we have to have a new process is speaker john boehner or some faction of the republicans of the house where the senate are holding out for a negotiation in theory, but in fact basically democrats give a lot of concessions to republicans and republicans don't have anything and then that is dubbed as compromised and the reason the democrats have to give is because they are worried that the government is going to stay shut down where
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the u.s. government will default. again, that is part of this. .. better education for kids. well, i don't know why democrats right now would agree to a format that takes off the table all the things they care about
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and is confined to the things that republicans care about. so again, i don't know that that is exactly what is being proposed. my simple point is this. i think democrats in the senate and the house are prepared to talk about anything. i am prepared to talk about anything. they can design whenever format they won. what is not fair and will not result in an actual deal is ransom taking or hostage taking and the expectation that democrats are paying ransom or providing concessions for the mere act of reopening the government for paying our bills. those are not things that you'd do for me, and they're not things that you do for the democrats. >> not necessarily a concession.
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you negotiate with the negotiations are going to look like. you don't have to agree to overturn obamacare but you can negotiate with the talks were going to look like so everyone is comparable. this is a tough vote for all the house republicans. a very tough vote. usually people in both parties want to have some coverage, something that they can point to end say i want some budget reform. another trillion in debt. >> which is fine. reopen the government, extend the debt ceiling. if they can do for a long time, do it for a time during which is initiations i taking place. why is it that we have hundreds of thousands of people who are not working right now in order for what you just described to occur? that does not make any sense. the small business administration gives out a trillion dollars worth of loans every month to small businesses all across the country. that is not happening right now.
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so the small businesses in every state that are counting on alone to get their business going, and you have the party of small business saying small business administration cannot do it. that is what they call themselves. and yet they suffer. you have farmers who are waiting for loans right now which cannot be processed. the republican party feels, they are the party that looks out for farmers. i happen to disagree. the farmer has done well under my administration, but having said that by which to keep the government shut down and those farmers not getting their loans while we are having discussions the you just talked about? you know, the republicans say they are concerned about drilling. they say obama has been restricting oil production despite the fact that oil production is at the highest level that has been in years and is continuing to zoom up. they say the democrats are
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holding back oil production in this company. well, one of the things that happens when the government shuts down is the drilling permits are not processed. so why would the republicans say to the folks are interested in drilling for oil, sorry, we can't let those things be processed until we have some negotiations and some cover to do what we are supposed to be doing anyway. that does not make sense. if there is a way to solve this, it has to include reopening the government and saying america is not going to default. will pay our bills. they can attach some process to that that gives them some certainty that in fact things they are concerned about will be topics in negotiations. if my word is not good enough. but if they want to specify all of the items that they think
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need to be topics of conversation, i'm happy to do it part of that process as we will go through line by line all of the aspects of the president health care plan that we don't like and what the president to answer for those things, i am happy to sit down with them for as many hours is that what. i won't let them cut a law that is going to make sure tens of millions of people actually get health care, but i am happy to talk about it. stephen cohen. i'm just going through my list here. [inaudible question] the campaign against terrorism. see you as ministry operations, how does that square with your contention that america cannot be at war forever? >> if you look at the speech i
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gave at the national defense college several months ago, i outlined how i saw the shift in terrorism around the world and what we have to do to respond to it. part of what i said is that we have decimated the core of hellcat debt that had been operating primarily between afghanistan and pakistan. you now have these regional groups, some of which are explicitly tied to al qaeda for the ideology, some of which are more localized. a few of them have the ability to project beyond their borders, but they can do a lot of damage inside their borders. and africa is one of the places where because in some cases it is easier for folks i doubt in
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vaster rains that are sparsely populated. using some of these groups gather. there's a difference which ran a story after terrorists are plotting directly to do damage to the united states and as being involved in wars. the risk of terrorism and terrorist networks will continue for some time to come. we have to have a long-term plan that is not just military base. we have to engage in a war of ideas, engage with muslim countries and tried to isolate radical elements that and doing more damage. we have to think about economic development. not a direct correlation, there is no doubt that if you got a lot of unemployed and educated and man in societies that there
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is a greater likelihood that terrorist recruits are available . you have acted of -- we are partnering with countries wherever we can and want to build that internationally, but we are not going to farm out our defense. i have to say, by the way, the operations that took place in libya and somalia were examples of the extraordinary skill and dedication and talent of our men and women in the armed forces. they do their jobs extremely well with great precision at great risk to themselves and, i think, they are pretty good examples for now those of us in washington should operate as well. >> did their captive comply with
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international law? >> we know that mr. lee be planned and helped execute plots that killed hundreds of people, a whole lot of americans. we have strong evidence of that. he will be brought to justice. marc cohen. >> mr. president, while you are waiting for the shutdown to end, why is it that you cannot go along with any of the bills that the house is passing funding the fda and fema where you were yesterday. you have to be tempted to find those bills and get funding to those programs you support. >> of course i am tempted because you would like to think that you can solve at least some of the problems. here is the problem. what you have seen our bills
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that come up where where republicans are dealing with political pressure they put the bill forward. if there is no political beef, a television story then nothing happens. and if we do some sort of shotgun approach like that then you will have some programs that are highly visible, yet find it and reopen like national monuments, but things that don't get a lot of attention like the sba loans not being funded. and we don't get to the select which programs we implement our not. i don't get a chance to go back and say, you know what, this cut command me an idea that the republican congressman came up with i don't like, so let's not implement that.
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once you have a budget and government you make sure that it is all operating. we don't get to pick and choose based on which party likes what. so that is where the budget discussions take place. if there are things that republicans don't like they can argue and come to an agreement. [inaudible question] >> i'm going to take one more question. persistence has worked. >> you talk about the political dynamic working back is there
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anything that you wish you could have done differently and after this what you call, what do you expect the political dynamics will change moving forward? >> i entered into good-faith negotiations. he addressed the speakership. i thought it was my allegation at that point at least nobody had any belief that people would come close to potential the
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fall. whenever i see and today i still say you should have taken the deal i effort. our deficit problems would not have impede growth. but at that time i think house republicans had just taken over. we don't have to compromise. and we came pretty close to default. we saw the impact of that. i would have thought that they would have learned the lesson from that as i did which is we can't put the american people and our economy through the wringer again. so that is the reason why i have been clear, we are not going to negotiate around the debt ceiling.
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that must be dealt with in a reasonable fashion. by the way, i often hear people say, well, and the past it has been done with all the time. the truth of the matter is if he looked at the history people posture frequently, but the way the debt ceiling often got past was used it the debt ceiling on to a budget negotiation once it was completed. people figure, i don't want to take a bunch of tough votes. and then let me do it all at once. but it was not a situation in which if i don't get what i want i am going to let as default. that is what has changed and is no real learning in 2011. as a consequence i said we are not going to do that again, not just for me, but because future presidents, republican or democrat, should not be in a position where they have to choose between making sure the economy stays afloat and
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avoiding worldwide catastrophe or providing concessions to one faction of one party in one house. and -- but let me tell you a lesson i did not learn. i did not learn a lesson that we should not compromise. i still think we should. there are all kinds of issues we should be talking about, and i don't expect to get 100 percent of my way and am open to conversations with not just the speaker, but any republicans. >> if you enter into a series of short-term you would be back in the same place with the same members of congress. but the political dynamic if you do the short term? >> well as changes they are aware of the fact that i am not budging when it comes to the full faith and credit of the united states. that must be dealt with.
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you don't pay a ransom. you don't provide concessions for congress doing its job in america paying its bills. and i think most people understand that. i was at a small business the other day talking to a bunch of workers. i said, when you are at the plan in the middle of your job you ever say to your boss, unless i get the race right now and more vacation pay i am going to just shut down. i'm not going to read just walk off the job but i will break the equipment. have you think that will go? they all thought it would be fired. i think most of us think that. there is nothing wrong with asking for race or more time off, but you cannot burn down the plan to or your office if you don't keep your weight.
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the same thing is true here, and i think most americans understand that. thank you very much, everybody. [inaudible conversations] >> coming out on c-span2, attorneys and activists discussed the supreme court case of mccutcheon v. fec reactions about limits on campaign contributions. in tonight's debate between candidates for governor in new jersey and the senate hearing on terrorist groups operating in somalia. coming up on the next washington journal the latest on that government shut down with a member of the appropriations and budget committees. we then hear from representative don edwards on the speaker's efforts to create a super committee of the budget and spending issues. the president's insistence that the government be reopened
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before negotiations to meet later look of the impact of the shutdown outside washington d.c. washington journal is live every morning starting at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> the video library is amazing. you can view the programming any time. it's easy. go to and go to the video library. to watch the news video go down to the most recent tab, click, you want to watch and press play. you can search the library for a specific topic or keyword or find a person. type in their name, its search command go to people. cut to their bio page and scroll down to appearances. you can share what you are watching and make a clip. use this said buttons or handle tools, and the title and description and then click share and send it by e-mail, facebook,
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twitter, or google plus. the c-span video library, searchable, easy, and free, created by the cable-tv industry and funded by your local cable or satellite provider. >> today the supreme court heard oral arguments in mccutcheon v. fec reactions, a case challenging campaign contribution limits for individual donors. several attorneys who wrote briefs for both sides spoke outside the supreme court building. this is a half-hour. >> plaintive with mccutcheon in the case today. we did the briefs and are pleased with the results of the argument this morning. it is apparent that the court views these aggregate limits, a limit of how many candid it's a particular donor can support to only nine and only one of the
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three national political parties as way to blunt an instrument causing too much cause -- first amendment harm to be sustained under the current decisions of the u.s. supreme court. we look very -- we are encouraged by the argument. we look forward to a decision by the court that will help restore balance in our political system. right now the parties and candidates are limited in what they can accept. the result is donors are being forced to give money to a super packs and not for profits and five to seven that are much less accountable, much less transparent than candid it's in political parties. and by preventing -- by forcing money to go in that direction we have a less help the system. with these aggregate limits we will see more candidates raise money.
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national parties and state parties will raise more money. and more help the system and our current system of restrictions and forcing money into independent spenders rather than by the candidates and political parties themselves. thank you. >> hi. i have fred wertheimer from democracy 21, one of the attorneys for error i'm the guy supporting the aggregate limits. a couple of important points i would like to make. first of all, justice scalia ask the question about how much money went to candidates and parties and how much went outside groups. candidates and parties with these overall limits spent over
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$5 billion in the 2012 elections. outside groups spent a billion. candid it's spent 83 percent of the money spent in that 2012 elections. parties spent more than twice as much as the outside groups. the candidates and parties were dealing with billions of dollars secondly, this case is about million dollar and $2 million contributions, not about whether a few more contributions can be made by mr. mccutcheon to a few more candidates. it is about whether the speaker can set up a joint fund-raising committee and solicit and mr. mccutcheon give him over $2 million. it is about whether president obama in 2012 to raise $70,000 in contributions for joint fund-raising committees could have raised one. 2 million. this case is about precisely the kind of contributions that the
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supreme court has ruled for 40 years create opportunities for corruption and can be limited. now, facing the cou unconstitutional because there is no risk of corruption. now justice scalia appears to think, well, there is just as much risk of corruption with outside spending as there are with contributions, but that is not what the court said in citizens united. in citizens united the supreme
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court said outside groups can make one limited expenditure because they do not create opportunities for corruption. since buckley v vallejo the supreme court has repeatedly said that contributions to candid it's do create the opportunity for corruption and can be limited. that is the issue facing the court today. this is a corruption case. if the supreme court were to strike down the overall contribution limits we are bound to see million dollar and $2 million contributions solicited by the most powerful office holders in washington given by donors and creating opportunities for the kind of quid pro quo corruption that the court has said for four decades can be limited. thank you.
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[inaudible question] >> just the individual limits, the limit that an individual can give to a number of candidates. is there any way to disallow the aggregate limits for just that category, or is it like taking a break out of the house and the whole thing falls? >> i understand the chief justice's. wise if you want to touch have more than the number of candid it's you can give $50,200 to, why should that person not be able to give a few more? a couple of answers to that. first of all, mr. mccutcheon could give contributions to every republican candidate for congress. he just cannot give $5,200 to each. the supreme court in the earlier decisions as distinguish between the first amendment rights of the donor which is in direct and
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the first amendment rights of the spender which is to erect expression. so this is a line drawn by congress. congress can certainly change hemline, but you cannot get rid of aggregate limits for candid it's creating the opportunity for the speaker or democratic leader policy to create a joint fund-raising committee and solicit the check from individuals. >> that is not true. >> would you let me finish and then you can come and? >> fine, i will be happy to, but that is not true. >> a joint fund-raising committee can be created for all candid it's, contributions and that 2 million more range can be given and solicited. as was pointed out in this argument, justice kennedy and the mcconnell case supported the prohibition on soliciting large
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contributions because he said they create the opportunity for a quid pro quo corruption. i go back. with that this aggregate mimic for parties president obama could have solicited over $1 million. without the aggregate limit for candid it's huge contributions could be solicited for a joint fund-raising committee. that is the danger and by this court has no grounds for striking down the contribution limits in this case. >> i am president of the center for competitive politics -- >> can we get council appeared? >> erin murphy, spelled the usual way. >> thank you. we thought the court was well-prepared. we had a great chance to make the arguments that we wanted to
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make. as we told the court, and a system like this where people are allowed to make unlimited expenditures it does not make sense to continue to have these aggregate limits on how much people consider this in the most transparent way possible which is the candidates and parties. and as we told the court, it just does not make sense to continue to have limits where someone can contribute to nine candidates, but when they contribute to the tenth there is something impermissible about that. we thought we had a great chance to make the argument and the court asked some wonderful questions today. ms. murphy, at the end of the argument justice kennedy said, are you saying that we should go along with this system just because it is the long? almost 40 years. to you want buckley reversed? >> we don't think that aid needs to be reversed.
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we think that these limits are unconstitutional under the current system because in this system they impose impermissible burden is on people's ability to contribute to ten candidates instead of nine and contributes to parties instead of making independent expenditures. you don't need to change the entire system to hold these limits constitutional, but the questioning today revealed that there are some questions about the system itself. >> if the aggregate limits are unconstitutional because they limit the number of people they can give to and the way in which you can give, why not the actual contribution limits themselves? >> the case is not about the base, to the -- contribution limits. those of bin justified on grounds that have to do with the direct relationship between candidates and people giving them contributions. when you're talking about an aggregate limit you're not talking about how much someone can contribute to one candidate. you are imposing restrictions on
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how many candid it's one person can support, and it is not seem to be a rationale for that. >> at the end of the day u.n. allowing people with more money to have more free speech. >> you allow everybody to have more free speech. you allow people to speak in ways that they find most effective and the ways that are also the most transparent within the system. instead of forcing people to make independent expenditures in the speech by associating with the people whose values they share. >> and coordination. could you explain what you believe is the correct argument on members of congress, house and senate coordinating between themselves to the fact. >> there are restrictions on the ways they can coordinate in the sense of giving money to each other, and we think they address the concerns that the government was talking about.
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they prevent candidates from giving large amounts of money to other candidates and serving as the impractical conduit that the government was suggesting. >> with some of the justices said, if you win it means more money for more people who have more money and limits the voices of people who don't have money. >> ultimately the first amendment answer is we want more speech from everybody. it is not a question of who gets to speak. everyone gets to speak as much as they want to and in the ways they find most effective. by getting rid of these limits we can ensure that people can do that in the most transparent way possible, within the system where we already have disclosure that insures the public knows who is supporting him. thank you. >> my name is rev. dr. william barber. we can hear from the campaign in north carolina as grass-roots organizers.
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many of the lawyers are speaking to these issues. one of the things that we want from the grassroots to make clear is that when we look at equal justice under the law, the law in all of its majesty was to ensure constitutionally that the homeless person has as much free speech as the about the person. this mccutcheon case would undermine that. put in place by overturning shall be a ruling that allows people on limited ways so rollback voting rights and only be challenged on the back end. i am from the south, and we are seeing that happening. as soon as shelby was passed. in fact, we have seen the worst voting restrictions in the country. now they want to allow unlimited amounts of money to influence politics. in north carolina we have seen them when we look at the influence of someone like bob
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hope and we see the direct evidence of what happens when money influences who gets in our state capitals and who gets in our government offices. a direct connection between obscene amounts of money being spent and an attack on people who need medicare, an attack on public education, the attack on voting rights, the attack and the unemployed, the attack on fair tax policy. so for those of us at the grass-roots level we are deeply, deeply concerned that this mccutcheon case should not be named mccutcheon v. fec, but the real question should be money versus the people. will this be a democracy where we have equal justice or will this be a democracy that is sold piece by piece to the highest bidder? as a clergyperson, the moral standpoint is found in isaiah
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chapter one where it says that when leaders chase after gifts and chase after bribes and do not care for the poor and the fatherless in their public policy and those on the margin they, in fact, undermine the nation. the supreme court, if it rules in favor. it allows it to be bought and paid for by the highest bidder. that will undermine the very majesty of the law which was designed to insure the homeless person has as much free speech as a wealthy person. >> say your name again. >> my name is rev. dr. william barber. >> hi, i am david keating. we file an amicus brief in this
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case. i want to say a brief comment about the case and then correct the record. having the funds necessary to mount an effective campaign. the law already allows the speaker, the president to ask for over $4 million for political action committees, and it does not happen. the second thing is in the mccain final bill their is a limit on how much can be solicited by an elected official. that is not challenged by this case. we think is a good chance that meant will survive. in other words, there will not be able to ask for these multimillion-dollar contributions.
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and also studies have shown that challengers rely on a larger portion of the funding from people like mr. mccutcheon because people like mr. mccutcheon and people who are left-leaning like the support challengers, as the chief justice said in one of his questions, what about someone who wants to support candid it's who want to support environmental regulation or gun control regulation? a gunner must choose between either giving to the environmental candid it's or giving to the gun control candidate. he cannot support all of them. >> i say if we need to have laws to restrict large -- will we should do is have laws that are a scalpel that aimed simply at the problem and not a meat axe approach that congress to extend start funding for challengers.
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the scalpel approach would be you would say an elected official could not ask for more than the current limit to day of the 123,000. i actually think the law requires that now, but if it does not the law could i use -- easily be passed just a target that and not to target the ability of people like mr. mceachern and others to support the candidates they believe in. >> i'm asking whether the current scheme bars corruption are not. >> i think the current scheme actually may how keep corruption the way to get rid of corruption been when with. if you can't get to enough challengers, that will help them stay in office. that is why we have the first amendment. it is to allow speech and that is what ultimately is the check against corruption, speech by the press and the people. we have to be careful about limiting.
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>> president of public citizen's we also filed an amicus in the case today on behalf of representative david price. the mccutcheon case is about corruption as real people understand it which is to say the system would be more tilted for the millionaires and billionaires and is also about corruption of the supreme court. quid pro quo. it is a certainty that the supreme court decides this case on behalf of mccutcheon we will see more corruption, more legalized bribery will become the norm. if there is any doubt about how this will go, the ability of millionaires to evade any kind of suggestions of limits look at their recent example of freedom partners. we now have a couple of hundred people pulling together
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$250 million to follow it through secret organizations that fund other sigurd organizations to find influence over election outcomes. this case is simply about corruption, but precedence suggests that the court actually may have pulled the existing rules to overturn this decision means overturning core precepts. we can only hope that the court today will decide not to do that. >> isn't this put more money back into the political parties? that was an issue that was raised. the case could potentially put more money in the hands of the dnc, rnc, and other party organizations. >> it is a certainty that if the case goes further mccutcheon there will be more money for the political parties. less money for the outside groups. they seem to be willing to write as.
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check as they need to end it will be more. thank you. >> hi. i am council. we also filed an amicus brief with the group of organizations representing almost nine and a half million americans who all came together from the oldest and largest and constituency groups in the country such as the naacp, greenpeace, sierra club, cwa, all coming together to say that americans are outraged about the dominance of big money on our current government, politics, and policy. we are seeing that six in ten americans say the elected representatives are more responsive to the big money donors than to voters or the public interest. in ten americans sang large campaign contributions are blocking, preventing our
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government from focusing on fixing the current issues that affect our lives such as responding to the climate changed, upward mobility issues like fair taxation. this is something that is causing the american people to have the lowest current opinion of congress in historical record and it is critical that the court uphold the aggregate contribution limit to be able to protect our government from more dominance by big money. we currently see 84 percent of those candidates elected to congress last year raise more money from 01% than from all of their small donors combined. i would also like to read but some of the information being said about incumbents versus challengers. we find that a big money system is absolutely already benefiting incumbents over challengers with house incumbents raising of a one-and-a-half million compared to a mere 300,000 from
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challengers. the senate incumbents and over 7 million, senate challengers and a half. also, we have to it, as some of the justices were trying to say, we must understand that these decisions do not get made in some kind of vacuum separate and apart from the other governing structures. we saw the court in citizens united come to the decision wherein they thought that money would be disclosed. it turns out, as we know, much of that money is not being disclosed. it led to an explosion in dark money that now we're trying to go back through and fix the regulations after the fact. much as with the whole conversation about the ability is circumvent limits and how all of those limits would play together. solicited and received and that would cause a corruption risk. in fact if the court wants to
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look with such detail which we encourage them to consider the real world impacts of their decisions then they should question that in a trial court where they could build an actual record, a point that justice stephen breyer was making. this case is of no other policy and democratic government will be open for sale and able to be further captured by private economic interests that are distorting policy and causing the voices of the average americans to be absent from the public policy debate. our brief shows that government is so much more responsive to big donors and the lower income folks that it is actually blocking majorities of the african-american community and almost the majority of the latino community finding themselves in the bottom third of the income grew and therefore government has been found not at all responsive.
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this is a crisis of confidence and is time that the supreme court makes good decisions. thank you very much. >> my name a is robert biersack. a nonpartisan research organization. a fair amount of confusion today about the mechanics of some of this process. how the movement of money can occur between different kinds of organizations without restriction and the impact on these large contributions that would be allowed if this decision -- if this part of the law is reversed. a lot of experience over many years with that kind of innovation, the way in which networks. we know how they can be done and are happy to discuss that in detail if you would like to know how the process will involve if this is overturned.
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secondly, there was question about whether the system we currently have fundamentally disadvantages the party. there is lot of experience with that kind of change. mccain fine gold allegedly would have destroyed the party's ability to raise funds because they lost their ability to raise unlimited fines. the party has innovated well and were active in raising small contributions from lots of americans and have been able to raise more money under the new restrictions and they were before and and there is no reason to think this provision needs to be overturned in order to protect parties who have succeeded in the system as it exists today. we are happy to have a longer conversation about some of the details to clear up the confusion. >> hello. my name is tara malloy, senior counsel at the campaign legal center. it has been involved in this court case ever since the district court. we filed in a district court and
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again in the supreme court trying to explain the real world consequences of striking down the aggregate limit. one of the notable things about oral argument was how abstract and how many have pedicles proposed by the supreme court justices exposing how little they are first in the realities the politics of fun. we tried to point out exactly what would happen and came up with a number that were bandied about such as a single individual can give over $1 million to a party of their choice and, was extraordinary is these numbers were not in dispute. the justices expressed skepticism about whether this would happen or in the wake of citizens united this was a big deal. this is troubling.
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we can speak further, but i want to say that it was disheartening to have in particular justice scalia say over and over again, what we have to worry about a contribution when already we have supertax spending millions independently. it was your decision that unleased independent spending. it is unbelievable that he is now using it as a justification for striking down yet another protection against big money in politics. i think that the oral argument really exposed how far some of the justices are willing to go to completely deregulate money and would be happy to explain further if there are further questions. >> good morning. my name is stephen spaulding. common cause signed on.
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standing of for average ordinary americans who were tired of their forces being drowned out by big money. we have a lot of problems in our politics today, a lot of this function. like what is going on across the street with the government shut down. some litigates think one of the problems is that there is too little money. that is something we reject and that the supreme court has rejected for over 40 years. the only thing bedstands between our -- the integrity of our representative democracy and a system of pure and utter legalized bribery add these contribution limits. and as we just heard, they promote the first amendment. contribution limits in sure we have, vibrant democracy where folks are able to express themselves on the basis of their ideas and not by the depth of
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their pocket and the size of their bank account. the american people across the country have been calling their representatives, republicans, democrats, calling on congress to adopt a constitutional amendment to make clear once and for all that money is property cannot speech. corporations are entities but do not have a constitutional right to spend unlimited amounts of money in politics and i would be happy to talk to anyone after this about what is happening at the grass-roots level across the country. >> political groups in favor of campaign contribution limits of a rally outside the supreme court. here is part of the rally which includes remarks from a congressman and senator. it is a half-hour. [applause] >> thank you all very much. good morning. it is wonderful to be here with everyday americans, the folks that ought to be fun in their campaigns.
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the tragic citizens united case swept away one of the bomarcs we had against big money influencing our government. there are few remaining restrictions these days. the aggregate limits we place on the money that wealthy americans can contribute to congressional candidates across this country. we have a fight on behalf of the voices of the average person out there, every day americans you want to reclaim their democracy. we beseech and implore this court. hold the line on this so that we don't end up with a small, tiny group of americans, very wealthy americans who can get $2 million to find dozens if not hundreds of congressional campaigns in one fell swoop.
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basically taking over the institution of congress, sitting up on they're gilded a/s and decreeing with the public policy should be when the voices of everyday americans are being drowned out. to we want the government with the voices of everyday americans cannot compete against the megaphone of the big donors? do we want that kind of government? no, we don't. we want a government where the forces of everyday americans are heard. we will soon be introducing the grassroots democracy act because it is not just about putting limits on big money. it is about in powering everyday americans to be the source of funding for campaigns. remove away from a system where there is heavy dependency on the wealthy by candidates and there is dependency on every day americans.
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that is where we need to move the grassroots democracy act would give us tax credits, they will bring matching funds in to amplify the voices of grass-roots donors to contribute to grass roots candidates and will help grass-roots candidates fight against the influence of big money. it will speed up the day, speed up the day when every day americans, when you feel empowered to say, my voice does count. my voice discount. my voice does count. thank you all very much. [applause] >> thank you, congressman. we would now like to bring out robert weisman, the president of
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public citizen's. [applause] >> plutocracy or democracy. the rich or the rest of us, legalized bribery for law and order, corruption or common sense. the supreme court has an easy choice today. we don't know how we will turn out. if we do no position on -- we do know if they strike this down what will happen. a few hundred people will start spending millions of dollars to buy our elections, just a few hundred people. we know that we will have the outbreak of corruption as regular people understand it which is to say, the system will be tilted even more to benefit
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the super rich and the giant corporations. we will also have a huge outbreak of corruption as the supreme court understands that which is played pro quo corruption, the buying of direct influence. that is the inevitability of this decision goes the wrong way there is reason to hope it won't. the supreme court rules for mccutcheon and against current election rolls. it will have to strike at the underpinnings of current campaign finance law and effectively cut the legs out from buckley v vallejo which it may not want to do. we can help. we have to hope that the court will decide with common sense and precedents. but we should not be in the business of having to help that our democracy can function. we should have that as our basic
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right. that is, in fact, what the constitution is designed to uphold, to recognize, and to realize which is why irrespective of how this decision turns out we need a constitutional amendment to restore our democracy, to reestablish the basic principle that democracy is of, by command for the people democracy is ours. that is what i grass mats -- grass-roots movement is doing. we hope this will come out the right way, but we have to join together to make sure democracy turns our way. thank you very much. [applause] >> thanks a lot. pretty soon we will hopefully hear from the folks inside the court remanded a sense of what is happening. i wanted to make sure that folks understood what is an issue here .
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the issue is the aggregate contribution limit cast on the total amount a person can give directly to candidates in each election cycle. for the upcoming cycle that is $123,000. $123,000.1 person can give. that is why this case, it is so sobering that the court took this case and we are hopeful that the corps will not yield to the pressures to see even more of our democracy to the powerful and wealthy. and now it is my privilege to introduce mary boyle, a friend and colleague who is the vice president for communications at common cause, an amazing organization.
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[applause] >> thank you so much. common cause has been in this fight for over 40 years. we are thrilled to be here today working with all of you and these organizations focus to get big money and politics that we are giving it a heck of an effort, the fact is, the justices in the building behind me probably cannot hear what we are saying or doing. the fact is, the people across the street in congress, in the capitol, and down pennsylvania avenue should and do incidence if we make ourselves heard long enough and not be enough and persuasively enough, if we demand -- if we demonstrate that we are in this fight for the long haul and that we are in need to win it we can get control of the outrageous flow
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of money in our politics and our elections and the corruption and the influence that goes with it. we know we need to do. the need to write, speak, organize and all levels of government. we need to keep -- we need to keep standing strong for campaign finance laws. our democracy is not for sale to the highest bidder. many to stand strong at the local, state, and national levels that allow kendis to run for office without being beholden to their large givers. and we need to keep standing for the constitutional amendment recognizes that money is not speech and allows us to stop corporate spending.
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we know what we need to do. let's go do it. thank you. [applause] >> all right. next it is my pleasure to introduce one of the great leaders in the environmental movement, bill radford, executive director of greenpeace usa. [applause] >> good morning. it is good to see in the crowd my brothers and sisters from cwa it is good to see people. there we go. my name is daniel bradford. it is great to be up here today standing up and fighting for democracy together. we are here today because sean mccutcheon is not happy. ..
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