tv Polk County Democrats Steak Fry CSPAN October 11, 2017 3:24pm-4:35pm EDT
tim ryan of ohio looked at the future of their party and what lawmakers have to do for democrats to retake the house and senate in the 2018 elections. this is an hour. >> good afternoon. i'm lindsey paulson, co chair, along with kimberly of the polk county democrats committee. i would like to thank more than our 100 volunteers here today to make our event successful. this event was built entirely on volunteers. and one of the most inspiring things for me has been to watch our political veterans and our political freshmen come together to revive an american tradition. so as you're leaving today, please stop and thank some of those individuals in those light blue t-shirts. those are your volunteers, and those are individuals that have worked hard to make today a success. it's now my honor to begin the presentation from our three
headliners and introduce our first headliner, congresswoman, sherry boost owes of illinois. it's fitting we decided to have me introduce her, the one born in illinois. congresswoman boostos represents illinois's 17th congressional district, which includes western, central and northern illinois. now on her third term, congresswoman boostos focuses on job creation, strengthening our economy, building a stronger middle class. she's been a relentless advocate for women and families and worked across the aisle with both democrats and republicans on common sense solutions to cut government waste and to strengthen both medicare and social security. born in springfield, illinois, the congresswoman grew up in a family that taught her the importance of hard work, caring for others and public service. she began her career in journalism before moving into health care. congresswoman boostos is credible a leader in the make it in america plan to create more
good-paying jobs in our communities, and she also helps lead the effort to make sure that all-american flags purchased with federal dollars are 100% made in america. with a focus on launching the next industrial revolution in illinois, she successfully worked to bring the first of its kind digital manufacturing labs to illinois. congresswoman boostos is a member of the house agricultural committee, where she has worked across the aisle to pass the first long-term farm bill in quite a few years. in addition, as iowans, one of the things i think we can admire the most about congresswoman boostos is her ability to flip her long-standing red district to blue. in her 2012 election, boostos was considered to be one of the most viable challengers against a republican incumbent, and was able to benefit from the congressional red to blue program. she was very viable in her efforts, and won her election 53%-47%.
we've got a few thing to learn from her, and based on this crowd here today, i think there's a lot of people who are very interested in hearing from a fellow midwesterner on how to turn a red district blue. congresswoman boostos was recently re-elected to serve as the co chair of the democratic policy and communications committee. as the only midwesterner elected to democratic house leadership, she's working to ensure that house democrats' agenda connects with our rural and working-class americans. in addition, she serves as a senior rep. the last thing i would like to share about congresswoman boostos is a personal story. a dear friend of mine was born in the quad cities and in a sense moved to the west coast. when telling her about the steak fry, i stopped and said, "one of our headliners is actually your parents' congresswoman." she immediately said, oh, "sherry boostos? i hear a lot about her. how did you guys get her?" i told her we got her because she's here to teach all of us how to flip iowa to a whether or not state once again.
without further ado, please join me in welcoming our neighbor, congresswoman sherry boostos. >> hello, iowa! how is everybody doing? okay. i'm really tall. so i'm going to try to figure out -- well. that might be harder. i'm not technical enough to be able to figure out how to raise that. how is everybody doing? here we go. someone who is more technical than i. thank you so much. >> you're welcome. >> this is what you get for being tall in iowa. you know what? it is great to be back in des moines. and i'll tell you why it's great to be back in des moines. believe it or not, i can actually see iowa from my house. i really can. and i'll tell you, right outside my front door -- literally outside of my front door is the mississippi river. and on the other side of the
mississippi river is what? so when i'm getting up in the morning and i'm having my first cup of coffee, this is what i see. i see the great state of iowa every single morning. so while i come from the illinois quad cities, believe it or not, i have actually spent most of my professional life here in iowa. so as the nice introduction shared with you, i cross the river actually for 17 years working as a journalist in davenport. and for another three-and-a-half years, i drove from the quad cities to des moines, and i worked in health care here. literally -- okay. i might get my direction a little bit turned around. but principle park is what? that way? right that way. so i -- okay. everybody -- some pointing that way. some pointing that way. so i lived literally right outside of principle ballpark. and i absolutely loved, loved
watching the iowa cubs. loved watching the iowa cubs. and so when i would go to or from the games -- anybody ever go to the high life lounge? [ applause ] so the old vintage beers, i would have a beer or two. a schlitz and schmidt's. all the beers are pre1979. anybody ever have the fried spam sandwich? so i would have that. and then i would have a pickled egg. and it would just remind me of the -- just the wholesome, healthy, midwestern eating that we all love. but what makes des moines special? what makes iowa special? it's not just the restaurants, it's not just the food. it is the people. it is people like you. and so we may have a rivalry, iowa and illinois, on the basketball court or on the football field. and, of course, we both have the best farmland anywhere in the
world, right? but i do know, where we are the same, iowans and illinoisans is in those midwestern values and ethics. we share that same pride in american manufacturing. and when we walk down main street, we do it a little differently than other places, don't we? we look up. and we say hello. because we're midwesterners. when our neighbors or our friends fall on hard times, we come together and we help them. it's why we call it the heartland. because it's who we are. and that's really what i'm here to talk with you about today. if you leave this place with nothing else more than this, please know this. there is hope for democrats in the heartland. so since november, we've heard a lot about the counties that
voted twice for president obama. and then switched to donald trump. in fact, there was not any state where more of that happened by county, unfortunately, than in iowa. did you know that? okay. and then in my state, there were 11 counties. we have 102 all together. a little bit more than your 99 here. but in illinois, there were 11 counties that went from president obama to donald trump. and all but two of those -- so 9 of the 11, were in my congressional district. i just share that with you for a little perspective. and donald trump won my congressional district. but i won by 20 points. [ applause ] and so i know a thing or two about donald trump voters. and so what happened is, after november, i had some folks who turned to me and said, "you're
like a political unicorn." in other words, when you're a midwestern rural democrat, we're -- almost an endangered species. and we've got to change that. and it really pains me to admit this. it's like a knife to my heart that there are some in the democratic party who just want to write off districts like mine. and forget about states like iowa. and say that it's just too darn hard to elect democrats in rural america. and that we should just be flown over. well, we've got news for them, don't we? [ applause ] because the heartland is far from trump country. and the road to a successful democratic party runs right through the heartland. [ cheers and applause ] you know, so many -- and i'm
sure there are so many people in this audience today, worked so hard in the last election cycle. i mean, think about how hard you all worked. i traveled more than 22,000 miles, and went to about 22 congressional districts. from small towns to big cities. not just in iowa and illinois, but also in indiana, minnesota, michigan, montana. and you know what i saw? i saw too many forgotten corners of our country. frankly, too many forgotten places from our own party. and you know what? we can never let that happen again! and we're going to need your help on that! and one reason i know we're not going to let that happen is because we started this program that we call build the bench. it's an all-day candidate boot camp, where we are working with candidates, whether they want to
run for dog catcher or congress. and we're making sure that they walk away from that training, knowing how not just to run, but to win. and i know we're making a difference, because just before i came here, just down the road a little bit, we had one of the candidate boot camps right here in des moines. and i can tell you that you've got some wonderful, wonderful candidates who are ready to step up to the challenge. [ applause ] and this is the -- this is what tom vilsack, your former governor and my friend, has been talking about for a generation or more. that it's got to start from the bottom-up. and we can win in the midwest. i know we can win. we just need to make sure that we take that approach. because we know what's on the agenda of our republican friends, don't we? we know what's happening out in washington. and you certainly know what's happening here in iowa. this repealing collective
bargaining rights. the privatizing medicaid. cutting education funding. this is the republican agenda. plain for all to see. but what's our agenda? you guys think about that at all? what's our agenda? we've been criticized for not having a clear and compelling vision. and i hate to say it, but i think a lot of the critics were right on that. so let's talk about that a little bit. what happened? why do our friends in small towns all throughout the heartland feel that our party has left them behind? why have we lost more than 1,000 seats in state legislatures, governors' mansions and in congress in less than a decade? you know, i can tell you what i have learned from my own congressional races in a swing district. and it starts, my friends, by getting off the interstate. lesson number one. it starts by visiting the town square. the main street pub, the local
church. not just political functions. but places like i just talked about. and it starts by listening to hard-working americans who have -- who not only feel like they have been forgotten, but maybe they really have been forgotten. far too many of them are struggling to hang on to just that middle class american dream. they're tired of working harder for a paycheck that just keeps getting smaller. and we know that they don't want a handout. they just want a chance at real work. we need to show that we not only understand their fears, but also their anxieties and their aspirations. it's a key part of it, too. they're tired of politicians who they keep hearing, but really who aren't doing anything. they want us to do something. and frankly, my fellow democrats, they don't want resistance. they want results. it's what i hear when i go to places like the grocery store. we do something on saturdays that we call supermarket
saturday. and i talk with moms who are picking out their froot loops for their kids and dads picking out their pepperoni pizza. and what i hear from them is that they want to make sure that we're not just listening to them, but we take what we learn, we turn that intolation and we fight for them. it's also what i hear when i do something we call "sherry on shift." what i do, i job shadow people. i'm officially, by the way, a certified forklift driver. i want you to know that. [ applause ] as a result of that. and anybody ever go to a carp processing plant? okay. don't wear sandals. when the mississippi river water and carp guts are on the floor. but, you know -- i've met so many people. i've met home nurses who work not just the day shift, but the night shift and wonder if they're going to be able to take their families on vacations in the next year. i've met farmers who are worried if they're going to be the last
generation to farm their land that's been in their families for generations. i've met truck drivers who are getting on in their years and are worried about their pension and are wondering if they might just have to work well into their 70s. and they are tired of looking into the future and not seeing a future. and you know who else saw this frustration? donald trump. donald trump saw that frustration. and you know what he did with it? he exploited it. he has made a bunch of empty promises to the americans who have fallen on hard times. but think about this. where are his results? not a single jobs bill has been presented to us. from the trump administration. in fact, there's not been one bill of any significance that has been presented to us. this is a guy who on the campaign trail spent months attacking goldman sachs to do what when he got in office?
filled his cabinet with goldman sachs executives. you know, here's a guy who wants to cut the u.s. department of agriculture's budget by 21 cents on the dollar. then he wants to charge us, mr. and mrs. taxpayer, about $3 million every time he flies down to mar-a-lago. and meanwhile, his treasury secretary is flying off in a plane that we are paying for with his wife so he can go see the eclipse. this is what's going on. and this is a raw deal. and i'm here to tell you that we as democrats, we've got a better deal. it's founded in the principles of creating better jobs, better jobs -- i'm sorry, better jobs, better wages and a better future for all working americans. and it starts by rebuilding our infrastructure -- [ applause ] so how do we create these jobs, right? one part. we rebuild our infrastructure. and we're not just talking about
the roads and bridges. but everybody in iowa who has anything to do with agriculture knows that we also have to rebuild our locks and our dams. and let's take a look at ultra high-speed trains. [ applause ] i wasn't expecting that to get a reaction like that. but i'm -- totally with you, sister. and here's the other thing. there are 23 million rural americans who don't have access to high-speed internet. that's the kind of infrastructure we're also talking about. we need to -- we need to invest in our talent pipeline by doubling what we invest in programs like apprenticeships and job training. and when we look at tax reform, it's something that's going on in congress right now. we've got to make sure that we are giving tax incentives to these companies that we can call patriot companies. that's how we're going to get to 10 million good-paying full-time jobs. when we make sure that we recognize businesses that invest in american workers. by offering access to affordable
health care. a fair retirement package. and affordable child care. so let's have our tax code work for americans. and here in iowa and illinois. not against us. because the hard-working people we know, they want a fair pay for a fair job, and they want to make sure that wall street doesn't come in and figure out some new scheme to send their jobs overseas. [ applause ] and we need to make sure that we are rewarding companies that not just want to benefit their own bottom line, but our country's bottom line. so my friends, we are at a crossroads. you know, i've spelled that out. i think we are at a crossroads. and we feel it. and in many ways, we're really in this unchartered territory with a great divide in our country. and, you know, we've seen divide -- a divided country before. for those of you who have lived into your 50s or 60s or 70s,
you've seen a lot of that division in our country. but this really feels different this time, doesn't it? feels really different. and it seems like the norms and the standards and the principles that have sustained us for generations are being questioned, and really are under attack, even. and so was democrats -- as democrats, it is up to us to break down these barriers and bring our country together once again. it's up to us to fight for those values that have always made america great, and it is up to us to prove to hard-working men and women who have been left behind that we will never give up on them. character doesn't come from succeeding in easy times. as iowans, you know that. it comes from facing adversity, staring it down, and coming out on top. we are being challenged. but we also stand on the shoulders of great democrats who have come before us, as we chart this new course.
[ applause ] democrats like fdr to jfk. democrats like bobby kennedy to barack obama. and democrats like tom harken to tom vilsack. this is our heritage, this is our foundation. and this is who we are as democrats. we will never stop fighting to strengthen working families. we will never stop fighting to restore the american dream. and we will never stop fighting to build a better america. democrats, let's never give up. thank you very much! [ applause ] please welcome, polk county democrats events committee co chair, kimberly boggess.
>> thank you congresswoman bustos. good afternoon, my fellow democrats. it is great to see us gathered here together to bring back an iowa tradition. i can't help but think there are more than 1,500 of us gathered here, because we have seen the damage the republican agenda has done here in iowa and across our country. a few weeks ago, somebody asked me what really has me fired up. i took a second, thought about everything that makes me a democrat, and i came to the realization that when everything is under attack, it's hard to know where to start. we are gathered today, because we have a common goal. we're building coalitions. we will fight, and we will win. under new leadership in iowa, we are winning special elections, school boards, city council and county supervisors. these people have stepped up because they wanted to serve,
and we thank you and encourage more of you to run. now, when i was asked to introduce congressman seth bolten, i had to do my homework. the old google search. i was pleased to see that just like myself, he is still paying back his student loans. it's a fun club to be in, said no one, ever. in 2001, seth joined the marines, days after graduating from college. and only months before the attacks of september 11th. he served four tours in a war he didn't support, but still, he served. [ applause ] his infantry platoon was one of the first to reach baghdad in 2003. seth attended graduate school, worked briefly in the private sector, where he felt compelled to serve again, and he ran for
public office in his home state of massachusetts. seth's platform was to run on bringing a new generation of leaders to washington, and he won. seth has served two terms since being sworn in, and has worked tirelessly to bring bipartisan bills with great success. including faster care for veterans act, and modernizing government act. he was named the most effective freshman democrat. that's a big deal! by the center for effective lawmaking. since the 2016 election, seth has focused on creating a new economic agenda that will make a difference for american families, and reforming the democratic party. by doing that, we will win. we will take back the house in 2018. seth has been recruiting and mentoring service-driven leaders
across this country, who are new to politics and want to run for congress. so please give a warm welcome to congressman seth moulten. [ applause ] >> thank you. thank you. thank you, kimberly. thank you, polk county democrats! how are we feeling today? there's a lot of energy out there. and i like to see that. i also want to thank all of the candidates who have stepped up, who have gotten involved, who have shared their vision for this great state with all of you today. and i want to tell you what an honor it is to be up here with representatives bustos and ryan. i'm proud to be here with two great leaders in our party. now, a lot of you must be asking, what does a sophomore
congressman from massachusetts doing speaking here in iowa? you know, i don't come from a political family. the first congressman that my parents met is this guy right here. i'm still paying back my college loans, as kimberly said. and i recently went and visited a factory, got a great tour from management, saw -- they made some of the equipment we used in iraq. i gave a speech about how important it is to have americans engaged in advanced manufacturing. and then i asked all the workers, do you have any questions? and there was great silence. and then one kind lady in the back raised her hand and she said, "who are you?" "why are you here?" so i understand that some of you may be asking that question. but to be honest, it's a question i've gotten a lot in my life. it's a question my parents asked when i signed up to serve in the
marines, before 9/11. it's a question that my friends asked when i went back for four tours in a war that i disagreed with. disagreed with. it's a question that establishment democrats asked when i took on an 18 year incumbent in my own party even though it saved the seat from a republican. and it's a question that our party leadership asks when i'm willing to cross the aisle to work with the republican to advance an american priority. but you know the answer to that question is very simple, i do these things because they're the right things to do. and it's the same reason that democrats like you across this country have marched in the hundreds of thousands to support women and reject hate. it's the same reason why
democrats have stood up across this country in town halls and congressional districts and demanded of their republicans that we fix obamacare, not repeal it. and it's because of democrats like you that when we remember trump's three campaign promises to build a wall, to ban muslims and to repeal obamacare, he is 0 for 3. but let's not pretend that trump and the republicans haven't done any damage. let's not pretend that everything in america is okay. there are a lot of good americans in small towns and big cities across this country who are hurting today and our party, the democratic party, is in the worse position since the 1920s to do anything about it.
in the white house, the senate, the house of representatives and in state legislatures across the country where we've lost over 1,000 seats in just the last decade. that means that we've got work to do, democrats. that means that we've got change to make. that means that we can't just keep doing the same old thing and expect to win again. we've got to get back to our party roots. we've got to get back in touch with those voters that we have lost. because the reality is that a lot of americans feel left behind not just by the republicans, but by our party and by our country. i want to share a story about one of those americans who got left behind, because he's one of my heros. his name is james hassle. and i served with james in iraq. james grew up in a poor family in alabama. he joined the marines because he
wanted to serve his country and when our platoon got in a tough spot in iraq in 2004 and another marine named ryan from vermont got hit with a grenade, james put him on his back and carried him through machine gunfire to be evacuated. james saved ryan's life at the great risk of his own. now when james got out of the modern corps, he wanted to continue serving. so he went to school and he got a degree in nursing and he got a great job working in an emergency room so he could keep saving lives back here at home. but as you might imagine for someone who went through an experience like that, james suffered from post traumatic stress. so he went to the v.a. for help. and in a story i've heard repeated by too many veterans from this war and from war's past, the v.a. didn't give him
the counseling that he wanted and needed. they just prescribed him a lot of medications. so many medications that at the age of 30 james hassle died of a heart attack just from taking the medications prescribed by the v.a. the first time james's father ever got on an airplane was to go to his son's funeral. we can do better than that, america. we can do better than that for people that have put their lives on the line for our country. and i recently got a call from another veteran i served with named pete. i hadn't heard from him in a while. turns out i hadn't heard from him because he's homeless. he's homeless.
and, you know, james and pete, they're not the only americans who have been left behind. we've been leaving behind americans on factory floors whose jobs have been taken over by robots or automated out of existence and used to be able to bring home a good paying salary to their family with dignity. we've lost americans who used to serve in planned parenthood clinics bringing health care to millions of americans that couldn't get it anywhere else before republicans decided that politics is more important than people. we've left behind americans who run lunch counters and small businesses in small towns who have been put out of business by those big chains who pay less taxes just because they have lobbyists in washington. to my republican friends, we're
not going to fix any of this. we're not going to look out for pete or james or all these good americans by slashing veterans care, by slashing mental health care by cutting obamacare by leaving millions out on the street without health insurance and we're not going to make america great again if we leave all these great americans behind. now you got to give trump credit, at least he recognized that problem. that a lot of americans are hurting but his solution is to send us back into the coal mines, to go back to this mythical vision of the country in 1955 when half of the rest rooms and lunch counters in this nation were segregated by the color of your skin. trump is threatening to get us into nuclear wars overseas and
he's refusing to stand up to racist domestic terrorists right here at home. but while president trump wants to take us backwards to get us out of this problem, let's remind americans that democrats can take us forward. democrats can take us forward, can bring us together because we realize that politics is not a game with the score kept in washington, d.c. politics is about real people with real lives that matter every single day. that's why i served four tours in a war i disagreed with because i didn't want to leave my fellow marines behind and i knew we could do better. that's why i served -- signed up to serve before 9/11 because i
believe in this country, so much so that i'm willing to fight for it and i'm willing to die for it. that's why i took on an establishment democratic in my own party because i said if you're not willing to get involved, you're not going to change the system. and it's why i'm willing to stand up to the establishment leadership today because we've got to change if we're going to win again and i believe america needs us to win again. in my platoon of marines i served with guys from all over the country. i had a marine from iowa and a marine from st. john's, vermont. marines from massachusetts and alabama, california and texas. a marine from a gated community outside of park city, utah. a marine from inner city new york. we came together with remarkably
different backgrounds, different religious beliefs, different political beliefs but at the end of the day we were able to set aside those differences to do what's right for america and why is that? i think it's because we had a common mission and i think that's what america needs today. america needs a mission. we need a mission that brings us all together to rise above the divisive politics of today because we're all on the same team at the end of the day. we're all on team america. so let's make it our mission in this age of automation to ensure that every american, no matter where you live, in middle america or silicon valley, you have a role to play in the new economy, the economy of the future. and let's show that we don't just respect americans who have college degrees, we respect americans who don't have a college degree too. i never chose a marine for a
mission based on the degree he had hanging on his wall. and no marine ever trusted me based on the degree i had hanging on mine. let's show america and let's show the world that we can build the green economy, not just because it's good for the environment but because it's good for jobs. because there are five times as many as jobs in the green economy right now as in coal and gas and america should be the leader. we shouldn't be buying solar panels from china. america should lead this new economy. let's show america that we can build 21st century infrastructure because everybody in america, no matter if you live in a big city or a smallton, you need high speed broadband access so you all have access to the same new jobs on the internet.
and let's build real high speed rail because if the closest job opening to you right now is a three hour drive away, you should be able to get there on a high speed train in 30 minutes. and at the end of the day come back in 30 minutes to that same small town you grew up in where you want to raise your family and where you want to support your local businesses. and let me just talk for a second about this silly border wall. the one that mexico is not going to pay for. show me a 30 foot wall and i will show you a 35 foot ladder. but you know the wall that we actually should be building, the wall that we actually need in america is a cyber wall to stop the chinese from attacking american businesses, to stop the russians from hacking american elections, because american
workers should benefit from american ideas not the chinese who steal them and american voters who choose who our next president not the russian dictators who hack us. that's a mission that can bring us all together again. that can rise above the divisive politics of the day, that can revive small towns across america. if we do these things and other things, we can move america forward again and why do i think we can do this? because we're democrats. because in tough times democrats have always risen to the occasion. because it was democrats who got us out of the great depression. because it was a democrat who led us to victory in world war ii. because it was a democrat who said we'll put a man on the moon and it's democrats who made it happen. because it's democrats who led the fight for civil rights.
because it's democrats who led the fight for equal rights and it's because democrats who said once and for all that love is love and you can marry who you want, that my own brother can marry who he wants and it's democrats today who are protecting and preserving universal health care and one more thing, i think it's time for a new generation of democrats to help lead this fight. democrats who are in the gig economy to tell us how everybody can be a part of the economy of our future. democrats who went to iraq and afghanistan to step in for the generation that sent us there. if we do that, we can move this country forward again. if we show leadership, democrats can win again and america needs us to win again.
let me close with one little story. when i was living in dallas, texas, like every aspiring massachusetts politician, when i was living in dallas, texas before i ran for congress, i went to church every week. and the church i went to was the same church that president george w. bush went to. remember that, when george w. bush was the biggest problem we faced in america? oh, for the good old days. i didn't always agree with everything that was said in that church and i didn't always agree with everybody who sat next to me in those pews, but every week at the end of the service we all stood together and we sang that hymn i know you know well, he
will raise you up, on eagle's winners, bear you on the breadth of dawn, make you shine like the sun. i think there are a lot of americans who need to hear that message today. say it with me. we will raise you up. you can do better than that. we will raise you up! one more time, we will raise you up! so when you see a homeless man in the street, you say we will raise you up. when you see a young girl who can't get a good education, you say we will raise you up. when you see a veteran whose hampered by opioids, you say we will raise you up. we will raise you up beyond the divisive politics of trump. we will rise above you. we will raise you up in the next
election. that's what we need to do to move this country forward again. so rise up, iowa. we need you! we need you! america needs you. god bless you! i'm with you every step of the way. thank you. please welcome pack our county chair, shawn beg nowski. >> let's hear another round of applause for congressman seth moulton. that was wonderful. i want to recognize a couple folks in the audience we missed where. we've had some more elected officials coming in. please join me in welcoming our senate majority and representative monica kirj is in the audience as well.
please check out our new polk county parade donkey that was just painted by ben shoo. our final -- please give them a round of applause. our final headliner today is congressman tim ryan. he is the congressman for ohio's 13th district which is a traditionally blue color district that spans from akron to youngstown. since being elected in 2003, he's accumulated quite a name for himself. he's well-known for being one of our outspoken voices for the revival of american manufacturing and our brothers and sisters in organized labor. he's introduced the currency reform for fair trade act which wanted to crack down on currency manipulation from other countries like china and he's got a long history of advocacy. it's not just as a congressman but even as a state lettinger he was talking about a state based
earned income tax credit in ohio. he's also an interesting dude for those that don't know him. he's meditated. he's written a book on healthy eating. welcome to the steak fry on healthy eating. he was just here in july. we got him on his way out of town and we had six days to plan an event with him. we picked kuhnies in beavertown and the response that he had was electric. when he said that the democratic party needs to be the party of the people who have to take a shower when they get home from work again, the whole room went crazy. so it was an easy decision for us when we were looking at our headliners today. we were looking for new faces, we were looking for bold voices and we were looking for folks who can talk about the economy. congressman tim ryan checks all those boxes. please join me in welcome our last headliner, congressman tim
ryan. >> thank you, chairman. hello, iowa, it is good to be in big ten country. it's so great to be here with some old fashioned politics and bands and candidates and discussions about the future of the democratic party here in iowa and across the country and i know after which what will be a very well thought campaign for congress and governor that we're going to come together as democrats and make sure we take back the state of iowa. so for the longest time i've been in congress 15 years and for the longest time, i was single and then about four years
ago i got married. so i went from being single to being married. and that's a slight change in lifestyle as you all remember. so i got married but i also married a woman who had two kids. so i went from being single to being married with my wife and she had two kids. so i went from being single to married with two kids. my wife got rid of her place, i got rid of my place. we had to get neutral territory and what do you do when you get married to a woman that has a couple kids and you just got a new house. you got to go out and get a dog, right? so we go out to get a dog and what happens when you go out to get a dog with two kids? you come back with two dogs. so now i go from being single to being married with two kids and
two dogs and then 3 1/2 years ago or so we had brady, so now there's three kids, two dogs, one wife, one house. and so something happens during the course of an evening that i hadn't really recognized happening for a while. it was an experience. it was called and is called silence. i looked around, i was sitting on the couch, i looked around and it was about 10:00 at night and there was no one around. everybody was upstairs in bed and probably in the same bed but that's a whole other story that you don't need to hear. so what's a guy from youngstown, ohio do when he's in his family room and his family's all asleep and he's got the whole run of the house, he grabs the remote control, right? so i'm flipping through the channels and what's a guy from
youngstown do when he gets the remote control, because i hadn't seen it in a while. we were watching paw patrol and nickelodeon tv and all this. you find some sports on, right? so i'm flipping through the channel and i find this documentary on jimmy valvano. you remember the coach? he was the baseball coach at north carolina state. so jimmy v's on this documentary and he's giving a speech and in his speech he says, you know, god must have loved ordinary people because he made so many of us. but he said, but every day in so many different ways ordinary people do extraordinary things. all across america, ordinary
people do extraordinary things and i thought to myself, when the democratic party is at its best, we're the party that helps ordinary people be able to do extraordinary things. and we have an obligation to help ordinary people. think of what we stand for. it's the party about helping ordinary people do extraordinary things. and that's been the challenge, quite frankly, for our party. i think we rely too much on some smart person at harvard, some harvard attorney's going to come up with some big plan for us that's just going to fix everything. when the fact of the matter is, the solutions to our country's problems need to be coming out
of youngstown, ohio, and des moines and davenport and gary, indiana. we had an anniversary in youngstown a week or two back, september 19th, 1977, and in youngstown it's known as black monday. that was the day that u.s. sheet and tube closed down their facilities in youngstown. and we saw thousands of jobs in our community go away and there was an article about this last couple weeks ago and i sent it to the text chain that has my wife's family in it and my mother-in-law text back and she says, i'll never forget that
day. i'll never forget when bobby came home lunch pale in hand dirt on his hands and said i don't know what we're going to do. just borrowed $4,000 from his parents to pay for a new house. had two little kids and the potential loss of a job. and that's the same thing that is happened in communities all over the united states of america, that have been wiped out and you know what frustrates me, you know what angers me, is that that was 40 years ago and these communities have not recovered because america has not made it a priority to help
these communities recover and plug back into the global economy. and so if i go to iowa, i hear about may tag. if i go out to south carolina, i hear about the textile mills. if i go to the great lakes states, you hear about auto. and the plants like ours that had 16,000 workers and now they have three or four in the plant. the steel mills that have gone away and the communities and families that have suffered because of it. when i first got into the state senate, i was brand-new. i was 29 years old -- i was 26-year-old. shows you how old i'm getting. i don't even remember when i started doing this. but i'll never forget about two months in, a local steel plant
went bankrupt. we're about to go bankrupt. and the employees were trying to figure out how they were going to save the business. it was about a thousand jobs. and so they were trying to figure out if they could do what's called an esop, like an employee owned built by the packard brothers. this place is packed with 2,000 people. so i walk in as a new state senator and it's packed, and up on the stage is the head of the union, somebody from kent state university who knows about esops and then 2,000 families and workers there and as i walked in listened for a while, they had two aisles facing the stage with microphones and this guy was at the microphone who worked at the
plant and he said, you could hear him saying, you know, we've got to do something about this. i got a wife, i got kids, i got a house payment. i don't know what we're going to do but we got to do something and he said, that's my machine. i go to work every day. that's my machine that i run every day and i want to run that machine. it's my machine. big continuous castor processing to make steel. my machine. that's the dignity of work. our party -- our party has to focus like a laser beam on that
man, on that woman whose a waitress with two kids and is on her feet all day long. they don't think they're with us any more. we lost them. and we lost them to trump and while i'm mad at the republicans, i'm just as mad at us for letting that happen. there's no way this guy should be president of the united states. no way at all. and we let those people down. we let them down. we didn't see them. we didn't listen to them. we didn't hear them. and if we want to be a national party, not a coastal party, a national political party in the united states, we've got to get those workers back from iowa, ohio, wisconsin, indiana,
pennsylvania, kentucky. those are our people. those are our people. and we got to go and get them. we've got a lot of challenges today. we've got globalization, we've got automation, we've got an opioid epidemic. we've got a diabetes epidemic in the united states. coming down the pike is driver's license trucks and more automation. when the fact of the matter is in about 20 or 25 states in the united states, the number one job is truck driver. we see automation in all of our manufacturing. we have 3 billion people around the globe that are moving into the middle class and will consume 300% more than their consuming today. we have the climate getting
warmer, six degrees in the next 70 years coming down the pike. we have venture capital money where 75% of it goes to three states, california, massachusetts and new york. not iowa, not ohio. that's a challenge for us. and what i want say to all of you here today, in iowa and across the country, is we have watched while the republican party has done nothing but divide the united states of america and divide our people. they ask us, you know, whose black and whose white. whose a man and whose a woman? whose gay and whose straight? whose from the urban area and whose from rural america?
and divide and divide and divide. and then we came along as democrats and we affirmed their divisions because then we started talking to people the same way. we would say, well, if you're african-american, i'm going to talk to you about voting rights. if you're latino, i'm going to talk to you about immigration. if you're a woman i talk to you about choice. if uruguyou're gay, i'm going tk to you about lgbt rights. we affirmed their divisions. we played right into their hands and now they're hating on us and i just don't want us hating back on them because that's only producing more hate and we've got to come together. these challenges that i listed for you, we can't solve those challenges divided. we've got to come together. it's the only way we're going to solve these huge challenges that are facing our country.
and so we can't let them drag us into hateful arguments. we can't let them divide us. we've got to come together. there's nothing that we can't achieve if we do it together and that's what this whole thing is all about. this whole experiment in democracy, self-government and people benefit politically by dividing us up. we don't have the power, not one group of us has the power to make the change and guess what? if we don't get into power, none of the individual groups are going to be able to do a damn thing because we won't have the power. so we've got our work cut out
for us and we've got to talk about the things that unite us not the things that divide us, especially as democrats. we will always be and fight for equality and justice for everyone, but what we have to let everyone know is we are going to fight for their economic well-being, their jobs, their pension, their paycheck, their health care. and if we do that, we will be back into the majority in iowa and across the united states. let me make one last point and then i'll tell you a quick story. we've got to think big again and this is a little critique that i've been noticing and i give
the democrats some like it, some don't. but we got to think big again. we hear a lot about the minimum wage and the living wage and 12, 13, 14, $15 an hour. i think that's entirely appropriate, but that is not our aspiration and we talk about that like that is our only economic plan that we have. my guys back home, my men and women back home, they want to make $40 an hour and they hear democrats only talking about $15 an hour. we don't connect with those people. we've got to talk about good high wage, high-paying jobs. we can't talk about going carbon neutral. we've got to start, because of the six degree increase in the next 70 years in the klei hait, we've got to be the party that talks about reversing global
warming, not going carbon neutral but actually reversing it with the way we grow our food and the way we build things and the energy we use. that's an aspirational message for democrats and let me say, let me say, that we cannot do this by being an antibusiness party, okay? i am -- i am not saying -- i am not saying that we shouldn't ask the wealthiest people in the united states to pay more, 100 out of the top fortune 500 companies don't pay a dime in the corporate tax. i'm not saying we shouldn't ask to get more out of capital gains or dividends and ask the wealthy to pay more, but you know what? we can do that and say, how do you -- how do i get general electric to hire 2,000 of my
people in youngstown? i want to work with you to help make that happen. sometimes we come off as so antibusiness. we've got to work with those venture capital companies to get investment into our communities. you can't just have government do it. it's got to be a public/private partnership to lift our country up. i want to tell you one story, last story about my grandpa. you can't tell by the name ryan, but i'm half italian. we're an obnoxious bunch as italians, yes we are. and so, my grandfather growing up in niles just outside of youngstown he couldn't speak english. and so he went to school and he got thrown out of school because he couldn't speak the language,
and it was a shame because growing up he never -- he forgot italian literally was so traumatized, he forgot the language. and he was back home and then he started walking to school again and in the town there was one black family, one african-american family and they lived down the street and the italian neighborhood by my grandpa. and my grandmother tells this story and she told it, you know, how sunday italian dinners go, she told it every fourth italian sunday, my grandma's house, but she would tell the story of my grandfather in the 1920s when things were really bad, he would walk down the street and he
would stop at the black kids' house and he would wait at the end of the driveway for the kid to come out and he'd walk him to school every single day. the little dark skinned italian boy and the little black kid walked to school together. that's how i grew up, that's how you grew up. they walked together. they walked together and they walked together for the next five or six decades. my grandfather in the union and this young black kid in the civil rights movement and they walked together and they transformed the united states of america with unions which should not be a dirty word in the democratic party. with unions. they passed social security and
medicare and medicaid and eventually civil rights because they walked together and what i'm telling you is that if we walk together, there is nothing that we can't do in the united states of america. if we walk together. and so i will only say what bobby kennedy used to say at the end of his brief energetic campaign for president. i do not promise you ease. i do not promise you comfort, but i will promise you these, weariness, hardship and sacrifice and with these i promise you victory. thank you, iowa.
american history tv on c-span3 is in primetime this week starting at 8:00 p.m. eastern. tonight the 60th anniversary of little rock central high school's interthe grags with former president bill clinton. thursday night a discussion on the lead-up and response of the 1957 forced desegregation of little rock central high school and friday night from american history tv's oral history series, interviews with prominent photojournalists who documented major events through american history. watch american history tv this week in primetime on c-span3. all this week book tv is in primetime on c-span2. tonight at 8:00, a look at the
2016 election with hillary clinton and her book, what happened. jonathan alan and amy par author of shattered and douglas shown and his book, america and the age of trump. on thursday night at 8 eastern books made into movies. author of hidden figures. chris pa ron toe and mark geist and their book 13 hours and rebecca scoot the immortal life of henry eta lax. library of congress and greg harbor at the mississippi book festival and political activist and author james o'keefe at freedom fest. this week watch book tv in primetime on c-span2. tomorrow housing and urban development secretary ben carson testifies on the future of housing in america. he'll speak before the house financial services committee and it starts live at 9:30 a.m.
eastern here on c-span3. also thursday, testimony from energy secretary rick perry on future energy missions and management priorities at his department. he'll speak before a house energy subcommittee and that begins live at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span2. you can also watch both hearings online at cspan.org or listen on the free cspan radio app. it's a radio station in the nation's capital. it covers 6 million people. this is a very heavily automobile commute city and it'll just extend our brand and give people who are involved in the process here a chance to listen to it. that's how it happened and it was that simple. cspan radio marking 20 years of public affairs programming from the nation's capital. listen to the washington journal live each morning beginning at
7:00 a.m. eastern. here recaps of the day's political events on washington today. and get the latest from congress, the administration and important events from across the nation. cspan radio is available in washington on 90.1 fm. on our website, cspan.org or by downloading the free cspan radio app. cspan radio at 20 years where you hear history unfold daily. earlier this week, democratic legislators participated in the exchange conference from washington. this panel focused on what can be done to countertrump administration policies with more progressive actions at the state and local levels. it's almost two hours. if you're --