tv Washington Journal CSPAN January 18, 2013 7:00am-9:00am EST
how us students score in international rankings. >> good morning a life view of the u.s. capitol on this friday morning as we prepare for president obama's second inauguration. a number of leading magazines focusing on what is next. the next four years is which i say chon science monitor two for the president. tomorrow, saturday is being called a national day of service. the white house ceremony will take place on sunday at noon
eastern as the president is sworn in from the blue room of the white house. the president ceremony will take place monday followed by a congressional luncheon and a parade. one question raced by on outgoing president 52 years ago this woke was the role in government in solving america's problems. we'll share with you some of the comments of dwight eisenhower in his farewell address. what is the role in government in solving america's problems. you can join the conversation by giving us a call. you can send us an e-mail at journal at cspan.org.
let's begin with the act two second terms for u.s. presidents have been problematic but not cursed. what history will says about how president obama will do. will obama blow another mandate. meanwhile from the hill newspaper there is this words from senator mitch mcconnell after four years of frosty relations senator mcconnell is reaching out to the president. senator mcconnell called on the president to use his inauguration speech to focus on the massive federal debt happeninging over the heads of our children and grandchildren. it is an offer senator mcconnell made four years ago but was soon forgotten. in his editorial he said given the serious nature of the challenge, i hope the president
uses his address to acknowledge the seriousness of the debt crisis and lace out ways working with both parties in the congress can get spending under control. from david brooks this morning in the "new york times," he writes the next four years. he says the president enters his second term. there has been a new controlling narrative, a new strategy for how to spend the next four years. he says as you know i am an earnest good government type. it would be based on the notion you have to learn to crawl before you can run. legitimate tors should work on a series of realistic incrementle laws that would rebuild competent and trust. this morning from the "new york times." and so the question this morning -- just what should the role be of government in solving america's problems.
eisenhower's address referred to the military complex. since we have had ten presidents since he delivered those words from the white house just three days before john f. kennedy was sworn in. here is a portion from his farewell address. >> crisis there will continue to be. in meeting them whether foreign or domestic, great or small, there is a temptation to feel could become to all our difficulties. development of unrealistic programs to cure every ill in agriculture. a dramatic expansion in research. these and many other possibilities, each possibly promising may be suggested as
the only way to the road we wish to travel. but each proposal must be weighed in the light of a broader consideration, the need to maintain balance in and among national programs. balance between the private and the public economy, balance between the cost and hoped for advantages, balance between the clearly necessary and the comfortably desireable, balance between our essential requirements as a nation and the duties imposed by the nation upon the individual, balance between actions of the moment and the national welfare of the future. good judgment seeks balance in progress, lack of it eventually finds imbalance and frustration. >> words of president eisenhower 52 years ago. are those words relevant today
as he talked about what government can and cannot do in solving problems. that speech is still available online. and pointing out those remarks giving the country a dire warning about what he described as a threat to democratic government. he also used the phrase military industrial complex. since then that has become a rallying cry of opponents for expansion. in an effort to control the expansion of the military industrial complex the president sought to cut the pentagon's budget. he wanted a budget he said the country could afford. share your thoughts about the role you think the government can play and also the words of dwight eisenhower. dan is joining us, welcome to the program. caller: thank you. i think serve aware of what our
state government has done to the gun owners in this state and really the safety of all the citizens. now if you want an example of why the government should stay out of the matters of the people on the local level especially take a look at the law they passed theirself. you had two firearm killed out in new york by a person who was a convicted felon. he brutally murdered his grandmother with a hammer. they had him in jail for 10 or 15 years and what did he do? he went and killed two more people. and who set up those laws and processes for him to get out of jail? then after that happened what did they do? they came after my gun rights. yesterday mr. bloomberg said there will be more killings and we need that so we can pass tighter gun laws. that's why i'm saying do not
register your long guns they are going for everything they can get here. and please america watch us in new york state. come to our aid, we need your help as much as you need ours. host: the role of government in solving america's problems. republican line virginia. good morning. caller: good morning. i was happy to see this question because obama seems to think that the government has the role of solving all of our problems and as the former person just said, slowly and surely our freedoms will be taken away. i mean it's a ridiculous concept in that there is nothing that gun control can do to prevent these horrendous thanges occurred in newtown
understand colorado. i think what's happened is people have become desensitized, especially the younger people about life and death and certainly their values have eroded and the respect for elleders, everything, respect for your country. the love of country, my gosh, it's just terrible the way our values are just being taken away. and i really think it's this constant media all the time and all of the violence on tv and movies. it's far more destructive than whether or not a person owns a gun. and legal guns, my gosh. so i think they set themselves up to say we must do something to allow this never to happen
solving america's problems. the word of dwight eisenhower as the president embarks on his second term. that's the question today. steve is joining us from michigan on our line for independents. good morning. caller: good morning. we have our problems in the country. but i was listening to news radio last night and we got another one. this is what i heard now -- i don't know if this is true or verified. but apparently the website where you send the denations and the flowers to the families of the sandy hook shooting, that website was posted two days before the shooting. if that's true we have a serious problem. host: do you honestly believe that? caller: i don't want to but that's what i heard on news radio . i'm just letting you know we
need to find out what is going on. i don't want people to flip out on this but we need to look into this. i'm scared. host: good morning, tom. caller: how you doing? host: fine thank you. caller: most of the material you read this morning are from liberal newspapers and magazines and you haven't read any from any conservative and all your guests this morning are liberals. and yesterday you had one guest from the brady campaign and your programming through the day was senator for vermont lady and you had a democrat eleven vin talking -- you never have any republican programming anymore.
unless republicans watch your show, you're not going to have any balance to your show. host: yesterday we expected to have a round table and he canceled yesterday. the republicans are in a retreat. caller: there are conserve thaves can come from the n.r.a., you should invite them. why don't you have any conservatives on your show this morning hypowe will and we do. hope you keep watching the network. the president is in a strong position at the start of his second term based on a new poll. as he prepares for his second inauguration president obama is in a stronger position than he was in his first term. 62% approving him on the job.
next is steve joining us from new jersey, democrats line. good morning to you, steve. caller: good morning. host: you are on the air, go ahead. caller: i'm on. i would like to see the government start a company called the u.s. oil company in which oils are designated by old time gee olings and then people can decide if they want to invest in these oil wells. if they do decide and the oil is discovered, they get their money back plus let's say an
amount equal to what they invested. and then this oil is owned by the u.s. government who refines the oil and then it's sold. 60% of what they make is used to pay down the national debt, 20% is used to help with schools and poor people and the last 20% is used to develop renewable energy sources. host: thanks for the call from new jersey. we reflect on the words of dwight eisenhower in his fair well address. the question we are asking the role in government in solving america's problems.
his farewell address on january 17, 1961 included advice to the country saying the government cannot solve all of the nation's problems. he also talked about america's military industrial complex. here is more from his farewell address. >> in the councils of government we must guard against unwanted influence whether sought or unsought we the military industrial complex. the potential for the decastrouse rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. we must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. we should take nothing for granted. only knowledgeable sidry can compel the huge machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals.
so let's secure liberty may prosper together. host: the comments of eisenhower in his farewell address. the washington times on the ed torle page t persist nt plague of washington waste. he writes -- host: christine is joining us from new york city. caller: good morning. i happen to love president eisenhower. i remember the jingles we used to sing when he was up for reelection. but about the role of government things have changed significantly since then and i think his words could be applied today with very good effect. and if you bear with me, i have
a sentence or two that i quoted. may i read it? host: please do. caller: should any political party attempt to abollish social security, unemployment insurance and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. there is a tiny splinter group of course that believes you can do these things, among them are h.l. hunt and a few other texas millionaires and an ockal business man from other areas. their number is nenthable and they are stupid. quote president dwight d. eisenhower. this is on page 51 of a book called the people's tension. i think that mr. eisenhower had a rare ability for balance and i would certainly like to see
people in government that matched his caliber of leadership once again. i do not believe our current president comes anywhere near that. hypothanks for the call and sharing that perspective in your own remembrances of dwight eisenhower. appreciate the call from new york city. courtesy of the boston globe, more on guns. 27 held on drug and gun charges in city gang raids. the president's campaign lives on, the organization that propelled him to a second term is being built into an entity to support his claims. the first goal will be working on the president's efforts dealing with gun violence and there is this headline. the gun debates of the past showing political risks. a look at what we faced in the 1990's and what the country is
facing today over gun violence. the role of government in solving america's problems as we reflect on the words of dwight eisenhower and are they relevant today is the question? caller: i think they are and i'm a democrat. president eisenhower is the first president that i really remember. and of course, my father is a world war ii veteran and he was very popular in the community. i lived in a suburb outside chattanooga and he was very popular with everybody. and he's the guy who looked like your grandfather, you know. but i want to say one other thing. man, they need to get a net out and throw it over those first three or four callers. that scarce me. and i don't see people like
next is curtis joining us from missouri republican line. good morning. caller: good morning. dwight eisenhower, i remember him. he was a five star general in world war ii. back in that day we had a lot less laws on the books. if you wanted to learn how to fly an airplane you could. there was a lot more things that a person could do. now they have limited it so much. we didn't send our factories overseas. i lost my factory to mexico. dwight eisenhower wouldn't have put up with banning guns because in 1938 the germans -- you can look it up on youtube,
german 1938 gun ban. our government is caller:ing that. i can't explain it as good as you can watch it on youtube. and as far as mental illnesses look on www.ccs hr. that is sids commission on human rights. >> second terms have had their par rills but the curse is overblown. take a look at relate tiss and miths of second acts. let me share with you some of the things from the article today --
host: by the way on sunday we'll approximate be with richard smith. next is a caller from michigan, independent line. ken is on the phone. good morning to you. caller: good morning. i wanted to make a comment about the tax code system. it's so complicated. i think that the government wants to do something to help
out the economy, they could institute a fair tax or a flat tax, something like the libertarian candidate gary johnson was advocating last year where if you buy something you just pay the tax on it, there is no more income tax or corporate tax but a consumption type flat tax. host: do you think that would work? caller: i think that would eliminate all these loopholes people take twn tax code system. if you're married, own a house, have children, you get all these deductions and if you don't have any of those things, then you don't get to take any of those deductions so it's just not fair. if your income comes from capital gains there is a different tax rate for you. if the government wants to help bring the economy back, make
everything fair across the board as far as taxes go. host: thanks for the call. we welcome our listeners and our focus this morning the role of government in solving america's problems. it was something that dwight eisenhower talked about in his fair well address 52 years ago this week. from our twitter page there is this from one of our viewers -- rick is joining us from maryland democrats line. good morning. caller: good morning. i think the government should be a part of our life, because without the government all these millionaires and billionaires wouldn't be where they are without having public education and building roads
and everything. and you need to ask your g.o.p. where is yoush leader mitt romney. seems like he dropped out of sight. on the guns, i think they need to put inshunes on a gun like you do a car. host: so often we focus on the u.s. debt or deficit, we have exceeded now the dealt limit of $16.4 trillion. you can see in the upper left-hand side the debt clock. difficult choices on the debt if the u.s. think it's ceiling. the piece points out by mid february or early march the united states could face an unprecedented default unless it raises the debt ceiling. that was from tim geithner. further into the body of the
"new york times" story i want to is share with you some of the numbers "the new york times" points out today. that could happen as early as february 15, if that happens by february 15 or early march, according to the by partisan policy center in analysis of what the government expects is $8 billion in revenue that day but it has $52 billion in spending that day, $6.8 billion in tax refunds, $3.5 in federal salaries, and $1.5 ode to military contractors and other commitments. consider again that day on february 15 f that is the day
we reach the limit, the country would not have enough money to pay the bond holders let alone anyone else, more over analysts have raced questions about whether the treasury would be able to reprogram the ought mated payment system to prioritize some payments over others. the role of government in solving america's problems. we go to judy from texas. depood morning. caller: my thought on this is personal responsibility. we cannot expect the government to take care of our problems. we talk about gun control. if you own a gun, you are the one that should be in control of what goes on with that gun. children can be educated. people don't have to get shot. as far as your emotional and mental conditions, most people in a family are aware of the fact if there is a problem in
the family. we really don't need to be hold how to raise the children, how to control the guns, how to spend our money. what we need is to accept and to work with our own personal responsibilities. host: thanks for the call. from inside "the washington post" david writes about the expected appointment of the new chief of staff. he's expected to do so in the next couple of days. he is 43-year-old widely known as the did deputy national security advisor for the last two years, helping guide the draw done in iraq and afghanistan. the piece points out --
some of the background on him, he is a native of minnesota, he earned a master's degree in foreign service. he is married with three children and has been known to commute to the white house by bicycle. >> tim nitenereast last day we are told is next grid. >> independent line good morning. caller: good morning. the way i see it the government has always been in our business and the sadness of it is coming
from an african-american point of view is look at the major compromise that this country made with our southern planters, the fugitive slave act. but that purpose deputized every white person to ask any african-american what are you doing here and why are you here and send them back into slavery. we have enough trouble here in this country. we are all over the world. bring the government back home to straighten out -- look at the highway systems, the roads are unbelievably bad. and the sadness of it is we are spending trillions of dollars. look at the oil companies. look at algeria, why are we there? >> more people have died in chicago than have died in
algeria. more people have died in this country than the last two major wars we call ourselves being in. our government is into business. and let me say this before i let you go, and that is this -- we are complaining about a man riding a bicycle over a lie and our government, what are we doing? why aren't we after cheney, bush? they laid and look at the people who have died and the money we've lost. hypothanks for the call. look at harper's weekly. will obama blow another mandate. the cover story of time magazine fee commured biden and the mayor of new york city. many of you weighing in on our twitter page who is better quipped to have a major role in
solving the country's party is either party? no. religion? laughable. good morning. caller: yes, the government has a role. how do people think we got all the major things in our country? my husband and i are both gun owners and that is what this is pointing at. we are responsible. we have a gun safe that no one can get n. these guns are taken out for protection, one for protection my husband has it and no one touches it. the only time it's taken out is for shooting or for hunting. there is a number of bullets given to my son who is a grown man. but i was taught and my family were taught if you can't take a
deer down in two sholts then you have no business shooting. so you go to a gun range and learn to shoot. these high capacities are not needed. if gun ranges want to have them there there should be a law they could. that would increase a business and go shoot those guns. no one needs these high capacity rounds. but our government does have a role. look at how our history on mental health for instance. we used to have them in institutions. these institutions were cruel. who took care of that? the government come in and changed these things. it just does have a role. businesses, they rely on the government, our mayors and whatever to make it conducive for business. so i really do not understand
specifically the republicans thinking they are wanting to take our guns away. the brady law just limited that. and i don't really know how it would work from family to family because in west virginia there is a history. you give a gun, it goes down to the next generation. i don't know how that's going to work. or they buy and sell or i've seen pit bords where they win guns. so i don't know how that part will work. host: on the idea of a universal background check something that the president is pushing for. caller: yes, very much. so and as far as mental health i'm not sure how that is going to work because there are gray areas in depression. host: one of the questions is how you determine mental health issues, what is the standard and how do you say yes to one person and no to another.
caller: exactly. host: thank you. the role of government in sharing america's problems. one voice on the fox news channel is going to continue according to politico long time strategist to george w. bush has reuped his contract. according to politico -- >> there is this from our twitter -- the role of government in solving america's problems and we reflect on what
dwithe eisenhower said 52 years ago in his farewell speech. ken is joining us from texas. good morning. caller: good morning. thanks very much for c-span. and what i wanted to say is that government has always been involved in the lives of citizens and has done lots of good things. when you take a look at what is happening, if you look to the south how successful mr. she vezz has been and now that he's passed away in cuba they have kept it quiet but his government is functioning without him. even though he didn't go through the swearing in ceremonies the vice president is stepping forward to help the country move forward t in the best way they can. it's very very heartening to
see how the citizens of venn sale la have been successful in moving forward and putting their lives forward. they live in a house for two years and it's them whether they bought it or paid for it. it's maizing the role the government is taking. if something should happen mr. obama wouldn't have to be sworn in. host: what is clearly a story is the al jeern troops. it involves the u.s.. the death toll remains unclear. there is a related story to all of this dealing with british politics.
next is a caller from arizona democrats line. good morning. caller: good morning. people in the u.s.a. listen. i try and call in and make sense out of situations. a war doesn't make sense to me. excessive gun violence doesn't make sense to me. what makes sense to me is to have the wars that are passed
to get paid for and to get paid for by the people that profitted the most. and that is the international globalized situation situation that people like mr. romney have gotten us into so that i did minute shs wages in the u.s.a. and people trying to get by can't pay any taxes. so the government has a roll to collect enough taxes like they used to. when we were forced into wars by the republicans wanting to take it all over the world in the depression and it wasn't possible because the japanese didn't like it that way. when they didn't like it that way, they started war. and the same situation with the germans, they were at war because people got to be treated well.
one, then the other, those are high sounding words but the government has got to create a balance. and you hear a lot of the term balance from mr. obama. i think he's been trying to do that for a long time but on account of racism mainly and on account of people are not used to other people other than the norm chrks has been like hundreds of years prior to that, it seems like some people feel that they need to exploit other people so that they can gain themselves. host: i'll stop you on that point. thanks for giving us a call. liz smith -- a couple of other headlines senator john carrie
finally gets chance to head state -- >> confirmation hearings for senator carrie will take place next thursday. the committee that he currently chairs, he will be facing questions and is expected to be approved by the senate to be the next secretary of state. senator geithner musing on the crisis. this is a is it down in an interview. he said --
the commit interview is also available online. the role of government solving america's problems. republican line from alabama , good morning. caller: good morning. i have very little education, 72 years old, a lot of experience. we need to evaluate each department within the government and let each department cut 10%, go to a flat tax, start with the very poor and evaluate it as we go
host: our last call on the question of government in solving america's problems. indiana good morning to you. caller: good morning. the government has a lot of problems and they need to work on everything internally. this could be the greatest country in the world. it has been the greatest country in the world ever since our existence. the entire country needs to step back, take a breath, threat leaders that have been elected do their jobs.
nobody wants to pay anymore taxes. they take 38% out of my check every week in taxes. i get back maybe $1,000 if i'm lucky. the president has a lot on his plate. he is one man speaking for 600 million. how is that to get up in the morning and realize you have everybody in the entire united states looking for you to make the right choice. host: the population in the united states is 300 million. caller: i'm sorry, even 300 million, that's one man speaking for everybody. he's got to make the right decision every second of the day. that's impossible. the country -- the laws we have in place, they've been there. they do work, just everyone has to abide by the laws. everyone should be treated equally. hypothank you for your calls and comments.
a tweet -- hypocoming -- host: coming up we'll be talking about the fiscal situation in their cities and the comments yesterday by vice president biden who addressed the 300 mares in attendance on guns and gun violence. and late ter president's promises, what did he fulfill in his first term. and programming notes we'll have coverage on the official swearing in ceremony that will take place at the white house. our coverage gets under way at 10:30 eastern time. and then the public swearing in. this is the second time since martin luther king had the
holiday that a president will be sworn in. the last time was president clinton. then ceremonies here in washington. live coverage all day here on the c-span networks including c-span roofment this is a live look from the southwest side of the u.s. capitol. the president will be sworn in at the capitol. the senses is being nut place and security is fog to get tighter over the next couple of days and yule need special passes with color coding to direct you where to go. more information on this on cspan.org. we'll be back in a moment.
>> tonight on c-span we'll show you inaugeral speeches from the last 60 years starting at 8:00 p.m. eastern with ronl reagan, bill clinton, dwight eisenhower, harry truman, richard nixon. then president john f. kennedy, george h.w. bush, lyndon johnson, president jimmy carter and we'll wrap up the night at 11 eastern with george w.
bush's speech. starting tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> why did you write a book about your experience? >> it was an important part of history. i felt it should be brought to bear. there had been some other accounts of the crisis i thought were not completely accurate in terms of what we did and what i did. so i thought it was important for the historical record to present our perspective and for people to understand there were different policy choices and options, disagreements. and that if we want to prevent another crisis from happening again, i really felt the public itself needed to engage more on financial reform, educate themselves better. make it an issue with their elected officials. so i have some policy recommendations at the end of it that i hope people will look at. >> the former head of the
deposit corporation on the government's worst financial crisis. her book is bull by the horns sunday at 8:00 on c-span's q&a. yournl continues. host: the mares joining us stephen benjamin in his first term as mayor of columbia south carolina. and mayor scott smith, a republican from mesa arrest arrest. i want to begin with you mayor smith. give us an economic snapshot of your city, what you are facing as you embark on your second temple. guest: we have said there is no more bad news. we hit the bottom a year and a half ago and since then it's been a slow but steady improvement. arizona hit the bottom with foreclosures. we got hit in one of the worst
ways in the housing boom but we are coming back. there is a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel. our city revenues have increased after about a three or four year slide. we are hovering at around 8% of unemployment over the december inflammation of the construction industry. but we are like a lot of the country we are in that steady low looking for that bump but it's not yet coming. host: your greatest employers who are they? guest: we are very much aerospace. we have a large airport and so aerospace and defense is big for us. so when we look at things like sequestration it has a huge impact on us. host: and the tax strukechure, where does your money come from? guest: we are a sales tax
budget. we have no property tax. we collect property tax to pay off bond debt. but we basically survive on sales taxes and state shared revenues which are mainly sales taxes also. so when the economy goes up, we are doing well. and when consumer confidence goes down we have the roller coaster effect with our tax base. host: an economic overview of your city, where your tax structure comes from and who are your largest employers. guest: it is the largest city in our stated. we're the home to our state capitol, to a large hospital system which is our largest employer and also the army's largest training base in the world. we have a sensitive tax
structure that sees 2/3 of our real estate not on our tax. our primary comes from our tax sment and our water that serve it is region. we've watched our unemployment decrease, we've out paced the national economy. last year we saw $1.1 billion in national investment. our focus has been on investing in our urban core and doing it together. a great focus on riegism. >> a question to both of you with debt in this country cities do that by floating bonds which explain how that works in mesa, arrest arrest and what that works for and how it's paid off. guest: we like to say we hit our fiscal cliff three and four
years ago, we had to figure out on a cash basis in many ways to balance our budget. but we use large amounts of debt to finances infrastructure, streets, politicians and sewer and water, those kinds of things. mayor benjamin and i are interested in this is these are financesed with tax exempt municipal bonds. that pace for most of the infrastructure in this country. one of the propose thals doesn't seem to want to die, it keeps floating around there as we look at washington trying to solve their budget problems is to eliminate the tax exempt status of municipal bonds. this is extremely important to us and is one of the major issues. doesn't sound like a sexy issue but you're talking about the basic financing of
infrastructure of cities and states. that's huge. we're not a heavily indebted city but we have a couple $300 million in bonds we built our city with. guest: scott and i have spent time together the last two years. we makes sure we invest in america and our infrastructure and the primary financing mechanism we use, 70% is financed using bond. we are talking about hospitals, school buildings, of course, we're talking about public power systems and understanding that this tool that we are using, of course we're using our own tax revenue to finances this is significant as we come fly with the e.p.a. and burdens that they are placing on local
governments. but understanding this is not some rich man's loophole that emerged over the last few years. the exemption on municipal bonds has been around for 100 years. it says that local and state governments do not tax interest on federal debt. the federal government does not tax interest on municipal debt. and that relationship is so important. it has become a reliable financing tool. less than.1% of these bonds default. we have been good stewards using this tool to build and rebuild america. we believe that infrastructure is going to be a key way to put americans back to work in all of our cities and towns across this country.
we need to make sure this tool goes untouched. and all these discussions around the fiscal cliff, around tax reform, around the sequester it is so important to each and every one of us. host:, the budget, economy, guns some of the issues on the agenda this week for the mares. we'll here from vice president biden as he addressed the gun issue and we want to hear from you. our phone lines are open. you can send us an e-mail or join us on our twitter page. let me ask you about what is happening in other cities. pennsylvania, these are older cities you talk about infrastructure and also facing or discussing the possibility of bankruptcy. as you look at what other cities are dealing with, what lessons can you apply to your respective city? guest: for the most part, these
are the exceptions. most of the cities in the u.s. are wise stewards and we're in good financial shape. we have had significant challenge but we've met those challenges. in reality the biggest challenge we have is the same as a lot of others, debt and that seems to be the one factor of many of these cities host: if you were to draw the pie, how much goes to city budget? how much comes off the top before you can do anything? guest: in most cities 70 plus% of the budget goes to public safety or more. and 70 plus% of any department in public safety goes to salary. so you can imagine what the pension obligation does to a
budget. we don't run our own pension plan. we mart pailt in a statewide pension plan so while they are challenged they don't have the many challenges a city pension has. that seems to be our long term financial crisis for cities. they are extraordinary, they are rare. and the vast majority of towns in america are financially solvent and have a bright future. host: let's go to illinois independent line with scolt smith and stephen benjamin. caller: good morning mares. my comment is relative to both guns and finances. and legalizing marijuana to the degree where people can grow their own would remove guns from the entire marijuana equags and would take the gangs
away from the marijuana equation and it would make you guys so happy on what legalizing marijuana would do to your financial income through taxes of people who choose to buy the marijuana instead of growing it. and besides that, one of the biggest reasons that people are afraid of law enforcement or don't respect law enforcement is because law enforcement is the ones that are busting people for smoking their gentle remedy instead of detoxing alcohol and farm suit cals. and one last point, the people are very sick of the politicians in bed with the alcohol and pharmaceutical companies and that's why marijuana is illegal because they want people buying booze and pills. host: let me use his point to
go to the larger issue of guns and gun violence and share with you what the vice president told you yesterday as he addressed the u.s. conference of mares. >> i will not be able to stop gun violence, we know that in the future. but that's no excuse to do nothing. that is not an excuse to do nothing. as the president said, if we can save even one life it's worth it. i believe together we can save a whole lot more lives than that. and i think we can begin again, not because of guns alone. but i think we can begin an endeavor that stops the course of american society. i think we can begin to turn this around. it's not all because of guns. it's a lot of other things. maybe what happened in newtown is a call to action about more
than just gun violence, about civilty in our society. host: stephen benjamin, the mayor of south carolina your thoughts. guest: i've operated on the motto that silence means sense. host: we did get marion and guns in the same. guest: i will say this and i'm going to speak directly to this issue, i have learned being a good steward of taxpayer dollars they will give you great latitude if you show you count pen nist. we finished last year with a
budget surplus. we've been up gaded by standard and poor's. our employs are in the state pension system. we have a separate issue in which we have to make sure we appropriate for our employs and retirees and the medical benefits. we've rebuilt our reserves to almost $50 million. so you handle the money and people will give you a lot of latitude. on the gun issue, we're living in the post newtown reality right now. and there is a mood over the country right now that is just aching for some type of productive dialogue. and that's what we find amis. i will tell you at the conference you have democrats and republicans who dialogue
over even tough issues and work to find consensus. we are required to do that in our cities every day. it doesn't happen in our state capitol but it seems to be sorely lacking in washington, d.c. i'm a gun owner. i understand very much the importance and particularly the city in which i live and the state in which i live, it is deeply ingrained in the culture of south carolina. that being said, i understand having served warnts at my agents at 1:00 or 2:00 in the morning worrying what is on the other side of that door and understanding we ought to be able to engage in a thoughtful, realistic dialogue in which democrats aren't worried about being primaried and republicans aren't worried about being pri
married. host: i realize this is a complicated issue and we could spend hours on it. three of the principles that were outlined this week on the idea of universal background checks for any gun purchaser. support that or not? guest: if done in the right way. we have background checks. my biggest concern is we are dealing with a constitutional right so i would be very careful as to how those are undertaken. host: the idea of banning the clips that have more than ten bullets. support that or not? guest: i would like to have a larger discussion on how this fits in. you can hear arguments both sides on the magazine clips. there is a good argument for banning and a good argument for saying this sends us down the
slippery slope. i'd like to have these conversations in a larger context. guest: i don't know if ten is the magic number or five or twenty. i know that being a concealed weapon permit in the past. the rules are followed by the good guys and not the bad guys. so we have to allow responsible gun owners to have some latitude whatever the government decides to do. host: other than the n.r.a. leadership who is against background checks when buying a gun? guest: background checks already exist. but we're talking about an expansion and i understand why people get a little bit concerned because we are talking about a constitutional right. i think where we are headed is we will have a real discussion. i hope the discussion does not move to the extremes and we can have rational reasonable -- because gun own ners this
country, you have millions of gun owners who are law abiding citizens who value the second amendment. arizona is much like south carolina, there is a cultural thing. these are law abiding citizens and they are concerned about one step that takes away rights leads to another leads to another. hopefully we will have a deep discussion on this and see if expanding those background checks can be done in a way that still maintains valued second amendment rights. the host: the issue of mental health and i'm wondering how as a mayor you deal with mental health ires in columbia? guest: we've seen state budgets cut left and right and the cuts to our mental health agencies have been deeper and they go without significant ink in the newspaper. people don't pay as much attention. so the impact it has on
homelessness and crime, it's real and it's significant. host: is there still a stigma in dealing with mental health patients? guest: i'm not sure if it's a stigma. i think it's become so much more complex and tougher. but we have some agencies in our city, we have a mental illness recovery center that has been able to really show that given the time and resources and the proper medical benefits, we can take some folks who have wandered the streets for years dealing with some serious mental health issues and turn them into productive citizens. it can be done. it requires us making a focus and proper value system, we have to fund that value. guest: i think one of the biggest problems we have and one of the biggest challenges i'd like to say, even when you
look at newtown and aurora, those were driven by mental health issues. these were not normal people that decided to be relevant by picking up a gun. but the focus has been on the gun and the mental health has been a postscript. i hope it rises to the level of significance where we talk about funding those resources. many times the mental health officials are our police officers and firefighters because we do not give these problems the funding they really deserve. and one of the results of that is we end up with some of these tragedies. host: crime rate in mesa, arrest arrest, what was it? guest: i can't remember but we've had a significant drop in our violent crimes. host: and columbia, south
carolina? guest: we are down. violent crime is down 23%. and in some hotspots we've been working on, we've rebuilt our police force, fully staffed for the first time in 15 years under a new dynamic chief and we continue to invest in law enforcement. host: why is it so high in chicago? guest: i think mayor rahm emanuel would love to have that answer. we have violence in this country and in most large cities it's a huge problem where you have youth on youth violence. it's not the same as newtown but it's troubling. mesa is a big city. we're the 30th largest city in the country. we still don't experience the day-to-day things they do in chicago but we have those issues. but our cities have a problem
with violence and mostly it's youth on youth violence which is really sad. and that doesn't seem to get the headlines that a newtown does but it's a tragedy nonetheless. host: if you're just joining us, we are sitting down with two mares in town for the u.s. conference of mares, the mayor of mesa arrest arrest scott bith and the mayor of columbia south carolina, stephen benjamin. caller: good morning. to mayor benjamin, i want to say it's not ever mayor who will give a guy a ride to lunch who is lost in your city. i've learned a lot listening to you both. i have friends in arrest arrest
as well as living here in south carolina now and i just wonder you answered a lot of questions i thought i'd ask. but one of the things i wonder about is because this is to mayor benjamin, because you are the mayor of a significant urban municipalty in this state, your presence i believe of influence is very significant. so i wonder and i'm just curious, how does that significance play over into the various other dem grams of the state? because the state is in three different, you have your high land and mid lan and low lands and living in the low land area just below columbia, i notice there are cultural distinctions even regarding gun crime. even though it's a rural area,
still significant gun crimes. how does your voice speak to these other municipal tiss and influence nem adopting some cultural changes which he spoke of earlier about gun violence being a cultural issue. host: we want to hear that story but we'll get to that in a little bit. guest: i take my role as mayor very seriously understanding if we have the benefit of not being a massive city like chicago and new york. if i need to i can touch everybody i need to touch on an issue if i had to. but if we do something, we do it right. we have the ability to affect things what happens. my family is in orange town 45 miles away. we can serve as a leading light.
but we are the vibrant urban core, the place we hope to have talent and jobs as serve as a magnet. i see my role not being leader of my city but hopefully serving as a model for the rest of the state to follow. a lot of our more rural communities have faced significant challenges. we are just off i-95 where the ref rand is calling from is half way between miami and new york. so some of the gun challenges have rereal and drug trade is very real in south carolina. that's why we have to do everything we can to don't invest in good strong law enforcement, good have good immigration policy that focuses on our southern and northern border and east and west coast that can be just as pourous as
the southern border. host: what was the story? guest: the reverend was new to town and just took a new job. he was walking by the post office and and we started up a conversation and told me he was walking to a restaurant on that street. it was about a mile away and he didn't know . that i threw him in the car and we road on down to the restaurant and just had a great chance to have a conversation. i didn't tell him who i was until he was about to get out of the car and we were trading information. he's a cool dude. host: scott smith is the mayor of mesa, arizona. he earned his law degree from arizona state university.
and stephen benjamin. our next call you are is from california republican line, good morning. caller: good morning. i've enjoyed your conversation so far. i haven't seen a republican and democrat is it together and get along this well ever especially on the gun issue. in california we have strict laws. there is no gun show loophole. you can't buy internet purchases but through a licensed holder. there is no private third party trabses that can occur. if you do, you risk state housing at the state for five years. so california does have some very strict laws.
i think most people in the nation if you go to some internet site that is you can buy, many of them won't even sell to the state because of the regulations are so onerous besides the price, you can easily just be walking into a gun store. which typically an incentive on a used gun buy is you can often find what you want for a lot less used. host: thanks for the call. i want to go back to his point and the two of you sitting together a democrat and republican. how do we view congress? guest: i tell people the difference in the city level and state and congresses, there is no doubt there is different political fill fiss. we won't agree on everything. but what happens when you're in the city council meeting you
start talking about a problem and you focus on the problem and the philosophies and ideologies come up during the discussion. when you're in i don't think you start talking about ideology and you might get to the problem. that's a big difference in what we deal with and what congress deals with, it seems to be more of the game of proving who is right and wrong. you don't get that at the city level. we realize we may have a different approach but we focus on the problem. we don't get to kick anything down the road. when the pothole is there, it's got to be filled t garbage has to be picked up. that's why i enjoy being around mayors because we focus on solutions. we are very much solution driven people. we seem to have lost that at the state and national level. that's why we continue to have crisis after crisis. it doesn't seem congress will
get to a solution unless they are forced to and even then it's a half solution. where they set up a mechanism to force themselveses to make a decision because the consequences were so bad and then they still couldn't make a decision. i think that's unfournl because we deserve to have solutions. this is not a zero sum game. we need some decision makers. we are not seeing that out of washington and that's truszkowski traiting. host: the second point dealing with guns and gun violence. there is a related tweet to that saying --
guest: to baung scott's point again t tooblet focus on problem solving, the reality is that our organization is a bipartisan non-partisan organization. i am a democrat, i want to make it clear that we run non-part san elections in south carolina . that's the way we run our cities, we focus on getting things done. there are some issues that i know that scott and i may be completely ideological but there is a big difference between i'd logic and understanding the importance and the respect that you can give others, understanding that reasonable people can see the very same issue very differently and be able to is it on the balcony and look down and understand you can respect different people's point of view. but you have to achieve some type of consensus in getting things done at the end of the
day. people are clam moring for bipartisan solutions and we hope and pray that our congressional leaders can find that. i have a wonder relationship with my delegation on both side of the aisle and we will continue to push the agenda of america's cities. we have some significant cultural problems in america. regrettably cultural violence that i'm not sure anyone can put their finger on what the cause of it is. i will say this, our children are growing up in very perilous times right now. and the change in the nature of the american family and children who are growing up now who for the very first time in american history our children are expected to be less literate than their parents. my parents taught me every
generation is supposed to build on the last generation. children are going to jail and dying. children are worrying about issues i didn't have to worry about as a child, shelter and safety and nutrition. if we don't continue to invest in the education and safe and health of our kid, we are going to continue to deal with issues that all the laws in the world won't fix. host: we are with two mares here t mayor of mesa, arizona. columbia south carolina home to 130,000 residents. a caller from new jersey is on the phone. caller: i would like these
gentlemen comment on dearing to be a national list rather than a globalist. our cities are plagued by unemployment because of the trade treatments that ship our jobs overseas. we have a defense budget not ready to be audited. in cam den we have water running down the walls of our schools and nobody wants to talk about sank wears on our budgets in new jersey there are illegal ail yens. so i would pray that they will dare to bring up nationally the idea that we would protect our borders, have jobs for ourselves here first. host: thanks. mayor benjamin. guest: sure. we don't have some of the major immigration challenges in arizona that texas might have. but i will say this, for 200
years this american ethoss, this believe that the american dream is real. people talk about the american dream that if you work hard and do the right things, you have a chance to do anything you want to do here in america. and that is a part of our country's d.n.a. as a result we are and will remain attractive to people from every nation in this world. people want to come from the south, the north and east and the west. that is a good thing. we've got to find a way to develop a national immigration policy that allows our country to be safe. we have to make sure we protect our borders t canadian border and the southern border. we've got to make sure that we allow ourselves to continue to attract talent. every city in the country, every company has significant
talent needs that until we develop our talent pipeline here in the united states we need to continue to bring in folks from every country around the world who can meet the needs of the american people. but it's so important that underscoring every debate that we have that we don't have a complete and dedicated focus to the importance of civil rights and the human dignity and that must be the common thread that brings whatever national policy that we come up w. i will say this last thing and i will defer to scott who deals with this issue much more. we cannot allow the federal government to take its responsibility to protect our homeland and push it down to cities. if it's a sequester and all these questions around municipal bond t federal government loves to pass laws and then push the check down to
the our local governments which means that our taxpayers have to bear that burden. that's not right. host: are you on the flont lines with regard to immigration? guest: absolutely, we are ground zero as far as that goes because half of the immigrants come through arizona, the vast majority of illegal drugs come through arizona because we have become that pipeline. we deal with that issue. we deal with the cartels and so our discussion is very different because it also includes the violence of human traffic along with the discussion on what do we do with those people that do come to america because america is worth coming to. i hope that never changes that we are the place to want to come to. the reality is that for those who would like to just sort of
put large laws around the america and say isolation. that doesn't make it in today's world. we are so connected in the world, our economy are so connected and with the internet and that type of thing, we are dealing with something we have never dealt with before. and that is the students who graduated with me said who am i going to compete with. the kits who graduate in mesa, arizona now, their exettors are from shanghai and that's not something theoretical. that is real. the connected nature of the economies in the world means we have to look at ways to balance that thing that makes america so great which is the rule of law and having order and creating an environment where people can thrive because there is that order.
but also understanding we live in a globe where we should be the leaders and have to interact. that's where our children's future are is being a part of this global economy. that's not something we can easily avoid,host: galas on the. thank you for waiting. caller: right now i see that new york's services for the mentally ill are being sanitized because of the union's and pensions -- are being sabotages because of the unions and pensions. i just want to know why pensions are being blamed for everything. i pay into my own pension. host: ok. do you have a question, or is that your statement? caller: why are pensions being blamed for the budget problems? host: thank you for the call, gail. guest: i do not think pensions
are being blamed, it is just a mathematical reality. when you look at budgets, obligations, there is no doubt that there are some areas and some places where we have overextended our obligations. we have promised to much. with the shift in demographics, in the financial reality, you have people who made commitments, cities and companies who have made commitments that they simply cannot meet. that is a mathematical issue. unfortunately, it becomes an ideological issue. what can we afford? that is what cities have to deal with. can we cut the check to cover these things? everybody wants employees who are fairly compensated, and fair compensation includes benefits, includes retirement benefits. that is how you attract good people and keep those people. but those have to be done in a reasonable manner that does not put you in financial problems. that is where the discussion is.
unfortunately, it becomes a political issue. host: a very quick followup from sasha. what is your solution to the gun cartel, the guns coming into the u.s.? guest: the guns that the federal government allowed to go into mexico which were used to kill people. there is no doubt that we have an active international gun trade. we have guns going all over the world, and it is difficult to stop. that is one of the things that we realize when we talk about gun control here, that the fact is that guns seem to find -- the bad guys seem to find a way to always get guns, regardless of the rules. that is an oversimplification to say something, that you do not do anything because bad guys always have guns. but we have to come to the realization that simply creating a ban, is limiting this or that,
will not solve the problem. it is a larger and more complex problem that demands real solutions rather than simplistic ones. host: a final question to you, as you come to fill your message in office. guest: over 9% of the american'' gross domestic product comes from the cities. if you give us the tools, which means in many respects not taking away tools from us -- if you give us the tools, which can lead this american renaissance. we have a big vision in colombia that we want to be -- in columbia that we want to be the most educated city in america.
the greatest inhibitor to economic growth in america right now is the federal government. the inability of cities to do proper transportation planning, law enforcement planning, the inability of our private sector folks to make investments -- because we do not only know what is going to happen a year from now, we do not know what is going to happen 90 days from now. we have to get the fiscal house in order in washington, d.c. america's mayors will have a partnership and we are excited about it. host: the mayor of columbia, south carolina, stephen benjamin, and scott smith, the mayor of mesa, arizona. president obama made 500 campaign promises. how did he do in the first four years in office? bill adair from politifact will join us on what the president did and did not do in his first quarter years, and what is ahead
in the second term. and friday, america by the numbers, how inept -- or america's students compare in math and reading. a live view of the u.s. capitol as preparations continue for monday's inauguration ceremonies prince's role but was sworn in in 1981, every u.s. president has been -- ceremonies. since ronald reagan was sworn in in 1981, every u.s. president has been inaugurated on the west side of the capital. this is speak -- this is c- span's "washington journal," for friday, january 18. back in a moment.
>> the greatest honor history can bestow is the title of peacemaker. this honor now beckons america, the chance to help lead the world at last out of the valley of turmoil and on to that high ground of peace than man has dreamed of since the dawn of civilization. >> we must embark on a bold new program of the benefits of specific advances and industrial products available for the improvement of undeveloped areas. >> this weekend on american history tv, back story with the american history guys. they explore the history and traditions of a presidential inaugurations. live saturday morning at 11:00 eastern, part of three days of
american history tv, right through inauguration day, on c- span3. >> hi, barack hussein obama, do solemnly swear -- >> this weekend, the 57th presidential inauguration as president obama begins his second term. sunday, the official swearing-in ceremony at the white house, why shortly before noon eastern. our coverage begins with a look back at the president's 2009 inaugural address. monday, the public inaugural ceremony with the swearing in at the u.s. capitol. other festivities, including the capitol luncheon and the inaugural parade. on c-span, c-span radio, and c- span.org. throughout the day, join the conversation by phone, on facebook, and on twitter.
host: bill adair is editor of politifact. thank you for being here this morning. politifact has dug into president obama's campaign promises, what he was able to accomplish during his first term. you rate him as having over 500 promises. is that a lot? guest: it seemed like a lot to us. we decided to apply the politifact approach, which we use for fact checking, to promise checking to verify what an elected official has done in terms of keeping his or her promises. we started with the obameter, using a meter to do journalism, through journalism, and then summarize it with a rating. we went about collecting president obama's promises from the 2008 campaign, and, indeed,
more than 500. there was a point where i think we all wished john mccain had won because he made a few -- he made a lot fewer promises. we took the 500, and for the past but for years, in a product that i think is unprecedented in american journalism, we have been following them, calling people, tracking these things, digging into the budget, and really coming up with the definitive report card on how president obama has done in his first term. host: here is the obameter from politifact. 47% of promises kept, the total in the category for those pledges being kept or even in the works is 72%, 73%. guest: it is really a surprise, i think. it is hard to compare to anything because we did not apply the same methodology to
previous presidents. but i have got to say, when we saw over the holidays that it was that high, we were really struck that, particularly in an era of dysfunction and gridlock in congress, that president obama had fulfilled or at least partially fulfilled so many -- as you said, 73%. we will talk more about why that is, but i think if you talk to experts who have done this on a smaller scale with previous presidents, they say presidents often set promises they cannot keep, so it is unusual that a majority of promises might be kept. the remarkable thing here is that there are so many promises and that they were so specific. in an era of such transparency and when it is so easy for journalists to look things up, we can readily find what was
kept and what was broken. host: bill adair, editor of politifact. if you would like to join the conversation, here are the numbers to call -- host: we're looking at promises made in the obama administration. what counts as a promise kept? what counts as a promise broken? guest: we were inventing a new form of journalism. the beauty of the obameter is you can look things up by subject, by reading. a lot of critics like to focus on the things that we call promises broken. we had to define what was a promise kept and what was a promise broken. how did we define a promise? we defined it promised as a guarantee of prospective action that was verifiable, then we
read it typically into one of two ratings. in the work that there was some sort of progress toward fulfilling or stalled if there was a lack of progress. at a point that we felt like we could judge completion, with an decided whether it was kept were broken. kept is pretty much you hear it, the promise has been substantially or completely fulfilled, broken, not fulfilled pretty trickier ones are compromise, to where there has been some progress, where there has been a partial achievement of the goal. ultimately these are judgment calls on our part, but they are made based on shoe leather reporting. our reporters spent hours on some of these promises, trying to figure out what happened, what is the budgeting, whatever. one of the things we heard from federal agencies was, you are the first reporter who has ever called us about that. that is testament to what washington journal is about --
what washington journalism is about. that there is less coverage of the federal agencies and of regulation, and so it really represents delving into an area where i think journalists should be digging more. host: first up for bill adair is ashley in houston on the democrats line. hi, ashley. caller: my question was, as politifact started keeping these records since president obama was in office, or before? host: we started politifact in 2007, so that was too late to do it for the bush presidency, and the main focus of our work is our fact checking. this is kind of a side business for us. i wish that we could go back and compare it to previous presidents, not just president bush but all back in history.
but given limited resources, we made an extraordinary effort here. host: ashley, are you still with us? caller: what are your thoughts be -- yes. host: what are your thoughts about this? caller: well, it is nothing to compare it to. it would be very nice if we had something else to compare, and it seems to me since president obama has been president, we have had more fact checking than i have ever heard of, and i am in my 60's. i would like to hear something about some of the other presidents and how they perform in office. it seems to me that there is a lot going on that did not go on with other presidents. guest: i agree with you. i wish we had been around before 2007. one thing we had done, depending on your state, politifact has 10
state sites. some of them include florida, ohio, wisconsin, oregon, virginia, rhode island, new hampshire. in most of those states, we have similar features where we are following the campaign promises of governors. we have the scott o'meara in florida, -- the scott-o-meter, which follows governor rick scott. it is a new form of accountability journalism, where we are taking the power of the web and using it in a new way to hold elected officials accountable. unfortunately, we cannot go back in time. host: here is a snapshot of politifact's website. we see senator marco rubio being examined. also, phil gingrey in georgia.
saul, from new york, on the independent line. caller: since 2008, when john mccain was running for president, republicans have been claiming that if they raise the capital gains taxes, which obama wanted to do, and dividends taxes 15%, that is going to hurt people and retirement plans. they have been scary people that way. elderly people right -- they have been scaring people that way. elie people right now, on their 401 k, everybody knows that when you take money out of the retirement plan, you pay ordinary income taxes. you don't get the 15% tax break that rich people get when they have been outside the retirement plan. nobody has been saying anything about it.
no news media, no politicians, no democrats. i would like to hear what he says about that. guest: sure, saul. we have done a lot of fact checks on claims about taxes, and i would interview to go to our website, politifact.com, and -- ifnder truth-o-meter it is a factual claim, we will check it. where it gets tricky, two things in what you just said. one is opinions. we cannot fact check an opinion. if somebody says taxes are too high or taxes are not going to go up, those are often impossible to fact check. we will, however, check things about a claim about someone's plan, so we did a lot of checks during the 2012 campaign on claims that president obama made
about mitt romney's plan, and claims that mitt romney made about obama. we also have a search box on our side so you can look things up. if you have an iphone or android, we have a couple of mobile apps that can help you look things up like that. host: speaking of the archives at the c-span video library, let's go to some of the promises president obama made before he was elected to the presidency. this was a debate back on january 31, 2008, talking about health care. >> ted kennedy said he is confident that we will get universal health care, and he has been working on a longer than anybody. but he has gone through 12 of these plans, and each time they have failed. part of the reason i think they have failed as we have not been able to bring democrats, republicans together to get it done. that is what i did in illinois,
to provide insurance for people who did not have it. that is what i will do in bringing all parties together, not negotiating behind closed doors but bringing all parties together, and broadcasting those negotiations on c-span so that the american people can see what the choices are. part of what we have to do is to enlist the american people in this process. and overcoming the special interests and lobbyists -- they will resist any thing we try to do. my plan, her plan, they will try to resist. the antidote to that is making sure that the american people understand what is at stake. i am absolutely committed to making sure that everybody in america who needs health care will get it. host: president obama in a presidential debate back in january, 2008. how did he do? guest: the promise there that we raided was his promise to televise health-care negotiations on c-span.
it was an interesting promise at the time, made to distinguish himself from hillary clinton, who of course had led the effort in the early part of the clinton presidency for the health care plan and was criticized for having those negotiations private. what did obama do? exactly what hillary did. so we have raided -- so we have rated that a promise broken. where obama talked a big game about transparency, fulfilled a lot of transparency, don't get me wrong, but on something like that, the way washington works, those negotiations are not on c- span, they are in a room at the white house where deals are cut. it is sausage being made. that promise was not fulfilled, so that one earned a broken. host: what about his broader pledges on health care? guest: health care was an area where he had a fair amount of
success. he kept 47% of the health-care promises. many of those were tucked inside the health care law, which of course passed in the first two years of his presidency when democrats controlled the house. so health care was an area where he had some of his biggest success. from caffeyhear from michigan on our democrats line. caller: good morning. i think the president has kept most of his promises. everyone he could possibly keep. i mean, the republicans have gone after him like nothing. but during the presidential election, you heard him say many times -- the republicans say -- "facts don't matter." they just do not care about facts. i think he is doing a wonderful job. i'm perfectly satisfied with my vote. thank you.
guest: i think she makes an interesting point about the opposition that he got, and i think it is important to recognize, yes, a large share of the promises broken are because of opposition from republicans and the fact that they control the house has stopped progress. but obama also used partisanship to succeed. so in a partisan europe, partisanship works for him. he used that democratic control of the house to muscle through the health care law and the economic stimulus. both of them were filled with promises that he made in the campaign, the economic stimulus was like a grab bag of obama campaign promises. it included dozens of promises. so partisanship did slow him down, but he also used -- like a --
host: so in the first parts of it -- so the first part of his presidency, using it to -- guest: we do not have a point where a promise was fulfilled. i suspect he kept more promises in the first half when democrats controlled the house than in the second half, but the other way, presidents do not have to get approval from congress for everything they do, and a lot of things he did in some areas, like education, were things he could do because he is president. promote stuff, champion. we had one promise or the verb was "champion." well, he did. so it was a promise kept. so it is not like every campaign promise requires congressional approval. host: bill adair, our michigan caller talked about gridlock in washington. the promise to bring democrats
and republicans together and pass an agenda, and politifact ranks that as a promise broken. bipartisanship. guest: probably the biggest challenge facing the american political system now, it is an era of talking points, when talking points are hurled from one party at the other. but there is not much talking. i think this was a promise that he made as part of hope and change, and it is one that by any measurement he has not fulfilled. now, you can blame, as many democrats do, republicans, for not being willing to consider things. but we judge outcomes, not in 10. in this case, he promised this and it is not any better. that is a promise broken. host: all of those things limes,
john writes on twitter -- along those lines, john wrightwood -- "1 obama has not done is not the problem. it is what pace -- it is what he has done that is causing the country's demise." guest: we leave that to others. it is a board to recognize we are independent journalists. we are making these judgments. putting them out there for people to make of them what they want. that goes for not just the obameter, but also fact checking. we are not in the business of analyzing that. what we want to do is provide people information about what is true and what is not, and then let them make judgments from there. host: let's hear from rick in cherokee, north carolina. a republican column. caller: my question is regarding mr. obama, just like what he is
doing with our guns right now, trying to take them away. i signed two petitions prior to now, for national gun rights and the nra both. when hillary clinton was trying to go around, run around congress and was going to the u.n. to try to take them that way. what i am wondering about is why -- with what happened with the kids, we're all sorry about that, but the mother knew that the her sun was not right. these things are going to happen when you have a mentally ill person living in the home. i'm sorry to say that, but it is the truth. a lot of the problems going on with his gun problems, most of its gang related, you know? host: what have you heard from president obama regarding gun issues that you would like to have bill adair comment on?
caller: i mean, i was trained in the military to use my weapon. i do not see any reason or any cause to take away our constitutional rights. they're just using everything in our system, and the media is covering up everything. it is just burning us up. guest: i would encourage you to go to politifact and look under the subject guns under our truth-o-meter tab. you mentioned hillary clinton working with the u.n. to take our guns. we fact check something very similar and rated it false, or are lowest reading, -- or our lowest reading, "pants on fire." help straighten out the facts for people over there have been a lot of misconceptions, a lot
of inaccuracies that have been put out about different plans, about the intent of different officials. i should clarify that is separate from opinions. people can have opinions, but they believe that president obama's begun efforts are too much, but i do not think it is accurate to say that hillary clinton is working with the u.n. to take away guns. we have explored that in some detail. host: here is a politifact recent piece. "truth-o-meter has checked gun claims by new jersey democrats." politifact dug into what new jersey democrats had said regarding guns. as president obama outlined what he wants -- as president obama outlined what he wants to do in his second term, politifact has taken notice of that.
guest: we are grateful that he has only made 24 promises this time around, so it is not the full 500. we will continue to find the 503508 is our current tally. on sunday we will at the promises -- the current 500. 508 is our current tally. on sunday we will add the promises from this past campaign. it seems in 2008, in other cases, there were interesting things about a secretary of business, so we will be following those and see how the does. we will add those to the obameter and designate them so people can see how he is doing on its 2012 promises. host: up next from minnesota, penny. sika hi. i've really enjoyed this. i would like to know how you have weighed the biggest promises.
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