tv Newsmakers CSPAN August 4, 2013 10:00am-10:36am EDT
withxt, "newsmakers" patrick leahy followed by the farewell ceremony for the robert mueller. later, the national governors association closing session with a discussion on cyber security. >> joining us on "newsmakers" is senator patrick leahy. thanks for being with us. >> it is good to the here. >> joining us is mattingly and
john bradley. >> thank you for being here. your committee has been at the center of two of the biggest debates this year. as we are heading into the august recess, i would like to know what your personal top priorities are. >> we have several. i've been having a lot of quiet meetings with members of the house, both republicans and democrats. to see if we could have something on the president desk. the way the nsa is scooping up information about americans, i do not think there is enough transparency. i think we can have more with endangering our safety.
of they have a better idea how this court works. -- ao wanted to do another number of other new things. if somebody is going to be charged with a crime, whether it is dna evidence or something, does it meet certain standards so we do not have some of the terrible mistakes we have seen in the past? change the trying to way we sentence people. against mandatory minimums. this is a great idea when they are passed. it sounds better on paper than in practice. >> the fact that you have
someone like senator rand paul joining you and senator mike new leaving and prove the chance for passing that sort of the bill? republican thought i have republican cosponsors. the organic farm standards began the huge organic farm movement in this country. a senior republican senator. ink we have become too polarized and to partisan -- too partisan. i want to get republicans on board here at a number of these liberal ornot
conservative. it makes good sense. i would like there to be wasted people to know if they are being snooped on. ort should bi not be liberal republican, that should be good common sense. somebody joked that it is a darn good bill or one of us did not read it. >> do you trust the nsa? can do a lote nsa of things that can be helpful to the united states. tooink they're gotten
carried away by what is technologically feasible. what disciplinary steps were taken to allow a 29-year-old contract worker to come in and so everything they have and go to china and russia with it? if this happened in the major company like ibm or something, people would be fired. kinds of check so that would not happen. nsa will be --e has gotten too carried away with what is technologically possible and not what is best for the security of the united states. i say that having babe ruth on
-- based on where they have been successful. >> why do you think these phone records to non-thwart attentional terrorist attacks? >> sometimes just having phone .ecords is not enough unless you have some idea of why you are gaining them. if wedy said yesterday had all this before 9/11 we would not have had 9/11. to go from a lot of the hijackers before 9/11. we had in assistant u.s. attorney trying to warn thatuarters in washington you have a problem with the strange people wanting to fly airplanes. they said we know best about this. let's is worried about it.
let's do nothing. on september 10 they wanted to budgets significantly. youollowing up on that, this is theng that phone record collection and a if you cannot prove it to me it should and. is this legislation you would consider to shut down? >> they have not proven it to me. it has shown me we collect a
are in a defensive mode. are the font you behind closed doors insane to lay off their guys? >> yesterday i talked with the president. .e are friends i have a great admiration for him. he has thegue that it responsibility for keeping america safe. he will say he needs all the tools. he should, but within the framework of our constitution. seal all of our borders. tap everyone's phone call. randomly search everyone's home. but are you?afer
would you want that? we are always going to face terrorist threat. we have seen a rise in al qaeda has of this misguided idea. we spent a trillion dollars going into iraq. it does not make us safer. we will be paying for it for decades. we lost thousands of them men and women. just because we can do something does not make sense to do it. that it is asaid third term president bush. would you classify it as that?
we found the number of mistakes that were made. i have proposals. somewhere -- somewhere acceptable. >> i want to talk about judges. your company is working hard to confirm these three judges president obama has named to the dc court of appeal. the republicans have signaled that they will block these nominees. if they do that on the floor, how do you think your party should react to that? the ability tove vote them up or down. she is extraordinarily well- qualified. they are qualified to be a
member of the supreme court. the caseload is a lot higher than it was during the bush era. they required nude judges when it was a republican president. now it is a much higher caseload but with a democratic president we do not need it. they went through easily. this is an extra ordinary important courts. a lot of the things that go through the administrators go there. they do more to thwart the will of the president or congress.
that affect cases us on drug safety and health care go to the dc circuit. it is not balanced now. they are trying keep it in balance. >> do think there should be on the table or off the table? it'll come back if it is filibuster. it is one thing if you are not qualified. these people are extraordinarily well-qualified. do you think the justice department may have caused problems for the legislative sectionby pursuing
three done in texas? >> i do not think they have. two texas made changes hours after the supreme court came down, the state was not acting like they are open to any negotiations. i am hoping we can go back and have a new voting rights act. the supreme court is sharply divided. they understood this a lot hours.and hundreds of there voted for by republicans and democrats. five people say you must have done it wrong.
they admitted there will still be voting rights violations. and i grew up in the civil rights era. we have got to come in with this. we did it in a nonpartisan way last time. i would like for us to do that again. >>. might have had a story where he talked to a councilmember and supporta lot republican this but they do not want to be named publicly. why is that? you have a small but very vocal minority.
a republican party that has taken in idealistic attitude, get rid of everything. they are the ones that killed the major farm bill. >> do you want to name names? [laughter] that is why even during the debate running up to the immigration bill people were saying they could not possibly get through the committee. all but two of the votes were bipartisan. i met quietly in my capital asking republicans and democrats how to work this out. i am doing the same thing with
voting rights. do not put us in the league. been talking to constitutional scholars. what have you been asking them? first let's look at what the supreme court said. some like the descent of the case. how do wed that, give something that will this an attack? i am going to try to get as many as possible.
how do we do it? i want to be strong enough that when i go with concerns i can say this has a strong constitutional backing. i was in private practice. burma does not require you to become a total of x urged on the voting rights act. i am trying to learn what makes sense. after the gun legislation was delayed to president held an emotional news conference about newtown shooting. he said this is ron one. ?s it realistic >> i wish we could. we have several part of that out
i am ai partisan vote gun owner. i always have been. i go to a pistol range behind my home in vermont. and ae a lots of land hill like close up behind his. -- that goes up behind it. they have to fill out these forms and a background check? why should we be allowing people to go into an unregistered gun show when they have 12 felonies and buy a gun? that loophole should be close. this would be one of the vast
majority of americans. at some points i cannot get through. >> is there a change? this is something that would make a lot of sense. it is not going to get through now. could you pass one law that would stop all the gun laws? can you do a lot better? yes. you have some. the mayor of new york city did not help this. he actually turned off some people. he has some on the far right who say the second amendment allows to have any of that. there's going to be a balance in between. >> just a quick follow-up.
tom jones was confirmed this week. why did they choose to let this go. the was a sportsman group that came off for him. i think there were enough theback's to push universal background check. now they do not. the reaction from a lot of all as they thought let's not get involved in this again. why don't we strictly enforce the gun laws we have. if you go seven years blocking why aren't you
enforcing the laws? this is a man that is well- qualified. >> was certain to form policy. place inthat took egypt, you're calling it a clue? >> yes. wishy-washy? the white house has said it is not a two. -- coup. >> i disagree. i am just a small-town lawyer from vermont. i will call that a coup. and the foreign , weations bill, remember
are dealing beginning october 1. it would allow some money and provide certain steps to be taken to restore democracy. will be part of that loud if those steps are taken. tosi is not summit going come back as president. -- suddenly come back as president. it is not mean that we have to say you are important to us. here is a link check. if you want anyone you have to tolow some specific steps the extent you have the read them of press. couple of follow-ups. m a.ayon trious if you see
guantanamo?se >> george w. bush wanted to close it. we are spending hundreds of millions of dollars for nothing. people who are a threat to us, they bring us into the federal courts. there we have maximum-security prisons from which they would never escape. everything look like i know ther, legislation has passed. . voted against it it would make it harder for the president to close it. the sooner we close it, the better. the process has started. do you have a concrete timeline? talked to the president
about this. theoes not want to leave office at guantanamo still open. people have to be realistic. the fear tohave catch a terrorist. we cannot prosecute with our federal courts. why not? and they are the best federal court in the world. we have had hundreds of convictions in our court and four or five in the military tribunals. that we arenstrate not afraid. and we a core system will use it. >> what are your plans beyond this recess? i am able to do a number of
things around the state. wear a tie.ave to weig my wife and i will have five grandchildren with us in vermont. we will spoil them rotten and then turn them back to the their parents to deal with. >> is john mccain a new close ally of the senate? >> john mccain is john mccain. i have known him. we will sometimes be shouting at each other. five minutes later we're walking arm in arm down the halls. i'll tell you one thing about john. -- if disagrees with you you disagree was with you, he has no hesitation to tell you. i get the president credit for reaching out. there are areas i disagree with.
that is the way we used to do. i have been here with democratic and republican presidents. they disagree. who cares about what is best? >> thanks for being with us. >> thank you. we will continue the conversation. did he make today? >> i was interested to hear him talk about the gun legislation .hat failed on the senate floor president obama and other leading democrats believed that this is just round one and they would be coming back. the sort of dropped from radar as immigration came back up.
he does not think it is going to come back. that has now closed. that henteresting to me seemed to indicate that michael bloomberg may be heard the debate more than he held. he put out ads that were very challenging to conservative democrats. it seems that way he was saying they might have put it forward. sometimes these are helping and sometimes hurting. >> they have been pretty clear. they are willing to go after anybody whether they are republicans or democrats. they are concerned that it might cause -- cost them seats in the election. he is just going to be replaced .ith a pro-gun
>> he did not mince words. he made a comment about that. >> it was a very blunt response. a leader in this debate now. he said it was a coup without any question whatsoever. when you have people like john and patrick leahy working where they are, it is problematic to rich >> to have covered him in the senate. positions himself in the senate? >> he disagreed with the white house on several fronts. he is fairly independent. >> along those lines, there's
no better example than what is going on with the nsa. the administration is pushing as hard as they can to defend these programs. he isk leahy has said looking for changes. he said they got a little bit out of their rating on this. this is problematic for the intelligence committee. this shows he is an independent. >> they brought up the issue of immigration and gun control. where are both of these issues? overgun-control he said is with. he sees immigration as still life. even though it is now out of his hands, he is still going to work really hard at communicating with members of the house and trying to get the product to the president
does. >> thank you for being with us here. we appreciate it. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] the national governor association is beating up their meeting today. we will bring you live coverage on the role of cybersecurity. 12:15 p.m. eastern here on c-span. later you can watch ron paul at this year's young americans for liberty convention. whistleblowers like edward snowden and bradley manning. here is a look. isk is howgest sluggish will they get? speaking out can be dangerous. we write calls on purpose. -- we write laws on purpose.
all the politicians want truth. they want us to know everything about government. there might be laws that say you are a whistleblower -- whistleblower. we will protect you. sure. if you do that they charge you with treason. this reminds me in a dictatorship the truth is treason within empire of lies. only heldment is together by lies. these revolutions whether it is ravi manning or snowden they have not really hurt anybody but they have hurt the politicians. they have embarrassed them. you mean we spy on every country in the world? all of our friends? all of our trading partners? it is out in the open. tot becomes treasonous
they getng the facade away by claiming they are the humanitarians. you have a desire for humanitarian treatment for the people will and the best help for the poor. that is humanitarian with a result that has been proven throughout history. >> you can watch all of the former congressman's remarks at 6:30 p.m. eastern today here on c-span. eric holder spoke a farewell
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