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tv   Washington Journal 02172020  CSPAN  February 17, 2020 6:59am-9:03am EST

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university political science professor, matthew greene, talks about the careers of notable speakers of the u.s. house of representatives. that is sunday, february 23 at 8:00 p.m. eastern and pacific time. >> here is a look at some of what is coming up today. our three hour "washington journal" program is next. candidatesemocratic participate in a summit in las vegas. a form with presidential speechwriters. campaign continues with pete buttigieg speaking with caucus-goers in a town hall , carson city, live today at 2:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. this morning, at george mason university lawyer talks about his book. later, douglas bradburn,
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president and ceo of george washington's mount vernon, talks about how washington views the presidency and executive power. as always, you can join the conversation on facebook and twitter. "washington journal" is next. is next. ♪ host: good morning. 17th.monday, february, we had to morning, mount vernon for a conversation about the first president and his impact on the office. we begin with a question about the qualities you want in the person who occupies the oval office. what do you look for in a president? in the eastern and central time zones, 202-748-8000. in the mountain or pacific time zones, 202-748-8001.
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you can send us a text this morning. .hat number, 202-748-8003 please include your name and where you are from. otherwise, catch up with us on social media. start calling now on this president's day and as you are thinking about the qualities an want, we take you back to event last year, the release of presidents." "the [video clip] >> there was a preeminent little -- inist and and 1951 inhting the fee 1 -- and
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1951, roam around the reservation at will as long as he did not offend congress for .he public that was an essay perfectly attuned to the times written in the shadow of roosevelt, wilson, truman, presidents who were , some would say imaginative in interpreting the range of executive power. any reader of this book will how evolutionary and presidency is. we all agree economic management .s a determining factor 19th-century presidents were not
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expected in any way. james monroe presided over the first great depression and he onereelected with all but electoral vote. 100 years later, herbert hoover became personally associated with the great depression in a way that made a second term impossible. what had changed? government.f god -- the notion of what the federal government was responsible for, the bully pulpit. the idea the administrative office had become one of advocacy, conservation, protecting consumers against tainted meat and woodrow wilson and the concentration of power during the war and by the time hoover became president, people expected let -- expected vastly
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more from the federal government. how do you weigh apples and oranges? that is one of the internal what if i think anyone who plays this game has to grapple with. host: richard norton smith talking about the book that came out last year. noted historians rank america's best and worst chief executives. we will talk about that book and the c-span survey throughout this our. we want to hear from you. what qualities do you look for in a president? here is a few of you. peggy saying getting things done for the american people, not enriching themselves. to dorothy saying i look for someone who you can trust to do what they say, someone who can win a debate, someone unafraid to take on the washington elite.
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i looked and found that in trump. passion,integrity, having written at least one birth -- book that tells us who they are. honesty, integrity, and .on-fear-based leadership strong and protecting our environment. you can weigh in on facebook and twitter or you can give us a call. phone lines split up regionally. 202-748-8000 in the eastern or central time zones. 202-748-8001 in the mountain or pacific time zones. we will start with edwin in north carolina, good morning. caller: good morning. thanks for c-span. i want a president that will be honest and not say things that mislead. for example, president donald and --- keep saying
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african unemployment is low. as of january. it is not as low as whites, 3.1%, not as low as hispanics, ..3%, not as low as asians i don't want somebody to say a statement like african-american employment is the lowest since ultra sheen. you look at the numbers and it is not truthful. you have to be truthful to the american public. host: who is the last president who was truthful to the american public? caller: i am not saying truthful -- i will give an example. i have been around 61 years and generationfar as my even though i was born and raised in the bronx and was a time, i thinke
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ronald reagan was truthful to the american public, but ronald whatn's term mirrors president trump is doing. job creation, money coming into the treasury. they spent towns -- tons of money on defense. i understand giving money to the military, but you have got to have a cap and say i will pay my people in uniform. onhave to be truthful now this not only economy, you have people working three jobs with low income and not any benefits. i was fortunate to work both military and civil service in that 40 years. not a lot of people have those benefits. your phone calls,
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asking the question what qualities do you look for in a president. ron in california, thanks for getting up early with us. caller: good morning. happy presidents' day to everybody. if you give me a second, i have to tell you something funny. indiansd to call -- the used to call the president of the united states the great white father. that was their calling and that worked until andrew jackson came along and put the people on the trail of tears to oklahoma. that was not a good thing. what happened after andrew jackson was an interesting phenomenon. presidents are not born based on whether they tell the truth or not. it was all likability. --we knew back in the day
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lincoln, he was one of the most hated presidents and also one of the most loved and then it goes on from there. we have had some really bad presidents, some terrible presidents. warren harding was not a good president. you start looking at all these different presidents we have had. in the modern era, it started after dwight eisenhower took over and then it was lbj, the worst president i think we have ever had. nixon was worse than he was. >> when you started talking about the likability factor or the truth telling factor or the effectiveness, what is the most important quality in your mind? caller: my opinion and i know it sounds strange, it is
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likability. i voted for george and laura twice because they were likable as opposed to the other people. i voted for reagan twice. i voted for barack obama and michelle twice. the bottom line of this story is if i don't like someone personally, that is my to votece and i choose for someone that has qualities i think are honest and truthful for me. subjective is a opinion and has nothing to do with helping the economy or protect our country. our country is based on a wartime economy. without war, that -- we would fail. the german parlance, we are only happy at war or rebuilding. host: you and others might be interested in looking at c-span's historian survey of the
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president. at last came out in 2017 ranking all the past presidents, c-span working with 91 historians and professional observers of the presidency to rank the past presidents on various qualities of presidential leadership. the formermentioned president warren harding ranking forth from last in the 2017 survey. warren harding coming in with a ranking of 360 points to give you a sense of how those points are determined, 10 qualities of presidential leadership the historians we work with rank those presidents on giving them a scoring of 1 or 10 on the various qualities. they might play into your thoughts as you talk about the qualities you look for in a president. crisis leadership, economic
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leadership, moral authority, administrative skills, relations with congress, vision, setting an agenda, pursuing equal justice for all and performance within the context of the times, the 10 qualities of presidential leadership and when it comes to those 10 qualities and the historians we worked with, abraham lincoln coming in as he had in our 2009 and 2000 survey as the top ranked president followed by george washington, theodore roosevelt, dwight eisenhower, thomas jefferson, ronald reagan, and so on. all available at our website and perhaps it will play into your whathts as we ask qualities you look for in a president. bill in wyoming, you are next. caller: i am a first time caller and i love c-span.
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72-year-old veteran and i could not agree more looking at the survey with the lineup you have of ar as the qualities good president. i totally agree with the survey. host: do one or two of those qualities stand out? is there something that is most important out of those 10? caller: i believe the main quality is a moral quality to .erve others i saw or experienced that in my earliest days with dwight his parting words fulfilledion when he
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his duties as president, beware of the military industrial we still live by it is a real crisis for mankind. host: when it comes to eisenhower, he ranked fourth when it comes specifically to that category, moral authority, going through the 91 historians and other observers of the presidency. forth on moral authority behind franklin roosevelt, abraham lincoln, george washington. good company there. absolutely -- caller: absolutely. jimmy carter and barack obama are the only two presidents i that hadto vote for any moral authority.
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hillary or vote for trump in 2016. my conscience would not allow me to do that and for goodness sake , i hope this time around we don't have somebody by the presidency like the corporations that bought most of the politicians in office today. that is a fear i have and a concern, i will say, for our country. host: on that topic, two headlines from today's newspapers talking about money and wealth in politics and whether that is a quality that matters. this is ethan epstein's case, money and electability talks,
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which is why lunenburg rises in rises iny -- bloomberg popularity. this from the lead editorial in today's washington times simply titled money matters. , but hislutocrat riches may win votes. $200 million of the personal into thee poured presidential campaign by the end of 2019. that number expected to go up. ryan in san diego, california. good morning. taking myank you for call. i think the idea of a president and a moral leader though it seems normal or natural for people to look towards a
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president, sort of a tribal leader looking toward a president for morality is ineffective because if you look at -- to me, the best presidents have good administrative and managerial qualities. i think obama was a great moral leader, very likable, but one of the worst presidents we have ever had. the world was unstable, we were unstable. you look at syria and isis and ukraine. trump, who is very unlikable although i like him, things are stable. isis seems to be under control and i like presidents that are governors and have run things before. i would not vote for any of the senators. if trump has proven anything, it is he has shown a good executive
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person can do a much better job than a senator. i would vote for bloomberg or stier. i could not see myself voting for sanders or warren. i don't think they have the qualities. aboutyou said talking president trump he is unlikable, but i like him. explain what you mean. isler: i like him because he straightforward. he has a lot of audacity. he is right for the times. he has exposed media and corruption in the government. i think he has shaken washington and gone after the establishment which used to be a democrat point where the democrats would say we need to take on the establishment. if there has ever been an antiestablishment president, it is trump. i don't understand democrats and bernie sanders, you don't hear them taking on the establishment. trump is the opinion of me of an
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antiestablishment president. i think he has proven that we need somebody that has some type of executive qualities. host: robert in new york, you are next. i want a president thoroughly committed to separation of church and state. host: why is that the most important quality? caller: because the current president is doing everything to suck up to his evangelical and fundamentalist base. i want to get rid of betsy devos as secretary of education because she wants to eliminate public education in sake for private, primarily religious education -- they call it -- it is education really indoctrination.
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host: have there been other presidents who worried you when it comes to blurring the lines between church and state? to think it took a while to come up with anything. jimmy carter was suddenly very religious. in my memory, as far as i could remember, he never tried to force his religious attitudes on the general public. i would be happy with somebody like him. he was able to arrange an agreement between anwar sadat and -- which is tough to do. i would be happy with somebody like him. host: continuing to take your calls. if youines, 202-748-8000 are in the eastern or central time zones. 202-748-8001 in the mountain or pacific time zones. what qualities do you look for in a president on this
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president's day? more from one of those events covering the release of the c-span book, "the presidents." talkingmichael gearhart about the relationship between presidents and the public. [video clip] >> one reason people think about the presidency a lot is because one thing that gets left out of in equation a lot of times thinking about great leaders is they need followers. they need the people. they need the people not just to vote for them, but to support them and they need to enjoy interacting with people. taft hated it. lincoln liked it. lincoln was a great storyteller. he would stop almost anybody and say let me tell you a story.
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then not. -- there is more realism in that than not. something reflect else. the american people almost in spite of themselves almost want and that is a king. they go back and forth on it, but they like to look up to somebody. they want to look up to somebody and the presidency can occupy a position no other leader can occupy, which is so far he is always in the camera, always in eye, always being written about. people are always telling stories about them. we have days dedicated to them. we have president's day. bit of aittle reflection of how to some extent we threw off the king, but there
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is a little bit in us and the american people that want there to be good in the president so they can revere them and honor them to some extent like a king. year michael gearhart last at an event at the national constitution center accompanying the release of the c-span book, "the presidents." noted historians rank the best and worst chief executives providing insights into the .ives of 44 american presidents you can buy the hardback wherever books are sold. preorder the paperback now. any royalties go to the nonprofit c-span education which creates the history of -- your phone calls asking what qualities you look for in a person that occupies the oval
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office. byron in tennessee, good morning. caller: i would like a president that comes right out and says exactly what he means. there is nothing worse than listening to somebody for 30 minutes and you don't know where they stand. that is the reason i like donald trump he puts america first since we are a christian nation, he supports the christians and i will vote for donald trump o -- again. last presidenthe who did that? who came out and put america first before donald trump? of one,i cannot think to be honest with you. ronald reagan was a good president, but i think donald trump will be as good or better than president reagan.
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thank you. host: jackie in new york city, good morning. caller: it is the qualities i reagan.ilar to with jimmy carter and president obama, they brought into the system a very negative attitude towards america. how the world looked at america and that we were not great and powerful and i believe trump has brought back tremendous amount of pride from every state to state. the states that usually voted blue voted red because he touched americans like no president before him. i have, through the decades, watched our jobs disappear and go overseas. he wants to bring those jobs
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back and he is telling america what he wants to do to accomplish this and it would be good if he could do that. unfortunately, democrats do not like an outsider like trump. he has executive skills and americans.ouches his rallies are terrific because he has the strong personality and he has like -- is like one of the people. obama brought negative racism, divisiveness and jimmy carter did the same exact thing and that is why i think reagan won because he brought pride back to america. i want to see jobs come back, what he is trying to do for our vets. our vets have been treated terribly and he wants to change that system. host: you mentioned president trump's rallies. here is a clip from president
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trump's greatest rally talking about what his administration will fight for. [video clip] >> we will defend privacy, free speech, religious liberty, and arms.ght to keep and bear we are going to protect your second amendments. they are going to take everything, your wealth, your guns, everything. will never stop fighting for the sacred values that bind us together as one america. we support, protect, and defend the constitution of the united states.
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with the incredible .eroes of law enforcement we believe in the dignity of work and the sanctity of life. we believe faith and family, not government and bureaucracy are the true american way. we believe children should be taught to love our country, honor history, and always .espect our great american flag we live by the words of our national motto, "in god we trust." host: president trump in new hampshire last week, the presidential campaign trail leads this week to nevada. followed a week later by the
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south carolina primary and shifts to super tuesday. watch on c-span. we are asking what qualities do in a president? a person should be good and decent with visionary leadership and understanding of the basic functionalities of the government and military experience or understanding and willing to bring all people together. blake from pennsylvania, a presidential person should be compassionate and a president justifyever think ends the means. honesty, common decency, compassion. adheres to the rule of law. a person who makes me proud to be an american. none of the above apply to trump. kansas. from james in how about the president who is not a constant liar and upholds the integrity of the office?
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.arold in california caller: good morning. i would like to look for a president that works with the trumpside like donald says he wants to do, but the other side will not work for him . for all the democratic presidents running now that want to be president, i would like to hear from them how they would plan to work with the other side when they are not doing that now, if somebody could get that campaigns,that in that would be a good question. host: having this conversation on president's day or washington's birthday as it is known in the federal code, george washington's actual birthday, february 22. we will talk about how president's day and washington's birthday came to be combined and
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when we had later to mount vernon, it is the first up on a week long washington journal and american history tv series focused on d.c. area museums and highlighting collections that explore the american story. we will be joined by doug bradburn joining us from the onnt vernon museum and stuff the grounds of george washington's historic mount vernon. our 9:00 a.m. eastern hour this morning. out of columbus, ohio, good morning. what qualities do you look for in a president? caller: i look for a president that has moral values that care about the people. i want a president willing to abide by the laws, someone we can trust and that cares about our health care and cares about all people in general, even
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other world. we have to work together and i want a president that has some type of background. i would like to have a president that we can see what they have done, that they have skills and values about this country and what this country needs to move forward and i think the constitution is important and maybe that needs to be revisited . we need a president that has morals and values and that his word we can depend on. host: this is jim in fort lauderdale, florida. good morning. caller: good morning. there is no question in my mind if a president has courage and if he has the ability to inspire , that would make him a great president. prime examples of that are gambledashington
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everything his own and his family's welfare. number two, john f. kennedy. he took courage during the cuban missile crisis and inspired this rightsto start the civil movement in a way that could never have been done without his inspiration. number 3, ronald reagan because of the way he brought down the soviet empire and whether you like him or not, you have to admit donald trump moving the u.s. embassy to took a lot of courage. whether you agree with donald him, or love him or hate he probably will go down as one of the great presidents of the united states because of the courage he showed. host: on the question of
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courage, does it come with the times as well? a president who faces challenges in the world have more opportunity to demonstrate is the and in some ways greatness of a president if it comes down to courage subject to simply what is happening in the world at the time? caller: you know, john, i think courage is in the dna of the american people. look at what happened when amy klobuchar was the only person to raise her hand in the last debate. would you be comfortable with a socialistic being president of the united states? inspirationquestion and courage is what the american people look for. morality, let me tell you something, our greatest
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presidents had problems with morality. don't tell me through the process of politics that every single president we have ever had did not have some sort of a moral problem. even john f. kennedy was philandering. i don't want to go on about courage presidents, but and inspiration is what people remember in a president. thosemore from one of book release event last year for the c-span book, "the presidents." this is a historian talking about how adversity plays into how we judge a president. [video clip] judge theseo presidents based on how they dealt with adversity. there has to be something extraordinary happening during their administration and with lincoln, it does not get any
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more extraordinary than the civil war. sat is a man who simply there as the country was -- he chose not to sit there as the country was falling apart. he decided he was not going to allow the south to secede without challenging that, so we than wem much higher would someone who decided to leave it alone and let things take their course. it really doesn't matter how one responds. it has got to be a person who is decisive, someone who can communicate well, set a vision and pursue it and persuade people this is the right way to go. lincoln more than any other president was able to do that. rankingraham lincoln first in the c-span survey of past presidents based on
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interviews with 91 historians, professional observers of the presidency. abraham lincoln ranking first, james buchanan also discussed in that clip you saw. he ranks dead last. henry next out of michigan, good morning. caller: good morning. good morning. host: go ahead, sir. caller: i would like to see another president. i don't like what we had in john f. kennedy. i would like to see somebody who is going to do their job. donald trump is doing a beautiful job. with the trickle-down economics we have and in my state where i 68 yearsmoney, -- i am old. we need a president who is not going to pull back on the
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people. billy barr. tot: the caller referring william barr, has been in the news quite a bit. maybe you saw this photo yesterday. more than 1100 former justice department employees signed a public writer sunday urging william barr to resign over his handling of the case of president trump's longtime -- report anytone unethical conduct, signatures for that letter gathered by protect democracy, a group that has been critical of the 's --ing of robert mueller investigation into russian interference. because we have little expectations -- career employees
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to take action to uphold their oath of office and withhold their partisan a political justice. that letter coming out yesterday . linda in arkansas, you are next, good morning. caller: i want to first off thank our wonderful president, this is president's day and he speaks out -- what goes in his brain comes out of his mouth unlike barack obama, he was a snake in the grass. also, i want to quote proverbs leaders heart is in the hand of him as the rivers of every topurned this, leader -- host: what is that proverb mean to you? caller: that proverb means the lord guides everybody. we are all put on the earth for a purpose and our purpose is to
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serve the lord and he turns the leaders heart whatsoever he will like a river and that is proverbs21:1. the leaders, all their hearts are turned. honors -- he helps us how we do, that is how we will turn the king in our favor or against us. host: larry in georgia, good morning. the president that shows great character that we had was president barack obama. he asked peace of the whole .orld
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my son is eight years old and i d him from watching donald trump. any time president trump speaking, i turn on president -- obama. he is not bliss -- misleading a lot of ignorant people. if you are a citizen of the united states, you will not turn against your fellow person. i love democrats and independents. president obama won the nobel peace prize by the united states of america, president obama upon character under donald trump was to be assassinated so the young people will not know what kind of president he was. lesbians to gays,
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get them civil rights. need ahis text noting we leader, not a politician. a politician worries about the next election, a leader worries about the next generation. bernie sanders has been voting for we the people all his life. this is from bill. all the qualities pete buttigieg has, genius wisdom, balance, strength, decency, and the amazing capacity could -- to communicate and someone who knows who the president of mexico is. you, quality, compassion, and the desire to do good things for the people who had it. -- roosevelt,gon lbj, how did they get it? first-hand experience of poverty, sickness.
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202-748-8003 is that line. about 15 minutes or so left in this segment, getting your thoughts on this question, what qualities do you look for in a president? caller: good morning, america. i believe equal justice for all should be our top priority. they have a news channel on called newsy. no pundits. theuld like to shout out to troops that died in afghanistan recently and it is up to the women to make the selection great again. blessed day, a thank you. host: if you want to check out our book tv programming on c-span 2, it is available at out of alabama, good morning.
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caller: good morning. where to start? first of all, we are supposed to pray for our leaders. second of all, i appreciate donald trump standing against abortion and standing for the christians and the bible speaks of adam and eve, not adam and andy. i am quoting the bible this morning, adam and eve, not adam and andy. against abortion and gay host: aunt to the question, what qualities do you look for in a president? caller: everything you had previously, all the topics you had plus what i just mentioned. we have to have all of these qualities, not just the ones on their lineup.
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we are supposed to pray for our leaders regardless of who they are and that is what i am doing. i pray the lord does what is right for us. host: the lineup she was referring to, those qualities of presidential leadership were used by the historians who joined c-span in 2017 our presidential historians survey of past presidents, these were the 10 qualities of leadership every president was ranked on. these were the qualities they looked at, public persuasion, crisis leadership, economic management, moral authority, international relations, administrative skills, vision and setting an agenda, pursuing equal justice for all and performance within the context of the times just to focus on one of those issues, the
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relations with congress issue, here is how the presidents stacked up on that one issue according to 91 historians and professional researchers. they have lyndon johnson as the president with the best relations followed by george washington, franklin roosevelt, abraham lincoln, thomas jefferson and theodore roosevelt to take you to the bottom of that list, the presidents with the worst relations with congress, barack obama near the bottom fifth followed by franklin pierce, john tyler, james buchanan and andrew johnson dead last. at available at our website we have done the historian pasty three times ranking presidents all available for you to see. thomas and colonial heights,
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virginia. caller: how are you doing, john? host: doing well. caller: i am a 20 year army veteran during the vietnam era and i would like to respond to a collar that called in. earlier on you said donald trump has courage. drafted,were being president bone spurs wound up .etting seven deferments donald trump happen to be one of the worst presidents i have ever experienced. courage is athink top-quality needed by a president to occupy office? caller: yes, i do and the gentleman who called from florida said donald trump would
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go down as one of the most courageous presidents we have ever had because he moved the embassy, where was he when guys like myself needed him during the vietnam war? colonialt is thomas in heights, this is dorothy out of raleigh. good morning. caller: good morning, c-span, and its viewers. most people have said about honesty and integrity, but a president that can handle crisis. we are having a crisis now with the coronavirus. we will see how that is handled. with obama we had the ebola virus and recession. i believe obama will move up, he is about 12 in the list. i think he will move up. that recession was so bad and i will give george bush and obama the prospects they deserve.
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you would not have been able to go to the bank machine if they did what they were going to do? people do not know how bad the recession was because people -- those guys saved it. in history they are going to report what happened. us fromd not save anything. it had all been solved by the people i am talking about. got it all from bush and he saved it. we were not losing jobs, we were gaining jobs. bring people together, he was never separating people as trump do. trump could be a decent president if he were president
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of all the people and not just some of the people. 12t: barack obama coming in on the 2017 rankings of past presidents. when it comes to crisis leadership, barack obama ranking 15th. abraham lincoln, george washington, fdr leading in the category of crisis leadership. c-span's historians survey of past presidents and speaking of past presidents, i want to show you two of them talking about the qualities needed, this is former president george w. bush and bill clinton, 2017 scholars program where they were asked this question about the qualities a president should have. [video clip] >> think it takes for someone
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who says i want to be president, i want to be like you? >> humility. it is important to listen to people who know what you do not know. you haveve to say -- to win the election, but why are you running? when he ran for governor against richards, he did not say he is a betz, he said i wanted governor because i want to do these things. he had an agenda. it is about the people, not about you. and it is what a lot of these people who are real arrogant in office, time passes and it passes more quickly than you know. you want to be able to say -- youare better off
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don't want to say look at all the people i worked over. the most important thing is to be humble, to listen, to realize everybody has a story. 2017 inat event from our c-span archives. search for either one of those presidents in that event. less than 10 minutes left in this segment of the washington journal asking for phone calls, here is one more text from jim in buffalo, new york. i grew up thinking presidential quality should include honesty, integrity, compassion and determination. we look at who we have elected and they do not measure up. .ony in iowa, you are next caller: i am calling from the home of the five sullivan
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brothers and the president should have a good ear -- host: remind folks who the sullivan brothers are. caller: when the president collects the bodies from afghanistan and iraq, these foreign wars who have no understanding of the military, the men who come back, their families and countries are hurting. my uncle is buried in france and they were socialists and it saddens me to see our country .urning toward socialism i would like to say one last thing, when it comes to morality, you cannot say you are a moral person unless you are .uaranteed some sort of justice for anyone to run for president and say they are a moral person and yet take the life of the unborn in such numbers, 40
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million is so monumentally atrocious and unforgivable that i don't know how anyone who says they agree with abortion thanks they can make a law for any child that is alive. they should be making laws for the dead children. host: do you want to explain who the sullivan brothers are for those who do not know? caller: they were stationed on one ship during world war ii, they were killed at the same time and it cost a lot of people to have concern about that. it also sparked the movie called saving private ryan. host: thanks for the call from waterloo. ernest in michigan, good morning. caller: i would like to have a president that does not tell 16,000 lies and i would like to theyone also that says
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make bigots and racists feel good about themselves. host: this is tasha in idaho, good morning. qualities we are --king for in the president the leader of america. .e have an amazing nation from everyone else and helping yourself, just as president clinton set before, it is not about you anymore. host: who is the best example of leader? caller: franklin d roosevelt. teddy is up there, too. fdr, what an amazing person.
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he knew it was about the american people as well and it doesn't matter who you are. need toll people and we have someone who is going to look out for us and have a little to coram and not be having fights on twitter. host: this is jane in florida, good morning to you. caller: good morning. host: go ahead, jane. caller: okay. i agree every issue the historians brought up as to what makes a good president, i would agree with. what i am looking for this time is someone who can pull together the global community and fight climate change and also civil rights for everyone. literacy around the world, someone who can be a consensus
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candidate for the entire globe. a leader again. host: here is the story from today from a poll that came out on friday. looking at the issue of character. how you define character, whether you see character in the president or presidential candidates. that pole conducted wednesday through thursday last week shows bernie sanders has a clear advantage over the incumbent president. 40% said they admired sanders' character. 31% said they admired joe biden's character. senator elizabeth warren and south bend mayor pete -- pete buttigieg got 30%. mike bloomberg not far behind with 29% for those saying they admired character.
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30% for buttigieg and biden. 31% sayingomberg, president trump shares their values. i on thatpoy story -- on that ipsos poll. caller: we need a president who has strong moral values. a president who treat all people fairly, who believes in diversity. trump is a very unpopular president when it comes to that. if my republican friends would research anything, they would find out he is unpopular worldwide because of his moral values. the worst part about this president is that he does not care about anybody but himself. racist,bigoted
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arrogant, vein, conceited, self-centered habitual liar. host: give me to characteristics you want to see in a president, 4 or 5 characteristics on that front. caller: i like a president who has humility. jfk had humility. barack obama had it. i thought jimmy carter had humility. i did not vote for george w. bush, but i liked him as a person. i thought he was a man's man. these were very humble people. you don't judge people -- if you are going to judge somebody, judge them by politics. we have a president who has terrible moral values. is that she is an adulterer. host: planet -- he is an
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adulterer. host: we will be joined by frank buckley on his book. we take you on the first stop of a weeklong washington of a serin d.c. area museums, highlighting collections that explore the american story on this president's day we will be joined by doug bradburn, president nc eo -- and ceo of mount vernon bread he will -- mount vernon. he will be joining us on washington journal. ♪ >> in terms of style, barack obama for example spoke in what we call a periodic style.
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this is the march of paragraphs upon the -- on the page. of the people, by the people. barack obama was compatible because of what he experienced in his lifetime. bill clinton was very different. he was talking all the time. you are in his living room. very conversational style. style for your candidate, your client, is very different for each of them. it was very plainspoken. >> tonight on the communicators, from the state of the net conference we will discuss technology and the internet with congresswoman cathy mcmorris rodgers. congress and will heard in federal election official. watch the communicators tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span two.
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students from across the country told us the most important issue for the presidential candidates to address our climate change, gun violence, teen vaping, college affordability, mental health and immigration. we are awarding $100,000 in total cash prizes. the winners for the studentcam competition will be announced on march 11. >> washington journal continues. host: live shot of mount vernon this morning we will take you there in our next hour of the washington journal. but before that we are joined by frank buckley back at our desk. author of his latest book american secession, a looming threat of national breakups argue in this. it's a lot closer than we think in today's america. what you base that on? guest: i moved here from canada
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and went through all this before and i remember how would one point this was something that no one talked about and then a few years later we are having a referendum and nearly passes. countryn a very divided , in many ways it resembles the country a left and you begin to wonder whether or not we might just be better off with two separate countries. it's not what i want. i feel a little bill of the skunk of the garden party. all these people talking about great presidents and here i am talking of a breakup. ultimately i'm not arguing for secession. i'm saying it's a real threat and we should think about that. maybe turn down the volume a bit. host: a passage from your book, we are less united today than we have been at any time since the civil war divided by politics, religion and culture and all the ways that matter say for the naked force a law.
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we are already divided into two nations just as much as 1861. describe what those nations look like and where they are? guest: every morning the washington post arrives at my doorstep and it seems to me like a fresh argument for secession. it just drips with contempt on the other side, there is a lot of that. i think what's missing is a tolerance and understanding of people with very different points of view, when you don't have that, when half the country think the other half is deplorable, you have to wonder why should they be in the same country. book thatsaying your there are the bonds that still hold americans together, they are strained right now but they are there. what are they? guest: maybe they are more strained than ever in a long time in the past. we have a common culture. it's a world culture but a common culture.
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if americans see each other in a foreign country, in europe, we will recognize each other as americans. we are allowed. we are having fun. that's very american, i love that. areat the same time we canceling a lot of our culture, a lot of our history. we are told we are not supposed to be proud, but rather ashamed of our history. that is very divisive. if you want a country, it's very important to have the same kind of mythic heroes and forget a lot of the bad stuff. host: what can we follow -- fall back on? guest: if it ever comes to it, what i'm hoping would happen would be a realignment of the country in some way. you have to imagine that one state will say this is not working, for example we would like to have national health, we won't get it from washington.
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we might get it from sacramento and a smaller group of states, we don't think we would like to make america great again, let's make america small again. and if you do that, then maybe things like national health become possible and then you get a referendum and at that point people have to sit down and talk. and what they may end up talking about is letting different people go their own way but maintaining still a united country in some respects. a different kind of federalism. host: bigness and smallness come up in your book. the advantages and disadvantages. smallness being what might happen if american secession happens. what are the advantages and which does the balance favor? >> this was a big debate for our framers in 1787, nationalists like madison wanted a big country, when i looked at the evidence and look at other countries, what i discovered is bigness is badness generally and
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small is beautiful and smaller countries are less corrupt, , sor, even more prosperous we are comparing the biggest countries in the world to places like denmark. those are doing pretty well. host: frank buckley is our guest. the book is american secession, the looming threat of a national breakup takes a discussion point for this hour of the washington journal today. you can join us as you have all morning long on the phone lines split up regionally. 202-748-8000 in the eastern or central time zone. 202-748-8001 if you are in the mountain or pacific time zones. we will keep that text line open. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, [no audio]00 . -- 8003. caller: good morning. threat wee greatest
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have right now is that we have constitution to reflect the times of the day. the constitution was written by man. man is fallible. it's not the bible. it's very easy for russia to come in to interfere in our elections for example. we have this electoral college what we look at seven states that you really have to go and get -- campaign. to win the presidency. those states have less educated people. they are very easy to fool or gullible. not -- those people are we need a national election, the
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same rules for every state, we don't need to have this so complicated. the electoral college was a big topic of discussion back in 1787 with the framers, they thought it was important for states to be represented to give the states a voice. that's what we have and yes you are right, it's virtually impossible to amend the constitution's we are pretty much stuck with it, frankly that was something that a guy called roger sherman from connecticut gave us. he should probably be a hero for conservatives because the electoral college cuts their way. that is just an accident. that's how it's turned out. you know if you want to get a constitutional change, it would probably happen most likely with a threat of secession which would initiate a discussion between the seceding states and the rest of the country.
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as to how you would divvy things up. a state may want to go its own way with respect to national health but we may not want to have for example a passport to visit disneyland. so those of the kinds of discussions you have to have. >> play it out a bit more as you do in your book about the routes to secession if it were to happen today. you make the ark meant in your book that you think americans today would be less willing to fight to keep the union together like they did. >> one hope there's no crazy south carolina out there. i don't think we would see in abraham lincoln office. we were going through in the earlier hour a list of the best and worst presidents in very near the bottom was james buchanan. the president just before abraham lincoln. a lot of things wrong with buchanan in an era full of racists he was about the most racist of all. but he said something that made a lot of sense to me. he was talking about south carolina trying to secede and
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what he said was this does not make sense. we are prosperous, we are doing well, you have no right to secede and you have no reason to secede because you want slavery. slavery is nowhere better protected in the world and america at this point. only you still want to secede and what i my supposed to do, and my supposed to send in the troops. i think if we can't keep our country together by ordinary bonds of affection, we are not going to keep it together by sending in the army. james madison said the same thing. he said of the federal government invaded the state, the compact between the states would be over. wasyet when my alexandria invaded it was federal troops. don't get me wrong, the civil war usefully, thankfully ended slavery. but we don't have those issues today so i can see is civil war over slavery but i don't see is civil war on transgender bathrooms.
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>> host: the caller talked about those people when he was talking about another state, i want to go back to gary gallagher, author and historian who gave a speech last year talking about northern and southern perceptions of each other. what they thought about each other and whether perception is reality in the years leading up to the civil war. --[video argue either clip] >> often overlooked in this debate is the fact that substantial number of white northerners and white southerners believed that there were profound differences. in any circumstance, perception usually trumps reality indicating behaviors because people act according to what they perceive to be the truth. however that might differ from reality. but even the civil war, many a societys saw
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fundamentally and many would've said pernicious lady shaped by the presence of slavery. for their part, innumerable white southerners thought northerners and antagonist and meddling people determined to undermine the south slavery based social system. it matters little whether a real chasm separated people in this way. the new york daily tribune put it well in the spring of 1856. "the truth is though we are but one nation, we are two peoples, we are a people of e quality and the people of any quality. these two peoples are united by a bond of political union but whenever a collision comes which brings out the peculiar characteristics of the two, they are seen to be as unlike as almost any two civilized nations on the face of the earth. that same year in 1856, a young north carolinian, a cadet at west point, offered the southern
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viewpoint, our manners, feelings in education are as if we were different nations he wrote. indeed, everything indicates plainly a separation written >> are we two nations today or do you think we are more different -- or do we think we are more different than we are. guest: in many ways we are two nations. pick up the washington -- washington -- your reading stories by people very different from people of the other parts of the country. i think we could still get along but i think the speaker just now hit on some very important, namely that it's very psychological, there was a convention of the states in 1860 want to try and patch it together. they thought it's crazy. we don't want to go to war, let us work things out. remarkably the northerners offered to put slavery in the constitution.
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the most antislavery people said we will make it so slavery will always be part of our u.s. constitution, abraham lincoln said he would go along with that. but it didn't work. one of the southern delegates said that's not enough. you also have to respect us. you have to respect their slavery. in the northerners said no, we can't do that. that need for respect is always there. and never more than today. and i think it fuels a lot of the frankly nastiness of the politics. the willingness of people to go to either extreme. host: the book is american secession, phone line split up regionally. shelley in utah. good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. i just want to say respect is very important and also the fact that we have a president that bullies everybody all the time,
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that does not help our common denominator of getting this altogether. havee great grandma and i 18 children -- great grandkids. i truly believe there is a better life for them but the way the direction we are going, the middle class is being gone and we are having just the rich and the poor. happyneed to find a medium line, we need more middle-class than we do the rich and the poor. thank you for taking my call. those were good points and congratulations on all the kids. i think what you've done is describe both why people like and why people dislike donald trump. i don't want to get the politics , you are talking about the basic issues that help elect trump. at the same time you're talking about the way in which a lot of
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americans, half of americans think it's about the worst thing that happened. way, in 1972,his irving kristol said the culture wars over. left kind of the got a wake-up call, maybe they didn't win the culture war after all. was a992 to 2016 there broad consensus that we won't shake things up much, will now we are and -- with trump. and that is helped to produce the divisions i'm talking about so i'm not to take sides, i am just saying though divisions are there. host: one of the biggest cyst -- what are the biggest secession movements today? guest: there is something called calexit california. there are secession movements hampshire,as, new vermont, oregon.
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so they are small now, they start small but they can build up quickly and surprising. >> if it happens this time i think there would be politically correct, what do you mean? guest: rather than defending rlavery it might be the wokeie states in the union saying we can't take it anymore. host: good morning. the haves and the have-nots telling them what they need. we have a big problem in mississippi because the whole thing that holds america together is holding down black people. controlling those particular groups of people. we are the people that brought -- said that he that is last shall be first. we moved to the first position,
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black people started looking out for one another. given themselves everything they need on a white man to give it to them. it's the have trying to tell the have-nots what they need and this is where the problem is in black people -- this is whether states that it here incause i live mississippi, the flag is never talked about. we miss use fear and we ignore it, we worry about illegal immigrants, iraq, iran and everywhere else. host: got your point. guest: you are making good points, although i disagree. the goal actually a think should be for all of us to be treated equally. no priority to anybody. that means may be looking more carefully at people who have
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been hard done by. , the messages got to be we are -- we'll count in the same way. host: who is don livingston? guest: he is a secessionist. he is a philosopher, a student someone from, and a philosophical perspective likes the idea of secession. there are people out there. he lives in south carolina, he is not a racist in any way, shape or form. he is somebody who is talked up secessionf southern and southern distinctiveness. ofis a good example for me the people who want secession. host: out of port charlotte, florida, good morning. caller: earlier when you first started your broadcast you mentioned the washington post.
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your reason is what exactly? what you're reading when you pick up the washington post. you are going to bid in and out. guest: for the last couple of years there has been a not just slantded anti-trump mostly slant the tents to commute to get the people who support trump are kind of less than human and that bleeds over from the front page to see the opinions to the sports section even. i haven't seen in the weather section but it's pre-much all over the paper. host: do you have a follow-up question. caller: i'm surprised you would say that about a newspaper that is historically been reporting facts and historical accuracies. op-edw section from their are two separate things and your use of the word deplorables just
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goes back to see what your bias is. you are obviously conservative and are you hoping for secession? is that what you're hoping for? host: not at all -- guest: not at all, it was written in opposition to secession. i just said it's out there. and there are things we should do now to remove that thread. one of those things is to talk things down. i stand by what i set about the washington post. i think in many ways to great which but it's a paper underwent a real change with its , the new york times for example tries i think to be more moderate in its views. but let's not get into the post. host: randy in michigan says it seems your guest would like everything fast food style in our government and that's not how it works. it's a and slow and frustrating but it's our american way. we allow contentious debates but
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when push comes to shove we come together as americans. guest: well i hope he is right. he is right about all of that. the structure of government is made to prevent bad things from happening, you have to go through a bunch of hoops, it's not like that in the parliamentary system. providesays the system better results i think, what our system lacks is a reverse gear. you get bad stuff enacted and then it can't be amended. what does brexit and the scottish independence movement mean first -- secession in america? guest: not anything. people tend to look for europe for this, that or the other thing. we don't have to look abroad. brits, brexit was a form of regulatory reform. when i think about it. there are all these people here who might welcome secession. they include people who want to
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go their own way with respect to national health, but there also a lot of people who think they are in a regulatory mores that we are being ruled by unelected regulators and what they are talking about is the federal regulations and the alphabet soup mix in washington. people mightf prefer a smaller country. with less of washington's regulations. host: out in california, the morning. believe that capitalism and trump go together and every man is capitalism will trump is in office. there's one other thing. in this i reluctantly have to say as for immigration there comes a time in every nation, all nations when you no longer want immigrants to come into the
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country, you just have too many and when you are paying them instead of them working to make the country better, it's just doesn't work. guest: well i agree with a lot of what you just said. we are straying from the topic a little bit. i'm an immigrant myself. there is always a tendency for immigrants we get in here and pull the ladder up. but immigrants are a source of value to americans, the immigration debate i think should center around whether or bringing in her making nativeborn americans better off. that's a different debate. host: what is secession light? guest: what i was think might be a solution to our problems. secession light i describe as a greater grant of authority to the states or to a group of states over a whole bunch of
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issues. it's what the brits offered ireland in the 1880's, it's the way in which all of the former british colonies have left peacefully, gained their independence. it's a form of self-rule. so may be rather than just breaking of the country, maybe the thing to do is keep the country together but allow the pieces in different parts of it to have greater control over what they want to do. host: is that legal under the constitution? guest: everything is legal under the constitution if you amend it. something to get the game going which would be inactive secession and then that begins a discussion. no state has the right of secession, no state had that right in 1861 and they don't have it today. because the voters in other states count. for example, dividing up federal property or the data. it begins a series of discussions and maybe what cup -- might come out of it would be
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a greater tolerance for different parts of the country going their own way over any number of things. it might be abortion and it might be national health. the supremeole with court and congress play in what you are talking about if a secession movement is declared and we start walking down that path. guest: inevitably everything ends up in front of the supreme court. they do?d there is an 1868 case which says no right of secession, that was decided when the civil war was over. if secession was in the future, i think the supreme court would hesitate before giving a loaded gun to the president and also the originalists on the court would pay attention to the fact that the framers thought secession was perfectly possible. host: we are talking with frank
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buckley, the book is "american secession: the looming threat of national breakup." if you have phone calls, phone lines are region. 202-748-8000 in the eastern or central time zones. 202-748-8001 in the mountain or pacific time zones. 3 for your text messages. please say those, your name and where you are from. caller: mr. buckley, i am concerned the lack of understanding in the country currently about the electoral college, why it was -- it originated raid and -- originated and the discussions about eliminating at. -- could fuel more secession activity and i would like your thought on that. thank you. the electoral
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college because anything else would have been a dealbreaker for many of the states, for the smaller states. we had a compromise that had to compromise a lot of things and some of the things you might not of light, slave ring -- slavery being an example. that was the price of getting a country together. as for the electoral college, you can make a lot of arguments for and against it. obviously it runs up against the basic norm underlying our constitution and that is democracy. so the ic of one man, one vote across the country is inconsistent with the electoral college. the framers knew that, they had to argue against people like maddison who didn't want anything like that. the framers, most of them thought we don't want small states to be swallowed up by the big ones. the big ones back then were
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virginia and pennsylvania. the big ones today are new york and california. same argument. host: jim on twitter is one of our longtime viewers. he often tweets every day. this is his comment on the segment. comment on this segment, maybe we could start to , thect the 10th amendment powers not delegated to the united states by the constitution nor prohibited by it to the states are reserved to the states respectively or to the people. maybe that would be good, only it is kind of late to bring the 10th amendment in. it has not had too much staying power. that has not influenced the debate much. i would like to see more devolution of power to the states ultimately. i think that would go in some way towards solving our problems. i don't know that the 10th amendment is host: going to take us there. to dave in hail, -- host: hale, michigan. i have been juggling
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this my mind about the todd mary election. we could not amend the constitution on the facts of a -- the republicans put up seven electors up there in the primaries. democrats had two. i am independent, so it does not matter to me. saying is a secret ballot, and then they keep it secret until the federal election, and then they open the becomes intohen it play. to -- theverybody has political side of the situation. for both sides. count, ande vote may it may not count just like a
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regular person off the street. your comments, please. i will get off the air. host:-- guest: you make good points, but you lost me when you said why couldn't we amend the constitution. that is very hard to do. 38 states. there are probably a lot better ways of ordering our elections. and evidently, there is going to be messiness. in general, i think we have got take am that -- we can great deal of pride impaired with all of its messiness, we still do a great job. host: kevin in owings mills, maryland. i will deftly make a point to purchase your book. i believe that this secession is going to be economically driven. states deficit is
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at a point where it is getting tremendously out of control and it is going to at some point -- on everyone. before that happened one -- before that happens, i would see secessions and other things that get us from up under the financial issues we have. i am hoping that this secession is not a bloody secession, not a violent secession, but something that is controlled. i think it would be economically driven to the soviet union was -- i don't think -- when they became russia they no longer were indebted. they got a clean slate as far as international financial issues. [indiscernible] host: you make some good points and i agree with much of what you said i'm glad you brought up the soviet union. just about every country in the world is staring down a secession movement. i don't know why we think we are
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immune from that. i would think we are prime ready for it. with respect to the economic consequences, it is really hard for us to break up if you don't take responsibility for your part of the federal debt. that would be a serious problem. secession movements in other countries have been willing to talk about that and negotiate over that. exit, as itprice of were. you have got to do that. host: a political story -- a politico story from a few years ago the independence movements inspired by brexit. ,ou talked about cal exit others are mentioned. which one of those do you want to talk about? guest: what was the last one? haw-exit. guest: none of them have gotten anywhere close to off the
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ground. is these things happen fast, and when they happen they come out of the blue. something theo previous color set about whether talkeduld be violent, i about my experience in quebec, we talked about this and we sought. terms ofy thinking in whether such a thing could happen here. -- talk ofster secession going in quebec was something called bill 101. it was an anti-english piece of legislation. a lot of bingo people in quebec. the english did not call it bill 101, they called it bill for a one 41 is a highway between montreal and toronto. one of the things you would expect to happen if there was something like this in america would be u-haul would clean up. we sort ourselves out. we do it already.
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people are moving from illinois to texas or vice versa. there would be more of that. that is how you would solve things today, not through war. too easy to get up and move. host: union, washington. glenn, good morning. caller: good morning. i have a couple comments in the question. i will be brief. first, i holistic lee agree with what your guest is saying, especially the last statement. we don't need to go to war but we need to reconcile our deep differences ideologically asked people. that has nothing to do with race, as the caller from mississippi -- didn't he say that the -- of what keeps the u.s. together is keeping black people down? i thought that was psychotic. the caller from california coupled donald trump trump with capitalism. i agree with that. he represents freedom in capitalism.
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high andhim to look up rand, she is dead but look up -- ayn rand, look up her philosophies on capitalism. youtube a person on with a channel called "mark my words." statistics and points out social scientists that show that if donald trump is elected again, he will be the last republican president because minorities of immigrants vote over 2-1 for the democratic party. beth magically, if immigration continues it will be a matter of time before republicans will not be elected. what i would like to point out is this, at the founding of the nation -- maybe your guests can confirm this -- quite people in 96%-90 8% white before we formed this country.
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the remaining percentages were native americans and slaves. we now have a nation where white people are 57% of the population. i would ask people that call white people racist, or think the nation's racist against anyone that is invite, how did to 96% unless the framers who formed the nation made sure that race was not an issue? we all know they could not have put the territories together by abolishing slavery out of the gate and the constitution because look at what happened with the civil war. governmentsmocratic -- democrats try to separate from the union to hold onto sale be -- slavery. guest: a couple of points i want to respond to. one, i suspect he is libertarian. libertarians in particular may be tempted by the idea of secession. state, do not like that
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imagine the possibility of illuminating one entire level of government just like that. -- eliminating one level of government just like that. as for the effect of immigration, it happened. it happened throughout the 19th century. all these people who, at the time, were thought to be undesirable -- the irish, eastern european -- they came here and they changed us. that is an argument i hear from my friends on the left and it reminds me of the movie cabaret i do not know if your member the song "the future belongs to me." predicting the future is a mug's game and i would not get into that. as we talk about american secession, the looming threat -- the author frank brockley -- frank buckley with us. nullification is
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basically a form of secession. the idea is, and it goes back to thomas jefferson which by the way tells you a lot of the people who are revered american hero's are people who would have been sympathetic to some kind of secession. nullification is the idea that a state can nullify a federal law. if you nullify one federal law, you can nullify all of them. something drawn up by james madison was a lot later -- the ideas -- the idea is we are not saying we can nullify a law, what we can do is get in the way. we are not going to help enforce a federal law in any way. that is exactly what is going on right now with sanctuary cities and sanctuary states like california, that do not want to enforce immigration laws. it is a game that has been
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played by a lot of democratic states. and a lot of republican states. it goes back to the 1840's were northern states did not want to fugitive slave lost her this is part of our history. host: how did that usually end? guest: it plays out -- the fugitive slave laws were not much in force. that was a reason the south was unhappy. usually they do not go anywhere because we do not know exact what that means. flashpoint, which even reminded me of fort sumter, had anland, oregon, ice office in portland. they were stormed -- barricaded, rather by antifa. they were not permitted to escape your the police did not do anything to help them.
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they were only permitted to leave when federal marshals -- u.s. federal marshals were sent in to rescue them. that is not fort sumter, but it was remarkable. host: orangeburg, south carolina. caller: good morning. how are you? host: doing well. kind ofmy question -- i agree with what you are seeing -- saying. i am 74, as a child coming up i always thought i did live in two worlds. i did not know i was black until i was told i was black. i was five years old at the time. the fact that the world has , but we wentch through with slavery and everything shows that -- the show i watch last night, i think everyone should see it. it was on msnbc. was "evening america."
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it is something to watch. it has a lot to do with immigrants. undocumented people. i cried when i watched it. now,still crying about it how america has not really changed to respect people for who they are and not look at their color or their nationality. though as a people, if we don't get together and respect each other, we will never solve the problems that is going in america today. thank you. guest: there is a lot of truth in what you say, but don't you think that things have changed particularly in south carolina? when you were growing up, strom thurmond was the senator. strom thurmond changed over the years. the civil rights revolution has really taken hold, hasn't it? in all of the states, certainly
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in south carolina. if that is the case, it seems to me secession should be thought of as less threatening because the stakes are lower. in 1861, it was a big deal. to --r was justly flat justly foss to illuminate slavery. we don't have any of those horrible issues today. we have gone through the 1965 civil rights act, and nobody is much trying to undo that. but tooing to quarrel, think the quarrel's are over things that are a lot less inortant than they were 1965, 1865? united about a lot of important issues. what is dividing us in many cases seems to be far less important. host: janet on twitter comes back to secession light. it sounds like a plan to permit
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red states to go their own way in regards to civil rights. we are either the united states of america, or we are not. guest: that is the voice of liberal triumph is impaired in other words, -- voice of liberal triumph-ism. we are not talking about -- i help toi think it would spend time talking to people you disagree with. i think you would find they are not united racists. there are people who may have different points of view about things like abortion. that is perfectly fine. if that is your definition of an unacceptable difference, then we have to disagree. host: another quote from your book, "other countries have
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common cultures or religions. what america has is an idea that constitutes our identity as americans. that idea is a liberalism in the classical sense. if we are to resist the call to secessions, it is our allegiance to our country's liberal principle stuff will unite us. " guest: there are people who want to tell you it is more than a creek, we are a people. i would say, we are a liberal creed. american nationalism's liberal nationalism. if you're american, you have to subscribe to the basic truths outlined in the declaration. myyou don't do that, than to mind your less than american. people who do that eventually reveal themselves to be out of sync with what america is all about. host: what is america about? guest: america is about the possible's -- the printable's
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founded in the declaration that preach liberty and equality. those are good values. host: fulsome, california. caller: good morning tenement. mr. buckley, i have been thinking about the fact that the 2000 bush v gore election and to the 2016 election between trump and hillary clinton both went for the republican candidate in lieu of the idea that there were really more majority democrat voters. that thinking, that one person gets one vote, has been on my mind lately. i discovered that california has wer 40 million people now, have two senators who represent us. state of vermont, and many others whose populations are less than one
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million, also have two senators. power of my vote is really diminished by virtue of the fact that i live in a very populous state. to take that thought one step further, -- i hope my sourcing is right, but i read recently that the impeachment vote was in favor of conviction by i think 47 senators, but they represented 169 million people. those who acquitted, voted to acquit trump, represented 151 million people. fewer. 18 million people i feel like the power of my vote, my one vote per person, is
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really diminished based on historical facts in the last 20 years. guest: you are absolutely right. your vote is diminished. what we are observing here in the constitution is a conflict between what i think is a basic norm of democracy on the one hand, versus the way the constitution. worked out with the electoral college. if that is your problem now, i can well imagine how you feel if, as i expect, donald trump is reelected in 2020 this year. maybe gets a few more seats on the supreme court. i think at that point, maybe people will say i want to respect democracy, and that means secession. host: connecticut, this is gary. good morning. caller: i wanted to speak to the notion of secession as a sleeper issue. ofulting from the failure
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reconstruction and the failure to properly punish the traitors who raised their hand against the constitution of the united states and the government of the united states. during reconstruction, slowly but surely, blacks were suppressed. jim crow laws came into being. southerners still refer to the war as the war of northern aggression. the lost cause. these people have been waiting to have a voice, and state -- and they now have one in the president. if you look to the issue of monuments, i do not know if you are aware of the colfax massacre in louisiana. there is a monument to three white racists who participated in the massacre of 150 black women and children, and it says "it is here where northern carpet backing ended."
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we have monuments to people who were murderers and unrepentant traitors. i think that's where this is going. i think davis should have been hung. not have a boulevard named after him. many of the monuments themselves are inappropriate. guest: you're right. the prosecution of jefferson davis was pulled in -- he spent two years in prison. i honestly don't think that if he had been prosecuted life would be much different today. -- if he had been convicted and to a term of imprisonment, how would that make your life or my life any different? you're right about reconstruction being a failed project. another 100 years before we begin to remedy that.
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on the other hand, it seems that if that is how you are guard half of americans, then you have to ask if you want to be in the same country as them. host: about five minutes left with frank brickley -- frank buckley. we will try to get to as many calls as we can. richard has been waiting in boulder, colorado. caller: hello. are you there? host: yes. caller: a couple comments on a few things on secession. is country basically -- it the minimum wage. if you look at the red states, go state-by-state, most of them are -- an hour, and the -- likeple states washington dc close to $15 an hour. colorado is $12 an hour. $13 in denver. [indiscernible]
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the separation of church and state we happen losing. in our constitution it is freedom of religion. in the mid-1950's, they decided to put on the dollar bills "in god we trust." god was never on the money until that period of being scared about communism. indidn't have the word god the pledge of allegiance until the 1950's. even though it was written by a socialist in the 1900s. host: what is your question? caller: two forms of thought. seceding inave been the change of minimum wage. guest: that is a good thing by my view. let them decide whatever they want.
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if they raise the wage too high and you have unemployment, maybe they will think better. the issues you're talking about are mostly issues that are within the province of state power. that is fine. in jackson, caller: i just wanted to make a statement concerning the issue of secession. caller fromarlier colorado, it is a complex issue. the globalists caused these things, just like the proprietors of those that come from england, especially in the southern state of south carolina. if you look at it, you will see that those -- the investor class was looking at it from an investment standpoint. notwithstanding the fact that they had to deal with the king of england concerning he wanted
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a part of the correction of the stamp act. it was the oligarchs that had caused these problems when they put the people in their situation. we got it today. it is the globalists that cause these problems. causedeople to be -- people to be against each other. guest: i am glad you got talking about george the third. if you do not like secession, what you think about 1776? that was secession. great just exited britain. the empire. host: are you hopeful? guest: i'm hopeful that we will not have a secession. even if it does not help my book sells. host: why? guest: i hope that americans will, at the end of the day say, this is nuts. we are divided over things we
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should be agreeing about. when we disagree, we should do so civilly and with moderation. i am hoping that happens. or two moreor one calls. john and washington, d.c. caller: good morning c-span2 my name is john. -- good morning c-span. i caught the tail end of the comments about confederate statues. callers calling inciting that. era. the civil war i am writing policy for the retainment of wages to black americans for the injury of slavery. we have been confused for a while. this country does not os reparations. compensation and benefits denied to individuals known to have been enslaved people, who just so happen to be part black, part native
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american, with slavery there was a lot of forced sexual contact going on. removing allg at of your confederate statues throughout this country because it represents treason, murder, slavery, and there is no part of your heritage -- legally -- that you have standing to keep that up when you fought against the united states of america. that the end of the public visual impact is over. even in our courts we have statues of john marshall, who owned slaves. that is unnecessary. we do not see a statue of adolf hitler in the plaza of a court. , saddam hussein, do you think we would direct statues of him?
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a frenchman defined nationalism as people who have the same kind of history, but also the same kind of amnesia. they have forgotten things. is messyhat america and requires compromise. something like less than total victor on one side or the other. that is exactly what compromises. i like messiness. messiness works. it is essential to keep the country together. host: in the last minute, you are a law school professor. what do your students think about this? guest: we haven't gotten into it. i don't want to keep those issues before them, but as much as possible if you are a law professor, students should not have a clue what your politics are. i try to keep it that way. host: do they read your books? guest: i hope.
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host: are you going to have a conversation at some point on this? guest: i have a class on the framers debates. we will talk about it. it is there. host: frank buckley is the author of the book "american secession: the looming threat of a national breakup." we always appreciate your time. guest: thank you. host: up next on "washington journal, co. the first stop on a focusing on d.c. area museums, highlighting collections that explore the american story on this president's day. we will be joined next by douglas bradburn, president and ceo of george washington's mount vernon peer he is going to be joining us from the mount vernon museum and education center. , live we take you there pictures on your screen now, we are going to show you part of a
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panel discussion that took place at mount vernon. book release last year. historian doug brinkley and that discussion talks about what he would say to george washington if he had the chance to meet him today. >> what would you what to say to george washington? welcome, mr. president. but would you say you liked about what he did or what he didn't do. >> i would say thank you for what you did during the american revolution. thank you for being general washington. thank you for stepping down from the presidency instead of turning it into a dictatorship or government of tierney. tyranny. i would thank him for the character he had, the integrity. the fact that if we did not have
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him, i do not know if we would have made it as the united states because he needed -- we needed a figure to believe in. person ino larger american history than george washington. my gratitude towards him. my cup runneth over. with that said, there is the dockside of slavery. they're trying all the time to understand that dark spot of being from virginia in that particular period of time. we have to watch so we don't get too much into -- we think everything today has to be done hundreds of years in a certain way. i think washington is a a andtion noel biography, dispense will man. i can't imagine we would've had a country without washington's battlefield heroics. if you understand military history, look at washington's
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campaign in new jersey in the hudson river. announcer: washington journal continues. host: from the grounds of washington's mount vernon. bradford,ned by doug the president and ceo of george washington's mount vernon. inst: this would have been host: however the duties he was about to step into defined at that moment when he was sworn in? guest: they were defined at all. the present did see brand-new institution.


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