tv Washington Journal 03242021 CSPAN March 24, 2021 6:59am-10:06am EDT
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we discuss the future of the senate will a buster. later, house rules committee chair jim mcgovern and ranking member tom cole talk about the recent hearing on the war powers act and the role of congress. ♪ host: once again, flags at the capitol in across the country are flying at half staff to remember the victims of a mass shooting, this time honoring the 10 killed monday in a boulder colorado supermarket by a single gunman with a high-powered weapon. it prompted president biden yesterday to call on congress to pass tougher federal gun legislation. good morning, it is wednesday, march 20 fourth, 2021. we will spend the first hour here talking about gun restrictions and whether or not you support new legislation. if you support restrictions, the line to call is (202) 748-8000.
if you oppose those measures, (202) 748-8001. for all gun owners, regardless of your views on that, (202) 748-8002. you can also send us a text, (202) 748-8003. on twitter, we are @cspanwj. and it's facebook.com/c-span. well we will update you as much as we can on that story, the aftermath in boulder, colorado and more on what's ahead on capitol hill. broadly, here's the usa today front page and the reporting on both stories. "it was just a terror," the main hot headline. -- the main headline. "a chaotic scene as panicked shoppers fled to sit -- safety. the victims ranged in age from 20 to 65 and included officer
eric talley, father of seven children, the first responder to what the police chief described as a barrage of 911 calls. the same story, -- calls." the same story has a look at what happened yesterday and he coincidentally scheduled senate judiciary hearing where they debated with new urgency on how to address gun violence in america after a string of mass shootings in the past week, including one that killed 10 people in colorado. dick durbin of illinois opened the hearing by calling gun violence in the united states a public health crisis and asked for a moment of action and real caring, saying that prayer leaders "have their important place, but we are senate leaders, what are we doing? we won't solve this crisis with prosecuting after funerals. we need prevention before shooting." underlining this is the house
passed bill, expanded background check. president biden yesterday before a trip to ohio for a number of reasons was that the white house yesterday and called for the passage of hr eight and tougher background checks. [video clip] >> as we are waiting for more information on the motive, the information on the shooter, the modifications to the weapons took place, i don't need to wait another minute, let alone in our , to take common sense steps to save lives in the future and to urge my colleagues in the house and senate to act. we can ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines in this country once again. we got that done when i was a senator. it passed. it was law for the longest time and it brought down these mass killings. we should do it again. we can close the loopholes in
the background check system, including the charleston loophole. it's one of the best tools we have right now to prevent gun violence. the senate should immediately pass, let me say it again, the united states senate, hope some are listening, should immediate leap pass the two house passed bills to close loopholes in the background check system. these are bills that receive votes from republicans and democrats in the house. this should not be a partisan issue. this is an american issue. it will save lives. american lives. we have to act. host: president biden yesterday at the white house, some of the response to the shooting from the national rifle association, the day of the shooting they tweeted that a well regulated militia was necessary to the security of a free state and the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not the infringed. senator kennedy of louisiana
yesterday, tweeting that the u.s. has idiot control problems, not gun-control problems, calling on congress to enforce existing laws. mark kelly, the husband of gabby giffords, saying that happened yesterday was a tragedy and that lives were lost through a senseless act of violence and that no community should have to experience what they are going through right now and we must pass common sense reforms. mike lee was at the hearing yesterday, it's almost never the wealthy or well-connected whose safety is impaired i well-connected gun-control laws. this was true when king charles the second prohibited commoners from owning guns and it remains true in america today and he said that we should prepacked to the constitutional rights of all law-abiding americans, including those in low income american -- communities to protect themselves and their families. we will read the language from their that has been passed in the house and yet to be considered by the senate, part
of the subject of the hearing yesterday as they look at the broader issue of gun violence. do you support or oppose additional federal gun regulation? (202) 748-8000 (202) 748-8000 (202) 748-8000 --(202) 748-8000 is a line if you support. tom, go ahead. caller: good morning. i support it. i can't believe the nra has more power than the 90% of americans who support gun control. these machine guns are designed for combat in war. i agree with john kennedy, who said we should focus on drunk drivers. ok, let's focus on drivers. you need a license, you need to purchase insurance and people who want to buy guns should maybe have insurance. this is insane, this is the only
country where more people get killed by mass murders and you have lunatics, crazy people, especially in the republican side. i disagree with the democrat, what's his name from west virginia, joe mansion. i think he votes like a republican. he needs to go. he's an obstacle. he's doing the opposite of gun control. he votes like a republican and he needs to be out. we need a democrat, a democrat, real democrat. joe mansion always votes 90% as a republican. thank you. host: on the oppose line, conrad, florida. caller: good morning. i oppose it because there is no
audit of our defense department. although that might be far-fetched to many, i believe it has allowed our brightest people to develop destructive devices which have percolated to the point where we are getting these guns of war. my mother was a german in world war ii. she was in medical school, they bombed her building and she went to work for the americans, married my dad and came back here. one of the first concepts that i ever understood as a little kid, because everybody in my neighborhood had bb guns, she told me that, that, that guns are only used for killing.
they were not an item that we should pride ourselves. i'm a veteran, disabled. and i feel that if they took the guns, they don't, you don't need guns. the only guns they ought to have his hunting guns and the only people who should have hunting guns are people with hunting license. host: the late -- legislation that has already passed in the house, two measures. one of which is hr eight. it would establish background checks for gun sales between private cars, prohibiting transfers unless a licensed gun dealer, manufacturer takes possession of the firearm and conducts a background check. --
host: again, those have passed in the house, similar measures passed in the house in previous sessions, but never taken up by the senate. whether they come to the senate floor still has to be seen. our question for you this morning, do you support or oppose gun legislation? peter, west palm beach, florida. go ahead. sorry, peter. didn't punch the line. peter, go ahead. caller: i'm against gun control. people, guns are very dangerous. i was a military man in the korean war and i've seen the gun and how it works, it's dangerous. we do not need that type of gun. we do need pistols in your home for protection, rifles for hunting, but to have these guns in the streets, walking in the
streets with an ar-15, whatever they call them now, they are very dangerous. they don't need them in this civil war, this civilization we have. let's face it, the fellow that just killed 10 people a week ago bought that gun when a judge in colorado dismissed the rule they had their that would not allow that type of gun in the street. he dismissed them and called it unconstitutional. that gave that man the right to go by that gun and killed 10 people. that is a disgrace to our country. it should be never allowed to have that type of gun in this country. thank you. host: dakota, who is calling from twin falls, idaho. good morning. caller: good morning, how you doing today? host: fine, thank you. caller: i am opposed to the new gun law.
i see it as like this, i see it whereas if the people need to be more evaluated, the kids, this generation, our generation, i'm generation, generation z. i believe that there needs to be more mental health evaluation of the kids nowadays. being able to understand what is wrong and what is right. being able to voice their opinion when they need to not be criticized of what is going on in the world. host: how do we do a better job background checks, assessing the mental state of somebody for purchasing a firearm? caller: you know how when someone goes to court for aggravated assault, they tell you to go to a mental health evaluation.
it's the same thing like that. you get, you get screened, you get screened better just like in mental health where yes, we fall through our >> right here and i understand that. honestly, i think we should be able to have somebody sitting in the same room and watch their behavior and the reaction of the questions that are seen and have notetaking there. host: this is notetaking from "the sun," " ahmad alissa had problems with family, and the suspect is believed to have had real issues with his family." they write in this story, the story says "law enforcement was seen entering his home, 800,000
dollar family home, miles away from where he is believed to have opened fire with an ar-15 style rifle. a young woman told reporters to please leave the property on tuesday. several law enforcement officers, some with jackets that said fbi, others saying cbi on the back, were going door to door in speaking with neighbors and family on tuesday evening." a couple of comments from social media. this tweet says that the number of those racist and mentally unbalanced using weapons for mass shooting is absurdly tiny compared to the number of responsible americans owning said weapons. sports, home protection, insurance against rogue government protected by the
second amendment. i support government control, says bill. our forefathers had no concept of these killing machines. a text, would republican senators change their minds of their families were mowed down in a storm? maybe not. this is insanity. you shouldn't be able to walk out of a gun store with military grade happens. the second amendment was written when the only guns were single shot muskets. the heads of the giffords law center to prevent gun violence, robin thomas, testified yesterday before the senate judiciary committee. let's listen to what she had to say. >> help explain why it is a warning sign when a prohibited person tries to buy a gun, fails the background check, and why timely notification of law enforcement might help save lives. >> thank you for that question and thank you for your leadership on the issue. it's so important that we understand that when someone fails a background check it's
because they have a felony conviction or an appropriate domestic violence conviction or mental health prohibition. these are situations where an individual present -- presents a risk to themselves and others and we want to make sure we are doing everything we can to keep guns away from those individuals. when someone fails that background check it often means they might be intending to do violence, particularly in the case of domestic violence when guns present incredibly high risk to the individuals involved in the relationships. by giving law enforcement the opportunity to follow up and make sure that the individual is not getting guns through other means, we can prevent harm. host: one of the other senators in that hearing yesterday, senator tom cotton of arkansas tweeted "what should we do to reduce gun violence? it's simple, support police, enforce laws, lockup dangerous
criminals, not create vague laws restricting the rights of law-abiding gun owners." like ted cruz, "democrats propose going after law-abiding citizens every time there is a shooting. let's not scapegoat innocent law-abiding citizens and target their constitutional rights." "it should not be easier to buy a gun than it is to cast a ballot. and from massachusetts, the congresswoman says "the penn debt -- the trauma of gun violence is endless and it's time we passed meaningful gun control legislation, background checks, gun licensing and so much more." dianne feinstein of california says that military style assault weapon don't belong on the streets. "i look forward to working with president biden again to prevent more tragedies like yesterday in boulder."
steve, gun owners in charleston, south carolina. go ahead. caller: first couple of things, this is the kind of discussion, it could just go on for hours and hours. so many pinnacles -- tentacles to this octopus. you have domestic violence situations where police go to somebody's house, they leave, they take the husband or wife to jail for a night. that situation is volatile and it does nothing to stop anybody from going back and shooting someone later. restraining orders don't work. it's hard to approve of or disapprove of legislation until we know more about it. i will tell you this, this kind of situation will create a situation where there is a rush on gun sales. to calm down that problem, when the government threatens to get into gun control legislation it creates a bigger rush. people want to get a weapon before the legislation hits.
it kind of hurts the cause of the because of her and. -- because of the government. the hypocrisy of the candidates will show because they don't want to incur the ire of the nra. when it comes to background checks, i'm squeaky clean, i will always pass. by the way, i sold the gun back in the 70's and to this day i have a handwritten bill of sale, i took down that serial number and if it ever shows up somewhere and they come back to me i can say here is the guy i sold it to. in south carolina we don't prohibit person-to-person sales. they say you know we won't stop people from selling personal property among themselves. high-capacity magazines? first you have to define what that is. i know people who own ar-15's and i go out to the range and it sounds like a war.
tell you the truth, i don't have the kind of money to spend on ammo to play on that. that's just personal feeling, i don't have a problem with those magazines. i hunt. if you taken ar-15 and remove that innocent looking stock and put another stock on it, it's just another sporting rifle. host: as a gun owner, do you think there is any way, early reports indicate that he bought this firearm march 16, just days before the shooting. early reports indicate that he had some serious certainly family issues, troubling issues potentially. not casting aspersions on something we don't know yet, but those are the early reports on the individual. is there any legislation or law possible that would prevent a firearms store or a gun store from selling somebody a weapon, knowing his condition? caller: how deep would end
investigation have to go? if he doesn't have a case on record with a physician -- and then you get into doctor-patient confidentiality, the government getting into a medical record. of course the way the system is now it's all computers and they get in there and it's sticky. it's got to be something on record somewhere already or with a doctor. by the way, this will discourage people who need to go to a doctor from maybe going to the doctor because they don't want their mental situation on a doctor's record. it's sticky, going to be tough. i just really, i don't think that's a real good answer if you have never had a record or if you have never gone to a doctor with the condition. host: one of the witnesses yesterday was amy swearer, she talked about the difficulty of gun background checks. here's what she said. [video clip]
>> normally when people bring up private background checks they are referencing the impact on public shootings and it's important to recognize that perhaps with one exception, these would not have played any meaningful role in preventing any mass public shooting in recent history. perhaps, it's questionable, the question -- the exception being the odessa shooting a couple of years ago but the real problem is that most of these mass shooters pass background checks to begin with. that there isn't this sort of intermediate option for when they exhibit area serious signs of being unstable and violent towards themselves and others. more so than background checks from prohibited persons, when we talk about mass public shootings the real issue is that far too many pass the background checks in the first place. host: and here's what some people are saying on our social media pages. facebook, alexander posted new
gun legislation, we should never surrender civil rights. rape and assaults skyrocketed in australia and england. don't believe the polls. most people don't support new restrictions. sam and georgia says he supports more gun control obviously needed and that as for the republicans crying about the constitution, what would they say if it was their family gunned down. stacy opposes, saying that the people person who used the gun and is the one to blame. tell me when criminals follow the law and if restrictions work, why do we make drugs and murder illegal? gun restrictions only hurt law-abiding citizens. john says ban assault weapons and bump stocks, weapons of war don't belong in the hands of civilians and jack supports gun
restrictions. davenport, good morning. caller: the political system is paralyzed. you can't trust the nra, legislators are paralyzed. what i think is needed is a stunt. there was a movie network where the main character set i'm mad as hell and i'm not going to take it anymore. the people themselves have to say they are not going to take it anymore. i have a modest proposal in the vein of jonathan swift, where he suggested that the irish eat their children. my modest proposal is change the national anthem to god bless america. the star-spangled banner talks about land of the free and home of the brave. we are not free.
we are poor, we are heavily indebted. we can't pay off our mortgages. we are not brave. host: all right, asheboro, north carolina, david opposes new laws. tell us why. caller: i know that these idiots are out there using the guns and ways they shouldn't be used. we honor that. 10 miles from me i have, they found about 40 pounds of fenton all and different guns that would add up to be a garbage can probably for the guns. they don't report guns and want to do nothing about the alcohol and the drugs?
so hey, what's the deal with the guns? i know that there are people out here who use them and misuse them and it's wrong, but you don't -- you know what, if y'all people would start preaching the word of god, the democrat is strong in this country folks. they know it, we know it. host: denver, gun owners line. bruce, good morning. caller: i wanted to say that i know someone from a different standpoint who says it doesn't happen but if you want to become say talking about background checks for guns, if you want to become a guardian or coguardian, you know what you have to do to do that? get a criminal background check. you have to submit it to that just to become a coguardian for one of your family members. that being said, i'm a gun owner and tend to agree on issues that
are not guns because you can go all the way back in if you look at the guy in the bell tower in texas, he used an automatic weapon, a regular hunting rifle and he killed like six people or something like that. so i do think that there should be gun background checks. not really sure how you can implement that. like the other caller said, it's kind of hard to gauge how some people are mentally handicapped or not. some people know how to work the system and probably would figure out ways of getting around that. that sort of thing. but i still actually believe that there should be some sort of background check to help prevent -- host: if i could keep you on the phone for a second, there's a piece from "the washington post," familiar story in colorado, "the state has witnessed a disproportionate share of attacks.
columbine and 99, the chucky cheese 1993 killing, and in 2012, the movie theater shooting at the century 16, 12 killed, 58 injured. in the aftermath, has the state itself toughened gun laws? caller: not that i know of and any time they tried, like they set up in boulder, nancy said they don't know whether or not the judge who lifted the ban, they said they still don't know if that would have prohibited the guy from getting a gun and if that had gone into effect. as far as them banning guns, as far as i know, i know people who own ar-15's, you know? they just take them to the range and shoot with them. far as i know they would never
go out and do with these other clowns are doing. before i go, i think a lot of it is just individual responsibility. i shot my first gun when i was seven. i was always taught that, you know, you, you, you handled the gun, keep it locked away, you never use it to do any of the things like that. it was purely recreational. i have been around that. i have been around people who own guns who are very responsible. when you talk about criminals, most of the people i see, going back to that l tower, all through the 80's, they always talk about the criminals, the criminals. most of the people who do these shootings don't have a criminal background and it's not like they just got released out of prison or anything like that.
these are people that you would probably see walking down the street and you would think that they were normal but there is something else wrong there. host: all right, bruce calling us from denver. the lead editorial headline from "the denver post," "chaos and death while grocery shopping doesn't have to be colorado's story." stephen, good morning morning. gun owner, do us a favor, mute the volume and go ahead with your comments. caller: got it. alright, i'm a gun owner. was given my first gun by my father when i was 10. in pennsylvania you are allowed to legally hunt at 12 and i just think it needs to be education. parents, if you are going to have guns in your household, you have to educate children on how to use them. only point them at something that you intend to kill. i think all of the gun regulations, trying to do more
of a background check, i think we need to do more education on owning weapons of more than, you know, than to try to have more gun control or gun legislation. i think it's just going to push people to buy more guns and the people that either guns probably don't have an education with them and i think it's going to hurt it host:. bradley -- it. host: bradley is on the line for -- from clear port, west virginia. caller: i'm sorry, i hit the wrong button. i'm really a gun owner and opposed. host: go ahead, that's fine. caller: i'm a vietnam veteran and again, i'm against this for the simple reason that you already have the background check and it just needs to be enforced a little better. too many people are sleeping through that paperwork and stuff. are we going to ban hammers and
axes? remember when the media previewed that, when the tv people got killed on that porch that time? then this guy got this truck from lowe's or home depot when they run in and killed all these people? and the guy put off the bomb at that marathon and killed all them people? they need to get the people that stood this. it takes a finger to put the gun off. not only that, if you look at, that guy has a foreign name. he's probably come in this country. i'm strictly against these people coming in the country. look at the border. we don't know what you are bringing in. i'm strictly against it. you have already got procedures in their. let's just follow them up and do a better job with it. host: on the support line this time, eleanor in virginia, go ahead. caller: thank you for accepting
my call. i really do feel it's very simple. someone talked about when the second amendment was formed by the founding fathers, i know that there have been updates to it and that there are some needed, but i also know that assault rifles and mass killings are done by people who have probably a very sad, negative agenda. and whether they are angry with their parents or their schools or whatever, if the assault rifle and the big guns were not allowed by just anyone, hunters and people who work in law enforcement, yes. but just anyone, anyone can go in and buy and assault rifle or multiple guns? we are supposed to be a democracy.
and we are supposed to be about the citizens. most of us don't want to even own a gun. but obviously most of us do. but to say that i'm going to buy and assault rifle is just wrong. and it seems very logical to me that the legislatures and the people who make the decisions would just use common sense. host: thanks for the call. 10 dead after the shooting monday in boulder, colorado, reportedly by one lone gunman. 10 dead, including a police officer. this is the rollcall headline reporting on that hearing yesterday. mass shootings reveal old divisions on proposals, few signs that senate will shake years of stalemate in at that hearing, richard blumenthal of connecticut said now is the time
for stricter legislation. [video clip] >> honor these victims with victim -- with action, real action, not fig leafs or the shadows that have been offered on the others. along with hope, thoughts, and prayers. thoughts and prayers cannot save the eight victims in atlanta or the 10 last night, including a brave police officer. thoughts and prayers cannot save the 24,000 people killed every year or the 26 black people killed every day, the eight children killed as a result of unsecured weapons every day. thoughts and prayers are not enough. and yet thoughts and prayers is all we heard from my colleagues on the other side. thoughts and prayers must lead
to action. host: talking about the shootings in colorado and whether it's time for new legislation. . this from alan in huntington, west virginia, saying it's fine for people to use firearms for hunting or protection in the home but if someone wants to carry a gun in public they should have to qualify and go through psychological test like police officers. i oppose. common sense tell me that if every -- that if every law abiding citizen had a gun, more people would get shot. more guns is the answer. larry in new jersey says that military grade weapons that are manufactured and sold in the country should be manufactured as the sellers responsibility
and then liability should be tightly restricted. in the south dakota, they said get the facts straight. if a person is determined to kill people, they will find a way. another tweet says defined restrictions. eat the guns if you want. if you want to kill someone not in self-defense, you and your second amended should cease to exist. brenda, gun owner, go ahead. caller: my husband was a deer hunter, doesn't hunt anymore, we never hurt anybody with a gun, but my brother killed my brother with a bow and arrow 95 years ago. you can kill somebody with anything. it's really sorry, i'm so sorry for these people, i know how i
felt when my brother killed my brother. i don't know what's going on with the world. i'm almost 60 years old and it's crazy. host: mary were -- mary lou, mckees rocks, pennsylvania. caller: it's been man that killed those 10 people in colorado is under fbi investigation. is that something of which you are aware and are you able to check that out? and in addition, if he was under fbi investigation, there certainly is a breakdown there. he should not have been able to purchase that gun. host: i don't know specifically about what you said about the fbi. here's the front page of "the washington times" this morning.
there headline on the suspect, " the suspect in the shooting is a self-described muslim who came here as a child, supported refugees with a history of losing his temper. ahmad alissa was charged tuesday with 10 counts of first-degree murder and his first court date is slated for thursday however authorities offered no motive with the seemingly random attack in the upscale community. "i know that there is an extensive investigation getting underway into his background. he has lived most of his life in the united states and beyond that we are in the early stages of the investigation. the arrest affidavit was that ahmad alissa purchased a pistol
on march 16 and his sister-in-law was seen playing with a gun that looked like a machine gun two days ago. -- ago." kim, opposing new gun legislation, good morning. caller: i enjoyed your program, thanks for having me on, i'm excited to speak. real quickly, i know you only have a few seconds i can really talk. host: take your time, that's fine. caller: ok, thank you. my biggest concern is what we have is a situation in this country where we have a lot of mentally ill people who want people to die. having said that, i don't like guns. in fact hate is a strong word but i hate guns. ok? however the reason i hate them is because i don't want to die from a gun, i don't want my children to die from a gun. my neighbors, my friends, innocent people. therefore, i want someone to have a gun to take care of a
mentally ill person coming after me. now i'm a woman in my 50's. when i was a teenager growing up we heard of, my friends and i heard about the manson murders. if one of them had had a gun that night? there are a lot of examples we can make. more than recently a lot. slavery, if slaves when they brought -- were brought to this country, if they had each had a gun, you know? it speaks for itself. i think what we have is a mental health problem in this country. they are going to find guns. they will make guns. welders know how to make them. i think what concerns me is not being able to defend your children anymore, save their
lives if someone breaks into your home, things like that. host: a previous caller reference to the fbi looking into the background. this is from "the new york times," with the suspect charged in the shooting, "the identity of the suspect was previously known to the fbi as he was linked to another individual under investigation by the bureau according to officials." dennis supports new gun laws, good morning. caller: i support gun regulation. the constitution, we have to remember, it was written when we have black powder guns. take a shot once and you have to reload. that's what you use for hunting. why can't we title guns? because guns have, guns have serial numbers. let's title them. this way we know who bought the gun, where they bought the gun,
and where they sold the gun. this is a part of what we should be doing. thank you. host: ok, a gun owner in malden, massachusetts. hello there. caller: i've had a gun license since i was 36. i'm 76 now. we've got more convictions in massachusetts because it's hard to get a pistol. for me to get a pistol license, i had to get three letters from three different people. i had my photos taken, i was fingerprinted. every time i renew my license every five years i'd give it three months before the license runs out because they do a check on me all the time to see if i've been up to anything in the last five years. we get enough restrictions. it's a lot of people who are
mental. in this country now. the video games not help. host: a caller from massachusetts, one of the states with least amount of gun owners per household. nicholas kristof had a piece several years ago about how to redo shootings in one of the charts looked at the ownership of guns and this was a few years ago when it came out, 32% of households had guns, massachusetts one of the least. states and red had gun deaths above the average gun deaths. if we take a look at that highest national average of guns per household, that's over 80% and that's wyoming. the hearing yesterday before the house judiciary committee talking about gun violence from senator blumenthal, members called for prayers after mass shootings, fine but not the
answer. ted cruz responded to that. let's take a listen. [video clip] >> i agree and i don't apologize for thoughts or prayer. i will lift people up and i believe in the power of prayer and the contempt of democrats for prayer is an odd thing. but i also agree that thoughts and prayers alone are not enough . we need action. today chairman grassley and i, and i would ask senate democrats, including our newer colleagues who just got here, not to participate again in the shameful filibuster that this body engaged in in 2013. let's target the bad guys, the felons, the fugitives, those with mental disease, let's not scapegoat innocent law-abiding citizens and let's not target their constitutional rights. host: discussion this morning on
gun laws. we have about 15 more minutes on this topic. a tweet here, saying we should treat gun licenses like a driver's license. first training and then at the time, practice to learn how to operate it safely. take a test and if you pass you get a license. this one says i live in rural maryland. we hear shooting all day and into the night. the fascination and mindless accumulation of weapons is irresponsible and unconstitutional. register and require annual checkups. this one says i'm her -- old enough to remember kindergartners being gunned down by an ar-15 and our country look to the other way. instead of screaming at each other, what are actual solutions? this one says let's do it now, get it done, america has had enough.
pearl, go ahead. pearl? caller: i agree with one of the previous callers. if you have a mental health problem in this country, as a psychologist i know that the vast majority of people with mental health issues are not the least dangerous and that we need to pass strict gun control. i think guns belong with the military and the police. the hunters can use hunting rifles. if people want to use pistols to practice at targets, they can belong to gun clubs and the guns can be locked up and left there. people who think that guns will protect them in their home are wrong. when people have a home invasion, they get terrified and the person they are more likely to shoot is the teenager sneaking in after going to a party they were not supposed to go to. it's not likely that a person who is not trained will use a gun effectively.
in the media for the last few years we have seen how the police who are trained kill the wrong people. they go and shoot people in their apartments because they think someone might be dangerous when they are not. of course, i'm not criticizing the police, they have a very difficult job. i'm just making the point that even people who are very highly trained make mistakes when their adrenaline is pumping and they are in a dangerous situation. regular citizens like myself have no place around the gun. we need strict background checks. people should only be buying hunting rifles and pistols they can be registered and used only with gun clubs. let's protect the police by not allowing citizens to have firearms. host: next up is steve, opposing new gun legislation. caller: good morning. host: good morning. caller: i was sitting there
listening to the people calling and saying that we are in a democracy and we should register these guns and i'm shocked, i'm shocked at what the media and the democrats really have done to the whole country. what right does the government have under the constitution that you have that can be taken away? some kind of information on this guy? maybe we should be looking at the. other things with the government they are supposedly working for. host: we played to the president's comments at the top of the program, the reporting from nbc, biden calling on congress to tighten gun laws.
"i'm going to use all the resources at my disposal to keep people safe." rose, staten island, supporting tougher gun laws. caller: thank you for having me on. in depth i know a lot about gun legislation that i support. if joe mansion, the only senator, wants to extort everything when it comes to gun control, we have to pull back the curtain on these senators. joe mansion, ted cruz, ron johnson. we all know that they are motivated by a third paycheck and we know where it comes from. looking back at the mueller report we have learned, the right to bear arms, the congressman, the most honorable person who led the second impeachment of donald trump, these are all hired hitmen.
on a whim killing people? they are hired. the guy from las vegas? they are hired hitmen from the kremlin. let's face it. the extortion of these senators, and we have to get d.c. as a state so that we have more senators these gun-control measures, they don't get a the guns. i don't believe in the new york safe act. that's the best way. people can only guns, but we have to put back the assault up and span. come on, the nra? that's why they don't have a license and anymore. host: gun owners line, texas, dalton, go ahead. caller: when the terrorists flew airplanes into the world trade center, they didn't ban
airplanes. and when they run cars over mass groups of people they don't and cars. people have a right to own a weapon and take care of themselves and defend themselves and these people saying that duns won't help you in your own home, when you get mugged inside of your own home, you will see the importance of why you should have had a gun to begin with. in california they did not have a registered on but they got turned loose and turned free because he ran to a sanctuary city and turned loose and things like that. it's like common sense wise, you go down and buy a gun and when they open up the borders the rest of the country is not secure about the capital is surrounded by what? ar-15's and assault rifles. to protect them. but then they will come take
ours? we got the training, the license, everything that we got, i just don't understand why they think that they can band just anything they want to because it fits the bill. how much money have they received from the nra and other gun owners for donations and contributions for their campaigns to get into the position where they can turn around and take our rights away? host: headlines here from "the new york times," "18 deaths in one week," "president biden and democrats on capitol hill called tuesday for fast action to enact stricter gun laws, a plea met with a blockade of opposition by republicans
people going about their day, living their lives. not bothering anybody. a police officer performing his duty with great courage and heroism. seven children, i understand. tragic, tragic. host: back to your calls, jim in pioneer, ohio. jim, hello there. caller: thanks for c-span. i called on the oppose line. i'm not really sure if i oppose or support it, but i would like to offer an alternative. education, the caller called in earlier about education. to own and assault weapon i think a person should have extra
education, including psychological evaluation. that smile turned proposal. host: next up is john. hello there, you support new gun legislation? caller: absolutely. you know who is behind this, right? the fbi. like down there at stoneman douglas high. they knew about this guy, right? they didn't do anything. ok? this man's a muslim. we didn't hear nothing like that. it was all white supremacy when the asians were shot in spas. now it's all about the gun, the gun owner. ok? the fbi knows what they are doing. they let these people out to commit these crimes because they want the guns band. the other thing is this, handguns are the leading killer of people.
not assault rifles. once you get rid of the assault rifle, the democrats will go right to the handgun. ok? there was a show on television this morning showing the new skid row as kensington. i'm not far from there. overdoses three times outweigh gun violence and they are handing out meals in philadelphia, the mayor down there is down there handing out needles. ok? you people all want to ban guns so that you can control people. host: comments on social media from miguel, "a good guy with a gun would save a bad guy with a gun but there was a cop in boulder with a gun and he lost his life, so that his failed logic." "if a mentally ill person drives a car and runs over 10 people, do you take away the drivers license from everyone else?
it's a distraction," says tim. "second amendment rights are not just citizens protecting us from tyrannical government. don't think that could happen? it could happen to any country." this one says we have to come -- quit comparing guns to hammers and axes. those are made to chop wood and build. guns are made to kill. dennis, good morning. caller: good morning, how are you? host: fine, thank you. caller: i always tell people that i want to give them a little bit of an education. three countries that have banned guns, germany, china, and north carolina. north korea. that's all of got to say. host: kathy, hello there.
caller: i have a story about a gun. it was a rifle. my neighbor had one. he had a ranch up in northern california. sonoma. he was playing around with the rifle and it went off. i was laying in bed in the room next to the house where he is. it went through his window, through my window. went across me where i was laying down and into the wall. if i had been sitting up it probably would have killed me. what happens if someone is not using their gun properly? i wonder if he still has his gun, you know? that's just a situation with a rifle. host: ron is next in maryland who opposes just a -- opposes new
legislation. caller: an ar-15 is a military style weapon. we have all kinds of weapons for hunting and stuff that. we don't need a military-style weapon. what do they want, nuclear weapons next? it makes no sense. host: next up, we will talk about the filibuster in the u.s. senate. our guest is molly roberts to talk about that with us and to talk about the war powers act and the congressional role with the chair and ranking member of the rules committee, jim mcgovern and tom cole. that is ahead. ♪ >> book tv on c-span2 has top nonfiction books and authors every weekend. saturday at 8:00 p.m., george
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c-span to viewers as a public service. >> "washington journal" continues. host: we are joined by molly reynolds with the brookings institution. we will look this morning at the current issue of the filibuster, the historical and current issue because of potential legislating -- potential legislation. guest: it is good to be here. host: let's start with the historical context. the filibuster is not in the constitution, right? how did it come about? guest: you are right, it is not divided for in the constitution. we get the filibuster as it is used today starting with a quirk of history. in 1806, the senate was trying to clean up its rulebook and make sure modern legislature had
a rulebook that was up to date. they noticed they had on the book a motion they were not using called the motion to move the previous question so they took it out. this made possible the ability later in senate's history for senators to pursue extended debate. this is not being used at the time. there is not the tradition of obstruction we see in the senate. over the course of the next half-century up to the civil war , we see this combination of the senate's procedural rulebook and political interest and tactics by senate -- my senators -- obstruction that starts to look like what we see today.
host: people think of the senate as an old body, but according to the filibuster, there is dynamic debate about it over the centuries. no more sir today with the legislation passed by the house along with gun legislation. that will be waiting action in descendant. it is present action for the senate. guest: absolutely. over the sweep of history, what we have seen with the filibuster and other forms of obstruction -- the senate is one side making use of these tools, the ways the rules and procedures allow senators to obstruct action. they use those tools until the other side gets sufficiently
frustrated about the way the other side is using them and preventing action. that is what has produced change . we have seen a number of changes over the course of history. until 1917, the senate did not have a way to cut off debates. what we have now in the form of the closure motion. in the early 20th century, we see that come about. since then we have seen some changes to the way the rule works that generally come out of frustration by one side around a particular issue they are not able to get done. host: molly reynolds has a great piece explaining the filibuster, where it came from. i want to focus on what it takes -- i want to focus on the chart
you have there on the cloture motion. that means closing of the debate. over the last 20 years or so, the number of cloture motion filed has skyrocketed. to bring that bill to a close, needing to 60 votes for closure. is that a reflection of the increased partisanship in the senate for the failure of the filibuster rules that exist in descendant to not be able to move legislation over? -- legislation forward? guest: that trend is the product of a couple of things. one is the increase partisanship and polarization we see in the senate. today's senate, it is more typical to get the support of 60 senators in favor of legislation.
if you are in the minority party , you have less of an incentive to work with the majority party as you did 40 years ago. that incentivize more minority party obstruction -- that incentivized more minority party obstruction and it made the cloture since her -- the cloture movement more prevalent. the weight it is used now is in some ways a way senate leaders manage the chamber. that is important because even when you're using cloture motions and using it to help set the senate's schedule, the clock and the way the cloture motion affects the calendar means it could take a long time to get done, even if you have enough votes to end debate and move to final passage.
even when you can get that super majority, relying on culture -- relying on the cloture motion slows the senate down. even with what we have seen with president biden's cabinet nominees, we have had cloture motions filed on those. even when those nominees ultimately get confirmed, they can have debate on those nominations ended even with a simple majority because those are not subject to the simple majority. it means having to rely on cloture to manage a filibuster filled senate slows down the senate's business. host: the way we do judicial nominees is different than a normal piece of legislation that would come for the senate from the house? guest: absolutely. that dates back to two changes
to the way the filibuster works. the first one was in 2013, executed by democrats and that was a reduction in the number of votes needed to end debates for lower court nominees and nominees to the executive. in 2017 to confirm neil gorsuch, republicans executed the same change for supreme court's nominees. those change the way that senate's rules work and were made with only 51 votes. there is a way the senate can make changes to the way the filibuster works with a simple majority. we refer to this as the so-called "nuclear option." the senate has a way it can do this. in the past decade or so we have seen this have a couple of times two great consequence. we look forward to possible changes to the filibuster for legislation, this idea of using
the nuclear option of pursuing a rule change -- or change the way the rules operate using just 51 votes is what we are talking about. host: we welcome your questions and comments for molly reynolds on the future of the filibuster in descendant. democrats it is 202-748-8001, republicans -- democrats it is 202-748-8000, republicans 202-748-8001, and others it is 202-748-8002 you can send us -- and you can send us a text at 202-748-8003. "registration awaits action by descendant" -- "legislation awaits action by the senate," and we talked about much of that legislation. what are the options for majority leader chuck schumer? guest: leader schumer has a few
options. number one is to try to determine if any of those proposals would get votes from republicans. he would need at least 10 republicans because the senate is split evenly 50-50. for a lot of those proposals, that is not a real possibility. we have seen lots of reporting and comments from republican senators. a second option available to leader schumer, and we saw this with the american rescue plan, democrats could pursue another round of reconciliation registration -- reconciliation legislation which allow them -- which allows them to pass legislation without threat of the luster.
they kid use that as a ashen they could use that as a vehicle -- they could use that as a vehicle. the third option would be to try to build support in his caucus for some kind of change for the senate rules. whether that is a full on elimination of the filibuster forsythia change in the way the senate operates that would increase the degree to which the opponents of the bill could speak on. there are a number of -- floating around. the question is is there unanimous support the changes in the way the senate works among the democrats? if there is not, leader schumer is forced back into the first two options until he can get
support from his senators for some kind of change. host: you are saying if he does this, he will do it on a piece by piece basis and not just we are ending the filibuster and here is how. guest: it is hard to say. generally when we have seen changes to the way the filibuster works, they are connected to particular policy areas. what has allowed senate majorities to make changes to the way the filibuster works is being united enough around a particular issue and thinking it is important enough to change the way the senate gets things done. there's a bill in the senate related to army merchant ship's
at the outbreak of world war i that is being obstructed and does president wilson who uses that issue to build support for a change in the way the senate works because he says it is an issue, a matter of national security. we are going to connect the policy and the procedure and that is how we will get change. we think about where we are now, where leader schumer is now, the big question becomes if the senate democrats really are feeling frustrated by senate republicans, what is the issue around which they feel so frustrated and are facing so much obstruction that causes them to break the dam on the filibuster and make the change? host: we do have some calls waiting and i want to get to that.
you write about it. why is the role of the parliamentarian important in descendant, in particular when it comes to the filibuster? guest: the senate parliamentarian, her job is to be the senate's nonpartisan referee on a whole number of issues. her job is important and goes back to what we were talking about with regards to budget reconciliation. it is not an unlimited tool. there are rules that put a box around what you can and cannot do through this legislative process. it is the parliamentarian who evaluates the various pieces of reconciliation bill, the way the
senate has used reconciliation in the past, what the rules on paper say, and gives advice to descendant on whether or not something is allowed or is not allowed to be done through that process. host: her most recent ruling was on the $50 an hour piece on the -- the $15 an hour piece on the most recent relief bill. guest: correct. that was art of the american rescue plan. she said it was not permissible under the reconciliation assess -- reconciliation process. that got removed from the bill that was passed. democrats are quite likely to pursue reconciliation aggressively in the rest of this calendar year and potentially into next calendar year. we will be hearing more about
the parliamentarian and her role in this process. host: let's hear from our viewers. first to alan in new york, democrats like. caller: thank you very much. i have a few points about this. depending on how much time we have, we can go into a few of them. this rule about culture -- about cloture has changed the rule about how many are needed to pass and has changed our democracy -- to pass something and has changed our democracy. the shelby county decision talked about ending section five of the voting rights act because supposedly the dignity of the southern states was offended. what does that say about the dignity of the northern states who even when you have a 50-50 vote have to get 20 to 40 million more people on their side to get 60% cloture?
you are talking about democrats having to get something like 50 million people on their side to have their way which is totally nondemocratic. the 16th amendment which created the income tax skipped over proportional taxation of the states by population and let the federal government reach out and attacks individuals based on their income. if that is the case, i don't see why that doesn't establish a right of individuals in those states to be proportionately represented in the body that the site thinks about taxation and spending. -- that decides things about taxation and spending. we have taxation without representation. we have a lack of civic
education as most people are being documented by the system that are being detriment it by the system -- are being detrimented by the system. most people don't know the math and the people in descendant should be talking -- the people in the senate should be talking about that. most people don't know they are being cheated. host: thank you for your input. guest: alan brought up a number of important points about the filibuster. he mentioned the supreme court decision in shelby county and the way that one of the issues that is at the center of this debate is the question of voting rights. if you look over the filibuster's history, especially in the middle part of the 20th century, the connections between the filibuster and preventing legislation on voting rights and civil rights aimed at advancing
racial progress is a close one. there are numerous examples of high-profile filibusters and not so high-profile filibusters that have been used to prevent that legislation. as we think about what kind of issues might drive democrats to make a change to the filibuster, some of these questions around voting rights are at the center of that. we saw last summer former president obama at john lewis's funeral saying if it takes eliminating the filibuster to pass legislation, then we should eliminate the filibuster. that is one high-profile individual connecting procedural change with a policy issue. another thing alan -- allen
mentioned is the fact that each state has two senators and how that affects the power of numerical minority in descendant. with the filibuster, it is the case that numerical minorities can prevent something that a majority of senators want to see happen. a number of different dynamics that are important to think about how the filibuster has been used and is being used now. host: rafael warnock ties in the filibuster and voting rights saying "it is a contradiction to say we must protect minority rights in the senate while refusing to protect one or two rights in our society."
from ohio, democrats like. -- democrats line. caller: good morning. i believe the filibuster needs to be eliminated -- if there are important issues going on, for example with the gun things and the mass shootings going on, i think that can unite the democrats to eliminate this thing. it seems like things keep happening. there are a lot of important issues the country needs to get on the right track like infrastructure, the economy, jobs, climate change and many more issues. too many things have been installed to get to 60 votes. the history of the filibuster is that it was used to get rid of
black power in the south when jim crow was starting. it is really a racist mechanism to have the southern wife -- southern white holding power. they are introducing voting restrictions in many state legislatures. i think it is so blatant that even independence -- independents and democrats, we can see what they are doing. i say it is the most lax of physical -- laxity sickle -- it is the most relaxed body in the country. host: the work awaiting descendant, sometimes the filibuster seems like a relic of the older senate that is no
longer really applicable to today. guest: yeah, one of the interesting things about the development of how the filibuster is being used is that it is tied to this question of how much to the senate have to do. in the early 1970's when the senate's workload was increasing, descendant had a more it needed to be doing, one of the responses to that on the part of the senate majority leader at the time was to rework the way the filibuster operated so that if something was being filibustered, the senate could set it aside and moved to something else as opposed to having to stay focused on the issue being filibustered. this was designed to be a change
that would help descendant manage its growing schedule. one consequence made it easier for folks trying to oppose something to stop it from happening. no longer did you have to go to the floor and get -- and gives extended speeches -- and give extended speeches or try to actively stop something. you could just signal host:host: -- -- host: "the very survival of our democratic republic is at stake. the filibuster, and the artifact of jim crow and a creature of white supremacy, a procedure that was said to encourage robust debates but has turned into governmental paralysis. it preserves the status quo that the afl has opposed as
undemocratic and rooted in racism." we will hear from david in ohio. welcome. caller: good morning to you. i have two items i would like to bring up. the filibuster maintains that the minority will rule and that is based on senators voting against something or for something. i would like to stand on the young lady's analysis of descendant. there are five states, alaska, wyoming, north dakota, and south dakota totaling 7 million people total. you have california and texas that have over 70 million people and they only have four senators. you have a filibuster to
maintain that the minority rules. have a great day. guest: again, bringing up this feature of the senate and apportionment in descendant and every state has two senators interacts with the rules and be procedure. it does mean that a set of senators who represent a numerical minority of the population can prevent things that a majority of senators are trying to get through. at the end of the day, the question always comes back to do you have the support of enough senators in the majority party for democrats to make a change for how descendant works? some of those senators are from
smaller states. figuring out how to build that coalition is a big challenge. host:host: we talked about judicial nominations. then asks this, why did democrats not use the minority dissent clause to prevent supreme court nominations? democrats seem to be oversimplifying. it seems like he knows the rulebook of the judiciary committee. guest: one thing that is important to remember about the judiciary committee or other committees that often there are ways to get around them in the case of nominations. for example, even if the nomination is stuck in committee , they can force it out of committee onto the floor . underlying those questions is a
question about how aggressively should members of the senate, individual senators and groups, use the rules to try to accomplish their goals? there is a lot of argument that says they should be as aggressive as possible. there is also an argument that says if you are aggressive sometimes that can make you seem is a difficult person to work with or impose costs on your colleagues in a way that makes them less likely to work with you in the future. we will see individual senators come up and say i'm going to use my procedural rights. we saw senator ron johnson insist the entire texts -- text of the american rescue plan be read on the floor which took many hours.
in general, senators are trying to balance how much to they want to leverage their own individual procedural rights with working in a body of 100 people were even in the presence of the filibuster in senate cooperation is important and tries to balance that. host: this is what mitch mcconnell had to say as he pointed out the potential downfall of ending the filibuster and how republicans might react. [video clip] >> for a long time, senators have recognized that the country is better off with some actual stability. both sides have understood there are no permanent majorities in american politics. a system that gives both sides a voice benefits everyone in the long term. that is why 33 of our democratic
colleagues said if you use ago when it is -- when they signed a joint letter insisting that rules that protect debate on legislation be preserved. that is what president biden believed throughout his long senate tenure. about 15 years ago, senator biden said killing the filibuster would be "an example of the arrogance of power." that was president biden. he restated his position during the campaign just last year. here is what my colleague, the democratic leader said in 2017. "the legislative filibuster is the most important distinction between descendant and the house. let's find a way to further
protect the 60 vote rule for legislation. -- for legislation." that was the democratic leader in 2017. democrats did not just spend the last four years supporting the filibuster, they spent four years using it. host: molly reynolds, the minority leader pointing out that the democrats used it when he was in control of the senate using history to talk about the ever-changing rules of the u.s. senate, particularly regarding the filibuster. guest: thinking back over the history of the filibuster, it is a story of when the party is in the minority -- in the majority is frustrated by minority obstruction. when we see majority -- of the minority party taking my dirty
-- party taking the majority, we see them taking that position stopping -- wanting to stop the minority party. democrats held control of washington, certainly of the congress and that was the expectation. folks thought democrats would maintain that majority and that shaped the way the senate and congress operated. about 1980, we see more changes in party control that helped change the incentives that individual members have two use things like the filibuster and reduce the incentive to cooperate with the other side lest you give the other side things they can point to for reasons you should vote for them. that is a piece of historical
context about how the filibuster has been used. host: our guest is a graduate of smith college and her doctorate from the university of michigan. she is at the brookings institution and oversees the maintenance of the vital statistics on congress. more because here. flagstaff, arizona is next. tom on a republican line. caller: i appreciate having the opportunity to be here. i usually watch all the videos later in the day. i want to say that i believe that this concept of eliminating the filibuster is a raw power grab on behalf of democrats. i wanted to say that we are a federalist republic, we are not a true democracy and this is what distinguishes us from other countries.
it is one of the reasons i believe we are the greatest country on the face of the earth. it is a raw power grab when the democrats and other progressives refer to the filibuster as a vestige of jim crow, what they are doing is injecting race and identity politics into the discussion which is what they do in all circumstances. if their policies need to stand on their own two feet, they would not need to do so so they need to inject emotionalism into every topic they put forth. i think this would be a tremendously destabilizing event for the entire country. i think it could even spell the beginning of the end for our country. when i say that i think some states might get so upset that they are getting bullied by
progressives and democrats, most of whom live in new york and california and massachusetts, for example, that some states might refuse to cooperate with the federal government. i made a quick list of a couple of states that need federal government far less than the federal government needs them and those include alaska, wyoming, north dakota, and texas. any of those states could stand on their own two feet and support themselves entirely. there are democratic states that are overly reliant on the federal government. the best thing that could happen for our country in the next century is if the u.s. congress would rotate through all 50 state capitals over the next century and many people could get out of washington, d.c. and see what is going on.
what is going on there is not what is happening throughout the rest of the country and in rural. parts of the country. host: -- rural parts of the country. guest: rule changes -- host: rule changes on the filibuster, have thus -- have those had a broader impact on society? guest: one thing to remember about the filibuster is that the threshold descendant needs to get to to move to final passage is incredibly important but it is not magic. it won't force agreement among senators where agreement does not exist. when we think about what might happen if the rules were changed , we have to ask not just what is out there being stopped by the filibuster, but what is
being stopped -- but also there are democrats who would agree on the same proposal that a majority of house democrats would approve. it is hard to know how many there are or what they would look like. to the caller's point about changing the senate rules would be destabilizing, it is important to remember there are lots of pieces of legislation that would likely pass. it is hard to know what they are and what they would look like. host: this is george from st. louis, missouri. independent line. caller: to get rid of the filibuster entirely could be
destabilizing in that you could have a situation where the change of administration and everything slips and he resend all the laws of the previous administration. there could be instability. a majority should rule more than it does. i would favor a weakening of the filibuster without totally eliminating it. you could put the burden on the minority to stop something whereas the burden is on the majority to get those 60 votes. at one time in the past, you had to get two thirds of the senators that were present at the time to pass something which put more burden on the minority
that have people there. i don't know enough to know exactly what should be changed. i just feel like the filibuster should be weakened so that more of a burden is on the minority. host: president biden in an interview called for a "talking filibuster." a user asked this question, should be rules changed to require a talking filibuster? first of all, what is a talking filibuster and would it prevent other senate business? guest: those are great questions from lynn and the caller raises important issues under the umbrella of what would it change versus what it would actually
look like. to lynn's question about a talking filibuster, the devil is always in the details. exactly what it would look like might be hard to know. in general, it would involve instead of senators being able to signal silently they would be objecting to something, you have to go to the floor and speak. lynn race is one of the most important -- lynn raises one of the most important questions of that model which is if the senate is spending time on one thing, it makes it harder to spend time on other things. the underlying logic be kind the talking -- logic behind the talking filibuster is that if you increase the cost to the minority and you say you have to show up and do this, that would
make them less likely to engage in the filibuster. that strategy is not costless for the majority both in terms of what descendant is spending time on, but it is also the case that senators in the majority party would themselves likely have to show up on the senate floor frequently in the course of the conduct of minority party filibuster, certainly if the minority was trying to make life hard for them a dorky -- for the majority. this notion of making some changes to the way the filibuster works are designed to make it harder to do, harder for obstructing. . senators. whether that is changing the way the math is calculated from a share of the senators who are chosen and sworn to a share of the senators who are present and
voting and actually there. that is one possibility. the goal of all of those reforms is to increase the cost to those doing the obstruction and engaging in the obstruction. even when that happens, that does not mean there are not the costs the majority also has to bear in order to get from a to z on a legislation. host: this is henry calling from fort pierce, florida. caller: this young lady seems to talk about the filibuster as if it is in democracy. our forefathers stood up and said this is what we want. we don't want to of the majority. this young lady is arguing for tyranny of the majority. she is a little young, she has
not been around a while. in about 30 years she might speak a little differently. when you live more than 30 or 60 years, you actually have an experience of people. when the democrats don't have their way, they cannot argue intelligent arguments. it is always emotions. let's get this cumbersome people who don't think our way out of our way. host: molly reynolds, if you would care to respond, go ahead. guest: when we think about the connection of the filibuster and the founding, the filibuster is not provided for in the constitution. it was not imagined as part of
the development of the senate. they did intend for the senate to be different from the house. we talked about each state having two senators as opposed to election based on population in the house. there are important differences between the two. when folks talk about eliminating the filibuster, they say that would turn the senate into the house. i think those arguments are overblown. there are other important characteristics of the, including longer terms that make it a different institution than the way the house is. the way that we imagine and see senate filibuster today is light years away from what the
founders would have imagined for a particular legislative rule. guest: -- host: is this debate continues over the filibuster, a great resource is workings.edu -- brookings.edu and a piece molly reynolds wrote there. coming ahead, we will hear what is your top public policy issue. for democrats it is 202-748-8001 , for republicans 202-748-8002, all others it is 202-748-8002. go ahead and call in and we will get your comments after the brick. ♪ >> janet yellen and jerome powell testify on the cares fact
relief package. >> weeknights this month we are featuring american history tv programs as a preview of what is available every weekend on c-span three. tonight, author of "costume" talks about the personal motivations of professionals and hobbyists. using examples from colonial williamsburg and battle reenactments, he explores how history is explored through custom. enjoy american tv every weekend on c-span3 -- american history tv every weekend on c-span3. >> on wednesday, president biden has his first news conference since taking office -- on
thursday, president biden has his first news conference since taking office. watch live on c-span. host: we want to get your comments about your top policy issues. democrats call in at 202-748-8000, republicans at 202-748-8001, and all others at 202-748-8002. send us a text if you would like at 202-748-8003. a couple of democratic senators who threatened to withhold support for either nominees, this is the latest. senators back off the valve -- off the valve. b --ack off -- back off the
vow to withhold support of by the nominees. tammy duckworth and mary her mono had lashed out earlier in the day at the lack of asian-american and pacific islander representation in biden's cabinet. they would withhold nominees into the issue is addressed. senator duckworth said she would not stand in the way of qualified nominees who are a api leaders -- aapi leaders. this is from axios, they write a number of senior biden officials and members of congress are taking a trip today to a refugee facility along the u.s.-mexico border.
it comes as pressure mounts on president biden to visit himself amid a search of unaccompanied children and migrant families crossing into the u.s. your top public policy issue, we will hear from amelia in georgia. caller: right now it is the state of the country. i don't know why the republicans keep insisting the democrats want to grab power when the republicans have been in the majority since 2010. since then they have not allowed anything to pass. people need to use critical thinking skills and pay attention to what is going on around them. they have not passed any legislation, any significant bills for years. anything people have, social security and medicare, it was
done by democrats. one thing that needs to pass is the infrastructure. they don't want that done. they don't want the rural areas to have wi-fi internet, that way people will realize what is going on. they want to keep radio stations where all the talk about is situations that scare the people and let them know somebody is trying to take away from them. that is why they will never pass that. you can watch it, i can guarantee you that from now on everything will be no -- everything will be no -- will be known. if it is good for the people, they will not before it. host: this is brandon in pennsylvania, good morning.
caller: i am originally from the state of alabama. one of my favorite was to go to washington. [indiscernible] he advocated for policy that was in favor -- then i realized that was not real life. the republican party has used the filibuster [indiscernible] host: brandon, i hate to let you go. you are cutting in and out on the phone.
thank you for your call in. pat on the democrats line. caller: have you ever had a racial topic -- ted cruz should not be talking about nobody, and especially not about guns. host: here is reporting from bloomberg about yesterday's hearing. janet yellen pledges to work with congress on ways to ease the $10,000 cap on state and local tax elections that has been a focus for new york and new jersey lawmakers. we are going to hear again from the treasury secretary and the fed chair jay powell on the economy.
they will also be talking about the cares package. they will be before the senate banking committee this morning at 10:00 a.m. also, a hearing on campaign and voting rights ethics with eric holder and michigan's senate of state -- secretary of state, janet lawson. that will be on c-span3. in the afternoon, a hearing on sexual assault in the military. a subcommittee hears from survivors of sexual assault in the military and survivor advocates. that is a 2:30 eastern on c-span. to illinois, we hear from stephen, independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. the senate needs to pass the john lewis voting rights bill. there are several state
legislatures that are radically attempting to limit people's access to vote. georgia is the most egregious example where there are long lines in a voting place, people are not allowed to take sandwiches or water to people standing in line. the georgia law would allow the legislature after a further conducted election to decide if they did not like the results and simply reverse the results, as trump tried to persuade several legislatures after he lost, pennsylvania, wisconsin, michigan, and georgia. in regards to the filibuster, if schumer and the democrats were smart, they would simply push to limit the filibuster in certain
legislative cases instead of uniformly. thank you very much for your time. host: to our democrats line, this is chris in new york. caller: good morning. my call is for making the republicans admit that when mitt romney said corporations are people, the democrats just gave the corporations a conscience. they are people. now the corporations are starting to care about what the government is doing. i want to think the republicans -- thank the republicans for
making corporations actual people. host: usps's chief's plan for the postal service is a slower mail and price hikes. louis dejoy unveiled the biggest rollback any generation, part of a plan that includes longer delivery windows, produced post office hours, and higher post prices -- higher postage prices. you are calling with your top policy issue. james, tell us yours. caller: president, they kept saying cages. the national media, msnbc, cbs, abc covered it. they were all on trump. now they are quiet. the national media's
hypocrisy. -- the national media's hypocrisy. the national taxpayers will pay for it. the taxpayers are going to pay. trump had it right keeping them in mexico. mexico's government said trump had it right. all i have to say is this is a huge crisis at the border, the democrats want votes, and it's going to cost the american citizens money, thank you. host: reporting about the problem at the border, this is the hill and their headline " biden administration releases images of migrant facilities at the border. the administration releasing videos into texas facilities housing children amid more pressure for transparency at the federal centers. a customs and border patrol official told the hill the agency continues to ask
-- discourage external visitors including the press at facilities housing migrant children. cbp released two videos and 42 images of the facilities in an effort to balance the need for public transparency and accountability. we will take your top public policy by text. (202) 748-8003. this is joe in fayetteville, north carolina saying "when is congress and the senate going to fix social security? people turning 60 in 2020 will see a cut in social security when they claim it if there is still social security." rachel in gaithersburg, maryland "the most important public policy is the restoration of voting rights. the senate must pass the bill passed by the house, the gop is trying to disenfranchise millions. our democracy is broken and this is a good place to start fixing it." we hear from kenny in north
carolina on our democrats line. caller: yes, thank you for c-span, i love you. the only thing is, great that you show both sides, but we need someone out there fact checking both sides. when are people going to start believing our politicians over the years? eisenhower's said the military industrial complex will dismantle democracy. well. what did they say when reagan was in there? wasn't it newt gingrich that said we want to dismantle everything fdr put in? even social security, medicare, right down to the child labor laws. the way to do that is to bankrupt the system. they have done it for 40 years,
and it to do things we have to change before working americans even have any say anymore, supply-side economics, they have convinced everybody that's the way it has always been. even warren buffett said, used to, when the stock market rose, it floated all boats. that don't happen anymore. the reason is citizens united. when they can give unlimited amounts of secret money we are not a democracy. guess what? the other side hates it when the democrats be them at their own game. the last comment is, what did we fight world war ii over? mussolini said "if you can't slide a cigarette paper between a government and the corporations, you are a fascist."
don't call it fascism, call it corporatism,, because the corporations own the government and that's what we've got now. that's why they won't do anything about supply-side economics, because we have been bought. you look at all these other countries that don't let companies come in, here in north carolina i have heard that the chinese government owns 40% of the hog industry. host: one of the other hearings we covered yesterday on the c-span network, the senate health subcommittee hearing on prescription drug prices, this is the headline on that hearing. "senator sanders making plans to push prescription drug reform through reconciliation. here is senator sanders at that hearing. sen. sanders: a year and a half ago i took a trip from detroit, michigan into ontario with a number of full's from the
midwest who are diabetic. we purchased insulin, the same product made by the same company , for 1/10 of the price, 10% of the price. somebody jump in, either dr., why is it that in canada, telus simply, you can purchase the same exact widely used product for 1/10 of the price it costs in the united states? dr. persaud: two reasons, first , canadian medicines have prices regulated, because there is not going to be competition if you want to pay a reasonable price for products you have to regulate the prices, that is for
other high income countries not just canada. sen. sanders: let me interrupt you, i apologize. is there as any other country on earth that does not regulate the price of drugs or allow companies to charge any price they want? does any other country other than the united states allow that? dr. kesselheim: -- dr persaud: no. sen. sanders: do you want to jump in? dr. kesselheim: there is no other country that does that. we are unique in the world and allowing the pharmaceutical company to charge whatever price they want. as a result the only type of -- the only intervention in the u.s. market that lowers prices is the availability of interchangeable generics which, fortunately for insulin, -- unfortunately for insulin, we don't have any. there is no market pressure, prices have not fallen, there is no government pressure on
pharmaceutical companies to lower their prices to the same extent as in canada. host: as we talk about your top public policy issues. "trial data may be outdated hours after covid-19 collaborators astrazeneca and oxford university released data on large clinical trial. federal officials say information may have been missing. the pair touted their results in a news conference saying that 22 would present seven -- prevent 79 percent of symptomatic cases of covid-19 and 100% of all severe cases and hospitalizations. a few minutes after midnight the federal government issued its own release saying that data may have been based on outdated information. the independent group called the data safety monitoring board expressed concerns that astrazeneca may have included outdated information from the trial which may have provided an incomplete view of the efficacy
data. to allen in wisconsin on the independent line. caller: hey, c-span. my number one issue is student loans. people don't realize, it's just being reported now that 19 states in this country, the citizens of those states owe more than the entire state budget in student loan debt. that is just obscene, and i don't know what to say about it. i will give you one example. the state of georgia, their state budget is $48 billion. that's a lot of money. the people of georgia of $81 billion in student loan debt. most of that debt is owed to the federal government. this is a big government monstrosity. host: does it affect you personally? do you have student loan debt? caller: oh yeah i do.
it is disgusting what the power that the federal government has been given. these loans have been stripped of bankruptcy protections, of statutes of limitations. these things have become weaponized against the citizens. no good conservative who typically opposes bankruptcy legislation for student loans, no true conservative should be behind this program, it's disgusting. there was a hearing yesterday in the judiciary committee, it was scheduled, and they were going to discuss returning bankruptcy protections to student loans. that hearing got postponed because of the shooting in atlanta last week. from what i can tell, they can just want to shelve -- they just want to shelve this issue and they will use any opportunity to delay and do nothing. there are 55 million people, borrowers and cosigners, in the
country who are being crushed by this big government debt. i can only hope some republicans are starting to take another look at this problem. host: next up is mike from rockford, illinois. caller: good morning. the top issue is the emerging of the real issues we have. the immigrants on the border, i feel -- these shootings like the police officer yesterday. i watch the footage. it looks staged to me. distractions after distractions from our real issues as we have. 25,000 troops in our capital and they won't tell our congressmen why they aren't leaving. this is a major problem. host: you think that shooting in boulder, colorado was staged? caller: i feel in the footage i was being
shown, they walked the guy through the parking lot without a shirt after the incident. none of the public footage is real to me. i believe this is a diversion from real facts of china with the virus and now they can't get supplies in. i think it is an act of war. we had russia hack us, over 250 of our high-security platforms they got into for nine months in inland -- host: walter in meridian, mississippi on the republican line. caller: yes, i think our biggest concern is the news media. especially when you've got a whole side in the democrats party, i think something needs to be done about that. i don't know what can be done, but something needs to be done. they are only giving news to one side of the problem.
i think it's going destroy this country. host: which news channels do you typically watch, walter? we lost him, we will go to kathy in gig harbor, washington. independent line. caller: i wanted to say -- i have two issues. one issue is the sport hunting going on with the endangered wolves being taken off of the endangered list, the montana governor, wisconsin, the judge there. it has gotten really bad. the correlation is that it's between race and abuse -- rape and abuse and they are not being checked. dr. biden, i sincerely hope you do something about this because women are being hurt area the second -- are being hurt. the second issue is the medical pricing. i cannot get strips or sticks, even though i don't have diabetes, i have another unusual
disease and my insurance won't cover it. for me the biggest issue is getting the animals put back on the endangered list. it's disgusting what is going on and it seems to be more in red states and there is over 40% of all the cases, they are showing there has either been sexual abuse or it's been violent abuse stemming from these hunts. they are not setting up like rape relief or any kind of help for these people for repercussions from hunting. host: some comments on social media. income inequality is the core root of our issues as a nation. dave says "campaign finance reform, it is the root cause of our dysfunction." this one says "debt, biden is on track to destroy america, our kids are paying $28 trillion in
debt, or $224,000 per taxpayer, none of these big spending relief those are worth it." "covid-19 variants are still spreading, usa needs monthly pandemic checks and shutdowns, numbers are not going in the right directions." this one says "top issue is medicare for all." the flag at half staff at the u.s. capitol in memory of and in honor of the killed in the shooting in boulder, toronto on monday. john is in bradenton, florida on the republican line. caller: i got a couple issues real quick. i think my top issue would be the division of the people of this country based on the color of their skin. host: you are still on, go ahead. caller: this government, they say they want unity, but they
are all about dividing the people and like the other gentleman said it's the media that's doing the were, as we saw cities in this country burning down all summer long, that was not due to circumstance, that was due to the story that the media is putting in people's heads. my other issue is these bills they keep passing with all this wasteful spending and all this money that just gets misappropriated. that's the bottom line. the people in power are stealing money from the people and these people in power, this is a sinking ship. that's all i have to say. host: go to wilhelm in lawrenceburg, missouri. republican caller. caller:. i have a way to get rid of republicans. why not take out the republican name and put in their democratic
national committee. that will do the trick, because then you are working on both sides of the aisle. i hope they are working both sides of the aisle, democrat and democrat. host: coming up next on washington journal we will hear from both sides of the aisle. we talked to the chair and ranking member of the house rules committee about the war powers and the hearing they had in their efforts to reassert congress's role in the process. our guests jim mcgovern and tom cole, that's next. ♪ >> here's a look at our live coverage today. at 10:00 a.m. eastern on c-span, treasury secretary janet allen and to reserve chair jerome powell testify before the senate banking committee about the economy in federal response to the pandemic.
and 2:30 a senate armed services subcommittee holds a hearing on sexual assault in the military. the senate is back at 10:30 to work on nominations for assistant health and human services secretary and deputy energy secretary. a senate committee meets to review potential changes to campaign finance and election law with former attorney general eric holder and michigan secretary of state jocelyn benson. there is more live coverage streaming on our website. at 9:30 house homeland security subcommittee looks at how state and local officials are responding to domestic terrorism threats. at 10:00 a.m. a senate subcommittee is looking at how the federal government is preparing aunt 2:30 the senate small business committee reviews the status of several covid-19 relief programs including the
paycheck protection loan program. that is all live at c-span.org. >> washington journal continues. host: we are joined by the chair and ranking member of the rules committee, representative jim mcgovern from massachusetts, and also from oklahoma, representative tom cole. congressman, thank you for joining us. both: thank you. host: an important hearing on the 1973 war powers are you chairman mcgovern, tell us about the war powers act -- on the 1973 war powers. chairman mcgovern, tell us about the war powers and why you are taking up revision. rep. mcgovern: lyndon johnson said it's easy to get into war, it's hard as hell to get out of war. over the years both democratic and republican presidents have initiated military intervention,
military action involving our troops without appropriate consultation with congress, without getting congressional approval. basically usurping congressional power when it comes to the issue of war. the war powers which was passed over 50 years ago was supposed to balance things out and it hasn't. presidents find ways to get around it. we had a hearing in the rules committee to examine how we can do things better, and we talked about updating the war powers. it was an important committee hearing, it was a bipartisan committee hearing. i'm fortunate to be able to serve with my ranking member who shares many of my concerns about this issue and the hope is to establish a record and perhaps move forward legislatively to fix it. host: the war powers act passed
nearly 50 years ago in the waning years of the vietnam war which says in part the constitutional powers of the president as commander-in-chief to introduce armed forces into hostilities or situations where imminent involved in hostilities is clearly indicated by the circumstances or exercised only when pursuant to declaration of war or twos for the lithic statutory authorization or national emergencies created by an attack upon the u.s., its territories, or possessions, or armed forces. we seem to be operating under another of those authorizations, those authorizations of use of military force. where are we in terms of being able to have troops overseas? what are we operating under? rep. cole: the two most important authorizations are the 2001 authorization for the use of force which was a congressional response to 9/11.
secondly the 2002 aumf which ok'd us going into iraq. there have been other measures since then but those two have provided the justification for the executive branch to get us involved in innumerable conflicts in a variety of areas. when they did not suffice, let's take libya in 2013, whenever it was, and that particular case, i think the obama administration stretched to the nato alliance and got us involved in libya as part of nato. there have been endlessly creative ways for the executive branch to get us into wars, and congress whether it agreed or not would be stuck with or dealing with it afterwards. host: certainly over the years
since the beginning of the use of the aumf efforts have been made on the republican and democratic sides to end those and they have fallen short. why is that? rep. cole: because it's hard to get a majority vote with us. i think part of the problem here is that the executive branch has tried to usurp power. the other part of the problem is that, -- rep. mcgovern: congress has not stood up for its constitutional prerogatives. for a lot of members of congress i think this is true on both sides, they prefer not to vote on these issues and preferred not to debate these issues. it's easy to stand on the sidelines while the president launches a military incursion somewhere and cheer it on if it's going well and criticize him if it's not going well. you don't have to vote or
debate. that is not courage. our men and women who serve in our armed forces demonstrate courage every day. when congress does not do its job and debate these issues and hold the president's feet for the fire that is moral cowardice. what we are saying is, we all have responsibilities here, if you go to war that's a big deal. we are putting the lives of our constituents in harm's way. we ought to at least debate these issues and go on record as voting one way or another. host: a release from your office ahead of the hearing with the title of bipartisan coalition of lawmakers introduced legislation to introduce -- to reduce war -- your proposed legislation would "reassert congress's constitutional roles. how did this come about between you and chair mcgovern in terms
of developing this legislation, and how does this legislation see congress reasserting that role? rep. cole: i want to give the chairman a lot of credit. he's been consistent on this issue throughout the time i've known him. we have been on the rules committee quite a few years together. it didn't matter if it was the obama administration or the bush administration or the trump administration. he has consistently been here. i think he has unique credibility on the issue. part of the problem is the two sides in congress want to support their president even when they disagree with them. and jim was certainly supportive of president obama and is supportive of president biden. he has been insistent on this idea that if we are going to commit troops there needs to be a congressional vote on that. and i tip my hat to him and applaud him for that. we have worked on this a variety of times over the years trying
to nudge congress towards this and as he pointed out in the hearing we have a unique opportunity because the biden administration is interested in looking at new -- at revisiting this issue. we have to have -- we have not had an executive in either party in the past that has wanted to do that and it has been suggested that's because president biden when he was senator biden wrestled with the same kind of problems that our colleagues on both sides of the isle are dealing with on a regular basis. host: want to boko me out -- want to welcome our viewers and listeners. (202) 748-8000 is the democrats line. (202) 748-8001 for. (202) 748-8002 for independents and others. representative mcgovern, if you want to expand on what that legislation would do and how it would change the war powers as it currently exists.
rep. mcgovern: the point of the hearing is to tighten things up and require boats and required the necessary checks and balances be put into place. we are going to war, we are engaged in military today and over the years that are being justified from an authorization past 20 years ago. i was in congress when we voted on the authorization of the use of military force in afghanistan. every member of congress democrat
or republican with the exception of congresswoman barbara lee voted for that. i thought in the aftermath of 9/11 it was appropriate to go after those who were responsible for the terrible tragedy that took lace on our homeland. today, could i go back and change that vote, i probably would, because that authorization has been used to justify a continued involvement
in afghanistan that has changed and changed and been used to justify military operations other countries as well. i voted against the authorization for the use of military force in iraq because i was concerned about how these open ended aumfs would be used for a president to do whatever they wanted to do. i was concerned under democratic presidents as well as republican presidents and we may have finally caught lightning in a bottle in that we have bipartisan concern in
congress, we have a president now who has indicated that it is open to reviewing some of these things. let's pursue this and see whether we can do this better. i hope that's what happens. host: in terms of being open to changes the administration was barely a month old when they were faced with the situation in syria with airstrike in syria that was launched in late
february. under what authority was that airstrike launched? rep. cole: the president used his article to powers which was a stretch i thought. he did not use the existing aumf s as justification. i think this is another reason why we need to revisit the war powers resolution. presidents, and i love joe biden and i expect that he will be a great president, but i want to make sure that when it comes to issues of war that we are getting it right. that we don't prematurely, and not unnecessarily get into a military conflict, that there is the approval of congress and the debate. these are constituents lives. this is not just some arcane academic discussion. people die in these wars. we spend trillions.
i heard somebody complaining about the cost of the american rescue package when i was waiting to get on. we spend trillions in afghanistan. these are issues that deserve our attention and deserve thoughtful debate. we ought to make sure if we are going to commit american forces that it is absolutely necessary that it has been debated and that congress is on record as voting to authorize that use of orders. >> can i make a quick response. >> that is an area this most recent action by the biden administration we have a different perspective of, i think that president biden was acting within article to powers. it was an attack in response to an attack that put american contractors lives at risk and killed a foreign national. it was not meant to be sustained
activity. it was a warning to some militias operating in iraq. i thought that was pretty appropriate. i know some of my colleague to disagree with that. that's not what i'm concerned about. i'm concerned about long expensive engagements, as i know the chairman is that go on without -- something like when we went to war with isis in the obama administration and finish it up in the trump administration. i think that was the right thing to do but congress should have voted on it or the libyan incursion i think that was the wrong thing to do and congress should have voted on that in the obama years. i don't want to hobble the president where he can't respond to an attack. this is a different -- a difference that is pretty minor between chairman mcgovern and i. our broad view on this is similar and i think an administration that wants to work with him, we have a chance
to get something done and we will see whether or not congress has the will to enforce what we have done. host: your sense is like congressman mcgovern that this administration, president biden is open to talking about or revising this war powers act, do you think this is part of your effort in terms of being house members, being chair and ranking member of the rules committee of the house itself reasserting some of its authority over this in response to the many executive orders we have seen not just in this presidency but the trump and obama presidencies as well. rep. cole: speaking for myself i do. jim and i don't see every issue the same way, a liberal democrat , i'm a conservative republican. i think we see the constitutional role of the institution in which we both serve in the same way. it is refreshing to have an administration that lines up with that.
that was not true of previous administrations republican or democrat. we will see how far we can go. there was some concern yesterday that we might go too far with a presidential veto. i assured the republican witness that race that point that i think it's unlikely a democratic house and a democratic senate with a democratic senator tie-breaking and i think -- vice presidency with the tie-breaking vote is likely to put up bill on the president's desk he doesn't want to sign. i think a lot could come from the fact that the administration does appear to want to work with us and i have a lot of confident in -- a lot of confidence in my friend mr. mcgovern's leadership on this issue. host: congressman mcgovern, can you give us a timeline of when you think this bill drafted by your committee will see action on the house floor? rep. mcgovern: we had a hearing in the rules committee, the house foreign affairs committee
had a hearing yesterday. there are multiple steps. there will probably be an attempt to repeal or come up with new aumfs for existing conflicts. my hope is that in the coming weeks and months that we work on legislation and move it forward. the original war powers resolution was vetoed by richard nixon, and congress overrode that. i don't want to invite of vito, but i just point that out for historical fact. the deal is that we need to do something. tom and i, we have different political opinions. we represent constituents who, when in times of war are called to serve, and we have an obligation to make sure that they are being deployed out of
hock -- if they are deployed in harm's way it's absolutely necessary and we have a responsibility to prevent that. there is a constitutional responsibility and a moral responsibility to our constituents. we are still in afghanistan. i said yesterday that in the hearing a couple of years ago that i visited afghanistan and met with troops from massachusetts. one guy asked if we knew what was going on over there. it is so far removed from what the original mission was and the ash in the aftermath of 9/11. you need to know what is happening here. i think one of the problems is that congress has kind of allowed these wars to go on autopilot and we have not done our due diligence or debated these issues because there is no sunset on these aumfs. if we don't do something, 40
years from now some president will be justifying a military operation in sun country based on a 2001 or 2002 aumf. we had no idea in 2001 what the reality would be in 2021. for a whole bunch of reasons we need to take a look at this and update and modernize the war powers resolution. my hope is that we can do that in a bipartisan way. you don't have to agree with everything to agree with something. i think tom and i agree on a lot of something and hopefully we can move something forward that can make it through the house and senate and get on the president's desk. host: you brought up afghanistan. do you think u.s. troops should be withdrawn by the may 1 deadline? congressman mcgovern? rep. mcgovern: i do. again, people have different opinions. we have to find a way to end
this war otherwise we will be there forever. i want to protect and create a more stable world, but endless wars to me do not do that. when we talk about national security we need to understand that national security means the quality of life are people here at home. we have people who are hungry, people that are homeless, people who don't have jobs. we have aging infrastructure and we are told we don't have the resources to finance that. yet we have the resources to spend halfway around the world in a conflict that i'm not quite sure is adding anything to our national security. my whole view is the sooner we get our troops home the better. host: congressman jim mcgovern is the chair of the rules committee and congressman thomas goal is the ranking member. we have gary waiting illinois on
the republican line, go ahead. caller: thank you. what a wonderful opportunity to have a republican and democrat together. my question is, is there any way you to can get together and [indiscernible] for people that make all the machines and weapons, and maybe watch their voting record and have it put out into the public so we know. the second question would be, why is it when you have 20 minutes to vote it takes 45 minutes to an hour and a half to get the votes in? let third question is, i have been trying to get someone to listen to me, i am on social security, i'm below the poverty level. i don't own a computer but i would love to see it remind -- no one seems to pay any attention to me when i say that. [indiscernible] thank you very much. host: you can skip to the one
point if you want. we will start with tom cole. rep. cole: in terms of the voting records, they're pretty transparent. i'm not one that thinks we stumble into wars because of the defense industry or what have you. i think they do their job in terms of making sure we have the appropriate weapon. our job is to decide how much we spend and what we do. i don't think it's difficult to find out where members stand on the issue. on the 45 minute rush and we are operating under covid conditions and i hope we can review that soon because most members have been -- have gotten the vaccine. it makes it difficult to execute the vote. it's not members being lazy, we are supposed to come on in tranches and leave in tranches. that is what is causing that.
in terms of social security you raise an important point. i have a bill, i used to carry it with our former colleague john delaney to do what ronald reagan and tip o'neill and howard baker did which is to set up a commission to review social ready, because it's going bankrupt. the trust fund, talking about raising nicole. that would speed the time up. i don't think congress will allow that to occur. we were closer to it in 1983 the last time we made a major overhaul of the system. this would set up a commission, we would have to have a super majority, congress would have to vote on that. that's what we did last time, we fixed it or about 50 to 70 years. we should do the same thing. this is a popular program and we should not be at risk area we could have a debate about how much more robust to make it.
it's not like there's money sitting there. money is going out faster than it's coming in and has been since 2011. we have 10,000 people a day turning 65 becoming eligible for medicare and pretty quickly after that social ready if they are not already on it. that generation is going to live longer than any previous generation, it's bigger than any previous generation. we have real strains on the system that need to be addressed and it needs to be done in a bipartisan way. host: our main topic is the war powers and the house effort to revive that 1973 act. we go to ethel in daisy, tennessee on the democrats line. caller: i think they ought to get out of these wars, because we have that federal budget up
there with this pandemic. if you are not going to fix the economy with this virus they have to get it under control and get people back to work. so schools can be open and be open safely. i think joe biden is doing a good job about moving the vaccine and the american people ought to give him credit for it. i think he is a good person, and i think he is going to do great things for this country. host: thank you. jim mcgovern, do you want to respond? rep. mcgovern: i agree with the caller. i am somebody who believes that a better way to promote national security and international stability is not through war,
and not through selling arms to countries with terrible human rights violations but to focus on issues like poverty or hunger. i'm the author of a program called the mcgovern dole international food for education program named after george mcgovern and bob dole who cared deeply about ending global hunger. this is basically a school feeding program and some of the poorest countries in the world. i remember visiting one of the programs in a poor neighborhood in columbia many years ago, and a young mother came up to me and introduced me to her 10-year-old son. she said, and this neighborhood, every day, one of the armed actors comes through here asking me, the mother of this 10-year-old boy to give up my son. if i give him up and he joins one of these armed groups, they will guarantee him something i
can't which is feed him every day. she said i have come close to doing that, but because of this program i don't have to get my son up and he will stay here and learn how to read and write and become literate and may be the leader of this country someday. my view is when we do things like that and help lift people up, people like us and if they like you they won't blow you up. bottom line is we need to refocus much of our attention on those kinds of things and start moving away from militarizing so much of the world. personal view, i think the caller. host: congressman mcgovern, you mentioned the foreign affairs committee is taking up the legislation as well. i will ask both of you if you have heard from leaders in the military on this legislation on how they feel about it and they -- how they feel about the continued use of these authorizations for military force. tom cole, do you want to start?
rep. cole: i have not heard much since the hearing, but i remember asking jim mattis when he was secretary of defense, i was and still am on the defense appropriations subcommittee and asked him if he needed aumf. he said they do. we never got a proposal out of the trump administration, i'd be unfair to the formal president i didn't say he wanted to get our troops out of afghanistan and he did not initiate major military operations overseas. obama and bush did much more of that than president trump. in some areas i disagree with him, like trying to reduce troops in nato i think was a mistake. his instinct was broadly not that different in terms of not being involved in these things. i think the military wants a new
aum -- that means we need to get together and find a way to assert congressional authority. i think congress is much less likely to plunge the country into war then either party. i think getting more people involved in decisions slows it down. that's probably a good thing except in a national emergency where the president has all the authority he needs if there is an imminent attack or an attack underway on the united states, he could responded would not have to wait for congress to act. these ideas of going in in a case like libya or iraq where i agree with president obama and president trump in dealing with isis, it still would be better to do it through congress and get a lot of fingerprints on the decision. host: representative mcgovern, your thoughts? rep. mcgovern: i have similar
thoughts to what congressman cole just said. i go back to what i said earlier. decisions to go to war, putting our troops in harm's way is a big deal. people's lives are being put at risk. i think one of the things that we feel very strongly about. it was kind of the point of the hearing was that we need a better process. the current war powers resolution we believe is broken. it needs to be modernized to reflect current day realities and it also needs to be updated to deal with the fact that presidents of both parties have found ways to basically ignore congress. that is not good. if a president wants to go to war and there is a robust debate and people are raising criticisms, if those criticisms are unwarranted it only strengthens the president's hand. if the criticisms are warranted we might rethink this.
i go back to what i said at the beginning. lyndon johnson said "it is easy to get into war, it is hard as hell to get out." rep. cole: we have very senior officials involved in the justification in the bush and obama administrations for decisions to deploy military or spare you all of them, all of them agreed that these aumfs in the war powers need to be changed. even there thinking i think one of them in particular who worked in the bush administration as a senior lawyer for the state department at the national security agency, at one point said, "i initially did not favor the idea of sunsets, and i would want to make sure that if we ever did something like that, congress had to ask -- had to
act expeditiously so you don't leave troops out there unfunded. his thinking had changed because of the sheer length of the involvement that we had. people of both parties recognize we are dealing with a broken system here, and they are trying to work together across party lines. i took a lot of hope from the witnesses. they work for very different administrations, but they work very far apart -- they weren't very far apart in their thinking about the changes that needed to happen. host: was here from san diego, omar is on the independent line. caller: vietnam veteran, two combat tours, ended up shutting down saigon, came back. it's a funny thing, congressman. i do agree with mr. mcgovern who has good points on funding. i don't hear anybody mentioning anything about operations. it is now a corporate military and it was when i was back in
there. case in point agent orange, the corporations love it. everyone is making money. i would like to see them start taking a closer look at putting out to the people that the corporations are behind this. whatever military base is being set up in a foreign nation -- corporations are behind it. as i was getting out of the war, 80 years later, as the same thing. vietnam, 2021. something for mr. mcgovern i would like to mention in closing here. i came back from vietnam in 1975. one thing i was never told was that vietnam veterans were able to take civil service exams to look for work. there was no work for me. that's why ended up leaving massachusetts. i thought i would drop that on you. get out of war, 10 year war, 30
year war, there is no point in it. the war is here in the united states. they should be focusing on who they are leading into the country because we don't have to go overseas. america is broke. host: congressman mcgovern, your response. rep. mcgovern: let me think the caller for his service to the country. i agree on the issue of the growing corporate influence in terms of not only war but our military-industrial complex. we continue to fund weapon systems that are obsolete that have no practical use, but we do so in large part because these corporations continue to try to persuade members of congress to develop these weapon systems. they tell them we have to keep them going. also i think some of our foreign policy has strayed from a
commitment to human rights. we have weapons manufacturers that want to sell weapons to countries like saudi arabia, and we shouldn't be selling anything to saudi arabia that is at all lethal based on their human rights record. we need to reevaluate this. it gets into the issue of campaign reform and the power of some of these corporations. we have to have a discussion about what our foreign policy should be based on. i believe it ought to be based on human rights and that ought to be the centerpiece of our foreign policy. that means some of our so-called allies are not meant to be the beneficiary of met but -- of weapons made in the u.s.. host: a question of the mechanics of all of this, if you wind up getting legislation that changes the war powers act, where does that leave the
current authorizations for military force, and 2001 and 2002, are they automatically voided, do they have to be revisited legislatively? rep. cole: this is my personal opinion, -- we still have on the books the 1990 one authorization from the persian gulf war, that needs to be revealed. i think the 2002 authorization for the iraq war needs to be repealed outright. the 2000 one which does empower us to deal with the transnational terrorist groups i think probably needs to be modified, but cap in some form. we didn't go to afghanistan because corporations wanted us to go to afghanistan. we went because it was a platform osama bin laden operated out of thousands of americans on american soil. we did not go to libya because corporations asked us to. the obama administration made a
decision. i agree with some of what jim says about corporate influence and the weapons act, but let's not believe that they decide when and where we go to war. i think what we are trying to do here is get more decision-makers and reassert the authority the founding fathers thought congress should use. they put the declaration of war in congress because they did not want a single individual being able to put the country at war. they wanted to be a broadly popular decision. we have gotten away from that since the second world war, particularly since 9/11. i think what we are about is an effort to reclaim that and make sure that if we do commit our men and women the most awesome -- most national -- responsible for having made a
mistake if you will and getting us into a war that they opposed or we shouldn't have been in in the first place. host: go ahead. rep. mcgovern: tom made an important point when he reference to the 1991 authorization on the use of force in the persian gulf. it is still standing. we have not ended it. it is ridiculous that such an authorization is still on the books, as it is in 1991, and its current form, and in 1992. that is a long time. if we use the 2001 authorization act, if we use that to justify a military attack someplace that involves u.s. troops today the people who will fight in then war were not even born when congress voted on the 2001 aumf.
we have to end or change these. that's probably the first order of business. they want to know if we can do that sooner rather than later. host: let's go to mark calling from chicago on the democrats line. caller: hi, good morning, gentlemen. a question for each of you. i'm glad to see you working together. i'm calling on the democrat line. i'm afraid that negotiating down a bill to compromise and still we will find you don't get any votes from the minority, so i'm concerned about that. i did want to ask you, and addition to that, mr. mcgovern, how do you compartmentalize the fact that mr. cole voted against the certification of the election, how do you trust him and others who essentially voted to overthrow the election? mr. cole, do you expect us to forget that?
why would we give you any credibility on anything going forward? i mean that respectfully. host: tom cole, care to respond? rep. cole: absolutely. i voted the way my constituents wanted and i made that clear. i think jim and i will disagree on this. democrats did in 2001 challenge this in 2005 and 2017. this has been a form of protest in the past,. it is stunning to me that it was ok for democrats to do it but not ok for republicans to cast a similar vote. host: on his first question are you worried that you will be able to get enough republicans over on a bill like this? rep. cole: i think there is a great deal of bipartisanship in this and i think all of congress is worried about this loss of support and we certainly still
have troops that aren't in play and deployed. the deployment is nothing in terms of scale and size like they were in the bush and obama years. they have come down quite a bit at the end of the obama term and throughout the trump years. there is more concern that we not get back to where we where on both sides of the aisle. you could tell this from the hearing. there was not a lot of disagreement between republicans and democrats. there are a lot of areas we could agree on and jim made this point yesterday. we have an administration that wants to do this which was not true of previous years. i think in the last administration trump wanted to do with more than the national security apparatus wanted to do it. i think we have a unique opening . i think hopefully with jim mcgovern's leadership and leadership on the foreign
affairs committee where i understand they had a good hearing yesterday i read the stair and special i read the statement from the chair and the ranking member. we can find common ground and get something done. we have a president that seems to want to work with us in this case. >> representative mcgovern the caller had mentioned compartmentalizing. tell us about your relationship with your partner
there. rep. mcgovern: i think tom cole is one of the most decent and honorable people i've ever worked with in congress. i disagree with his vote and i disagree very strongly with his vote, he knows that. i say that as somebody who was one of the last people on the house floor on january 6. i came face-to-face with this group of writers -- rioters. that day is etched in my memory forever. having said that, i also differentiate between, from tom
with those who actually gave oxygen to the movement that resulted in what happened on january 6. and those who continue to try to rationalize what happened. those are people i have a tough time dealing with. tom and i have a very good relationship and one of the things that i appreciate is that he always reaches
out and wants to have a conversation. he has a little hideaway in the capital and sometimes invites me down for whiskey and cigars and we talk about a whole bunch of stuff. i have to be honest, i feel very fortunate that he is my ranking member on the rules committee. i think it's not only fortunate for me, but the rules committee impacts everything in congress, it's good for the institution.
he believes in the institution and he is a good, honorable, decent man. he's a conservative and i'm a liberal. you'll have to agree on everything to agree on something. i look forward to working with him as we move forward. host: a couple more minutes before we wrap up. we go to carl in madison, mississippi. caller: i'd like representative jim, i'm calling from massachusetts. i remember the first gulf war when bush senior was commander-in-chief and i was stationed in riyadh. i remember before the ward started -- i was making -- i was bringing products back on base about 15 miles. i had about two weeks for christmas and thanksgiving. i met a lot of people around the country in saudi arabia. the problem i saw, in the camp
you would detect that -- we were in there -- then after 9/11 they created another action. i know what you are saying about the war powers. we have to be very careful. war was the reason we went over there. saudi arabia -- that's why went back to research. the war and 9/11 was a disaster. i try not to blame it on junior bush, but i think what the kingdom is doing is coming to an end. you need to be aware of what is going on, just like north korea. kim was born two years after i left on january 7. he was born in 84. i was there for 81 and 82.
there were a lot of policies made after world war ii. you have to go back and research the policies after the end of japan host: either if you have a response? guest: let me just say that i think your policy, it ought to be human rights. and the gentleman talked about saudi arabia, that is a country that has one of the worst human rights records of any country in the world. they dismembered a washington post journalists. people are imprisoned and tortured for the mildest of dissent, and yet we continue to have this relationship with saudi arabia that, unfortunately makes us somewhat complicit in some of the horrible things that are happening. we should not be selling to
saudi arabia and we should be pointing out every chance i get, and i give president biden credit for making public the -- for declassified information on who is responsible for the " washington post" journalist's murder, because it points to the fact that this is a country that really has a human rights record that deserves condemnation, not our support or complicity. host:: we appreciate your time. let us get one more call and then we will wrap up. maureen, in new york. go ahead as we wrap up. caller: i just wondered, given the threat that china seems in the past, and especially accelerating now seems to be giving to us, how would a bill like this impact the executive branch, the president's ability to address that kind of thing,
and how are you looking at it in this bill as you make this? host: we will start with you, and wrap up. guest: i do not think it will limit the ability at all. in the western pacific we have strong allies in countries like japan, south korea, australia, these are countries that we have alliances with, countries that in the case of japan, we have forces stationed there. i do not see a limitation to the freedom of action. if we were to stumble, which is the furthers thing i know that jim and i would want into a conflict with china, that would certainly require a congressional approval. again, if the chinese did something untoward, anti-american president would be back -- would be free to act and has the alliances that you would need to be effective in the
region. again, i would want congressional scrutiny, because that would be a conflict of immeasurable consequence for this country given the size of both economies and populations, and the fact that both are nuclear powers, that is certainly something that we would need to be extraordinarily cautious about, but we have obligations, friends and the ability to defend ourselves. i do not see anything we are talking about limiting the president from doing the appropriate thing, but we would make sure that congress is included in the decision. host: a few final thoughts. host. -- guest: war should be the furthest thing from our minds. there are other ways to address the challenges that china poses. on the human rights front we ought not to be allowing our businesses to purchase goods from communities where they use
slave labor, that is what they are doing with the uighurs. we should use targeted sanctions on chinese officials who oversee policies that result in severe human rights violations or people guilty of corruption. but we ought to raise our voice and the international community about what they are doing in hong kong and they are cyber attacks against the united states, that is another area of concern, but i go back to what i have been saying over and over, we need to reformulate our policy where our values with regard to human rights are at the centerpiece, and that is what i hope will happen under this administration and i look forward to working to my friend. i have such great admiration to see how we will make progress. host: jim mcgovern is the chair of the rules committee, the ranking member is representative tom cole of oklahoma.
we appreciate your time in talking with our viewers and listeners on washington journal. that will do it for this morning's program. we are back tomorrow at 7:00 a.m. eastern and we hope that you are too. next up we will take you lower life to a hearing getting underway with the senate. they are hearing from treasury secretary janet yellen and jerome powell. that is live next on c-span. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2021] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> you cannot afford it and on your own. the american rescue plan will deliver on the hope that americans voted for, and put shots in people's arms and money in pockets and kids back at school. it is the investment we need to rescue the economy and begin the work of building a better system for the future. our witnesses, treasury secretary ellen and treasury -- and treasury chair powell have
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