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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  September 23, 2015 7:30pm-8:01pm EDT

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pundits are saying they have never seen anything like this. what do you think of it? >> it is early. when we get to december and january and new leaves on the trees and snow on the ground people start focusing. everybody knows it. >> do you think that is an appetite for something different? something that hasn't been tried before? >> the economy is coming back. when they have growth to it. people are less angry. certainly 2010 and i was elected governor in 2010 people were angry and homes were being foreclosed on. they could not find work. they were getting laid off. those are tough times. i think it will be a little different. economy chugging away. a little voltile but -- vol tile but better than 2010.
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it counts in january and that is when people make up their mind in new hampshire and iowa. >> let's take a quick break and get back to the studio audience. we will be proith back. >> welcome back to our conversation with the candidate series. tonight's guest is democratic lincoln chafee. time for questions from the audience. our first question coming from makenzie nicleson. >> minimum wage is barely enough to pay pills. if you were elected would you increase the minimum wage? >> yes, makenzie as a senator i voted to raise the minimum wage every time it came before me. as governor we raised it three
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times in my four years as governor. so i have a good record of addressing that issue. i also cared about the beneficial social programs that help build the mid class particulary on education with pell grants and head start. i would support them and have a record of supporting them. not only the minimum wage, but the other beneficial social programs. i am a supporter of the affordable care act. we had one of the best rollouts of any state. rhode island was one of the best because we worked and had a good rollout. i am an advocate of social programs that help build the middle class and that is a big issue between the republicans and democrats. a lot of republicans are saying this can't be a force for good in people's lives. i disagree.
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americans are made great by the strong middle class and these government programs help make our country state particularly in education, health care, and infrastructure. >> what is a reasonable minimum wage? >> i think it depends on the community. in new york city the cost of living is higher. so i would advocate for a federal minimum wage of $10 or $10.10 adjusted for inflation and let the communities reflect what their cost of living it. it is going to be different around the country. not an advocate of federal fits all minimum wage. >> next question is from dan. take it away. >> welcome, governor. >> thank you. how many of these have you done? >> 18. this past year is the two year defeat of the gun proposal that
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called for criminal and mental background check for gun shows and online sales. it is interesting at the time several independent polls reported that 9-10 states supported the common sense legislation. at this point, my question is what could or would a chafee administration done to pass this type of common sense gun legislation? >> the fact this didn't pass, and that is from west virginia and toomey from pennsylvania, representing the rural areas of pennsylvania, big gun state and couldn't get this passed shows the difficulty the second amendment advocates and particularly the nra is a political force. going forward, just the political realities.
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even colorado after common sense gun safety laws were passed, the tragedies in columnbibine. we have to get the nra on board. we have to sit down and work together. we are fighting each other on the common sense initiatives and we will not get anywhere. the reality is the nra has a lot of muscle politically. let's bring them to the table, find common ground and build on that. that is the way i would approach it. instead of making the nra our advisary let's work with them. >> what is the first thing you would say to the representation of the national rifle association when you talk about expanding background checks? >> there is a gun show loophole
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or assault weapon ban -- just find some common ground and where we can start to agree on the preface we will not take your guns way. let's grow on the common ground. >> thank you, governor. thank you for the question dan. let's know to social media. do you do twitter or facebook? >> i am working on it. >> the next one is from facebook. what is your plan to bring isis to a halt if you are president? >> yes, unfortunately, isis was born out of our breaking up of iraq. and isis, a lot of the ex-saddam
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sunni's formeded their own group. the mistake we made, i was one of the 23 that foresaw the trouble of going in there voted against the war on iraq. my view is just what president obama is doing with the iran nuclear deal. we crafted that deal with china and russia and with the brits and that is how we put it together. if he are going to deal with the other challenges of the middle east, isis and others, it has to be with the same dynamic of working with the russians and europeans and in the neighborhood. >> does isis have a voice in the negotiations? >> you have to find an area where we can put down the guns
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and stop the bombs and beheadings and however we can do that is how i pursue it. >> next question is coming from kaitlyn. take it away. >> good evening. the reading programs get a lot of atoppings when we talk about early childhood education but as america falls behind in math and science i think it is equally important we invest in s.t.e.m. programs at younger ages. can you talk about your vision for high quality early childhe'd education in the 21st severn century? >> my record is one of consistent advocy. i believe a believer through the local, state and federal level of government's role of having good education including early childhood education. head start program, some criticize but we can make it better. but the wealthy are going to
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that preschool and get their learning the alphabet and their skills. so head start is a perfect way to balance those who are not as wealthy. i would pour the resources as i have in the education program. i am a firm believer our public education system made america great so let's keep at it and expand. >> bringing in hire education. you have a couple college age high school daughters. one going to brown and the other dartmouth. college affordability is a huge issue with families as is the debt being dealt with. the president is saying he would like to have free community college. how would you approach the
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affordability? >> look at my record. not many have the record i have having been a mayor, governor and senator. i put the resources at a difficult time in the our education. rhode island college and community college and we had two years of no tuition increase because i put the resources in. and that is the state's responsibility. the governor should be doing that. that is what made america great. the chance to go to unh and afford it and not come out with debt. so that is up to the governors. i am not just talking the talk. i walk the walk. for the private, the pell grants. we have not kept up with our commitment at the federal level with the grnts. i would. it makes so much sense having a strong, educated country. >> gale taylor from the audience
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take it away. >> i am concerned about the money in politics. do you support an amendment to override the bill to reform campaign finance? >> the supreme court struck down some of these based on first amendment right for the wealthy to spend their money. and there is another case in the supreme court that also says the wealthy can spend their money on first amendment freedom of speech issues and finally citizens united -- i don't think i would go for a constitutional amendment, but i would have justice with my appointments of the supreme court, would take a few there are limits on speech as far as campaign finance goes. i have been a civil libertarian
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also. i think the money coming into the campaigns is so enormous it is hard for candidates. i am testing that. i am testing running for president without the huge money. the hundreds of millions. let's see how it works out. >> thank you. >> fundraising is an issue. reality of politics is you are up against a lot of well financed candidates particularly one. how do you balance it? >> i have ran for office 11 times. i know you need the resources. but the money is huge and i will not be able to raise that kind. i am spending what i have. i drib to iowa. driver out and back. i am not going to get in debt.
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i am just going to test someone who has a record of being a governor, mayor, senator, honest, and has a vision of changing the world has a chance without hundreds of millions. >> let's go to another facebook question. this is from justin who is asking an interesting one. governor, could you put the following word in order of importance. life, liberty and happiness. it is a little different. welcome to new hampshire. >> i don't know you can prioritize those. are they done in alphabetical order? >> when you are talking to people and inspiration is part of this. what do you tell them to get excited about the possibility of a chafee presidency? >> it is an important decision we will make about where we are
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going into the future. it is a huge decision. and especially being a democrat on the partisan side the democrats that want the wars to go on forever and the programs they support that hurt the middle class and the denial of climate change and appointment do is the supreme court, as a partisan democrat, this is a very important election. you want someone that has a record, someone with character as i said the courage at a -- to take it on. and has a vision of ending the conflict and bringing the resources home to our education, environment and health care. and piece in the other countries so they can focus on their education, health care, and their economy. so that is very important.
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>> thank you there that answer. let's go to lorey who has another question. and it is important about the economy as a whole. >> reporter: housing starts to play a big role in improving the employment rate. do you have plans that would significantly improve the ability for builders and the like to improve the housing start situation? >> housing reflects the economy and we certainly see whenever the economy goes bad the housing is one of the first casualities so the main thing is keeping the economy chugging along. the economy was good when i was in the senate and we were getting to surplus after the years of deficit and bush and cheney came in with a $1.6
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trillion dacks tax cut i voted geps. i was a republican then but voted against it. i said let's do it incrementally not in one chunk. the economy cratered and housing catered and the good people working in the housing industry -- and that is how i got my start with working in driveways and dacement. i was a the one that got the ground ready for the coun crete. also, armand laws,ian othe housing industry is always concerned about adhering and zoning and environment for the home builders to ruin my career. they keep a good chaps so they can continue to industry. >> why are you the guy to keep
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the economy chugging? and these wars overseas. why can lincoln chafee do it? >> i have been a mayor. i plowed the snow, picked up the garbage, had good schools, kept the property taxes done, reelected three times. i became a senator with bush and cheney coming in. i had a courage to vote against the tax cuts, war in iraq, and do the right thing on climate change and stop bolton from being confirmed to go the the united nations. these tough votes took courage and that character is what is most important and the vision of where we are going is most important. this great country of ours. the end the wars, i am a peace maker and always have been in all of my elected positions, on
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the world stage, i served on the senate foreign relations committee. i chaired the subcommittee going to many countries in the middle east. i chaired the western emp rern e as well. education, health care and economy are better ways to spend the tax dollars. >> we are out of time for the tv portion of this. we are sounding off this but the conversation continues online with the mobile app. you will find another 30 more infants of questions coming from the student audience, commercial free, and until then thanks for watching and have a great night.
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>> c-span takes you on the road to the white house. unfiltered access to candidates. rallies and speeches and taking your comments on facebook, twitter and phone. and always, every campaign event we cover is available on our website at >> the sites and dates for three presidential debates. first is monday september 26th in 2016. on the campus of wright state university in dayton, iowa. the second on october 9th, 2016 at washington universities in st. louis, missouri. and the third and final debate on wednesday october 19th at the university of nevada in las vegas. and one vice presidential debate on tuesday october 4th, 2016 in
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farmville, virginia. the co-chair of the commission of presidential debates is on the phone with us. thank you for being here. >> pleasure. >> walk us through this and what led to these four universities. >> well, in the 28 years we have been doing this, what do is the year before the debate we send out to all of the colleges and universities a request for a bid and indicate what they have do and produce. there has to be so many hotel rooms within a certain area because of the 5,000 reporters there. we get in bids. we narrow what we have down to 16 schools and then we have a team of technology people, camera people, lighting people, etc who go out, sound people, visit the possible venues, come back to us, then we make other
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cuts and the secret service is very involved. they want to make sure whatever site we chose they can lockdown. so that 16 was then moved down to five. we also tried, not always possible, but we would like to get geographic diversity. something on the west, south, northeast and midwest is what we aim for. we counted washington university as the western site because it was on the western side of the mississippi river because we didn't get enough acceptable bids from the west. this year, or next year, is wright state in ohio which is an important state in the presidential election. longwood university in virginia. there hasn't been one in virginia before other than the
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first town hall meeting held in there in richland. and longwood is interesting because it was involved in the original brown versus board of education case. a very important case for our nation's history and the university has done a wonderful job of building around their location and their involvement in that. university of washington is poplar because of the facility and the secret service likes the university because of the ability for security. and university of nevada las vegas was the west coast choice. >> what about the possibility of a third party candidate? what would the criteria be for you to admit a third party contender? >> since 2000, you have to meet the constitutional requirements of being a native born, 35 years of age, you have to be on enough
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ballots to get 270 votes, and you have to be at 15% in an average of five major polls. the commission is still deciding the criteria. we have had a number of suggestions. one called for whoever gets the most signatures to get on enough ballots to qualify for 270 votes. we have one that said anybody who gets on enough ballots ought to be in it. another one saying there should be online voting situation and whoever wins the online votes ought to be automatically in the debates. there is a bunch of suggestions we have under consideration and consideration in changing format. we made a change in 2012, dividing the first and last
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debate into six 15-minute segments and the moderators indicated what particular subjects would be covered during that 15 minutes and the moderator was able to drill down and able to get into the meat of the issues rather than a one or two minute response. the actual result in 2012 is the candidates were talking and debating. there has been criticism of spin alley which is a circus atmosphere after the debate where reporters of each candidate go into a room to explain why their people won. there is a bunch of suggestions we have. and one is a town hall meeting so we can invite social media into the town hall meeting. we have a lot of work to do. we hope to make other major
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announ announcements particularly with the criteria. we like to announce that a year before the election so anyone thinking of running knows what they have to do qualify to be in the debate. >> we are a year out. but will the debates remain 90 minutes? are you confidant the nominees will participate? >> in the time i have been on the commission, and i created it, we have had 19 presidential debates and 7 vice presidential debates, i think it would be hard in today's world for a major candidate to say well i am not going to participate in debates.
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we have come a long way but there is no way to force a candidate to debate. they are taking that decision in their own hands as to whether the american people accept that.
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it's an opportunity for students to think critically of issues of mass importance by creating a five to seven minute video. it gives them the opportunity and a platform to have their voices heard on issues that are important to them, so they can express those views by creating a documentary. we do get a wide range of entries. the most the most important aspect for every documentary that we get is going to be content. we have had winners in the past created by just using a cell phone and others that are created using
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more high-tech equipment, but once again it's really the content that matters and signs through that made the documentaries. the response from students in the past has been great. we've had many issues that they have created videos on that are important from them. topics range from education, the economy, the environment the environment and really just a ride friday showing things that are important to teens. >> we've come to the consensus that humans cannot run without food. >> prior to the individuals with disabilities act, children with disabilities were not given the opportunity of an education. >> this year's theme is rode to the to the white house. what is the most important issue you want the candidates to discuss in the presidential campaign? there are many different
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candidates discussing different issues. one of of the key requirements and creating documentaries is to include footage that complements and further illustrates the point of view. it's a great way for them to include more information on the video that furthers their point. >> the first bell i will signed today is the water resources reform and development act. >> we've all heard the jokes about school meals and growing up on fish sticks and mystery meat tacos. >> it's a vital role that the government plays. it's especially vital for students with disabilities. students and teachers can go to our website. they will also find teacher tips, rubrics and incorporating c-span video and ways to contact
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us if they have further questions. the deadline for this competition is january 20, 2016 which is one year away from the next inaugural election. >> tonight on c-span to officials from the state department and congress talk about data transparency at a conference in washington. donald trump speaks at a town hall meeting in columbia, south carolina. later ims manager talks about global economic development. >> former secretary of commerce for economic affairs, mark dahms spoke on a conference about data transparency. he talked about government agencies like the census euro and the city of chicago are using data to better serve local communities. this is part of a


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