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tv   House Rules Committee Meeting on the Iran Nuclear Agreement  CSPAN  September 8, 2015 5:00pm-10:01pm EDT

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talk us about the next two weeks. >> the house is going to vote this week on the iran deal. the senate is keying up the debate this week as well. so they want to get that done as soon as possible because they only have a few weeks now to keep the government open. they have a lot that they want to do. there is a lot of deadlines coming up in the next few weeks, the next few months. and the leadership understands this is not going to be successful. so they want to have their show. they want to make their case to the public and it is really a political argument now for the presidential election, more than anything else. everybody knows that this thing is going to ultimately still be -- still go forward. so it is about politics right now. you have your one-week show or maybe a little bit more than that and then you move on quickly to other things. the main thing being keeping the government open, the lights on, past september 30th. >> what happens then? >> well i think what you'll see is a pretty -- a battle that
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we've seen many times in the past which is the leadership in both chambers do want to shut down. mitch mcconnell has pledged no shut downs on his watch. that means you can't have riders that the president would veto. that means planned parent hood, there are conservatives who want to defund it and the president said he will veto it. if you attach that to a bill being open, the government would shut down. there are other riders, epa riders, climate change riders and things republicans would like to get signed into law the president is not going to sign and threatened to veto. so that is the debate where the leadership said, let's have as clean a possible a c.r. and keep the government open for the next two months while we negotiate with the president, maybe three months. and that is another issue. how long this c.r. is going to be.
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is it just until halloween, which is what some democrats might want, is it thanksgiving, is it going to head into december. and that will also effect the over all debate because you have other things that expire. you have a highway bill that expires at the end of october. and the highway bill is very interesting because you need tens of billions of dollars to keep the highway construction budget funded because gas -- the gas tax brings in less and less money each year. people have better mile per gallon cars. they need to find some money for that. well, the money you find for that is money you can't find for the rest of the budget that is over here, the domestic spending in particular, where the president wants to spend an additional $37 billion this year and republican budget says zero. so that's -- that's where the big battle is over, is over the $37 for domestic spending. the president has threatened, he won't sign any bill that doesn't provide more spending.
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that could also shut the government down. if he says, look, whether it is in october, november or december, i'm vetoing this bill that will flat-fund my budget. he's not facing re-election. he could potentially do that. and to would be gut check for democrats. are they prepared to cut down the government for more spending. can they make that political argument in nan auction lead. >> if they don't want a shut down, and what do they face as far as republicans an their bodies. >> i think you have a lot of tense meetings in hc five which is the big room in the house where republicans meet and discuss and hash out in private what their strategy is going to be. i won't be surprised if the first attempt to keep the government open actually does do a lot of things that conservatives doesn't want. like defunding planned parenthood and immigration
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orders, maybe something on obama care. and it gets over to the senate, and mitch mcconnell can strip that out and send it back to the house and then you have a bipartisan support in the house. and that is what has happened a number of times in the past several years, where nancy pelosi and the house democrats have ultimately provided the votes to keep the government running, with enough republican support on top of that. i wouldn't be surprised to see something like that happen. you will have people like ted cruz, who is running for president, who is doing okay in the polls, people like rand paul who is not doing so well in the polls, marco rubio, et cetera, this is their chance to get some spotlight. this is a chance to get on tv and their chance to maybe make an impact and move in the polls. and they're competing against donald trump who will be here tomorrow with rand cruz in a big
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rally. this is the one chance to have the spotlight returned to them, returned to washington. and those running for president other than bernie sanders aren't doing so hat. combined that is about 16%, 17% of the vote. and that is not so great. this is a chance to show the core conservator voters, i'm not going to take on planned parenthood or immigration, et cetera. but the republican leaders want to part of that. it is interesting to see if there is more fights on floor against ted cruz, et cetera. >> again the phone number. and steven dennis our guest. mary anfrom new york, you are up first for our guest. good morning. >> thank you for taking my call. you know, i've always been republican and i think actually the last -- after mr. reagan, i
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think that was the last one i ever voted for because i just couldn't see anything within the republican party or democrat party i wanted to vote for. so anyway, what i can't understand is why the republicans keep saying that they are being bypassed by the president. i do not back the president. i have not backed the president in anything that he has said. but, the fact is, if they would try to defend themselves in court and played the same role as they are playing now in congress, they would -- if they were being charged with something, they sure would be locked up because they are not defending themselves. they have no -- made no resource to the american people on what is going on or demanding that
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the president follow protocol as far as the constitution is called. >> okay, caller, we'll let our guest response. >> yeah, so i think what you're -- and we're going to break away from this piece of washington journal. you can see that online. and back to the house rules committee, just about to get underway. the chairman pete sessions of texas, you can see him standing there. louise slaughter, the ranking member from new york. it looks like they are ready to go, working on the rules for the iran debate. the -- congress has until september 17th to come up with a resolution of disapproval of the iran nuclear deal. of course, if you foal the senate on c-span and our programming, you'll see some news reports that the senate have enough votes to override any potential veto of a resolution of disapproval. but this rules committee about the house debate on the iran nuclear deal, our live coverage here on c-span 3.
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good afternoon, the rules committee will come to order and welcome back from our august work period. it is an exciting -- exciting to see each of us together as we gather back, virginia fox was delighted. she even smiled at me, louise, that used to be a certain thing and now it is a rare die. and there is a virginia smile. >> we check with each other. >> i hope everybody had a chance to be with their families and constituent and also get back to
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enjoying the 95 degrees in rochester, in new york. one of the issues that i heard a lot about during the break back in dallas was the issue that today is before the rules committee and that is hjres 64 which would disapprove of this administration's deal with iran on the nuclear weapons. the american people i believe are looking for congress to explain what we're going to do and the actions that would take place. there are a lot of questions that not only surround this but there are questions about our future. i think hj 64 provides our best opportunity to do exactly that. to dissect it, to look at it, and certainly today we'll have a number of witnesses who will be able to provide expert testimony to that end. for the last few years, the administration has been dead set on cutting a deal with the iranians regarding its nuclear program. i don't think that is any secret. and in the last few months,
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however, it has been become clear that the administration was interested in, i think, cutting any good deal with the iranians. because the administration negotiated from position of wackness, i think -- weakness, i think it gives iran everything it wanted and leaves the american people wondering what we got in return. it cut a deal. it gives iran permanent sanctions relief for temporary agreements that merely keeps iran from building a nuclear bomb in the near term. it is now up to congress to stop this deal so that the iranian regime does not have access to the nearly $150 billion it would use to continue to fund terrorist organizations that destabilize the middle east and the world, including the united states of america. this deal pardons iran's previous actions, it encouraged iran to continue to undermine our allies and it turns iran
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from a nuclear pariah into a nuclear partner. this week congress will have an opportunity to completely review this deal with information that has provided to us and it's foremost congressional expert on the deal is the gentleman who is with us today, congressman ed royce. chairman royce has led over 30 hearings and briefings on this deal. i look forward to his insight and i also know that we have two other important witnesses that represent the democratic party. mr. levin with the ways and means committee and miss waters, ranking member of the financial services committee. i'm aware that this is a big deal. this committee is prepared to ask tough questions, this committee is prepared to ask serious and long-range questions about the future of this deal and to understand more about what we're trying to accomplish here today.
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before we defer to our first panel that will include not only mr. levin, but also miss waters and i would ask they feel free to come join the table at any point they choose to. i would defer to my colleague and dear friend, the gentlewoman from rochester, new york. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate that time. i want to welcome the witnesses as well, look forward to hearing what they have to say. i do need to correct one thing i believe that you mentioned. that this was an agreement between the president of the united states and iran. this is a agreement between the security council of the united nations and iran. it was negotiated by five countries plus one, as we all know. a security council has already voted 15-0 on this plan. and i'm assuming that that is the controlling vote. but in any case, we know that if everything holds as it said it
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was going to hold in the senate, that this is dead on arrival, but we will go on with the game. we're used to that. we spent, what, 57 votes on trying to hill health care. but anyway, thank you for yielding me the time. the joint comprehensive plan of action with iran has been hailed as, quote, remarkable, end quote, by retired army general colin powell, that i think all of us admire. the former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, obviously knowing everything you need to know about military operations, and also the former secretary of state for president george w. bush. it has a broad and firm support of the international community. even the members of israel security community have come out in support of this unprecedented comprehensive and enforceable agreement. even so, opponents decried as weak, riddled with loopholes and inadequate. and to those people, i ask what
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is the alternative? the agreement has flaws, perhaps, but it is my firm belief without it we'll be on a ever quick path to nuclear armed iran which is unacceptable to all of us. this agreement is a step toward peace, toward diplomacy, toward unifying the international community. on a negotiation partners, green bay, china, russia, germany and france and along with the rest of the world are looking for the congress of the united states not to embarrass itself and i urge my colleagues to support it. thank you very much and i yield back the balance of my time. >> ms. slaughter, thank you very much. i want to welcome not only miss waters but mr. levin and young chairman of the committee, mr. royce for taking time to be with us today. obviously, without objection, anything in writing will be entered into the record.
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you know that you're here to provide expert testimony. you recognize that this is a very serious issue and i appreciate each one of you being here today. mr. chairman, you're recognized. >> thank you chairman sessions and thank you ranking member, slaughter. >> that microphone on it. >> i guess i would just start, mr. chairman, with the observation that the premise there that the controlling vote would be the security council vote, which miss slaughter raised, sort of goes against the very intention of the house and senate in passing legislation in the first place. that would give congress a vote on this. and this really raised the question, the timing, of going to the security council before we received the briefing on the agreement itself. and before the people's representatives in the house and senate, even had an opportunity to be recorded on this. the fact that the assertion
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would make -- be made that the controlling vote would be the security council of the united nations rather than congress after congress had passed legislation and after that legislation was signed by the president of the united states, to have our in put. and part of that was for us to have the responsibility to look into this agreement before we made an informed decision upon whether or not it was in the interest of the united states. now we've held some 30 hearings in the foreign affairs committee, and briefings, and i just want to share with the members here, with the chairman and ranking member, that we very much appreciate the committee on rules meeting to consider this house joint resolution 64. what this resolution would do, it is a resolution of disapproval, that i introduced, that would prevent a flawed nuclear agreement with iran from
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being implemented. as you know, this legislation is possible because of the vote we made here in the house and the senate on the iran nuclear agreement review act that overwhelmingly past. the vote was 400-25. it was again, signed into law by the president. and that legislation established a process for congress to review the final nuclear agreement with iran and then take and up or down-vote on the merits. and in review we have. so many of you have had the opportunity to see some of the coverage of the committee hearings. but we've conducted that review in a bipartisan way. ranking member engel has been a tireless partner in this. the bipartisan way in which the committee has approached this issue wouldn't surprise mr. collins or judge hastings. we've kept to our collaborate roots since the members left the
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committee. and while we strive to present a united front to the world, we can't always agree. mr. chairman, i don't relish bringing this resolution to the floor. we all wanted these negotiations to succeed. but i'm afraid that this agreement not only comes up short, it is fatally flawed. and, indeed, it is dangerous. a few key concerns we've heard from the experts in front of our committee. first, iran is not required to dismantle key bomb-making technology. second, iran is permitted a vast enrichment capacity, reversing decades of bipartisan nonproliferation policy that never imagined endorsing this type of nuclear infrastructure for any country, never mind a country like iran. and iran is allowed to continue its research and development to gain an industrial scale nuclear program once this agreement
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begins to expire in as little as ten years. ten years is a flash in time. and then the iranian obligations start to unwind. i just don't see that as a formula for a safer, more secure region. while members of congress insisted on anywhere, anytime inspections, iran has agreed to something they call managed access. so instead after louing international inspectors, into suspicious sites in 24 hours, it will take 24 days, but not on the military bases. because, worse yet, there have been revelations in recent days but a side agreement between iran and the nuclear watch dog in the united nations. this sets the conditions in which a key iranian military site suspected of nuclear bomb work will be explored. when i say suspected of nuclear bomb work, the director of the
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iaea tells me there is a thousand pages of documents they have on the bomb work that was done there. and while the details have been kept from congress directly, it is reported that instead of international inspectors doing the international inspecting, we're going to have iranians themselves take the inspection lead. iran has cheated on every agreement they have signed to date. why are we trusting them to self police? and the deal guts the sanctions web that is putting intense pressure on iran. all economic and energy sanctions disappear. billions will be made available to iran to pursue the terrorism. and when i say iran, remember the way it is set up there where the rigc controlling many of the countries, this is not like a normal business arrangement in a company. when these companies were
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nationalized basically by the government, they were turned over to the irgc so these elements are strengthened in this deal. if we have $100 billion out of escrow and it goes into those accounts, this isn't a free functioning economy. no, the irgc will control that money and decide what they spend it on and we've already seen a little bit of their pronouncements about what is important to them. getting to hezbollah. the types of systems, gps systems, that will allow hezbollah to fire some 80,000 plus rockets and missiles that the irgc has supplied hezbollah. getting to hamas, the weapons to replace those that have already been fired, rebuilding the tunnels that eliot engel and i
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have been in, that is another commitment apparently that the irgc is making. so when we put that down payment in their hands, that is where the down payment goes. and as iran will be reconnected to the global economy, this is going to jump start those businesses that the irgc runs over there. so to our dismay, in addition, iran won a late concession to remove international constrictions on its ballistic missile program and on conventional arms, imperilling the security of the region. and frankly when we talk about the removal on ballistic missile programs, we have to remember the words of the ayatollah, it is the responsibility of every military man to figure out in iran huh to help mass produce icbm's. i don't think he's talking about a space program with that comment. so mr. chairman, and the reason i don't think it is because he follows it up with death to
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america. that is why i think it. that his line of thought is one which is a national security threat to the united states. chairman, those are a few of the reasons i'm opposed to the agreement. i appreciate the fact that the leadership and both parties recognize the gravity of the vote we'll have this week and i'd ask the rule allow as much time as possible for debate so as many possibles as possible can have their voices heard on this historic agreement. and that this be considered under a closed rule so we can have the straight up or down vote as envisioned by the iran nuclear agreement act passed last spring. whatever your view on this agreement, i think we can all agree that we face a very difficult and gravely threatening challenge from the iranian regime. this is a regime, again, that chants on a weekly basis, death to america, death to israel, and
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frankly they mean it. the region is a mess and congress has a role to play. and feel working with my colleagues and friend eliot engel that we've done a good job vetting this agreement and now members can come to their own conclusions as to whether this improves our national security. i feel it doesn't. but the house will come to its collective decision as it should. and i appreciate your time and i look forward to your questions. >> mr. chairman, thank you very much. i note that both of our witnesses that appear first from financial services and ways and means, i believe are in support of the administration's side, would that be correct? then i will make you make -- i will allow you the opportunity to decide which of you would present first, knowing that you both have -- then the gentleman, mr. levin, would prevent on behalf of the ways an means, the gentleman is recognized. >> and both of you will be recognized, right? >> i'm talking about you being recognized first and then we'll recognize miss waters.
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thank you very much, gentleman. >> thank you. once again, it ises a pleasure to be here and hello to everybody. after a few -- more than a few weeks away. i had a chance before we left, it seems so long ago, to speak out on this and to expression my position. since then, like all of you, we've gone home. we've talked to -- vastly and intensely and intensively with our constituents and others. i think that has been a productive process. as i understand it, you're going to allow many, many hours of debate. which i think is a very wise choice. so let me not go into a lot of detail. they'll be many hours of debate. and i'll participate in them. i thought instead i would refer to the statements of two people.
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my hope is that my reference to them and your reference to them might spark some kind of bipartisanship in this institution on this issue. i would first like to refer, as mentioned by louise slaughter, the statements -- it was the testimony on sunday of colin powell. he's the former secretary of state. we know his illustrious career. and here is what he said. and i quote, i think this is a good deal. i've studied very carefully the outline of the deal and what's in that deal and i've also carefully looked at the opposition to the deal and in my position after balancing these two sets of information is that it is a pretty good deal. now, i know there are objections
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to it but here is why i think it is a good deal. one of the great concerns that the pop position has that we're leaving open a lane for the iranians to go back to creating a nuclear weapon in ten or 15 years. they are for getting the reality that they've been a superhighway for the last ten years to create a nuclear weapon or a nuclear weapons program with no speed limit. and then he referred to the reduction in the centrifuges and in the stockpile, a very dramatic reduction. and then he goes on to say, and again i quote, and so we have stopped this highway race that they were going down. and i think that's very important. now, will they comply with it? will they actually do all of this? will they get nothing until they show compliance? and that is the important part
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of this, as he said though. get nothing until they show compliance. well the other criticism of this deal, and i continue quoting colin powell, has to do with behavior changes. why didn't we ask for it. it wasn't enough to just try to slow them down on the nuclear front or stop their ability to get a nuclear weapon. it is, should we also put in this deal, having them stop the funding of hamas, stopping the funding of hezbollah, stopping the backing of assad in syria. and i interject here. i think we all deeply feel the importance of that. and here is how he continued. i think all of these are important objectives. and they should not be set aside because of this deal. we have to keep pushing on the bad behavior that the iranians show constantly throughout the world. but this deal specifically had to deal with the thing that was most concerning to the world,
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most dangerous to the world, and that was the nuclear program which could produce a weapon in a very short period of time. that has been thrown into a detour. and then he continues. and i'm reminded of what my former boss ronald reagan used to say when he talked to the soviets. trust, but verify. with respect to the iranians, it's don't trust, never trust, and always verify. and i think a very vigorous verification program has been put in place with the iaea and other international organizations. and then he continued. and so even if we were going to kill this deal, which is not going to happen, it is going to take effect any way because all of these other countries that were in it with us are going to move forward. the u.n. is going to move
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forward. and 100 nations have already agreed to this dealhinking it's a good deal and they're all going to move forward. we're going to be standing in the sidelines. and so he finished, at least i finish quoting this. now, people will say, no can trust them. i don't trust them. i say we have a deal. let's see how they implement the deal. they don't implement it. bail out. none of our options are going. none of our options are going. but this is something we ought to pursue and try to make it happen under the terms under which the deal was reached. secondly, i would like to quote from prince go craft. i had a chance now six weeks ago to talk to him about this. he was, as we know, the national security adviser to jer ald ford and george h.w. bush.
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and i quote briefly from his op ed. congress faces a momentous decision regarding u.s. policy toward the middle east. the coming vote on the nuclear deal between p5+1, iran, will show the world whether the united states has the will and sense of responsibility to help stabilize the middle east or whether it will contribute to further turmoil, including the possible spread of nuclear weapons. in my view, the jcpoa meets the key objective shared by recent administrations of both parties that iran limit itself to a strictly civilian nuclear program with unprecedented verification and the monitoring by the iaea and the u.n. security council. if the u.s. could have handed iran a take it or leave it
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agreement, the terms doubtless would have been more onerous on iran. but negotiated agreements are the only ones that get signed in the times of peace are compromised by definition. it is where president reagan did with the soviet union on arms control and it is what president nixon did with china and it is the case with specific agreements with the soviet union and china. we'll continue to have significant differences with iran on important issues, including human rights, support for terrorist groups, and meddling in the internal affairs of neighbors. we must never tire of working to persuade iran to change its behavior on these issues and countering it where necessary. and then i conclude with this. there is no credible alternative for congress to prevent u.s. participation in the nuclear deal.
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if we walk away, we walk away alone. the world's leading powers work together effectively because of u.s. leadership. to turn our back on this accomplishment would be an abdication of the united states unique role and responsibility, incurring justified dismay among our allies and friends. we would lose all leverage over iran's nuclear activities. so let me just close -- you know, i went back and looked at the statements of senator vandenberg, who came from michigan, who talked about the importance of bipartisanship at the water's edge. i think he maybe was the first to say that. i think we all need to, as we proceed in this debate, to keep that very much in mind.
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the feelings are deep. mine are very deep, going back from when i was perhaps an infant. it was a matter of deep concern in our family regarding the establishment of a homeland, but for the jewish people in israel. we've all looked at this in a very, very diligent way. and mr. chairman, and ranking member, i hope you will allow long debate. i hope the debate may keep in mind when i said at the beginning, it is important, i think, to see if we can somehow, and maybe we'll do it afterwards, re-establish the bipartisanship on these key issues which has been a hallmark of this institution for a long time. thank you very much.
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>> mr. levin, thank you very much. we'll now move to financial services angle and we would recognize the gentle woman from los angeles. >> thank you, mr. chairman. ranking member, slaughter and other members of the committee, thank you for allowing me to testify before you on hj-64, a resolution. this approving the joint comprehensive plan of action. mr. chairman and members, when i had a discussion with my staff about the rules committee meeting today, they basically said, well you know, it is not necessary to go. and they said that even talk with some of the staff people of the rules committee, who said, well you know, this is perfunctory, it is not really necessary. it is going to be a closed rule. there are no amendments. but i rushed from the airplane coming in from los angeles today
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to be at this rules committee, despite the fact that i guess it is known that it is -- will be a closed rule, because i want to be recorded in history. that i took every opportunity to make my voice heard on this defining issue. this is a defining issue for the world, not just for the united states of america. i want it to be known that i believe that the five plus one, who came together on this joint agreement is extraordinary. to have china and russia at the table, talking about averting a nuclear war is extremely important. and not only do i want to be recorded in history, at every opportunity, i want to share
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with you and all of my colleagues not only how i feel, but what i have learned as this debate has taken place around this country and in my district. and so i'm here today to testify before you on hj-64, this resolution disapproving the joint comprehensive plan of action, the nuclear deal reached between iran and six world powers, that has support of nuclear experts, military personnel, atomic energy experts and the unanimous support of the national security council which voted 15-0 in favor of the deal. i very much believe this deal is in the best interest of the united states and international
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security because it stands up very well as a barrier to proliferation for at least 15 years and it establishes an in trucive inspections regime to ensure that iran's program remains heavily monitored and exclusively peaceful. i also believe it was the best agreement that could have been reach reached. the argument from prime minister benjamin netanyahu and the house republican leadership supporting this resolution, that a better deal is possible ignores their own views of the iranian regime. these critics describe the regime as a whollyin transgent one, bent on regional domination and unwilling to show any accommodation. given this depiction, what basis do they have for saying that somehow iran could have been persuaded to concede even more
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than they did. the other alternative, which i believe many of the agreements critics prefer, is an attack on iran, led by our country. the first thing that must be said about this is that every expert agrees that short of an american occupation of iran, nothing could prevent an iranian nuclear capacity. the war on iraq that president bush initiated was a single biggest disaster any american president ever caused. war with iran would be far worse. mr. chairman and members, i chaired a committee of the house opposing the war in iraq. and as we look back and reflect on the loss of life over 1,000 american soldiers and the costs of that war, i think we can all agree, it was a mistake.
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if we fail to understand the significance and the importance of this agreement, and we in any way attempt to walk away, and isolate ourselves, it would be perhaps the biggest mistake this country has ever made. without this deal, we would very quickly face the unparallel choice between allowing iranians to continue its march toward a nuclear capability, or using military force to temporarily stop it. let's be clear about one thing. if congress rejects this deal, it will not lead to a better one. if the united states walks away, we walk away alone. the harsh international sanctions against iran that have been in place for over a decade were able to get iran to the negotiating table but economic
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sanctions alone have not prevented iran from continuing to pursue a nuclear capability. in fact, history suggests that continued economic pressure will not force iran to agree to everything we might want, despite harsh sanctions and isolation, north korea still became a nuclear weapons state, crippling sanctions on iraq still did not lead to sadam relenting to u.s. demand, even under the threat of invasion. there is no guarantee that even powerful sanctions an the threat of ford will lead iran to eliminate all aspects of its nuclear program and plenty of reason to think that perhaps it will not. instead, the united states will have broken from its european allies. the necessary international support for iran related sanctions will likely erode. iran would be able to rapidly expand its capacity to produce bomb-grade materials and we would lose out on securing
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enhanced inspections needed to detect a clandestine weapons effort. in other words, the risk of a nuclear armed iran would significantly increase. this deal deserves support because it is a well built agreement that has iran conceding that they will not pursue nuclear weapons, it is significantly constraining iranian nuclear efforts for more than 15 years and gives nuclear inspectors unprecedented access. iran must prove that its nuclear program is peaceful. if it fails to do so with this deal, the united states will have all of the tools it does now have in the future. and so, if i can just wrap this up by again reiterating to all of you, that we all have an opportunity to be a part of a
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significant, important agreement. we all have an opportunity to be recorded in history, the way i think we would like to be recorded. that we joined hands in an effort to bring about peace. i am more than optimistic that we can do this. i'm more than optimistic that we can begin to rely on the young people in iran, many of whom have demonstrated that they too want peace, and that the ayatollah and others who have sent a different kind of message around the world, consistently, will not be in control forever. and it is up to us to have a vision for this possibility. and i want to be recorded that way. and i thank you for allowing me to be here at the rules
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committee today to be able to say one more time that i support this agreement. >> thank you very much. mr. chairman, you began talking about, and it's been a discussion today about the process that we know that the president did prefer to walk around congress. not needing, thinking he needed the congress involved. i am of a belief that something this big would involve, should involve congressional input and dialogue. and that is really what the corker bill was about. and can you tell us, real quickly, how did the corker bill ensure that congress has the ability to block this deal and why we're here is relevant to, i believe your committee and the four other committees of jurisdiction and why we're here today at this committee. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i would just make the observation that congress registered its concerns very
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early in this process. and in a bipartisan way. because if we think back to the legislation that i and eliot engel originally authored and tried to push in terms of this negotiation, that legislation, which passed this house 400-20 -- 400-20, and then blocked over in the senate, at the request of the administration, and could not come up, that would have given the ayatollah a choice between economic collapse or real compromise on his nuclear agreement. and i want to get to this point. the president offers a false choice between this agreement or war. even a supporter of the deal testified in front of the committee that i chair that, i wouldn't say if you were opposed to this deal that somehow that leads to war. i think that is false, said the witness on the behalf of the administration.
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it is false. it is false. indeed, the country's top military office, the chairman of the joint chiefs, recently testified in front of congress disputing the assertion that it was this deal or war. noting that the united states would have a range of options, what are those options? the most important one, the most important option that we had, the most effective sanctions against iran have always been those that give companies and countries a choice to do business with iran or the united states, and that indeed, is the premise of the legislation that we had passed 400-20. that is what we wanted to put into play. when given such a choice, which would still be possible to do, if congress rejects this agreement, then the result, in every case we've seen in the past, is companies and countries choose the united states. they do not choose to do business and lock themselves out of our market.
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the obama administration has never liked sanctions. they fought vigorously to oppose sanctions targeting the iran central bank in december of 2011. then, as they are now, the obama administration claimed that imposing these sanctions would divide the international coalition and leave the united states alone in the world. i'll remind you, that didn't happen when we hung tough in 2011, when congress pushed for those sanctions and we got that set of sanctions through. indeed, that is why iran is even at the table. so, businesses and in particular banks, will be hesitant to put a premium on the iranian market if that means getting shut out of the united states. i think all of us understand that. that is the power of the united states financial markets. that is the potential damage of reputational risk to any company that makes that decision. that is the power that we in congress wanted to deploy in this negotiation. and that is what the administration did not deploy,
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flat out, by blocking the legislation that i andel yont engel passed out of this house. so while maintaining a united sanctions front as congress rejects the nuclear agreement will be difficult, it will be easier to do so today than five years from now when iran is caught cheating and a sanctions regime must be reconstructed because i guarantee you, based on past behavior, they will be caught cheating. would i would -- so i would ask you, would you sooner deploy a treat now to force them to open up with a program where you can have verifiable inspections, going back to reagan's quote, which was actually an old russian saying, right, trust but verify. the verification is the part where we both agree, we don't trust iran. it is the verification program that is missing here. and that is what gives us -- many issues that gives us such
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great qualms in moving forward with something that would allow the iranians to do their own verification and bring that to the united nations. for all of those verification. for all of those reasons we felt congress should be involved in negotiating this agreement, and why we're very disappointed that oh, the letter we sent on the committee, 84% of the members of this house signed that letter for the four issues that we wanted in this agreement. and not one of those issues is in the agreement. anywhere, any time informations, not there. don't lift the sanctions up front. hold them for the duration of the agreement to make sure that we have compliance. not there. the answers to the 12 questions from the iaea for which we have a thousand pages of evidence, not -- not there. the request that this be multiple decades not there.
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something we never envisioned. they add lifting the arms embargo on iran so iran will have the ability to move forward with its icbm program as well as transferring conventional arms to hezbollah and hamas. it -- i've never seen anything negotiated as poorly as this agreement. and that's why we're here today, mr. chairman. >> mr. chairman, could i just comment briefly? >> yes, sir. >> i have a a meeting at 6:00. i just need to keep. could i just take a couple of minutes? >> the gentleman would like a couple more minutes? would this be an opening statement or would this be to reply to a question? >> i asked if i could comment on -- >> you would like to reply to the same question. the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you. it's sometimes said that the administration fought the sanctions throughout. that's not true. i was involved in many of the
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discussions about sanctions. and if anybody wants to raise that question, i suggest that they talk to howard berman. it's not true. there were differences of opinion about the nature of the sanctions in some respect. it is incorrect to say that this administration opposed sanctions against iran. it's not true. and i just want to say one other word about this notion that we'll be stronger turning this down in terms of sanctions. i don't know of any responsible person who has looked at this who has the background in it who says that. i just suggest that you look at the testimony of secretary jack lew. he just refutes this notion that
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if we turn this down, we can on our own effectively impose a stronger sanctions regime. that's fallacious. we would walk alone, as mr. scowcroft has said and colin powell has said. the notion that we have the financial power when already other nations have begun to undertake some further economic work with iran, it's -- it's an illusion. it's an illusion. because so many of the sanctions would disappear. the other countries would not participate. and the ministers from the other countries have said very clearly to us that this notion that you can turn this down and have a stronger set of sanctions is
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something that is imaginary. i appreciate the chance to answer your question. we'll have a full debate on this for hours, as many as you allow. we'll have a full debate about this. mr. royce will have a chance to raise these points, and we'll be fully prepared to answer them. >> but if the gentleman would yield, part of this is personal for me because one of those bills was my bill. and when you say the president did not oppose sanctions, it was my -- if you would yield, it was my legislation. it did pass 400-20. it passed unanimously through the committee. and yes, the president and the secretary of state opposed it every step of the way. and managed to block it in the senate. so for me, my personal experience is one of -- one of not being able to convince the
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administration that putting additional pressure on iran with sanctions would be helpful. and the conclusion i reached is one that was shared by the vast majority of this house at the time. >> if you look -- if i take back my time -- >> excuse me just a minute. i appreciate the gentlemen having a discussion back and forth. yes, sir? thank you very much. i want to be respectful to all three of you to get the things out that you wanted to respond to a question. my last point that i'd like to make is simply this. the question that this will lead to war. and i think i have a tendency to understand that the american foreign policy i believe since the dropping of the bomb has been the belief that fewer countries should have access to nuclear weapons. we've spent a great deal of time
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trying to watch that, the proliferation that might occur, whether it was the soviet union or other nations as they go through their ups and downs. and that it defies my logic that we would just automatically say but you can have it in 15 years. when we've tried to do everything we can do to not do that. and it seems like to me that when negotiation fails, that's when you get war. i believe that to have any country that threatens our allies or americans, that it is in our best interests, mr. chairman, to make sure that we're doing what we can to protect this country. and i believe it's a capitulation and giving in to that. and so i have answered the question myself. i believe this is about making iran the strongest person in the
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middle east. and that comes against conventional wisdom. i don't understand that. and i'm worried about that. >> chairman, if i could respond to that, again, to quote the chairman of the joint chiefs, as he said, it is -- it does not -- it does not mean that we would have a military. conflict. he said that the united states has a range of options. he did not think it meant that. he thinks that it doesn't mean war. but what it does mean is rolling up our sleeves and turning up the economic pressure on the regime and on the regime supporters in negotiating a better agreement that advances the national security interests of the united states and our allies and our partners. but that is something that we will bebait as we go forward. >> well, my point was in the negotiations, we gave it to them. if we didn't want them to have it, it would resort the war. thank you very much. >> right.
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we're not opposed to diplomacy. we're just against bad diplomacy. and that's what we're going to debate. >> i think this gives up to diplomacy. the gentleman? >> to be excused. >> mr. levin, you did tell me you had things you had to do. >> and i appreciate the time. >> we appreciate you very much. thank you very much. >> thanks. >> yes, sir. ms williams, will you stay? >> thank you. i want to thank the chairman of the committee, foreign affairs for being here with us and thank ms. waters for being here with us also. mr. chairman, most of us here today agree the united states cannot tolerate a nuclear regime in iran. unfortunately, president obama and his allies have spent the
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past two months vilifying as warmongerers those who are deeply concerned as i am that this deal may postpone but will not prevent iran from gaining nuclear weapons. that is unfortunate rhetoric for those who themselves stated if you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care. before the final deal was announced, i spoke on the house familiar about my concerns that inspectors from the international atomic energy agency would have limited access to key sites under untenable bureaucratic terms. given what we know about the text of the deal itself, from the text of the deal itself, what we have learned about the agreement between iran and the iaea, these concerns are well-founded. in addition to allowing iran to continue and enhance its nuclear capabilities, this deal lifts
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crucial economic sanctions, allowing billions of dollars to flow into the iranian economy. it is expected that much of this windfall estimated to exceed 100 billion will pass through iran's economy to entity likes hezbollah, which is dedicated itself to war with israel since the early 1980s. mr. royce, your discussion with the chairman makes it clear a wealthier, more militarized iran poses a significant threat to the stability of our allies in the region, especially to our friend israel. given the ayatollah's continued public incitement of violence against israel, what steps can congress take in tandem with disapproval of the joint agreement to bolster israel's security and instability in the middle east?
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>> well, representative foxx, let me share with you my concerns in terms of what i saw up close on the basis of iran's transfer. >> your microphone. >> on the basis of iran's transfer of military capability to hezbollah. in 2006, when i was chairman of the terrorist subcommittee, anti-terrorism subcommittee, we were in haifa when it was being shelled by the hezbollah regime. and at this point, quds forces were on the ground. iranian forces were assisting. they maybe had 10,000 rockets and missiles in the inventory. in haifa, they were slamming these missiles. each one had 90,000 ball embargoes, into the center of town. there were 600 victims in the trauma hospital. going to prevent iran from building on the tragedy that we've already witnessed, the first question is this.
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we've already shown an incapacity to stop iran from transferring what was 10,000 rockets, and now is 80,000. but this is the recent statement that the iranian government has made. they now say what we need to do is to transfer, and this would be a violation, right, of the old arms embargo. but it's one of the reasons they wanted that lifted. they want to transfer to hezbollah the gps capability, or the ability to direct these missiles so they can be fired precisely at a given target. no longer will they just slam into the center of town. now they can hit the airport, or they can hit a skyscraper in tel aviv. or they can hit jerusalem at a specific location. that's the capability the iranian regime is trying to transfer. it's hard to do it when you don't have the resources. but boy, if you lift $100 billion worth of money that is held in escrow, and that goes into the hands of the irgc, then
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they're going have that capability. they've also it was reported in "the wall street journal," iran is looking to rebuild the tunnels. myself and eliot engel were in one of the tunnels there is 33 that were discovered. they need to be rebuilt according to the eyes the irgc in iran. so that government is offering to rebuild those tunnels for hamas, resupply hamas with weapons. and the question i have is in the middle of this negotiation, you have the head of the quds forces who personally led a raid into israel, who helped overthrow the government in yemen, win over allies, who has led forces in syria and in iraq, who has killed 500 americans, this individual reportedly made a trip over to russia in order
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to talk with russian officials. i wonder what he wanted. one of the things we know he wants is greater capability in offensive weaponry, missiles and otherwise. and now the russians are talking about sending to iran new missiles. those are the types of weapons that iran would like to put in the hands of hezbollah. and now that they're in syria, by the way, they're on the border and recently iran has been charged with firing missiles from syria into israel. so what i see here is a need to really focus on the fact that this tranche of cash into the hands of the military leaders in iran and the quds forces on the ground that help hezbollah is going to give them the opportunity to open up in very short order a new front. so if this goes through and the sanctions are lifted, and the arms embargo is lifted, these
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are the worries i think we have. but by the way, it's not just israel. i'll just remind you, our friends in the region, it wasn't just yemen that fell. jordan has concerns. the gulf states have concerns. egypt has to live with all the money that iran puts into the hands of the muslim brotherhood. so think about where this money is going to go and how many of our friends and allies are going to be threatened as a result. >> mr. chairman, i know we are spending a lot of time here today. and i'll ask one more quick question if i might. the administration has assured us that some u.s. sanctions will remain in place, like those related to iran's deplorable human rights violations. in your view, mr. royce, how effective will these remaining sanctions be in altering iran's behavior? >> well, think about this, if you will. members of the rules committee. iran takes the lives of about
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2500 of its citizens every year. you hear about the cases in even prison and the torture and the killings. those are ones who have religious views that differ from the regime. think about the four americans that have been held by iran and the fact that they're not released. so we had one measure of leverage besides the drop in the price of oil, and that was the sanctions that we were holding on iran. that gave us if we were to double down on the sanctions and make it harder on iran, that gave us our best hope of changing the behavior of that regime. who now will be empowered when we lift the sanctions? as i said before, who controls in iran? the bank accounts, theirs is not a free economy. the ayatollahs, the clerics and the commanders of the irgc of their military are the ones that
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control the major companies because after the '79 revolution, they were transferred to those individuals. so as the money courses in, as the money goes through the society, they are the ones with the leverage. up until now, iran has been on the ropes. now lift the sanctions, a and those individuals will be empowered. and unfortunately, they're true believers in terms of their cause. when they say death to america, when they say death to israel, and you saw rouhani himself marching in the street, this is a story that "the new york times" carried. they said the crowd behind were saying "death to america." the signs in front of him, "death to israel." they quote rouhani and they ask him how does the future look. he says with this deal the future looks very bright. wouldn't it have been better if we at least had gotten them to change their rhetoric in terms of their threats?
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talk about telegraphing a punch. i mean, the iranian regime has been very clear in terms of its objectives since 1979. and the neighbors countries can attest to the fact that they're not only destabilizing the region, they have very real designs on what they would like to do in those neighborhoods in terms of sowing terror. and they prove they can do it whenever they can get their hands on hard currency. they're going have a lot more hard currency unfortunately if this deal goes through. >> thank you. thank you, mr. chairman. mrs. slaughter, you're recognized. >> thank you, madam chairman. i would like to ask consent of administrative policy. >> without objection. >> and i would like to read and let the administration speak for itself here this afternoon. the administration strongly opposes, as we all know, and it just talks about who is in the p5 plus 1. it would effectively block the
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international community from peacefully and verifiablebly preventing iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, would allow for the resumption of the unconstrain and unchecked iranian nuclear program, and would lead to the unraveling of the international sanctions regime that was sustained because the administration sought to diplomatically resolve concerns regarding iran's nuclear program. further enactment of this resolution would deal a devastating blow to america's credibility as a leader of diplomacy and could ultimately result in the exhaustion of alternatives to military action. if this resolution were enacted, the hard work of sustaining a unified coalition to combat iran's destabilizing activities in the region would be much more difficult, as would america's ability to lead the world on nuclear nonproliferation. preventing iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon has ban top priority of the united states and the administration. it's been a long-standing policy
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to retain all options to achieve that objective, including possible military options. at the same time, the administration has worked diligently with the congress and our international partners to achieve a peaceful diplomatic solution, recognizing that a negotiated understanding offers a more effective, a verifiable and durable resolution. jcpoa achieves this by reinforcing the prohibition against iran obtaining a nuclear weapon. a verifiablebly cutting off all of iran's potential pathways to a nuclear weapon and instituting the most comprehensive inspection and verification regime ever neglected to a nuclear program. jcpoa makes the united states and the world safer by removing the gravest threat that iran could pose to the middle east, including israel and our gulf partners. the jcpoa if faithfully
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implemented would very final cut off through a plutonium pathway or through a potential covert plan. iran is bound under the treaty of nonproliferation of nuclear weapons to never seek a nuclear weapon and jcpoa provides the tools to ensure that iran cannot use a peaceful program as a cover to pursue a nuclear weapon. jcpoa is not based on trust, but on an unprecedented inspections, monitoring and transparency regime. under the jcpoa there will be 24/7 monitoring of iran's key nuclear facilities. inspectors will be able to get timely access to the places they need to go for inspections or iran will be in violation of the jcpoa and risk the reimposition of sanctions which let me add would probably only be possible if we have this treaty, or this
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agreement rather. because the other nations in this agreement would not go along with reinstating sanctions. and they have said so. for decades, the inspectors will have access to iran's entire nuclear supply chain from the uranium mines and mills to the centrifuge production facilities. and this means in order for iran to covertly acquire a nuclear weapon, it would need to build an entirely separate undetected nuclear supply chain. the jcpoa also facilitates the international accom mick energy agency to complete its report on the possible military dimensions of iran's 2003 program. it also ensures that iran has powerful incentives to keep its nuclear agreements. before getting phased relief from secondary sanction, iran has to complete all of the major nuclear steps which will extend the amount of time it would take iran to acquire enough material
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from the one weapon from the current two to three months to at least a year. for example, the core of iran's heavywater reactor will be pulled out and filled with concrete, rendering it unable to produce plutonium that co. be used to create a weapon. 2/3 of its nearly 20,000 currently installed centrifuges will be removed. its current stockpile of enriched uranium will be enriched by 98%. and it must put in place the monitoring surveillance and access measures that will ensure the ability to verify that its nuclear program is used exclusively for peaceful purposes going forward. if iran fails to abide by jcpoa commitments, all relieved sanctions both unilateral and multilateral can snap back into place. the administration is fully committed to continuing to brief and closely consult the congress as we work with our
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international partners to ensure successful implementation of the jcpoa. as we address our concerns with iran's nuclear program, the administration remains clear-eyed and shares the deep concerns of the congress and the american people about iran's support for terrorism. its destabilizing role in the region, its human right ace bayouses. and that is why we will continue to vigorously enforce our sanctions against these activities and work closely with our partners in the region to counter them. using a range of unilateral and multilateral tools. the jcpoa must be assessed by what it achieves on its central goal of preventing iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. and the administration urges the congress to fully consider the stakes for our national security of walking away from the international community. without the jcpoa in place, iran would likely resume the advancement of its nuclear program without any of the
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constraints or transparency required by this deal, and without the international unity of our sanctions regime, which would be the worst of all possible worlds, leaving us in a position of weakness, not strength. the president has made it clear that he will veto any legislation that prevents the successful implementation of jcpoa if the president were presented with hres-64. he would veto the resolution. and i yield back my time. thank you very much. mr. cole, you're recognized. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to begin by thanking both our members from being here. i especially want to thank the chairman who i think has been particularly astute. and i want to pause it a couple of things up-front before i ask my questions. first, i don't question anybody's motives in this debate. i really don't. quite frankly, on the president's side, look, about
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two out of every three people that have an opinion in the country are against this deal. and most americans think -- i saw another poll today that if a majority of congress disapproves as it likely will, that the president shouldn't veto that. so -- and, you know, from the president's the future of democratic leader in the senate is opposed to this deal. is the former democratic chairman of the senate foreign relations committee is opposed to this deal. i believe both the current ranking members of the senate and the house foreign affairs committee, both democrats obviously are opposed to this deal. so if you're willing to push ahead under that, then you certainly must believe in the deal. so i don't have any doubt that the president believes in what he is doing. and i don't have any doubt the secretary believes in what he is doing. i also want to posit the same thing is true on the other side. we've heard a lot of rhetoric
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out of the white house that republican opposition is simply partisan obstructionism. they were singing a little different tune six weeks ago when trade promotion authority got passed overwhelmingly by republican votes to give what the president to that point had been his biggest foreign policy victory of the year. and frankly, if he negotiates successfully deals and transpacific partnership and the equivalent agreement with our european friends, it will probably be overwhelmingly republican votes that pass that if he chooses to submit an agreement. so to suggest the republicans aren't willing to support the president simply because there is a partisan difference is wrong. i think they have demonstrated -- or isn't kret correct. they have demonstrated repeatedly they're willing to support him if they think he is right. which i assume is true for our democratic members who opposed him on the trade issue because they thought he was wrong. i don't doubt their motives. but they didn't support, quote, the president for partisan
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reasons. i would hope they would grant we're not opposing him today for partisan reasons. there are a lot of things about this agreement that cause me a great deal of concern. mr. chairman, i want to adjust my first question to you. there have been all sorts of news reports about secret side deals between iran and the international atomic energy agency. have those agreements been fully  to those agreements been fully the country. does the administration even have detailed knowledge about those agreements? >> i have asked for those agreements in writing, the two side agreements, and no. we have not received them, mr. cole. >> in your opinion, could those agreements materially impact whether or not this is a good agreement or not? >> if we go to the issue of self-inspections, i had always presumed that international
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inspectors would be doing the international inspections. and given the erosion of the original concept of anywhere, any time inspections to first 24 hours, and then as michael hayden, former head of the cia explained, into a position where it becomes a political decision, not a technical one, in which iran has a say, russia has a say, china has a say in terms of access, i think a debate about that mechanism for verification is one that could have an impact ovuzt members' decisions, about whether or not this will be effective in preventing iran from obtaining a weapon. >> would -- is there any reason to believe that the international atomic energy agency or the iranian government
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would make these agreements public, so we would all know what the nature of the inspection regime is, who can come, who can't come, under what conditions? >> and that is why i wrote to the white house asking that they be made public. and i don't see any reason why they shouldn't be so that they can be part of this debate. >> do you know if the administration has asked the international atomic energy agency and the iranian government to make them public? >> i do not know the answer to that. >> i would certainly hope that they would. and if they haven't, to this point, that they do. let me move to another part of the agreement that we know a little bit more about. and that's the easing of sanctions in terms of the financial windfall that will come the iranian regime. as i understood it when we initially announced and the president initially announced our objectives in the negotiations, things were supposed to be linked so that as confidence was accumulated, that the iranians were keeping their word, sanctions would be gradually easing there would be
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a sort of process of quid pro quo as that unfolded. is that indeed the nature of the agreement today? >> i think one of the things we ran into is the attitude of the military in iran, which early on boasted that they're not going to give access to the military sites for inspection. they're not going to have that in their dreams, to quote the irgc leadership. so what evolved was a situation where because we weren't going to achieve the original goals that we sought in terms of -- because it evolved into managed access and then this question of side agreements, iran just held its position and said no, we want all the sanctions lifted. and the very real question is how then do you verify that iran is keeping its side of the
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agreement? as michael hayden said, the worry we always had was not just the facility we might want to look at, but all the facilities where they might be doing additional work that we couldn't gain access so. so we end up with self-inspections on the iranian side of the equation, and we end up giving ground in terms of lifting the sanctions without having that verification. so i think it goes right to the conundrum that you point out, mr. cole. >> let me -- and you alluded to this. can you give us some idea of what the people in the region, the effect of friends and allies of the united states, what has their reaction been? >> i received a call from the ambassador from the uae who indicated that their government was no longer -- no longer felt
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bound by the agreement which we call the gold standard on nonproliferation, which the uae had signed. and he indicated to us that in his words, your worst enemy has achieved this right to enrich. it's a right to enrich now that your friends are going to want too. and we won't be the only country. so i've heard a critique of this on an ongoing basis. myself and my ranking member have had lunch with the representative of saudi arabia. we've heard from the leadership of all five political parties, main parties in israel, from labor, from the center left, from center right, we've heard from the governments in lebanon about their concern. let me just frankly say that as this process went along, we heard concerns from those in the
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region who feel that iran might become the hedgemon in that region, especially with the lifting of sanctions. we heard their worries about the lifting of sanctions. >> so that could suggest that this could easily ignite an arms race of sorts in the middle east from our friends who feel somewhat abandoned or at least vulnerable. >> we've had much testimony, mr. cole, before the committee about those who are concerned, that we had a nonproliferation regime to which now iran has carved out an exception. and what then will be the reaction? we already know the reaction from the united arab emirates, from that conversation the ambassador had with me. but who else will follow down that road? and that is why it's very important when you have a negotiation to remember that the end goal here is to have
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something which really could control the right to enrich and also the verification. >> one of the things that concerns me about this. i'll try to be quick, because i know my colleagues have many questions too. we hear a lot of comparisons between the reagan negotiation with the old soviet union and this one. and it strikes me that the key difference was at reykjavik, ronald reagan got up and walked out. he said the deal isn't good enough. and lo and behold, we had a deal later that was good enough. unfortunately, i think that critical moment was probably in april of this last year when the deadline for the negotiation was up. and i think had the president said everybody's negotiated in good faith. we just can't agree, but we're9a leaving but the sanctions of course stay. if you want to change your mind and call, we'd be happy to come back to the table and sit back with you and see if we can find a way forward.
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i think that was really a critical order. if you're extending the deadline, you're the guy making the concessions. >> mr. cole, they think was a fundamental error in judgment. because instead by lifting at a time when iran was on the ropes, by lifting sanctions by $700 million a month, that gave iran the breathing room then and the confidence to believe that if they waited this out, maybe they did not need to give concessions. and it was not just on that front, but also the transfer of, you know, the gold sales from turkey. there were areas where iran was beginning to test, to see what would we do to prevent iran from busting sanctions. and in a situation like that, if you don't do what reagan did, you know, show your resolve, as he showed his resolve in walking away from reykjavik until he got a better deal, if instead you give in and you start to lift the sanctions and you say okay,
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you've got the right to enrich in the meantime, fair deal would have been to say okay, you shut down your enrichment and we'll give you something in return. but ultimately out of that unfortunate situation we lost the pressure for the right to enrich. but it wasn't just that we lost in the negotiation. because as we went forward, we got rolled on every one of those four issues that i raised. and then amazingly, at the 11th hour, russia came to iran's side in this debate and said by the way, we also want the arms embargo itself lifted on icbm technology as well as regular conventional arms. and they got that in the negotiation. risks you aware -- and this would be speculative, and you might not be able to answer definitively. but i appreciate your opinion on it because it's well informed. were there any gains from april that we signed the deal in july?
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did the deal somehow get better for us? i can certainly see a number of ways it god better along the way or to the iranians. it's very different from the objectives that the president announced at the beginning of the negotiation. but are there areas that we seem to get the upper hand in if any? >> mr. cole, i did not see any areas where i felt we were gaining ground. and this goes to the issue that i and mr. ingle and my committee brought up in the prior congress when we suggested that if we had additional leverage on iran, if we had passed that legislation, which would have cut iran's access, you know, to its financial sector and actually give the ayatollah that tough choice between real compromise on his nuclear program or economic collapse, that that was the leverage we needed at a time when iran was fighting a real financial problem with hyperinflation, very high
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unemployment, the price of oil going down. that was the time to leverage. but the administration did not want to put that additional leverage on. and despite a bipartisan vote of 400-20 in the house, they blocked that legislation in the senate. so i think we lost our opportunity to leverage for what we needed in the agreement. >> well, i'm going yield back time. >> mr. -- sir, before you. >> certainly. i would be happy. >> because i've got the answer to one of your quirks yes, ma'am. >> my intrepid staff back here has given this to me. about the question about the side agreements with iaea, there is no secret side deal hiding loopholes to the nuclear agreement with iran. iran has the same sort of agreements with iaea that the united states has. iran is a party to the nuclear nonproliferation treaty. so it has so-called and quote safeguards agreement with the iaea that contains among other things verification protocols
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agreed to by iaea and iran. the iaea has these safeguard agreements with 180 countries, including us. we have one of our own. each one of them are separate. these extremely sensitive agreements, including the usa's agreement with iaea are all confidential because if they were public, none of the 180 countries would agree to iaea oversight. if lawmakers from iran ask the iaea to see the safeguards agreement with the united states, the iaea director general amano would say no, and he did the same when he told our lawmakers that he could not show them iran's agreement. >> reclaiming my time. >> thank you for yielding. >> absolutely. >> i would just point out there is a big difference between the united states which hasn't violated the nonproliferation agreement and iran that has repeatedly violated. that's why there was a
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negotiation. because they had been in violation repeatedly on this. so the idea that they should have the same treatment as people who have kept their immigrant and kept their word is suspect to me. regardless, at the end of the day, you know, i think it has to be made available, because this is all about a country that has repeatedly broken its word and not kept its commitments. so that would suggest you need to have a little extra insurance on our side. >> have it unilaterally. >> i didn't say unilaterally. i think the iranian government frankly ought to disclose it. i think the iaea in this case, it's a little different. this is a country that has broken its agreement. so we're saying should it have all the privileges under this that everybody has that keeps their word. and i'm sorry. i just don't have that kind of
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confidence in the people in tehran, the regime. so that's my concern. let me yield back, if i may. but i just want to thank my friend the chairman. and i want to thank your ranking member as well for the manner which you both have conducted yourself through this. and the hearing. it's been informative. it's been helpful to those of us that are not on your committee. and again, look forward to hearing more in the days ahead. so with that, mr. chairman, i yield back. >> chair, thanks to the gentleman. the chair yields back. the chair recognizes the gentleman from massachusetts. >> thank you very much. let me say from the outset i support this deal. and i think it's a good deal. for one important reason, it blocks all of iran's pathways to a nuclear weapon. that's what this deal was supposed to be about. in this negotiation, by the way, stopped the progress on iran's nuclear program. if it wasn't for this negotiation iran would probably have the bomb by now.
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and then we would be talking about some really awful alternatives here today. i just also think it's worth repeating that all 15 members of the u.n. security council and the six members of the gulf cooperation council including saudi arabia also support the agreement as the most effective method in preventing a nuclear armed iran. and i'd like to ask unanimous content to put in the record a letter signed by more than 100 american ambassadors, including five former ambassadors to israel in support of the deal. i'd like to also issue a consent to put in support a record that was sent to all of us by 77 nuclear nonproliferation experts who have been advisers to both republican and democratic administrations. >> without objection. >> also, a letter we should have received from 32 of the nation's top scientists, including nobel laureates, veteran makers of nuclear arms and former white house science advisers who wrote
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a letter in support of this deal. and also a letter that was sent to us by 4,100 u.s. catholic sisters throughout the united states in support of this deal. look, i don't trust iran. i think this -- i think the verification measures in this agreement are solid. and i think that's reflected by the expert opinion that is coming out in support of this deal. i also should just say for this record, i don't trust iran, i don't think the iranians have a lot of trust for us either. and when you look at our history in iran from a cia overthrow of their government in the 1950s to our collaboration with our then friend saddam hussein in the late 1980s when we shared intelligence with him which he then used to use sarin gas against iranian soldiers. i mean, i think there is a lot
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of history with us that provides a lot of skepticism in iran with regard to anything we do. so neither of us trusts one another. and that is precisely why we need an agreement like this that is verified. and i think the administration deserves credit. and look, i think everybody on this committee has made up their mind on how they're going to vote on this. i think the point of this committee is to make sure that there is ample time for robust debate so that everybody can make their views known and engage in that debate. and i surely would support that i hope we have as much debate as humanely possible. because i think it is important for people on both sides to be able to state their opinion. but, again, i would close by saying, you know, i'm going to proudly support this agreement and vote against the resolution approval because i think it's in the interests of the united states. i think it is in the interests of israel. i think it is the interests of
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the world to prevent iran for getting a nuclear weapon. and i think this is our best chance of getting it. wand that i yield back my time. >> the gentleman yields back. the chair thanks the gentleman. thank you, mr. chairman, and thank you for being with us for so long this evening. it's easy to listen to your testimony and thank that your mind is made up about this issue and has been made up about this issue. i know you will not toot your own horn. but it's not as if you just focused on this in 2015. you did lead 80% of this house in trying to get a better -- encouraging the president to get a better agreement this year. but you did that very same thing last year. and you did that very same thing in 2013. it has been year after year after year after year that you have been trying to be a productive force in this conversation. i want to read just in case other folks won't, your letter from this year that, again, on behalf of more than 80% of the house said we hope the administration is able to
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achieve a lasting and meaningful agreement. to suggest that this is a happy day for folks disagree with so many of the president's policies is -- is far from true from day one on issues of international concern. you have tried to be a partner with this white house and lead the white house. and again, done so on behalf of the vast majority of this congress. i'm much less concerned about the so-called 24-day clock on known sites. i'm concerned about the 24-day clock on unknown sites. when you talk about a meaningful agreement, when we talk about the iaea, if i go back to your letter from 2015 you site that the iaea was looking for 12 different sets of information from iran. and at the time that you penned that letter, iran had only complied with one of those 12 requests. it's not as if the history of noncompliance is something from the 1970s or the 1980s.
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it's from spring of 2015 and is ongoing. as i read the agreement, and again, what this congress asked for was a meaningful and long lasting agreement we can discard long lasting because ten years is ten years. and we no long lasting is not here. in terms of meaningful, when an unknown site is identified, the u.s.ifieds this through our intelligence committee. we go to the iaea, this third party group and say we believe there is something worth looking at here. what happens? what happens next? >> and that's part of our concern here. because this now becomes a political decision rather than a technical decision. you would hope that the iaea would simply have the right then to go inspect the site. but having had the precedent already set that, you know, core samples are going to be taken by the iranians themselves and turned over to the iaea, what
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that means is in the future, you're going to have not that anywhere, any time inspection. not that 24-hour inspection, but you'll have at the outset a 24-day process, a process in which the iranians are going to have a say, in which russia and china will have a say. out of the seven-party deliberations, which will occur. and if one of the european partners decide it's not worth it to press the issue of violations because it might force a reimposition of sanctions, they'll have their fourth vote out of seven. so this is constructed in such a way in my judgment as to be of maximum advantage to the military in iran. and the other point i would make is that yes, it's easier to get access to civilian sites, but it was always the military sites where we were most concerned.
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because it was always the military sites where like parchon, they had done their bomb work in the past. and it was the military sites they were most vociferous about never allowing international inspectors in. so yes, they'll try to self-police those sites. and they'll do so apparently without coming clean on the 12 questions that were asked. they answered as you said the first part of one of those questions. but the rest of the answers they refused to give. to date, anyway. so how do we know how far they have gotten on their bomb work? the original insistence, one of the reasons we pushed this whole case was to try to get those answers. and for them to come out the other side of this agreement without coming clean on what they have done in their development of their foundation for their nuclear program is beyond me signing off on something like that. so there is another side agreement where the iaea
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apparently will reach some kind of a concurrence with iran. but one which will not printed. and again, to go back to the point, the reason iran is being treated differently i would say is because there aren't too many states in the world where the ayatollah or the head of state attends rallies in which they say yes, death to america. death to israel, and so forth. >> mr. chairman, i just want to be on the record. chairman royce from the very beginning tried to bring us together around this issue at every opportunity. he tried to play a constructive role in this. and to have him now as the lone witness sitting at the table having to speak out against this agreement because it fails to meet those important goals that he set out early on in
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cooperation with all of us is disappointing. i would argue if we had more chairman royces in congress, we had more folks trying to play that productive bipartisan, collaborative role up-front, ewould have fewer contentious rules committee meetings. and it is so disappointing to have seen so much work and so much opportunity lost in this particular moment. i thank the chairman. i yield back. mr. chairman? >> thank you so much. and let the record reflect we do appreciate the gentleman being here, taking his afternoon, and will continue this push to see if we can get you on one vote tonight. and we're about halfway through that but we'll keep you informed accordingly. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> i'll welcome back all 12 of the members. i apologize for not being here earlier. i stated my opposition to this agreement throughout the summer. and there are a plethora of reasons. and i won't bore all you, the
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chairman of the foreign affairs committee or anyone else. but i'm at the point now where i believe that we would be wise to consider what to do after this agreement is in force. and so beginning in july, i wrote to the president calling for a high level military person to be involved in monitoring the monitors of the inspections or regime. and toward that end, i believe it would be helpful if staffers from the relevant committees, particularly energy, foreign affairs, the state department, the defense department would be sequestered to such an individual or individuals for purposes of attending to just
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that. one of the things that offends me highly is the fact that no american citizen is going to be directly involved in the inspections or regime. and i don't think that's right. and that is not even close to a reason. it's among the reasons that i choose to oppose this. additionally, today i filed legislation introducing a regulation, authorizing military force against iran if necessary to prevent it from on tang nuclear weapons. too many areas of nebulousness, and i believe in this instance that it would be helpful if iran clearly understood muscularity. and that this president or any successor, if they did not follow along with this agreement
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would have the authority to take whatever necessary military actions to stop them. i have a variety of reasons. i'll have many opportunities to speak during the course of the week. mr. chairman, my only request would be of the rules committee. and that is that we give sufficient time for there to be a robust debate so that all sides, all members will have an opportunity to offer input. i yield back the balance of my time. >> yes, sir. thank you very much. the gentleman from texas, dr. burgess. >> thank you, mr. chairman. it is unusual when the gentleman from florida and i agree. but i would echo his statement that i hope we allow ample time for debate for this because it is so important. and mr. chairman, i just have to ask you, we have all come home from our districts in august. and the question i got over and over again, why is this -- why is this being handled the way it
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is and not as would be directed by article 2, section 2, second paragraph, where this would be a treaty subject to the advice and consent of the senate and requiring a 2/3 majority? >> and i would concur that i wish the president would support handling this as a treaty. as you know, though, he is in opposition and will veto a bill that would make it a treaty. which then means the question would be to go to court. and how many years would that take? i don't know. but if you're asking me in my opinion should he have come before congress to present this as a treaty? i would say yes. and clearly he expressed his opposition to it and let us know that if we tried to move in that direction, it would be vetoed. and so that leaves us where we are today.
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>> but it is -- it is extremely unfortunate. it certainly points up the wisdom of the founders who purposefully structured this type of arrangement so that it would be difficult, and you would have to convince 2/3 majority in the senate. and as mr. cole pointed out, this has 2/3 majority opposition amongst the people when you look at the polling across the country. and certainly what i heard, and i'll just report to you from the 26th district of the great state of texas, it was uniformly opposed to what is being proposed in this agreement. >> dr. burgess, if i could respond to that, there is one indirect positive result of this not being a treaty. it does not have the force of law in the united states. >> so it really only is enforced for the duration of this administration, however long that is? >> that's correct. >> let me just ask you, because,
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i mean, this is really bothersome to me. there are three americans being held prisoner, a fourth for whom is unaccounted but believed to be in iran. so why -- why wouldn't we structure an agreement where at least there were some certainty that those individuals were being treated fairly and really in a perfect world, they would be repatriated to the united states? certainly the three who are prisoners, the one who is not under the control of the iranian government, i get that. but "the washington post" reporter, the ex-marine, i mean, these guys should be home. >> and we held hearings on this, raised this with the administration repeatedly. and during those hearings, brought family members, including the sister of that marine. and yes, that young marine who went to visit his grandmother in iran has been tortured. we had hearings on the case of
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pastor abedini, a christian pastor whose crime was merely to gather people to study the bible. he has been tortured. his wife testified before us. jason, "the washington post" reporter, as you know worked for a better understanding of the iranian people. if you read his columns, it's -- you can't figure out what the objection would be. because it was simply people-to-people reporting. and yet he languishes, you know, in jail, and just went through a show trial. robert levenson, i don't think we've heard about his whereabouts since 2007. he is the american longest held as a hostage. but holding hostages is not something new for the iranian regime. >> you know, i just -- i wasn't there. i watched it on television. but at the white house correspondents dinner, the president gave a rather
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impassioned talk about how "the washington post" reporter should be returned and released by the iranian government. i mean, did that -- was that just a speech? does that not carry any weight? >> you weight? >> sometimes how a ruzeme its own people is a good indication it will treat others. as i said earlier, you have 2,500 people who were killed this year because of religious differences, because they were, you know, some other minority religion, which the regime takes exception to. or killed because, you know, they spoke out about religious freedom. so we're dealing with absolutists with respect to the ayatollah and other clerics running that country. and despite bipartisan calls from congress, we didn't demand the release of these four americans prior to this agreement. in my judgment, we should have. >> now, the commander of the
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force, who was responsible, if i recall correctly on several trips to iraq it was well-known there was an iranian general who was -- iranian commander who was involved in the creation or construction of vehicle borne explosive devices, and individual explosive devices, the type of wiring and copper that was used pretty much points to this individual. after a period of time, he gets, in fact, a no build by anyone and is free to do whatever he wants. is that correct? >> they have been lifted. while it's still a violation. there's every indication that he flew to moscow and had meetings with senior russian leaders, including president putin as well as the defense minister of russia. he is credited with the death of
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over 500 americans. he has a long, long list of terrorist activity in charge of assassinations outside of iran and of military operations outside of iran. the irgc carries out the operations inside, the kudz force is outside. that could include the forces that helped overthrow yemen, as well as he personally led an attack into israel with the hezbollah unit. he's credited with doing that. he has been in syria, in iraq, you get a sense of just what kind of a danger this individual is. you can only imagine the types of weapons he wants to get his hands are. >> one of those will be an intercontinental delivery device. i want to thank you spending time with us today.
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this has caused me to dust off the copy of the art of the deal. a lot of people refer to this as a deal. this isn't a deal, this is a gift. a gift from the administration to the ayatollahs and the mullahs in iran. it should be defeated and turned back. we should treat it as a treaty. if you can't convince 2/3 of the senate to be with him. that's the end of that. thank you mr. chairman, i yield back. >> i know we have four or five other committee members that would wish to speak with you. what i'd like to do is to allow you a chance, if i could to go down and vote. we have not given you that chance and for you to come back. >> thank you mr. chairman. >> if you could do that, we'll stay right here and have a brief discussion. we'll let you do that and wait for you to return, please. the committee wants to welcome a
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man from dallas texas, from princeton, university, the class of 2017. i want to thank him for being pin attendance. and also a member of my staff, renee, texas a&m class of 2016. i want to thank her for taking time to be here today. both these interns from princeton and institute of higher learning, texas a&m we want to welcome and thank you for being here. today, what we've done is we've allowed ourself a chance to look at the deal that the president as a result of the corker bill, will -- we're looking at a disapproval act. i know that we have two other members of congress that are here and would be ready, i believe, one of them, the gentlemen, mr. gomert from
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tyler, texas, would be seeking and is seeking to be a member who would come and give testimony. mr. gomert i want you to know that we have received your amendment in the nature of a substitute that would -- we would engage you on. and i'm sure that she would use this time if she would choose to entertain this opportunity, the gentlewoman from new york, if she would choose to enter that into the record. >> i think we did that -- >> has that been done already? i'm sorry. i was gone for a minute. we're trying to burn 30 seconds. the gentlewoman has placed the statement of administrative policy -- i want to thank her very much for doing that. and so what we're going to do here is wait for mr. royce to come back. i want to thank the committee
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for not only their indulgence in allowing us to meet today, but we did not have the opportunity as a result two of our witnesses needing to leave and then mr. royce needing a chance to go down and vote. the chance for us to wait here for just a minute for mr. royce going back. we will then go to the gentlemen from ohio. and then on down the dias and we note that the gentleman, the chairman of the committee ran down and he's running back. chairman royce, i want to thank you very much. the gentlemen from columbus, ohio, the gentleman -- >> thank you, mr. chairman and i appreciate chairman royce running that was like watching
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the ohio state game last night you ran so fast. i appreciate you being here. you know, in congress, we set forward committees to create experts on lots of different areas. you've spent a lot of time in foreign affairs, as has your ranking member. i'm sorry we don't get the advantage of having him here today to talk about his perspective on this nor any other members from your committee. the other two minority members that were here, do they serve on your committee? >> no. >> do they serve on the intelligence committee by any chance? >> well, maybe in the distant past they may have. >> okay. but clearly not -- they're not getting the benefit of the current briefings and the current situation. has -- do you know if ranking member engel has made his position public? i believe he has. >> both on the house side, the chairman and ranking member are both opposed to the iranian
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nuclear deal. it's the same in the senate. both the ranking democratic member and the chairman of the committee are also in opposition. >> so there is bipartisan opposition to this deal? >> from those, i would say -- from those who have studied this the closest, we do have concerns. >> and i think you've done a great job of outlining those in the previous questions. i won't make you sort of reexplain that for me. but what i would like to talk about is just going forward, let's assume for a second that the president does have 34 senators that he claims to have and this deal, you know, is going to happen in its current form. can you tell me how important your committee is going to be and the work you're going to do to make sure we pet pressure on the international community and
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the administration to monitor the situation. as i look at what happened in the north korean deal from 1994, you know, the north koreans talked really nice at the beginning and they signed a deal. in fact, the framework of that deal was very similar to this deal. what was included, what wasn't included. but it came very apparent pretty quickly in a few years they were not going to follow the agreement. tell me what your committee can do going forward to make sure that we get the information about when or if iran might be cheating, how we can make sure that we have a very vigilant follow up. that's one of the things everybody wants to talk about how colinpowell said it was a good idea. he said what's important is that we follow up to make sure people
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are doing what they said they'd doing. >> i think the most immediate challenge is going to be presuming for a minute that we don't prevail. i think the media challenge is going to be iran distancing itself from any commitment on arms transfers. because the other day, we saw some of their senior officials say regardless of what's in the un sanctions, that say we've got to wait five years on the arms embargo and the conventional side, we don't recognize that. so what does the united states do? if we kick iran in the act in the moving a large traunch of missiles, especially the new precision guided missiles they claim they are going to transfer hes bola. what do we do if hezbollah
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starts firing them off? these are not going to be the types of missiles and rockets that you can necessarily stop with the iron dome or patriot batteries. these are the new evolution of rockets that iran has been working on. iran is fixated on its ballistic missile system, both long range in terms of those that would be capable of hitting the united states, which, obviously the ayatollah frequently speaks about. but also the intermediate range ones that they will use in the region. and so the question becomes what are we willing to do to say, look, part of this agreement is that you're not going to transfer that -- those arms, which you're in the process of doing. and, indeed, they're in the process of firing rockets off right now into israel from syria. these are forces, iranian forces.
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this is why it looks to me like the international community intends to sort of look the other way w. turn a blind eye to the violations, the current violations of the agreement. when i said earlier that iran had cheated on every agreement since 1979, that's the truth. and so i think these are the kinds of issues -- now in terms of how do we catch them now that we've got an agreement that says they are going to do the self-policing basically. international inspectors are not going to be allowed into their military bases. i don't have a good answer to that. i am very concerned about that. >> i appreciate t. you knit. i want to be clear. i oppose the deal. i think you laid out the reasons why. we need to stay laser focused on the future and how we can plot the best course given wherever we end up here. we need to have a plan. i think your committee is going to be right in the middle of this. i appreciate your leadership on
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this. and i just leave you with one last question, because the false question of -- that's been laid that it's this or war, i would just ask you, what would be better if you had to have a war, unventional war or nuclear war? >> i'm going to go back to the comment of the chairman of the joint chiefs, he doesn't buy into the premise at all. there's a whole range of options. one of those options which i raised earlier was the fact that we continue to forget, we in terms of the international market, this country is the 800 pound gorilla. if you give companies a choice between doing business with the united states or only doing business with iran, i'll just quote stewart levy, the former secretary of the treasury. it's a pretty easy choice for any business or any country to make. you know what the answer is going to be. the question is, are we going to
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impose that. and we've never gotten to the point of really pushing that because we haven't been faced with a situation desperate enough. if we have to, if we have to reimpose sanctions, that is the way to do it. and give countries that choice and give the ayatollah that choice of whether he wants to see total economic collapse or real compromise on his nuclear program. >> gentleman yields back his time. the gentleman from georgia, mr. collins is recognized. >> thank you, mr. chair. mr. chairman it's good to have you serving on the foreign affairs before this congress. i'm not going to stay long here. it just bothers me as one who, frankly i voted just a few months ago even against this. i felt like we left the moorings a long time ago. it's amazing in the last six to eight months hearing the
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administration going from we'll never allow them to have nuclear weapons and we'll do everything in our power, well we'll let them get them in a certain timeframe. as one who also served in iraq back in 2008, it really -- the issue with the irg, mr. chairman, concerns me more than anything. and because it's getting sort of lost, i guess in the process of the nuclear agreement and the centrafuges and everything else. what we're doing here is strengthening the iranian irg. we're seeing it happen. we're seeing this take place. and really, sort of outside the circle of this entire agreement. i'm not sure why we chose to change, why we let this go. this is the part, frankly that i don't believe the world has an answer for. i don't believe this agreement has an answer for. why it was added at the last minute -- i know we talked about it in general here today. but this is the part from your
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perspective, why was this piece added? why -- besides the fact that it's the biggest gift in my opinion to the iranian regime. the dealings with -- >> the lifting of the arms embargo? >> yes. i think this the countries around that, the biggest concern here. >> this is what held the deal up at the end. it was the introduction of the russians into the equation running interference for iran saying no, you're not going to get a deal. this is all second hand. i wasn't there in the room. but the russians saying no, yore not going to get a deal unless you -- we lift the sanctions, you know, on arms transfer. now, why would the russians be interested in that? i can tell you, in my opinion, it's because they intend, just as we see evidence of it right now, to make a lot of money by transferring arms to the iranian
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regime. they know that into the escrow account is going to come $100 billion when this deal is done. and so they have the technical capability, for example, to sell targeting information to the iranians. right now the iranians can send those three stage icbm's up but they can't control where they land. they're not good at that. but i'm going to bet and hypothesize they would be willing to pay an awful lot of money to get that capability. the second thing is conventional arms. and this gives the russians the capability to transfer conventional arms. also, which, of course, the iranian government and the revolutionary guard corp really need to carry out their operations to assist the houthi rebels whether it's overthrowing yemen, whether it's the low level insurgency they're trying to inspire among the houthis in
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saudi arabia. where the oil fields are. whether it's in syria where they're firing rockets right now into israel or were a few weeks ago. or whether it's in iraq, whether it's in lebanon where they're trying to strengthen hezbollah and take over lebanon. so they have an agenda where they're in need of hard currency and it's been caught off for a long time. this would give the iranian revolutionary guard corp a real shot in the arm in terms of getting the weapons it needs. that's why i think it was introduced in the 11th hour. >> i think that's what brings so much concern to the table, that you bring this in, basically held off to the very end when the deal was there and bring this in and the russians of course stepping in. this is the part that anyone who is concerned about israel, anyone that's concerned about the middle east in general in looking at this would say that this agreement, you know, not only just on its face has
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issues. you made a comment a few minutes ago i think goes back to my heart and why it just distressed greatly the path we went on from the end of last year to this agreement, that was moving away from the sanctions and away from the international capability into -- at a point when you said they have to choose between us and those partners. we had that ability. we let that ability go. for whatever gain which it doesn't seem to be, especially as we get into the details of how it will be inspected and go forward except for political gain or legacy. whatever we want to call it. it's very disturbing that we had that leverage, we had even an election there that said right after he was elected you've got to go get the sanctions off. we're basically struggling here. and we let it go. i think the history that was spok spoken of earlier, the history will be how did we let this go when we were in a position of power and we went to a position
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of weakness. i don't want to see this go through h. we'll have to continue to fight this. i appreciate the chairman's vigilance. >> thank you very much, the gentleman from alabama. >> mr. chairman. thank you for you and your staff for the excellent work you've done on this. i serve on the armed services committee. we've been looking at this from our perspective. and the thing that botherers me the most about this is that when we're talking about these things the state department gets to negotiate this, men and women in the uniforms of the united states of america have to defend against it. i don't think people have been thinking about that. back earlier this year in the armed services committee we heard from the defense intelligence agency. this is not classified so i'm not releasing anything. this is what they told us. the islamic republic of iran continues to threaten u.s.
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strategic interests in the middle east. iran's actions and policies are designed to further its goal of becoming the dominant regional power as well as to enhance its strategic depth. iran views the united states as its most capable adversary and has fashioned its military strategy and doctrine accordingly. they talk about more specifics about what they're doing. they make this statement, numerous underground facilities reduce the vulnerability of critical elements of iran's military. so they can hide from us what they're doing, strengthen and make it more difficult for our conventional weapons to reach them. then they go on to talk about nuclear weapons. this national intelligence agency, we continue to assess that iran's goal is to develop capabilities that would allow it to build missile deliverable nuclear weapons.
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the regime faces no insurmountable technical barriers to producing a nuclear weapon. iran's overall defense strategy relies on a substantial inventory of theater ballistic missiles capable of reaching as far as southeastern europe. iran continues to develop more sophisticated missiles and to improve the range and accuracy of current missile systems. iran has publicly stated it intends to launch a space launch vehicle as early as this year that could be capable of intercontinental ballistic missile ranges. in july of this year before the senate armed services committee, general dempsey, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff said under no circumstances should we relieve pressure on iran relative to ballistic missile capabilities. and then earlier this year, the
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director of national intelligence said we judge that tehran would choose ballistic missiles as its preferred method of delivering nuclear weapons. iran's ballistic missiles are inherently capable of delivering weapons of mass destruction. so from the point of view of protecting the people of the united states, the burden of which falls on those men and women out there in ships today and in airplanes and our wonderful ground forces, let me ask you to confirm or not what general dempsey has posed to us. are these circumstances that we are relieving pressure on iran relative to ballistic missile capabilities? >> i believe that the chairman of the joint chiefs, as well as the secretary of defense were correct. and i believe it was a blunder. it was a blunder in the final hours of negotiation. and i would maybe credit this to the zeal for the deal. i don't know.
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but to concur, to concur, with the pressure from russia and iran, to lift the arms embargo, to lift that prohibition, prohibition on assistance with the icbm program as well as their conventional arms, i think that that was not in the interests, securities interests of the united states. >> you would agree that that relieved pressure on iran's ballistic missile capabilities? >> absolutely. because it will allow russia to operate, for example, with iran on their icbm program in the future. which i don't think under any conditions we should have entertained. >> you know, one of the things that bothers a lot of people about this deal, is that we hear a lot about a lot of people are doing this because they have some special relationship with israel, they want to protect
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israel. i'm a strong supporter of israel. i make no apologies for that. i oppose the deal because it's bad for the united states of america. they don't need intercontinental ballistic missiles to hit israel. they need icbm's to hit us. and that's their intent. that's what -- these aren't partisan people, the defense intelligence agency. the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. the director of national intelligence. these are professionals. and they're all telling us the same thing, that these icbm's, these ballistic missiles threaten the defense of the united states. >> if i could respond to that, in the words of the ayatollah, in keeping with the point you're making, israel is just the little satan. we are the great satan. in his equation. so i concur with your --
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>> will the gentleman yield? >> yes, sir. first of all, i would, again, remind the gentleman, this agreement is about preventing iran from getting a nuclear weapon. which i would like to think we could all agree would be a bad idea. i wanted to pick up something the gentleman said about the decisions that are made by the state department have to be, you know -- the burden falls on our men and women who serve our country in the military. i think this is a good moment to remind everybody here, we talk about our responsibility to our troops, that we are at war right now, not in iran, but in iraq and in syria. and to the beth st of my knowle, this institution can't get the spine together to actually bring an authorization to the floor and do our constitutional job to take responsibility for what these men and women are now having to deal with. i mean, every day we are engaged in military actions bombing every day, i know the chairman
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agrees that we ought to have an authorization here. but, i mean, you know, at least on this vote, at least on this issue here, you can vote no. you know, if enough people vote no and the president doesn't get his way. then this can't go forward. we're at war right now, and we don't even talk about it. so i appreciate the concern for our troops, but i wish there was -- >> reclaiming my time, mr. mcgovern. the truth of the matter is this will provide money to a regime that takes that money and gives it to terrorist groups that target u.s. military personnel and have killed them. and this will increase the likelihood of that, not decrease it. which is -- excuse me i have my time. which is exactly general dempsey's point. and the burden does fall on them. this is not about what's
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happening in syria right now, it's what's happening in iran and what iran intends to do throughout the middle east against the interests and the people of the united states of america. in 1938, england decided to go to munich and appease hitler. do you know what happened? we had world war ii. winston churchill wrote a book -- i did not give my time, mr. mcgovern i still have my time. he wrote a book called while england slept. john f. kennedy wrote his senior thesis called why england slept. i can't imagine john f. kennedy agreeing to this agreement, knowing what we know from these non-partisan professionals who deal with the defense of our country. i was in the store the other day buying some groceries. a woman came up to me with tears
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in her eyes. because she was so worried about this, not because she was concerned about israel, she was concerned about herself. and i think it behooves us in this congress to understand that our main job here is to defend the american people. this deal based upon what we know from the non-partisan professionals that defend this country endangers the american people. and i will vote against it and i hope we will have a vigorous debate on the floor about it. so we can make sure the people of america know what the truth is and so we can have a vote so everybody in america can know where we all stand as their representati representatives. and at the end of the day the american people can make a decision about whether we made the right decision. i have not given up my time. i have not given up my time.
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this deal was negotiated because somebody had a desire to get an agreement almost under any circumstance. because if you look at what general dempsey said, he said under no circumstances should we relieve pressure on iran relative to ballistic missile capabilities. do you know what? under these circumstances, we did it. and why america would sleep in the middle of that, i don't understand. and i yield back, mr. chairman. >> i guess, you think you're in the senate where you filibuster. yeah, i do, mr. chairman. one is to characterize this deal in those terms, i think, is irresponsible. to be honest with you. and i -- it goes to the motives of the people who have been working diligently to try to negotiate a deal to prevent iran from getting a nuclear weapon. i think it is in the interest of
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the united states of america to make sure iran does not get a nuclear weapon. this is our best opportunity to do so. the gentleman is against that, fine. for the gentleman to twist history is irresponsible. i get the administration a great deal of credit for coming up with an agreement. which has the support of major non-proliferation experts, national security experts, from colin powell, the way this has been characterized is like nobody of any gravtas believes there is any disagreement on this is wrong. to go down that road to characterize it the way the gentleman is i don't think is appropriate. you know, he can vote against it and those of us who support it can vote for t. and we will have a vote on this. my point originally was that
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this congress is shirking its responsibility in a war that we involved with in iraq and syria right now. that this congress has just walked away from and totally turned its back on the american forces that are over there right now. and my constituents are wondering why is it we're putting more and more money and more american forces into iraq, a government that now is totally aligned with iran. maybe the gentleman, if he comes to massachusetts can answer that question. >> mr. chairman may i respond very briefly? >> one moment, please. does the gentleman seek further time or did you yield? >> i yield. i believe in back and forth. >> well, you may believe in that. do you wish to entertain the gentleman? >> i do. i'm happy to yield to the gentleman. >> i have great respect for mr. mcgovern. he's a capable member of this house. i think this is the very heart of this matter.
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clear statements -- i think it would be irresponsible not to bring them up. yes, we need to have a vigorous debate. i'm not questioning people's motives. i'm questioning the rationale. and if we can't have a debate where we question the rationale of the single most important vote this congress has taken since we declared war on japan and germany, i think we would be shirking our responsibilities. i stand by my comments. i would be happy to come to the gentleman's district and i would be happy for you to come to my district. i had 16 town halls in my district the last few weeks, i can guarantee you there wasn't a single person in any of my districts who was for this deal. you may talk about these great experts, but the people of america don't like this deal, nor should they h. thank you sir, i yield back. >> the gentleman from the state of washington, the gentleman, mr. newhouse is recognized.
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>> thank you chairman sessions, i appreciate that. i appreciate you having such patience for this important topic. chairman royce thank you for being with us. so much time given to this issue in iran. i've only been in the house for almost nine months now. i think i'll be able to say if i'm lucky enough to be here in another nine years, this is probably going to be the most important vote i take. all of us collectively will probably be able to say something similar. i read the agreement. i went downstairs and availed myself and took the time to read what was in it. i've gone to israel to visit with people in that country to hear their concerns. their questions. things that i felt that i needed to understand. i've listened intently to chairman carey -- secretary
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carey, and secretary lew. i went into this process with as open a mind as possible because this is an important decision. it's not a republican versus a democrat decision. if it's a good deal, it's a good deal. if it's not, it's not. it shouldn't be just because we have a particular letter behind your name. i'm afraid it's turning into that. that's very, very unfortunate. but i have -- after all this process and very much enjoyed the conversation today, this has been very helpful. some of the new things have come out to me. and so that's been helpful to help solidify my decision. i still have some grave concerns. and i wanted to ask you chairman royce, if you could help me get through some of these things. we've had, i think, a fairly long history, bipartisan history, of opposing a nuclear iran. the world has also been working hard to make sure that doesn't
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happen. and it seems to me that even if iran followed this agreement to a t, that within a very short time, within a decade, they would be on a path to having a nuclear weapon clearly with the blessing of the international community and the united states. it seems to me that gthis goes against what we've been trying to achieve. it goes against the stability of the region and the world. can you comment on that? is that a correct assessment, chairman? >> i think that assessment is correct. mr. newhouse, i think that in ten plus years, between 10 and 15 years they are going to be on the threshold of having that capability. and that is if they do not cheat. if they cheat, it will be sooner. but it is the other consequences of this agreement, which are so
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concerning, because in releasing $100 billion or so into the hands of the government in iran, which actually controls the contracts, controls the iranian economy, controls the companies in iran which will be doing business with companies around the world, you give them the whe wherewi wherewithad to do something they have not been able to do. it is the largest terror network that we're dealing with on the planet. as we discussed previously, throughout the region, they have big ambitions. when you talk about egypt, and you think about the fact that it was the iranian regime that was putting money into the hands of the muslim brotherhood or funding hamas. what do we think is going to happen when they have that kind of capability not just to transfer the resources but now
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they're talking about transferring weapons. i think it is going to be a huge challenge when you have the force and you have individuals like general suleimani out there in the region now with limitless resources virtually. what we're talking about is just the down payment with $100 billion. after that come the contracts. come the contracts that put the money further into the hands of the ayatollah and his allies in that regime. so every aspect of this, the commitment to build ballistic missiles, when you have someone on the ropes, why give them the wherewithal to fund their ballistic missile program when you have the ayatollah on record saying it's every military man's responsibility to help mass produce icbm's? what do we think he means by that? unfortunately, i'll just conclude with this. for me, i believe he means this,
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when he says death to america, death to israel, i take him seriously. because in the past when people have talked like that, we've ignored their rhetoric at our peril. especially in cases with personalities that have already shown themselves willing to break international law and commit mayhem throughout the region. underwrite political assassinations, kill their own people, hold u.s. citizens as hostages. i take them at their word. therefore, i think it would behoove us to defeat this deal and push for one that gives the iranian regime, you know, gives the international community a choice. either do business with the united states or you do business with iran, but you don't do both. so if you don't want to deal in the international market or in the international financial
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system with the united states, so be it. you're out. as i said, stewart levy over at treasury indicated to me, when he was there, that this ultimately is the way to force real compromise that you need in their nuclear program. so that's the conclusion i've reached. thanks. >> thank you mr. chairman. the -- i don't buy into the premise that it's this deal or a war that that's the only two options. i think there's a lot of things that are available to us. and we should exercise every one of those options. not only the future -- in the shirt te short term, maybe this helps me. ten years to me, it isn't very long. a decade from now -- i'm from the rural area the horse will be out of the barn and you will not be ail to put it back in.
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i think every effort we can utilize or exercise to get a better deal -- and i think we can. we need to. so i appreciate the time that we're taking today. i hope -- and i believe we will be taking a lot of time in the coming days to debate and discuss this. we need to vet this very carefully. i hope every member of the body votes their conscious and listens intently and makes as good a decision as they possibly can. with that, mr. chairman i'll yield back. >> i want to thank you for taking the time to be here today and for your intention to detail and the things which you've done. i want to point out two staff members you have. they came by to brief me this morning. we spent about an hour. i found them most instructive to talk with me about the issues surrounding this entire matter to where we got closer folks.
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we will do our very best to get you on the floor here very quickly. with enough time for not only you, but the other relevant committees that would choose to speak about the various parts of this. i want to thank you for your leadership on behalf of your party and also this conference. >> thank you chairman sessions i want to thank the other members of the committee. >> i want to thank you mr. royce, and thank you for your staying power. thank you. appreciate it. >> thank you very much. >> mr. chairman if you would make sure anything you brought by that you want to have included we'll do that and i want to thank you very much. we now move to the second panel, the gentleman from tyler, texas would be asked to come and be a part of this. does theç gentlewoman of houst texas seek to be a part of the second panel? i would ask the gentlemen to
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please come join us. obviously, i'm looking at what i believe is why you're here, mr. gomer. i don't know what -- how the gentlewoman wishes -- she would be joining you? >> no. >> not joining you. i do not have a piece, necessarily, any amendment i'm aware of that you're here for. i'm first going to -- does the gentlewoman wish to speak about the deal as a whole? and on the procedure of such. that would be great you're both going to be here for some period of time to get through this. so the gentle woman of texas would be recognized. if the gentlewoman would like to do that. mr. gomer is recognized. >> thank you mr. chairman. thank you everybody here. i don't have to take too long. the chairman, chairman royce, has been quite clear and very
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articulate. and there have been some great questions. the deal is fatally flawed as he said, as he pointed out iran has violated every deal they've ever made since 1979. i would suggest, though, when it comes to the un agreement and the 15 parties that voted, taking the current bill to the floor would not be a cupitchulation on our obligation to the the un. it would be a capitulation on our oath to support and defend the constitution. it's very clear. article ii, the gentleman has already pointed out, section ii, talking about the president, he shall center the power by and with the advice and consent of the senate to make treaties provided 2/3 of the senators present concur.
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and i know mr. royce, chairman royce, had said that that would be the preferred method except that the president's already threatened that he would veto any effort along those lines. well, the fact is, that article ii, section ii when it comes to treaties does not make any provision for the president's veto. the senate can take a matter up that is a treaty. which this clearly is. and then if they vote 2/3 to ratify, it's ratified. if they don't, there is no veto available to the president. having consulted with numerous constitutional law professors, including berkeley constitutional law expert, a professor there, who says that
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although the senate may say the president needs to submit the iranian agreement as a treaty for ratification, that actually the senate could call it up on @r(t&ho court should say it failed to get the 2/3 necessary for ratification. and, therefore, it is not binding upon, nor is it a forcible against the united states. so it's a question. are we going to ignore the constitution? and i didn't vote for the corker bill like some of my friends here did not. but it is important to note that everyone that did vote for the corker carden bill had plenty of assurances that that was from the president and the secretary of state, that that was the proper thing to do. and, in fact, the president, his spokes people were saying this was an executive agreement, it
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does not require any kind of ratification under article ii. they made very clear that this -- in fact, as i noted in the findings, in the amendment on march 11th, secretary of state kerry had stated very clearly that he was not negotiating a legally binding plan. and then they go on -- and i think we all know that any international -- any agreement between the the united states and another country that affects changes, modified an existing treaty is a treaty and it does require ratification by 2/3 of the senate. well, this iranian deal, which really is a treaty, does that. article i of the treaty on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, which the u.s. is
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signatory. this is number 23 of the findings, under which the united states is not in any way to assist encourage or induce iran to acquire nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices. or control over such weapons or explosive devices. clearly, now we know this iranian deal is a treaty. because it does affect that under the non-proliferation treaty. we also know that directly or indirectly we're not supposed to allow acquisition of nuclear weapons or capabilities of controlling nuclear weapons for iran. and that is being changed. number 25 points out that article iii of the non-proliferation treaty regarding international inspectors in iran, and i'm quoting, shall have access at
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all times to all place and data and to any person who by reason of his occupation deals with materials, equipment or facilities which are required by the statute to be safeguarded. obviously, this deal -- people on this committee have talked repeatedly about what will be allowed and not allowed. it is changing the non-proliferation treaty. that makes it a treaty. then, of course, it mondays the non-proliferation treaty outside the prescribed method of amendment in article viii of the non-proliferation treaty. so we were assured and all of those that voted for the corker carden bill in the house and in the senate relied on the representations of the president, the secretary of state, all their spokes people, that this was not going to do any of those things, not going to be binding. and if those had been accurate, then the carden cork -- corker
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carden bill was a good way to get congress with a say in this negotiation. now, that we see it truly is a treaty, to do anything but bring a bill, i don't care whose name is on it. i don't care we put the whole rules committee. but let's bring a bill to the floor, not the one that's going to say we approve or disapprove, because that is in effect, bring r bringing our approval, disapproval vote to effect when it's really a sham. this is a treaty. it's clearly a treaty. and i wish the house had a say in treaties. it doesn't. so the house ought to demand that the senate take up their role, corker carden doesn't apply here. and i know my friend is down on
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the floor. he has a privileged motion he's making that actually corker carden has not been triggered yet because all of the agreement has not been provided to the house as required under corker carden. so he's got a point. but i would submit to this committee the truth is, this is a treaty and we need to vote and call it what it is. i tell you what, america will be proud that 2/3 that have been referenced here will be proud, and those who would quote ronald reagan, trust but verify as my friend from oklahoma pointed out. he walked away from the bad deal at reykjavik and as a result of his steadfastness brought down an evil empire in the soviet union. we can help do that, too, with iran. but not if we treat a treaty as
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anything other than a treaty. so i will encourage you to accept any kind of amendment you wish to make in the nature of a institute. anybody's name on it, you care to put on there, but we need to call this what it is. and america will be grateful. i feel so strongly about this. if we'll just do what the constitution says, i'm willing to make my leadership happy. and not run again. i feel that strongly about it. but it is imperative that we follow the constitution here. and if we don't follow the constitution, i'm going to be around probably for a long time the biggest pain in the rear that people can imagine. i thank the gentleman and yield back. >> yes, sir. mr. jackson lee? >> i thank you for delaying your time for this second panel. and i also want to join some of the comments that i've heard, this has been a very
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deliberative discussion. for those of us who are able to hear a good part of it, it was thoughtful and very helpful. i indicated that i want today just briefly discuss one or two procedural points one of which i've heard a number of people indicate to give us a vigorous amount of time for debate. i'd like to offer an eight hour debate per day wednesday and thursday, and then maybe half that amount, four hours on friday. i do believe that more than a ten hour debate on a 435 person congress is vitally important. i've heard a number of timeframes. but we may have individuals who want to raise constitutional issues. and i think this is a very important vote. the second point i want to make, and i think the tone here was very appropriate. is we have the responsibility not to frighten the american people.
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we do have differences of opinion. it is going to probably be emotional. all of us will probably be making statements of our affection for israel and the work we've done for israel, as well as, i assume, some of us will also speak about peace in the middle east. and we'll also recognize the heinousness of some of the actions of iran. i don't think that we will deny the discussion on the floor. but what i wanted to say is as i listened to chairman royce, who worked and had the house version of public law number 114-17, which is the public law of the corker carden bill, i just want to read the provisions, as i heard the discussion i want to make the point. that as we proceed with the joint comprehensive plan of action, there is existing public law that will guide the enforcement or the response that
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congress can have. i also want to, as i read these provisions into the record, mr. chairman, saying, that i have nod heard the administration counter with the alternative is war. i think what the point is, is that if necessary, that the united states is both as the singular world power. and some argue that franchised terrorism makes terrorism fighting in a different format. is well prepared the address the breaches that iran may encounter if necessary in an approach that may require military utilization. but i have not heard any of the members here document the so-called alternative is war. let me just read so that we know that congress is not relieved of her constitutional responsibilities or statutory responsibilities. the public law says, after the congressional review period the
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president would be required to provide an assessment to congress every 90 days on iran's compliance with the agreement. in the event the president cannot certify compliance or if the president determines there has been a material breach of the agreement, congress could vote on an expedited basis to restore sanctions that have been waived or suspended under the agreement. the bill also requires the president to make a series of detailed reports to congress on a range of issues. including iran's nuclear program, its ballistic missiles work, which i heard vigorously discussed here and support of terrorism globally. we know the agreement does not give iran a pass on the issues of sanctions and its terrorist activities. i close by saying that all of us want the hostages to be returned. i don't think the story is finished or the door is closed. i hope as we continue this, that we'll be reminded of congress's continuing engagement and responsibility as dictated by
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public law 114-17. and that will be part of the debate going forward so that it can be both a vigorous and factual debate being an effective story if you will because the american people will be watching on how we ultimately make the sdisdecision on a very important responsibility that has been given back to the congress. with that, i yield back. >> thank you very much. is there any member of the democrats' side here that has questions? seeing none, is there a republican member that would seek time? the gentleman from georgia, mr. collins is recognized. >> thank you mr. chairman. i think the issue -- it goes back to something the gentle lady from texas who i enjoy serving with on a committee. we talk about a lot of things. many times we have a difference
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of opinion. i think a difference of opinion is still here. in looking at this, the simple fact that this issue of terrorism, the issue of the lifting of those iranian guard, those are issues that take away from those that were expressed earlier today by mr. mcgovern. this was the part that concerns many of us here at the end in the actual text and what was done in the longer part of this. not even getting to the fact of the nuclear agreements, the closing of the reactors or moving those. i think that's the part that came in at the end. it was a surprise to most watchers of the agreement. and then coming in and i think lends to gomer's part is the fact of when does this translate over from the agreement to the treaty aspect? there is a lot of concerns about that. i'm not sure how, though, we do not look at that aspect as a part. maybe i misunderstood what you
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said in your statements. that that was really address said in other ways. would you like to explain more why this issue of the terrorism, the issues that were addressed earlier which you were here for when i spoke to the chairman, how that -- not really be a part of this treaty as far as affecting why we should not be in support of this? i may have misheard you. i would like to hear what you were discussing to you, mr. congress woman. >> let me add a little anecdote. today i was in the 9/11 memorial in new york, homeland security committee. if there's ever a more sobering and emotional experience, it is to go there and recognize what america has been through. through the actions of terrorists. the point that i was making, and i think it's been made here
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before, is that the sanctions, the actions of iran as all have indicated, that it is a state sponsor of terrorism, those sanctions are terrorism. those sanctions are separated from the question of the issue of a nonnuclear agreement. but those will continue. >> i think the concern that i'm having is this part dealing with the iranian guard is not separate from this. this is still -- it was brought in to bear in this agreement. that was the concern as my friend from alabama was speaking about. i think understanding the threats that are there is a very real under current with the problems that we are having. many of us are struggling with just the framework and structure of how this is sit set up.
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take anything out of what i may or may not feel about the motivations, the realistic possibility, getting to the heart of it is concerned. i appreciate you attempting to verify that now. >> if i might, i refer to a corporate pardon bill more than some. and there are provisions in that bill have that an intimate relationship with the administration and congress in terms of the kind of reporting which would include your concerns about the iranian guard. >> and i voted against that bill. i felt like we left our tradition when we left the sanctions part of this. we i believe we could have gotten a better deal. they had an election.
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they changed that. the first thing they want to do is get rid of sanctions. they go to the table and promise everything. with a country that's never lived up to the most part of any agreements they have had, that's a concern to many of us. there's a difference in opinion. >> if i just may say a sentence. mr. collins and i have debates on the judiciary committee. but let me just say a counter to that would be we have obviously implemented sanctions on iran for a very, very long time. and they are at the breaking point and i would make the argument that this is a agreement pointedly directed at stopping the nuclear proliferation iran. so it's always a question of whether sanctions would break them any further. they are at their low point. i yield back.
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>> thank you very much. the gentleman yields back. any other member that seeks time? thank you very much. i want to thank both of our witnesses for taking time. i know you sat here the bulk of the time and i know ms. lee, you put your time in the chair today. i appreciate it very much. >> thank you. >> anything that you have to leave for our great stenographer, would appreciate it. let's close the hearing portion of our effort on 64. and the chair will be in receipt of a motion. >> disapproving of the agreement transmitted to congress by the president on july 19, 2015 relating to the nuclear program of iran a.
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the rule provides 10 hour of debate by the respective chairs and ranking minority members of the committees on foreign affairs, financial services, the judiciary, oversight and government forum and ways and means. the rule waves all points of order against consideration. the rule provides that the joint resolution shall be considered as read. the rule leaves all points of order against provisions in the joint resolution. rule provides the final period of debate which shall not exceed one hour equally dividing control by the chair and ranking minority member of the committee on foreign affairs. the rule provides one motion to recommit. finally, second 2 of the rule provides that upon receipt of a message from the senate, transmitting hj res 61 with a senate amendment to the text thereof consisting only of the text of hj 64 as passed by the house. the house shall be considered to
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have concurred in the senate amendment or amendments. thank you very much. now for myself for further explanation. this rule provides for consideration of the disapproval under closed rule. that way it can be a clear vote to court or you are against it. rule provides for 11 hours of debate, committees of jurisdiction lastly, the rule provides that the senate passes a joint resolution that is identical to the house version will consider it as adopted. i think what we have tried to do is have a long fruitful hearing where all members had an opportunity to be heard. you heard the motion from the gentle woman from north carol a carolina. >> i'm concerned, as i think we all are on number 8.
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we are deeming we concur with whatever the senate does. why are we doing that? >> seasonally what's happening is is both of the bodies are going after the same time. they may name it something different. normally what happens is the house will pass something and the senate will take the measure up. this is being concurrently done by both sides. they make take up a different number of the bill. they may call their bill something different. as long as the text is exactly the same, we are saying we will adopt that. >> as long as it's exactly the same. >> exactly the same. but the title of the bill may be different. so the text of the bill. >> once again, i think because we are very fond over here of
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the order. >> fond or not, this is going to take us -- we have been through 30 hearings on this matter. and the senate has their procedures and processes. all we are trying to simply say is if the bills are exactly, exactly the same text, the title of the bill does not have to be exactly the same. it is not a trick. >> all right. thank you for your explanation. >> this is not just a big serious question. but relating in section two of the rule we speak to what i gather are the relevant committees, foreign affairs, natural services, the judiciary oversight and government reform and ways and means. while i don't have any axes to grind with any of the
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committees, and i guess one could a argue that all committees of congress ought to be involved, but is there any particular reason armed services is is not involved in the matter of dealing with this issue? >> at the time a bill is dropped, and i know we all ought to know this. i'm going to get to the answer. there are referrals made based upon the subjects subjective reading of the bill. and they did not receive any referral. so we did not include them. as pa hrrliamentarian. >> i appreciate the chair a's clarification. i would not even pursue it further other than to observe.
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>> there's a presentation of with what they may or may not have had is given a a certain time. >> we had 10 hours of debate already. >> intelligence hasn't been heard from. >> you know, i might say that this is a very difficult issue. i thought we did a pretty good job of keeping that in check today. >> i understand the vote will now be on the motion from the gentlewoman from north carolina. those in favor say aye. those no. >> the ayes have it. the motion is agreed to. and i will be handling this for republicans. >> and i will be handling for my side. >> i do not anticipate there will be further rules committee activity this week. and i thank you very much for this hearing.
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the u.s. house schedule to begin their debate on the iran nuclear agreement tomorrow. they expect a vote on the resolution disapproving of the deal sometime this week. congress has until september 17th to reject the iran deal. you can watch that house debate live on c-span. presidential candidate and former secretary of state hillary clinton talks about the iran nuclear agreement tomorrow at the brookings institution. our live coverage is at 9:00 a.m. eastern on c-span2. and later, opponents of the iran agreement hold a rally at the u.s. capitol. republican presidential candidates ted cruz and donald trump will be among the speakers. the event begins at 1:00 p.m. eastern time. our live coverage will be here on are c-span3.
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>> he was a nazi. he was a concentration camp commandant. he was responsible for the murder of thousands of jews. >> this sunday night on q&a, jennifer teage on her life-altering discovery that her grandfather was the nazi concentration commandant, known as the butcher. >> we would see tremendously true person, a person who was -- he was capable of -- he had dogs. he had two dogs. he trained them to tear humans apart. i think this sums it up pretty good. he was a person who was -- there was a pleasure that he felt when he killed people.
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this is something when you are normal, if you don't have this aspect in your personality, it is is very, very difficult to grasp. >> sunday night 8:00 p.m. pacific on c-span's q&a. >> at the brookings institution they predicted the interest rates would by the end of the year. this is an hour and a half. >> i thank you all for coming. i'm director of the monetary policy at brookings. our mission is simple, to
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improve monetary policy and public understanding of it. >> we are at a really interesting and pivotal moment in federal reserve policy. pause of the great recession and the financial crisis as bad as most of us have seen in our lifetime, something that rivaled the one that led to the great depression, the federal reserve did extraordinary things. it cut interest rates to zero at the end of 2008. i bet nobody thought we would be sitting here in 2015 trying to decide if there was a time to raise it now. the fed engaged quantitative easing. but trillions of dollars of bonds and mortgage-backed securities in an experiment in monetary policy that people will be studying and writing about for a generation to come.
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and these techniques have been matched and amplified and amended by central banks in the uk, europe, and japan. and they represent a lesson in economic history that we will be learning from for a long time. >> but the policymakers at the federal reserve don't have the luxury of waiting for the next milton friedman or ben bernanke to write about the history of the 21st century. they have to make decisions now. it has fallen 3.5%. so there has been a sense among some people that, okay, it's time for the fed to begin to ever so slightly tighten the spigot and raise interest rates. and i think that it is safe to say a couple months ago or maybe a month ago a consensus that the
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time had come. and then somehow the world blew up. the stock market gyrated. the chinese devalued the currency. their stock market crashed. mario draghi said this morning that the rest of the world looks worse than he expected. and financial conditions have tightened. so that is something the fed has to take into account. so today we are going to discuss what should the fed do, what will the fed do not only next week but in the months and years to come, given they are in uncharted waters. i have a very distinguished panel of experts. this is not a cross-section of america, nor is it meant to be. they are four economists all of whom worked at the federal reserve at one point in their career. all of whom believe we should have a federal reserve. nobody here wants to go to the
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gold standard. i suspect, although i may be surprised, that nobody here thinks the fed should forever abandon its interesting in controlling inflation, even though inflation is very low, far from their target. this is for people who have a sense of how the fed works but are outside the fed and can think about how the fed might do things to have a greater chance of achieving the goals set by congress, stable prices, and maximum sustainable employment with implicit now mandate of, oh, by the way, we would like to not have another financial crisis. julian coronado, young across the street at the peterson group. john foust worked with janet yellen at johns hopkins and can tell us what he really thinks. and my brookings colleague don cohen, vice chairman during some of the worst of the crisis. in addition to being a brookings is a member of the bank of
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england's financial policy committee, which has to weigh the financial stability issues that confront us today. we're not going to have any opening statements. we're going to have a conversation. we'll invite you to join it sometime later in the hour. so i thought it would be useful if we started -- if i asked each of you to put yourself in the position of the federal open market committee. and what are the things that you have to look at as you decide so is september the time to raise rates? should we wait until disease or maybe even later? what are the cross currents that you think are being weighed. we'll get to how you weigh them. don, do you want to take a start? >> sure. so if i were to start, i would look at the outlook of the economy in one to three years. monetary policy works for the lag.
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whatever i decide now has no affect on august employment numbers we'll be getting. that's in the past. and we'll have very little effect on employment or inflation over the next three, six, nine months. so i have to think about where we're going to be in one to three years. i think in that regard -- so i like to think of the fed fed's decisions as being outlook dependent. data are important. but you have to be careful not to overreact to individual pieces of data and by sort of processing the data through an outlook, a forecast. i think that's one way of trying to extract the signal from the noise of the data and not overreacting and thinking about how it affects where things will be one to three years from now. when i think about where we have been the last couple of years, i see very steady progress in the
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labor market. that's more than twice as much -- twice or more than twice as much as we need to tighten the labor market. so for a labor market perspective, we have been -- the u.s. economy has been doing pretty darned good. we have 2% growth, 2.25% growth. productivity around half a percent the last few years. focusing on too much growth can lead you astray. the labor market and inflation. the labor market has been tightening. there is probably some slack left in it. but we are using that up pretty
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quickly. so i start from the perspective -- and as that is used up and if we overshoot the maximum sustainable employment, which i think we probably will by at least a little, that will push inflation back to the 2% target. so i start from the premise that interest rates will have to raise at some point. in my mind before too long. now, exactly when they increase isn't all that important. september, december. that's not very important. what's important is they have to start rising. what's important on is the track for interest rates. the total path of interesting rates once they start to increase. now, one thing that might make me hesitate to do it in september is -- well, a couple things. inflation has been very low and hasn't shown any sign of increasing. i don't need to see that. i think the labor market is
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tight enough. inflation will come back. we will get up to the 2% level. but it would be a little reassuring if you saw a little more there. so the fact that inflation hasn't risen, wage gains hadn't picked up wouldn't hold me entirely. but it has me hesitating whether they will move sooner rather than later. the turbulence and volatility i financial markets and the fact that expectations of a fed increase in september are still pretty low. i hesitate to raise in september because we don't know what the chinese outcome would be. i would put very strongly on the table an expectation that rates would go up. i would retain the wording about later this year. and make that the default
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proposition. and i think that would help to build in hair rights later this year and put that in the market so when i finally did move, it wouldn't be such a surprise. >> john, do you disagree with any of that? >> i very much agree with that position that don just gave. i would like to add a little color of my own or some details that fill it out a bit. if you look at the outlook of one to three years from now, one thing that is important to realize is any given announcement like friday's employment report or any other data announcement, we learned very little where it would be one to three years from now. they are very slowly. friday's employment report won't change that outlook much and
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there by won't change the decision much. if that number comes in at 100,000, which is lower than 200 we have been seeing, there's revisions. that's one month. there's a long history now of pretty steady job growth. that accumulates on the real side how fast the labor market is healing. that accumulates slowly. now it reports that it is expecting to take a few years for inflation to get back to two. so it will move slowly there. it has said they want reasonable confidence that it will move back towards two. if they decide to delay in order to gain more confidence on that point, where could that confidence come from? >> well, as it turns out, and as
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vice chair fisher said last week at jackson hole, because of energy prices falling, we are expecting inflation to go down. that is baked in the cake. so doesn't affect your confidence at all. it may make -- if you wait, it may make the optics a little more peculiar. so what should -- i think we're back to what don said, is the real side is of the economy. is the labor market continuing{o to tighten. are you confident that it will continue to tighten. and i gave a paper saying that that relationship between labor market tightness inflation isn't
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very well understood especially at the current moment. but everyone believes at some point, as the labor market tightens, it will provide upward inflation and we will see inflation emerge. everybody believes we are getting near that point. how close are we to that point? are we close enough to gradually begin going to just one that is extraordinarily accommodating. and that i think is what the debate is about. have said is it doesn't matter so much. it's the path over time. it laid a lot of groundwork that likely to be breaking out.
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they still have the confidence in the labor agreement. and can i just say one other thing. it is important for us the last few weeks. it is important to realize that the real side didn't. you can go ask people did they fire a bunch of people? are they still producing automobiles? well, i think so. in the united states. it didn't blow knupp china. >> it did. >> well, that's true. i know first and foremost, you look through the volatility. the question you ask, is this volatility telling us something. that is economy is fundamentally
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waerbg, so i can't have confidence that it is is going to return. there have been an intense discussion about that. does the volatility single something about the underlying economy. or is it like a lot of volatility and financial markets the kind that will leave no trace in the data. >> let me hear you. so i get that the relationship between financial conditions and inflation. but as we said, and as i know you know, you have to make decisions on what you know. let me play devil's advocate. we still think, some people think there is still slack in the labor market. a lot of people working part-time would rather have full time work.
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impaired to a month ago, there is got to be some wealth effect. it has to be somewhat less concerned that we have a bubble in the stock market. i don't know how much work they are but i know the direction. commodity prices are falling. it is not just a that they are making up the numbers. copper and oil. other than the fed saying we want to raise rates in 2015, why is it even on the table? >> i think it's what don started with and john continued with. you have to look ahead two years. up until a month or two ago, i was very much thinking, well, if they raised rates, that makes some sense. looking out as with the steady employment gains. you know, two years ahead, we will be slightly overview if
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this continues. you want to start the normalization process now. this is small, gradual. we have plenty of time to reverse course or stop if things develop badly. sit not so much volatility. they are down 5% to 10% that's noble. and then that has effects on spending. there's 2% basis. >> it acts as a breakdown. >> it is the biggest thing >> for obvious reasons, it seems to me probably it is better to wait.
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in particular, just one final appointment. given how the decision of overpredictions of growth has made and been disappointed for so long now. one or two years, fine. whatever this noise. but it's been so many years now. and under shooting inflation for so many years. >> they unpredicted the labor market. so there is this productivity puzzle. so they have been pessimistic about unemployment. >> if you made a mistake and inflation went up to 3% and you had to%'b[o tighten it back, th strikes me -- >> in other words, is this what you think they are thinking? do you think they will look at the world as the way you just described it? >> my gut feeling is probably
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under rated it a little bit. >> what were you perceiving the markets were looking at like the fed or different? >> that's a very important point. a couple of things. the message is the timing doesn't matter. it's about the path. that's not entirely true for the markets that translate that policy. it does tell us about the fed's reaction, how they are waiting these developments relative to our view of the world. learning information about how they are waiting these developments. so the timing does matter very much. >> so sooner suggests they have more confidence in the economy.
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>> so if they move in september, it would tell us they are not weighting very strongly. they are weighting the labor market much more strongly. the markets are already signaling. markets today right before we came on, 25% for september. so it would be a big big supply for the markets if they actually raised rates. and the fed would not want to surprise markets. there is an element of fed policy that's always been there that we aren't talking about. that is risk management. the fed has cultivated this recovery so carefully with such enormous effort for the last seven years. will you take it in unstable
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global financial with real macro economic questions. they are not just about volatility but the volatility came from significant data developments around the world. we have the bricks, the wonderful bricks, brazil, russia, india, china. india is the only sort of okay one. that's important. that was a macroeconomic cast lift to the volatility that has rippled back on to shores. are we going to be resilient to that? do we have a good shot at it? for sure. a lot of domestic strength. i think when the tpepd decides now is the time for that progress, it matters very much to whether the markets say this is the right and good policy or this is a policy mistake.
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i did a survey. their median was 20%. in line with the broader market pricing. then i asked, how would markets react if they did? the universal a answer is it would be a policy mistake. >> what do you point to? >> even lower than 20%. maybe 10 or 15. >> i'm considerably higher than 20%. but i don't have a particular number in approximate mind. >> i'm with john. i think it's probably less than 50/50 given all the developments julia talked about. but higher. >> do you all agree based on what we know now before the end of the year still remains greater than 52% chance? >> i do.
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>> i think it's about 50/50. >> i think it's slightly more than 50% on the assumption that there is some recovery in the markets. >> yeah. as long as things stabilize. i think what we have all agreed with is that the important thing about this volatility is the macro signal behind it. and that's what,kdç they are g to be looking at. what we will learn about that turmoil in china. and if that proves it is either impacting the globe less th23ñ3e thought or not transferring here, then, yes, they go. and to the greater extend it is slowing us. >> when i came to washington and started covering the fed in 1987, the fed basically said nothing. that was the thing about being at the wall street journal.
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we had gone a long way. as a former reporter, i'm in favor of transparency. but as i look a at communications today, sometimes they are a little bit of a headache. we won't want to be predictable, but it will be gradual. >> i'm not sure they said that one. they would be happy to be predictable but predictions are deterministic mechanical. >> like i said. it goes to my point. so is this just the world in which we live. it is hard to make conditional statements if the world unfolds the way we do, this is our plan but don't hold us to it if the world changes. or could they have done a better job of framing that conversation? particularly, have all the conversations from all the members of the f1 c mailing in
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their votes by press release or press interview, is that making things berth because we see the debate or worsej]y because it suggests the meeting is pro formative. >> i want to pick up your last point. members of the committee seem to have made up their minds before they come to the meeting. i haven't heard any of these people say, this is a tough call. because here's how i'm leading the economy. where will it be to the fed mandate. i have never heard that phrase. it bothers me as someone who was executive of that committee for 15 years and sat on it another
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eight. it is not always informative but it can be. you have to listen to each other. that's this precommitment. and then changing your mind every month or two when a new piece of data come out. yeah, september. well, not so sure now. well, maybe. i don't think that's helpful. economic conditionality as well as it should. it just focusing on essentially the left side of the reaction, as opposed to what you're going to do with interest rates rather than the right side. >> do you think their communication will have been as good as possible? >> i think there's room for improvement. i think i agree with the point that the data dependency has -- there was general conclusion that giving too determineistic a
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complacency. i agree with that proposition. i think the pendulum has swung too far to the other side where they are inadvertently stoking the market.6pañ it is a combination of the way they are publicly react to go different data going after the employment report and saying that's a pretty good number. that's not helpful. and the meeting we can go live. well, if the number is good tomorrow we can go. i don't think that will be the nature of the deliberation. it will be looking at the fullness of the accumulated progress, the outlook, the risks
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to the outlook. so i think the tone of the framing of the reaction function hasn't been optimal and has inadvertently led to where they have caused market volatility that might make it difficult for them to announce a decision. somewhere in between there's a median, you can provide guidance, this is how we're thinking. give us a little runway to anticipate that and perhaps not -- the dollar is is not spiking ahead of every fed meeting. >> i think there's some people who say we are nearer to the point where it just doesn't make sense. the anticipation of the fed is worse than the reality. we know that everybody is nervous about what markets are going to do when the fed finally pushes the button.
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people who lived through 1994 with when the fed raised rates and thought they telegraphed it and surprised markets and we ended up with a financial crisis in mexico and orange county and all of that. i understand why they want to be cautious. other people look at history and don't want to go down as the federal reserve who repeated the mistakes of 1937 and just at the wrong moment. but that said, is is there a case, that okay, 5.3% unemployment, zero% interest rates are too low. the markets have been frothing at the mouth as the fed is going to do this. wouldn't it be better if the fed got into it. so people got used to the fact that zero interest rates are not a permanent condition? >> there might be something to that. i suspect that it won't move just to move. that's not generally the way they work. another way of thinking about it
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is the precise timing of the initial move is not important to the side of the economy. it is some folks who deal at that end of short-term financial markets. so the particulars of doing it now as opposed to a month from now or two months from now might make sense. but i don't think that argument will be -- that's a footnote, i believe. it's the discussion of where the economy is going to be in one to three years. >> why so much emphasis? we all said that's important. what's the reason for that? >> that's the statement about how they believe the economists think. that chair yellen at the san francisco fed earlier this year gave a nice description of this.
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that the economy, the interest rates, financial conditions consistent with some continued progress in the labor market and with inflation getting back. that is likely to be a gradual path. if you say about that, we would all love it if the economy boomed. then obviously it will will tighten faster. but we haven't seen that happen. >> we don't want people to think we are going to get interest rates back to normal, whatever, 3.5% because they would behave accordingly and that would have bad effects. >> yes. thank you. >> joe? >> at a point where we talk about zero and this extremely accomodative. i don't think we know -- certainly with the labor market it appears to be accomodative. it is is not accomodative when we look at inflation. if we look around the world we
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used to think -- okay. it's lagging. we look around the world. now we know zero isn't the lower bound. we have a number of central banks at negative rates. we have a situation where there is an exchange rate mechanism that is unusual because of the die vergens. you do have or steps, which do feedback into the economy on export growth, on inflation, through a number of channels. so it is a very difficult time to calibrate and thisú presumption that zero is this crazy accomodative rate, that's an assumption based on past;j;ñ history, which may or may not be applicable. i think in the speech you just
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referenced, she framed it as the true funds rate right now. we don't really know. we know it's pretty low. as zero in the past, the housing market could have been on fire. you would have had a lot of froth in the financial markets. it would have been a very different world in the past. we are muddling along at 2% growth. labor market, thumbs up for show. but no wage growth yet. it isn't quite operational yet. we think we're getting closement we hope we're getting close. so zero may not be the zero of yesteryear. that's something they have to grapple with right now. >> don and i were in china last week. it is amusing to hear that the chinese hadn't updated their talking point. they are talking about spillover from the u.s. to china. spillover is a two-way street if you don't mind the mixed
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metaphor. does it really affect unemployment and inflation in the united states a lot if china slows a little bit? or is it that it's not just china, it's china, brazil and russia. they should worry what will have ill effects on ma labor a that and indonesia. what do you think they ought to be thinking about? >> all the above is allowed. >> in addition to the year term interest rate, an interesting point to know is where the committee thinks they're heading after a few years and the fed funds rate has gone down. 4.25% to 3.5%. that's the median. it might have something to go further. this reflects a global move
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towards lower interest rates. >> no, the reasons to worry about the rest of the world is not that the federal reserve is china but that what happens in brazil and china affects the u.s. economy. exports have grown over time. compared to where they were 30 years ago. so it matters a bit more. they are still relatively close. so absolutely it matters. declines in stock prices will probably reduce investments and make wcs÷consumption. that will hurt u.s. exporters. a lot of investment goods.
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and the dollar is going to hurt our export. that takes time to show up. >> that is an important point. that and the economic story thing in a number of these countries. it feeds through to the u.s. economy over quite a while. so we won't learn much about that next month either or even the next month what the full import is. >> we're at the beginning of september now. back to the beginning of july. we say what have we learned since the beginning of july? your point, i got it, joe, whatever we thought about the rest of the world, it looks worse today than it did two months ago.
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>>. >> it was always a risk. it is is now very much in the data. brazil, second is quarter was announced do weeks ago or a week ago. >> not to mention canada. >> canada is in a recession. chinese kos it pmi lowest since 2009. these are hard data points where it was a nebulous risk that we worried about. now it's data we can see. >> as i said at the beginning, when the fed cut interest rates to zero, it decided that wasn't the most it could do. it engaged in several rounds of lots and lots of bonds. at the moment they are holding that portfolio steady by reinvesting when the bond matures. could you just explain for people who is the state of the fed's current thinking or what they have told us about what they are going to do with the portfolio.
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i'll ask whether you think they ought to do something different. >> well, the feds announced broad outlines or principles they will follow with the portfolio as things move forward. and i think the main thing they rates, raising rates or lowering rates. that tells you what they are trying to do to financial conditions. and they ultimately obviously would like to reduce the portfolio back to more normal sizes. they would like that to just be done as smooth and with limited disruption as possible. so that that isn't a signal about policy. that's more of a technical exercise helping them get back to where they would like to be. that's the broad outlook. >> some people think the fed has to sell off. if they bought bonds to lower my
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mortgage rate, when they sell them, they will push mortgage rates up. that's not the way the fed looks at it. what's wrong with that? >> i think there is something to that, roger. the fed portfolio holdings pushed down interest rates through a signaling of our intent. and that they can take care of with communication. but also just having just the demand of taking those bonds, particularly long maturity bonds off the market, pushed down long-termnídvç premium. i think as the fed's portfolio decline, it should rise. to what is a really clear thing. but i think the direction is pretty clear. if it's just very gradual it will hardly be noticeable. but it will be up. if they sold in size outright, i think you would have a very
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substantial effect on interest rates. >> consequently, you think that's unlikely. >> exactly. that's what i was going to do. i don't think they will let the portfolio run off until they get the federal funds up some maybe towards 1%. because what they are worried about, what they should worry about is start raising rates and things aren't as good as we thought. or there's a shock from outside the u.s. we need to lower rates to push them against it. you have to get rates up there to do that. they will want to get the short-term rates up a good bit before they start putting pressure on long term by letting the portfolio run off. if it were my choice, it would be nine months, a year or so after the beginning before i even let it run off. >> do you have a difference of view of what they should do than
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what they are doing? >> so, there are two elements. one is a sizable portfolio. they arel+ciñ clear they will n selling bonds at all for five or more years. >> does it pose any problem? >> no, i don't think it does. they heading when they do run off as they are prepaid or mature. there is a statement where they said they want to get as closep as possible, consistent with monetary policy, operating effectively or whatever, which is kind of a big statement. but it sounds like they want to get close to where they are before. it doesn't say that precisely. so it leaves room for a larger portfolio. personally i would argue they should have a large portfolio.
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this is 4 trillion. instead of going back to 1 trillion, why 2 trillion wouldn't be a good number. these are safe assets that people want to hold. i don't see any reason to make them scarce. there is good the fed can provide. they are helping transactions. >> the assets being the federal reserve. >> yeah. >> they told the bonds. instead, they give people short-term liquid assets. >> the fed are the ultimate transactions. they are used to running the economy on a tiny amount of reserves, which seems crazy in he retro expect to me. banks hold them and feel they have a safe asset and they don't have to scramble to turn them over really fast. it makes a lot more sense to run the economy that way.
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close they want to go yet. >> they have announced they are going to steady operating procedures, decide where they should go. and that will then determine whether they go back to where they were. if they say, no, no, no. >> i suspect they don't agree on where they want to go. >> that's several years down the road now. you talk about the fed forecasting two years from now. that's hard. what are things going to be like six years from now. they have time to steady that. and they said they are steadying that. i think well in advance of adopting a normalized stance they will make clear what that is likely to be. no more reserves than they need for whatever operating procedure
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they settle on. that's nearly a totalogy. >> does the fed care whether it has 2 trillion or 4 trillion or 1 trillion? >> i think the market would care if the fed started selling assets, which they have already taken off the table. i think one of the unknowns is how well they are going to be able to control short-term interest rates, how well they target. how big the reverse repo facility will have to be to control short-term interest rates in late of the fact that the pal sheet is so large. >> just to translate, the way they used to move interest rates is not going to work with a big balance sheet. so they have to adopt new tools and they have been playing with those new tools, experimenting. >> i think testing is the word. >> testing new tools because it do in real life. so that'scyi5 one question.
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>> that is one question. the testing has gone well. they think they understand the mechanics. they have some sense the dynamics. but we actually have to raise the target rate, see whether it lands in the target they set. how does that affect funding markets. these are the plumbing questions. and the plumbing questions will have influence on how they measure longer policy.-dkw they don't necessarily need to make decisions. they can push that down the road, get the short-term rates up to a comfortable level and make those decisions later. i think that's where they want to go. we will have to try and see. one, it could be they don't work as well. then you need to think about
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reducing your balance sheet and getting liquidity absorbed that way. or there is, for whatever reason, political sensitivities to paying this much interesting to banks or having a reverse repo facility with money market funds. it's hard to predict. >> beyond actually how they manage to control interest rates, again, i think a lot of people think, god, the market must benhz terrifying because t fed owns so many bonds. or something this ó allows the federal government to do a lot more deficit spending than it would otherwise. does the fact that the fed have such a big portfolio have any implications for the markets that you take seriously? >> not really. on a day to day basis there are other increased volatility than we have had in the past.fy that is an unrelated issue or
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tan general challengely related. regulations, all these question influencing market liquidity and dynamics. that matters very much. but in general, i don't think the fact that it is holding 4 trillion in assets really affects day-to-day market functioning. >> we've been talking mostly and and growth because those are the major responsibilities of the federal reserve. but we know the financial stability is also a concern of the government and a concern of the federal reserve. and the kind of conventional explanation, janet yellen and others is, okay, we're going to use interest rates differently and steer the economy towards this wonderful place of maximum employment and stable prices. and if we look at the risks
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about financial stabilities, we're going to use all these other things thatxbi/x we've coe call macro credentials. those people that think we should raise interest rates above all are making a mistake because we can use the tools. how will equipped is the fed and the u.s. in general to use these new fangeled macro tools to avoid a repeat crisis? >> not as well equipped as we think they should be. so i agree with chair yellen and many others that have said that raising interest rates ought to be the last line of defense for financial stability, steering away from the inflation target, from the employment target. but it is there and if the other stuff fails, then you couldq8te a worse situation, like the global financial crisis if you don't do something about it. but we have created in dodd
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frank and in regulation a lot of new tools on financial stability, in particular capital and liquidity for banks and bank holding companies, designated large nonbank institutions, systemically important, subject to additional scrutiny and additional regulations. so we've done a lot. but i do worry that we haven't done enough and in particular, i worry about the housing market. so if you think about where financial crises have come and financial cycles have come in the united states and many other places, it's through housing. think about the '80s, late '80s, through 2007, 2008 was housing crisis. we basically don't have tools directly target the housing market the way many other countries, including the uk, their financial -- we on the financial policy committee can
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raise and lower loan to value ratios, loan to income ratios if we think there's a bubble developing or a recession developing, we could lower things to make -- to make credit easier to get in the residential housing market. and there's nothing like that in the u.s. so i think where our tools are limited and the last lineáéb7d defense is further towards monetary policy than i would like it to be because of that. and i worry about the decision j making, also. the fnlt stability oversight council has ten or so agencies on it. it's chaired by the secretary of the treasury. i'm not sure if is a good mechanism, governance mechanism for making countercyclical financial macro prudential policy. i think the secretary will be quite conflicted and certainly in even numbered leap years.
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it looks like these campaigns began a year before that. and the other agencies don't have the same financial stability focus that the fed has. kwlompt. improvement. >> there's sort of two things to think about that don was talking about. there is general resilience in the financial system, lots of capital. i think you'd agree there's been a great deal of progress making everybody morrow bust. >> and the bank holding companies. >> let's suppose you've made the system more resilient but a bubble appears. proactively -- and that's countercyclical.
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that's where the decision making over a wide range of bodies, the tools that that wide range of bodies hasqlih aren't as good they should be. so responding on the fly as something happens is more difficult here than in many countries. so i certainly agree with don on both those points. >> ifwq:qk that's the case, we to be very conservative in our baseline setting of things like mortgage loan to value ratios from the start, presumably, i don't know if we're where we should be there. >> that is a good point. >> and i would like to make the point that even if you did think that monetary policy should be used, remember that the worst part of the housing bubble developed very close to the peak of the interest rate cycle. a lot of the excessive credit
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layering and derivatives developments that prove so problematic for banks happened close to the peak of the interest rate cycle. so it's not necessarily the monetary policy mechanism is affect, anyway, in controlling bubbles. you really do need something that's far more microoriented towards the particular structure or market that you're focus on and housing is obviously dshg and the problem is with housing, of course, is that it's very politically sensitive. how you develop that is impressive. >> well done. time it's a really big problem. >> -- the first time they did something, they set it high enough so it didn't affect anybody, right? >> so what we did is try and set it high enough so that there
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wasn't much effect and it was basically insurance against the deterioration and credit standards as house prices rose relative to incomes and other prices. but i was surprised, anyway, at how little pushback there was from the political environment in the uk to this action. i thought we were going to hear more about first time home buyers and things like that. and i think part of it was setups. though there were a series of speeches by deputy governor and governor and others worried about the house price situation and what was developing outside london. and i think that -- and enunciating why it might be a concern. and then i think the action we took was pretty modest relative to that concern and pretty
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proportional. it worked out pretty well. >> we made the point that john did, as well, that productivity growth in this economy has been very disappointing want so that output per hour of work has grown very slowly. &t you think that's something the fed can do anything about, other than observe it and talk about it? or is that the -- of somewhere else, the rest of the government or -- >> one point that yennen has made, which is unorthodox that i don't agree with is to the extent that they can let the recovery develop some strong legs and really let the economy gain some momentum and strength, you can argue that would lead you to a better place with
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better productivity. so it really is important to let that mature and potentially give you some spill over effects to things like to the extent that we think there's a hangover risk aversion, either for firms or people and you let that fade away enough to where they're taking risks with starting new firms, allowing the recovery to gain momentum can lead you to a better place in productivity. >> i suppose the question i wish to pose is how could one be that independent and looking at the
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pc at 1.2 and provide a prescription which accounts for -- i'm referring to chair stan fisher which i suppose ties to the question to mr. foust, looking at your paper which was presented last week. how dow reconcile the necessity on the part of policymakers to be somewhat, shall we say humble, but at the same time call for normalization? which framework are you looking at? and how could you explain the relation function of the fed is the fed was capturing development, i'm referring to global development in the framework. which program temperature do you look at? >> john, do you want tohg3óñ tah that? >> sure. there is a lot of discussion aì% symposium about the
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relationship between the stateñ of labor market and when that starts to provide upward pressure on inflation to get inflation back to target. but i think the basic story that the fomc will have to be grappling with is these issues out with that kicked off the session nicely with. we need to be looking one and two years down the road. do we believe that if the labor market continues to improve at the rate it's improved for several years that a year or two down the rooz that depression will have emerged? and then when you say are they going to normalize in september or begin to normalize in september, that's a difference statement than is 50 basis points better than 5?
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in other words, that's one ste< from extremely accommodative to somewhat less so. and so if they do normalize -- this is just the framework. i'm not here saying what they should do. it will be because we believe that the built in momentum and the labor market, they're confident that will continue and they're confident that that will over time provide this pressure. now, when inflation is at 1.2 or inflation is at 28, if that's due to oil prices, for example -- what's that? >> 1.2 is corn. so they have made a policy on of working through that. that is the framework.
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>> so the question on international was where does international fit in there reaction, function?g@ie >> urnçright. so can i just make one point on this is, to me, where the timing does matter. the message has to add up. if you're telling me we're putting that in a framework that we have just written about doesn't work and the data are at the lows and going down and i'm going to stay it, anyway, that sends vary hawkish message about your reaction function. you can say gradual all you want. i've just learn the fed's version of data dependance is not what i thought. so it does matter, but the data are building your case for you and you deliver the message at the right time.
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i think the standard academic way of looking at timing doesn't matter, it's all about the past, the timing matters very much to rt%÷ take it. on the international side, this is a tricky thing. the fed has given us this stuff% and this is to your point about transparency and do we have too much and does it give us a headache? it's given us a summary of market projections, it's very to frame their decision. but then there's all this stuff outside. the summary of economic projections is very much anywhere. unemployment will go through the natural rate and we're%&!ñ goin have inflation coming back up to target. as we do so, we're going to gradually normalize rates. but there are all these things outside of it9xk that actually affect -- i think your term is
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disperate -- >> confoundingñ-i dynamics. >> the way i describe it as pragmatic real world banking is taking these factors into effect. they say they're taking it into %p are doing that. they have a lot of excellenty6÷ people on the staff that suggests-&&#ñ how t/z!pñ provi inflation, what are the things that they're watching? bp4+hat is why i put very low o central bank would raise rates after a massive shock to thenaxx financial markets? pretty big rumble and inflation is at lows. why would you do it?v⌜vñ-2epj
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>> so i wanted to weigh ñn on %r julia's side of this. it seems to me actually quite the markets so we stopped. i think we need to take seriously the possibility that the market is telling you differently, the equit#fo sell-f on the other. ç significant whackness, but if things do get badtícsc enough, others who are at or at best if very small. you should expect markets to be
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extremely sensitive to market risks. i worry that the committee is taking that seriously enough. how attentive are you to thoseç risks as well as more broadly in a@a the board starts talking about their/e0 base case in the medi term. so i wanted to ask whether they agree with the sentiments. >> one reason is to try and as somebody said, this is about trying to figure out what the markets are saying about the
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underlying economies and the is inflationary would feedback on the u.s. so a couple percentage points slowing in china or a decline in ch se, would have very little effect on the u.s. but you see broader disinflationary forces at work. and i guess one would hope that by waiting a little while, you could process better what the -- how they would be back on to the u.s. so that would be a reason to wait at least a little bit. i agree. but it's not about the market movements, per se. it's not what they're saying about what's going on underneath. >> just a couple of small wrinkles to that. it's the underlying database what it says about the
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underlying economy. should have add two little bits. when you think about the market volatility, i don't think you quiesence markets before we'll do anything. sozjpnñ when the fundamental do there will be marketwr3 turbul fairley close in the rearview mirror. there is all the time. so that can't be the driver of policy. deciding what[t7÷ is the financ market volatility telling you about the economy performing? to reemgzyw much will we learn about whether this?,dáq] going to feed into the u.s.jud;ç we'll learn very much about that few months. áthat's what makes the decision a difficult one and that is why
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don and i are higher decision. why they'll /tñhave, i'mjy 6rrr vigorous discussion.k:5r(t&háhp% >> one moreí1lt thing that has discussed is the other side of the weakness that might be strength within the u.s.2z[ q% some n÷ markets, it would still be$4tw súhhzsf(úzdñwould still be$4tw spending and capital &háhp &hc% h @r(t&hú c% than they thought it was going  when they -- certai:t going
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%s of circumstances where the u.s. economy is x a '=ñ chinaúfcx and!cg3vñ brazil. >> because that might take a couple ofgs>]ujj of a percenkñç xlóqnu slack. )pr(t&háhp &hc% grcc everyone seems to believe k for press[s;"conference. do you think if the indicators line upm;oñ by october that the
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>> i think4/u$ey would'xgç be a it would be better to send the chair out qk there and explain m ñ ask the panel, what about the risks ofw h volatility. and pretty soonl the forward two-year notes at 0.2 today
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income. this and startspc to reach for higñ yield.oid borrowers. >> i thinkotñ they would feel t this would be something that if they dealt with it in december or even october if i÷(k was thaó strong, you know,;7bnh things wouldn't have that muchfdqm tim get carried away. >> so how big a risk is that the fed waites and you get all that ñstuff?c sent>,]ñ by delaying in septemb even if they do tighten in -+3
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and/ay thea+÷5v&vo stromgest tn market volatility and market i@mf÷q6x volatility. so, you lsqvvknow, when stock,zs are down 10% relative/cv!z toxg they were ten months ago, that is a bad signal for the future z kñ#wuár.$2j÷zl#z i don't think if you delay on y"'suit-r' it on our own úç moving in the direction we thought, we don'trvp have
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3j the ? they'd but the down side is bias )jñ½ you've got'@ee to remove that be you -- you ÷c÷sñknow,0[cpu you before. ìáhp &hc% september hat we're scared about markets. and i don't think that is what and i don't think that is what janet would say in her press&ñp nñ-ñ* time and we'll just back away. it's going to be, you know, progress on our mandates isn't quite what we expected andba6=ñe got etr(t&háhp &hc%sks thakn noj market lbt;ñvolatility,vg"f bu global economy. we would like to gather a little
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more information. it's not going to be never. ñ what everybody,n2çñ said everyb much inflation or going the other way.xaao= thele risc! are more concerning becaused
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sometimes market peopleu2(z tha would take not going inhn9 @r(t% september as they're never going 6ñ saypy -- i think it'shf&ñq all these changes in the data and may jx telling us ab,ów theñkè side of the 8 over the next couple&áapp month you see numbers that say we didn't fall off the table and then you move. >> the one holding the piece of paper, stand up with the mike in >> thank you. i'll take just a second. this is cindy walsh.
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main street really does kind of understand what's going on. so i'm going to just give a main street perspective very quicklyñ participation in the workforce is now at 61% lower than in thes 1960s. so unemployment is actually probably closer to 20%.0 inflation, it seems so low because so much of it is placed low because sñ competition between natural gas1@zñ and oil. that's temporary. of cou dealing with health and food issues that are spiraling almost the interest rate;>!, we're q o that that's being b umóujrjz specifically through u.s. treasury bonds at the
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federal, state and local level o cf1 o leveraged to such a height, that we are almost sure that there's going to be a bond market class because there's going to be an bond investments. inflation is now probably> so can you -- i hear -- >> so my question is, we would like to hear you address it from those perspectives, because that is the perspective that main dealing more with what the
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effect of wall street would be. >> let me take a cut at that. first of all, i think we would disagree with the numbers you use, though i am certain that many people think inflation isf higher than this labor statistics says. i think that -- i'd like to panel to take one point that you made. whether main street is concerned about bond market fund, i'm not convinced. but a lot of people in financial regulatory circles are. and so one concern is after all this time ofkcíd& this energy o central banks all around the world holding down interest rates and making bondz bond funds, you know, so people reaching for yield and all that, is there a risk somehow that once the fed makes a small step towards normalization, there's some kind of really big problem? is that something we're worrying about?
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was zero. that is such a big reaction that it threatens the financial stability of the united states or the world economy. i think bond markets are likely to react in part because there are a group of people out there who say they'll never raise rates, that inflation is too low. they'll always find an excuse not the raise. i'd be surprised if bont markets didn't rise and markets-gf'o ar as liquid. but bond price -- yeah, bond prices didn't fall and rates didn't rise. but ugs r i think the fed can't let itself be frozen in those headlights. has to do the best it can to talk about gradual thereafter. if that's a true view of what
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it's going to do and then they can take the steps that needs to take and work on the bond market volatility and what not through other means. >> hire in the front. rich, can you stand up so that she can see you? please. >> a question abouthkjuñ china this global volatility, if i may, because he he just went to china. we talk about a couple reasons, u.s. economy for other reasons. but i think it's the mid point mechanism. do you think what china put the role in china play this time in
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this global sell off is purely economy problem or it is related to their policy transparency that puts the uncertainty? and if china governmenti>nn rea play a role here, what should they do next? >> i think both of the above. so i think people were concerned that chinese
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point, which is communication by the chinese government, by the peoples bank, they did this on a monday or tuesday. they didn't have a press conference until friday. so if you're going to change your exchange rate regime, i think you need to h3ghs÷ a very clear story about what you're doing and why you're doing it. i know the chinese don't have a lot of experience doing this because they don't have a domestic press the way the u.s. and europe havera6 a domestic ps pushing them all the time on what they're doing and why. but they're playing in a globalo think improvement in flv"r(t&há% communication clarification ofj framework and more immediacy of essential. >> can ik3la add to that? i think that's an incredible
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question. you put your finger on what one of the biggest changes over the last two months has been is the perception of the chinese policymakers. so we have lots of data out of china on things like the credit situation that's been developing. there's been a lot of concerns for the last couple of years about how much credit growth there has been, the shadow banking system, you know, ever more credit with ever less gdp. and we are always worried about china as a risk and the pushback has always been whether it's from investors or policymakers has been, oh, but it's china. they have a plan. it's a centrally planned, it's a new, strong regime, centrally planned government, they'll be able to manage it. and what the news has been is that actually they don't have a plan. and the plan xhangs from week to week. there is a very big change in
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perception. so i think for me, a lot of the volatility and the level change has been this is a bigger risk than we realize. so it's taking that into -- now it's difficult because when you're in a credit crunch, you have to throw different things out there and see where it works. there's not a clear cut playbook, especially out of china. but its nature, you're going to look a little bit lost at times. the u.s. did, europe did. and so we're going to be in this process, i think, for a while as they figure out what the plan is and what is effective. >> rich miller of bloomberg, thank you. >> i was wondering about december, the lack of liquidity in the markets, will that affect the decision? too, i wanted to pick up on something julia said about the communication process going forward. i would be interested in hearing what other people say about how
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they sort of don'tw@lñ go so deterministic as they were the last time, but don't get the market carnage in orange county, mexico, as david alluded to to '94, '95. as julia said, it seems difficult. i think react to the latest unemployment. allow are they going to communicate? >> so the first question is december. >> i'd be surprised if that held them back. so especially if they, in their october statement, for example, gave a pretty big clue that it was coming in december, the markets would already build it in. and if they really think they need to move, i would hope that -- and i'll bet all these vvz,hpp1us
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>> it's going to be a great time. and how do you management this vfç >> i think that's difficult and that's the sweet spot that's attempting to hit and it's difficult.&hr i think on sth data dependance, sometimes that makes it seem as if the fomc says we're on the edge of our seat all the time about ready to tip one way or the other. but that's not the case. i think they need to communicate more effectively that its outlook dependent and the outlook changes, the outlook for a year to three in the future changes rather gradually.
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and so it's affected by friday's jobs report. nothing is chiselled in stone. sometimes the messageawv6g come across as if they're skittish or something. it's outlook dependent, the outlook changesnfnpñ gradually most of the time. in good times, you know, a little bit of information comes in, you marmgally change the outlook that marginally changes what the policy could be. and i'd like to see the communication move more in that direction because it conveys, julia said earlier, the market has an impression. i don't think they behave that way, julia said. and that's what we're talking about, conveying more of this outlook.
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>>nw8qw thank you. i'm nick farmer. can you speak to changing the demographics, changing the fact that the u.s. corporations sell more and more of their products overs overseas, artificial intelligence, are these things impacting the interest rate productivity labor labor issues? does the fed take this into account? what are they doing about these issues? >> yeah. i can throw one more piece in. which is so some people have been arguing that a number of things which you cited
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demographics, productivity are causing the interest rate the economy needs in equilibrium to go down. i think the fomc itself has seen that. if you look at the long range projections, it's come down from about 4.25 to 3..5 and as i said earlier, it may have a bit further to go. and that is more of a long-term thing. let me add one big thing that you didn't mention which i do a lot of work on.. and that is the behavior of foreign countries and just the foreign government in terms of saving and investments. it used to be that developing countries would borrow for development and then they would borrow from us and they would invest and we would export to them and we would grow. there were problems with that
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strategy. about ten yearsrójo ago after t crisis, kins really made a strategy. and what you see now is countries don't borrow for development as on the scale they did before and, in fact, on average emerging markets, thev6a r vast net lenders. we have a mad of money coming in and going out that we never had before. that is contributed to low interest rates in the u.s. it is also holding the recovery back to some extent. normally in a recession, when we have a trade deficit going into the recession, it goes away during the recession. maybe it comes back gradually later. we only lost half of on our trade deficit in this recession and it's starting to come back already quite a bit. so this is a change.
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>> wuven of the changes we've seen out of china is they are now runningw down their fx reserves for the first time in 25 years. >> the key thing is, it's a bad idea for this year, absolutely, but that strikes me as market volatility that's probably not going to persist. >> or a change in exchange rate. >> et hasn't exchanged. >> you would like to make one point on the demographics. there is a debate and a discussion about whether that has led to lower national rates of unemployment. you want to gethat because there is less turnover, people are in their jobs longer. we think of the national rate as that level of churn in the labor market. it might be lower because of demographics in part..
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and, therefore, you might have more flack than you thought and we might see that in the summer of economic projections that you have a lower natural rate because of in terms of demographic issues. >> and in demographic issues name imply that the unemployment rate isn't as good as a single summary statistic as it used to be. but we have to think more about labor force participation, especially as it interacts with the deep recession we've had. you know, are some of the -- are some of the folks that left the labor market perhaps retiring early because they lost their job and didn't see prospects? if the economy is more healthy, do they come back and work for a while? those are important questions. in both, you ask that the fed think about these and deal with them adequately. the very complicated topic. being discussed, you can see it
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even in the minutes and the speeches of the fomc members and had working papers. does anybody have a great handle on those? okn. that we have yet to see. they're difficult issues about the interaction between long-term changes in the economy and one that may be precipitated by the financial crisis that will go away.he1zñ >> oh, please join me in thanking our panel. if there are paper cups at your seats, we would appreciate it if you would take them and put them in the recycling containers in the back. >> thank you very much. wednesday, hillary clinton talk bes the agreement at the
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brookings institution. our live coverage begins at 9:00 a.m. on c-span2. later, opponents of the rally will be at the capital. ted cruz and donald trump are among the speakers at that event that starts at 1:00 p.m. eastern time. we have it live here on c-span3. a signature feature of book tv is our all day coverage of festivals from across the country. here is our schedule. near the end of september, we're in new york for the brooklyn book festival, celebrating its 10th year. in early october, the southern festival of books in nashville. the weekend after that, were live from austin for the texas book festival. and near the end of the month, we'll be covering two book festivals in the same weekend. from our nation's heartland, it's the wisconsin book festival in madison and back on the east coast, the boston book festival. at the start of november, we're
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be in portland, oregon, for wordstock. followed by the national book awards from new york city. at the end of november, we're live for the 18th year in a row from florida for the miami book fair international. that is a few of the fairs and festivals this fall pp on c-span2's book tv. now, the u.s. between the u.s. and british militaries at the atlantic council here in washington. this is an hour and a half. >> it's a great honor for me to introduce to you my friend, penny mordaunt. her official duties include operations, operation policy, legal matters, personnel policy.
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and if that is not enough, other responsibilities include cyber, relations with iran and ireland and latin america. after graduating from university, penny began a very successful career in business and communications working in the private and public charitable sectors. she was communications director for the kensington and chelsea council. she supported british truckers during the french blockades. in 2006, she became director of diabetes uk, the largest patient organization in europe. if that wasn't enough, at the same time she founded her own media company which she ran successfully for many years before she successfully sold it off. in the world of politics and
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with high profile politicians under john major she was head of youth for the conservative party. she had a two-year spell as head of broadcasting under william hague. she's even dipped her toe into the waters on this side of the atlantic having worked as head of foreign press for george w. bush's presidential campaign in 2000 and again in 2004. in the 2010 general election penny won the the seat with a 7200-vote majority and in parliament under the coalition government served on the european scrutiny committee, the defense select committee, and as chairman of the all-party groups for life science and for aging and older people.k'ga and as an indication of her rising star in autumn of 2013 she was appointed private secretary to the secretary of defense. 2014, penny was only the second won in 1957. the only woman to propose the
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loyal address in. reply to the queen's speech to f the throne and in it she made reference to tweets about making more female involvement in parliament. and the speech was so good that the spectator magazine named it it the speech of the year for 2014 knocking out gordon brown. in 2015 she was reelected to parliament increasing her majority to over 10,500 and she assumed her current post in may 2015. she was involved in many charities including a patron of the victorian cross trust. and to me most importantly not only does she talk the talk, she walks the walk. she is a royal naval reservist
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acting as an active acting sub left tenant. so it's my great privilege and honor to introduce my friend, minister of state for the armed forces. >> thank you very much, frank. good afternoon, thank you for coming along. i have a big to-do list, but first is to say thank you. i have been for some time a cheerleader of our atlantic alliance.c[ and having peaked behind the defense curtain now as minister for the armed forces, i understand how close, how integrated and how interoperable our partnership is. i'm confident that partnership
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will continue to strengthen as we face up to the same challenges and same enemies and defend our common national interests creating security in which freedom and as a consequence our citizens can thrive. i'm a cheerleader for the u.s. because of your energy and he thus amp, your values. but most of all, because you are an example of enduring freedom and you are prepared to defend that freedom. i want to start by paying tribute to our armed forces. they have the best characteristics of our societyäñ duty, professionalism, self-service and sacrifice. they put the needs of other people before themselves and we have seen recent examples of that in the actions of f u.s. servicemen spencer stone, his friends and chris norman. in their actions on that french train a couple weeks ago. and a veteran of the afghan
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campaign who risked a lot in order to rescue his injured comrades, including a u.s. marine. but it is not just that heroism that makes our armed forces so formidable.rn+÷ it's their considerable skill. major david cooper of the royal army medical core, he's a reservist and veteran of the afghan campaign. in his day job, he's a paramedic in our national health service. a few months ago, responding as part of an air ambulance crew attended a roller coaster crash in southern england. on arrival, he noticed a young woman still trapped in one of the roller coaster cars way above his head, bleeding to death. without a second thought, he scaled the roller coaster and attended her applying techniques that he had learned and developed on the battlefield. he saved her life.
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our armed forces enrich our society, whether they are reservists or regulars, they give so much to their communities that they serve and in the uk, i want to ensure that the connection between the public and our armed forces is strong and deep. and in recent times that bond has been weakened. the public have lost faith in our ability to act. they question the merits of iraq and afghanistan. and they want us never to run those kinds of campaigns again. the experiences for the general public of our armed forces are too often through the prism of pity and charity. our soldiers, sailors, airmen and women are seen as victims, traumatized by combat. not as the dedicated professionals they are.
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but also the public are troubled by what they see on their television screens. the appalling atrocities committed by isil and they hatei the feeling of impotence they feel at not being able to stop an aid worker or a journalists being brutally murdered. so the challenge is to square those competing emotions. to show that we have learned from iraq and afghanistan. to show that we know we cannot fight other people's wars for them. but it is in our national interests to help them do so themselves. and we must clearly articulate that change. what our armed forces are for and to deepen the public's understanding of their mission and capability. then we can reset the relationship between our armed forces and the public. and we in the uk have much to oj learn from the u.s. in this respect.
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you really do understand how a military career can appeal to everyone in your society and the profile of military figures in the u.s. reflects the esteem your public places on those who choose such a career. we in the uk have made some progress in this respect. during the last parliament we enshrined an armed forces covenant, which throws down the gauntlet to our institutions and our businesses to support the military. but more is needed to foster the focus and the kind of support which is so genuine and spontaneous in the u.s. e we must ensure every part of our society and every community in the uk feels ownership of our armed forces and pride in what they do. %ájáu(port for defe vital. not just in democratic support for spending and in military
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action, but also because our armed forces must represent and reflect the society they serve. the quality is an operational imperative for defense. it's not just best use of best talent and ensuring that all who serve can thrive. it is much more than that. one of the first trips i took as minister for the armed forces was to go back to our officer training academy in kabul in afghanistan. i'd been there a couple years before where i had having graduated from darth mouth a a couple months before seen new women recruits who sought permission from every male member of their family in order to sign up and serve. training behind a brick wall. and at the time, i was very keen to point out to the afghan general in charge that it was
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probably a bad idea that the first time women and men who were going to fight alongside each other met was on the battlefield on an operation. and i was very proud to go back a few months ago to see the first 12 women officers pass out of that academy. one of them winning the sword of honor that year. and when i asked that particular cadet what her motivation was for being such a trailblazer and wanting to serve in the armed forces, she said she wanted to shape and defend her country. i know how she felt. i want to shape and defend my country, and i want others to be able to do the same. so i think we need, in this day and age, a very good reason why if we're going to remain keeping close combat roles and other roles in armed forces cut off to women, we need a very good
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evidence-based reason why we're going to continue to do that. and i'm very glad this issue is being looked at both in the u.s. and the uk. i want to salute the two women on completing their army ranger course. i know they are inspiration to ÷ women who serve in our armed forces and they are certainly an inspiration to me. they are an example of what make our armed forces so great. it's not our gadgets and gizmos, it's our people and reviews must place people at their heart. we must invest in them. at a time when man power costs are rising and we are trying to do more with our budget, it is a challenge to recruit and retain the best. and in the uk, we are bringing forward a new employment model. it's the widest review of terms and conditions in our armed forces since the second world war. it makes our offer fit for purpose in the here and now. ç
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last few days to talk about this and your work in a force for the future as you grapple@çé@q same issues as we are. but this investment in focus is not just about recruitment and k tension. it also guarantees our interoperability, which resides in more than technical connectivity of hardware and software, but in the heads and uniform. it creates that critical factor, trust in one another. that, after all s what makes our alliance so special. most of the time, we are working alongside each other fighting shoulder to shoulder, whether it is deterring russian aggression or as part of the global coalition against isil or in 2÷% keeping our vital trade routes open. we value that, and we will continue to play our part. meeting our nato commitment of
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2% gives us a budget that is growing in real terms every year for the next five years. and critically what we save in defense through efficiency drives we get to reinvest in defense. we will invest in hardware and software in the our capability, but above all else, we must also invest in our people. they are the guarantor of the freedoms they protect. and in our reviews, we must ensure we are enabling them to achieve their full potential. only then when our enemies do their worst will we continue to be our best. as we look at our national security interests and fast-changing threats that e we face, there is one constant. the national security of the united kingdom is greatly enhanced by our relationship
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with you. and the security of the united states is enhanced by your relationship with us in nato and with our allies around the world. and e with must continue to stand together to ensure the security, prosperity and freedom of all our people. thank you. >> i will take your card. thanks very much, everybody. i'm the editor of defense news. and member of the atlantic ni('ñ council and i'm honored to be here and to welcome you and to have this conversation with you. i'd like to start by asking you about, i think, one of the biggest things you guys are working on. you mentioned the strategic defense and security review. there's been an oath of silence taken by everybody who is associated with that. and as much as i'd like you to divulge all of the details of
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that review, i'm suspecting you may be reluctant to do that. but perhaps if i could ask you to sort of -- what are some of the big issues you're struggling with and is this going to be another one of those reviews that like the like review is going to involve very large and significant trade offs? >> i have happy news that this sdsr is not going to be like the 2010 review. were facing a pretty dire situation. we had an overcommitted defense budget, which was twice the size of the defense budget. >> the so-called black hole. >> the black hole, yes. calculated at about 71 billion, hñe gap.x so -- and in addition to the problems with the budget, we had this tangle of programs and initiatives which really didn't make any sense.
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so that was a pretty brutal time. and understandably, the focus on it was on k.i.t. and equipment. we had some very painful decisions to make. i think one of the criticisms of that period as well was that it wasn't particularly strategic for a strategic defense review. certainly when i was on the defense committee, that's one of the charges we levied. we are in a different position now. so we are now no longer that basket case. we are the top performing department. we have some really good initiatives that we've brought in. we have proper linkage between the military and the department structure and its political and what that means is that we
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can actually now be genuinely strategic. the other key thing about our defense reviews is that they're not just about defense. they're across government. so the home office, the foreign office, department of international development, department of energy, they are just as much part of it as we are. and it is a very logical process. it starts by looking at our planning assumptions, which happily and compared to the last review actually reflect what we do. and we will then look at threatd address what we need to do to combat that. >> foundationally, as you look at u.k. forces are engaged in the isis campaign, u.k. forces around the world are shaping, playing a key role in the whole deterrent for russia in terms of the deployments that british forces are making over to the east. as you, somebody who's engaged in both operations but also sort of shaping the thinking of this, what are the foundational capabilities that u.k. forces need? what are the sort of sets of
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challenges that you're building this force to be able to address for the future? >> in terms of the review, we're not there yet. we're not looking at that aspect of it. what we're looking at is what is in our national interest. so genuinely, i can't tell you what the answer to that is. we are clearly involved in less high profile but many more campaigns. currently in terms of our major operations, we're involved in 21 around the world. and there is a definite shift from the kinds of things that we've been doing in afghanistan to more capacity building, more training, preventing situations arising and deterring things. so that is now the norm of our operations. clearly we are very focused in working with the u.s. i think we're the second largest contributor to operation shader. we know that those kind of %$p activities, we need to be in it for the long haul, that we have learned from previous campaigns.
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it is frustrating at times, but we have to move incrementally. we have to build a force to ensure that there isn't just a vacuum there when we go. >> i want to get to the force and manpower part of the equation, which you talked about. you met with secretary brad carson and talked about our force of the future initiative as well. but there is a very big debate going on in washington right now about the isis campaign and whether large numbers of c american ground troops should be returning to iraq and as well going into syria. that is also going to debate over in the u.k. what's the state of the debate in the u.k., and is that on the table to deploy large numbers of british forces potentially to either one of those two countries? >> no, and we've been very clear. we do not think that is the right thing to do. coalition in addressing this.
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and the only way we are going to solve this problem for the long term is to build the capacity of the local force. as i said, that's sometimes very frustrating. we want to charge -- >> you want them to want it as much as you do, in a sense. >> well, what will happen otherwise is that we will defeat this particular opponent and something else will emerge. it will take time. it will take probably many years. but that is what we need to do. i think we need to learn from previous campaigns that we've been involved in and apply that to the situation now. >> from a manpower perspective, there was a cry of relief, i think, within the ministry of defense when the five-year budget plan came out. it was more generous than many people had expected. but it is very hardware intensive, heavy plan. t=mzaecond carrier is in it. joint strike fighter features prominently in that.
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even though the final number hasn't been decided, it's a significant piece of it. as the u.k. continues to be at the highest end of capability along with the united states, but the trade-off in that has been to shrink the force, less manpower investment. you've been aided a little bit by keeping manpower costs flat and also the economy cooperated there for a while. but now the british economy is starting to take off, so there's a recruitment challenge. more fundamentally, there's a concern here in washington that the british armed forces are all sort of undermanned in almost every billet, that it's traded away people to get that high-end capability and your service has suffered from that particularly. there's a sense of the modern day press gang on the waterfront to fill out ships they're getting ready to deploy because your deployment cycles are so intense at this point. and the navy may be between 1500 and 5,000 sailors short as it tries to bring in and operate both of the carriers. talk to us a little bit about what the strategy is on manpower, and are the british
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armed forces going to fundally have to grow? mine. what does that tell the united states as the united states looks to trade away manpower? >> well, in addition to that big, long, expensive list, a kit that's in our manifesto commitments, we've made commitments on manning as well, on the size of the army, on the full trained strength deployable part of our army. as i've said in my speech, this is a huge focus for the sdsr. the main challenges lie in this space. it's not just numbers. in a way, the numbers are not the problem. the navy, for example, is doing -- it's way ahead of its recruitment targets. use of reserve forces, that is now, after a shaky start, is


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