tv Politics and Public Policy Today CSPAN September 21, 2016 9:00am-11:01am EDT
this would fall into that category. i think, separation there is a legitimate way of trying to prevent certain kinds of interactions. >> that separation is happen sng. >> what's actually happening in the states is something i am not privy too. >> also, dr. romain, from what is known, what kind of guidance for protecting voter registration bases are in effect in the two states i mentioned earlier. will this be considering update
to include voter registration bases. >> we will be considering that with regard to our partnership with the eac and municipalities of protecting voting systems with a broader remit, perhaps, is one way to look at it. the guidelines that we have in place for i.t. have been involved in a number of years and involve integrity checks and other things that can protect information systems. the cybersecurity framework helps organizations a way to craft and manage risk. >> my time is almost up. thank you for your work. please let us know how we can be helpful going forward. with that, i yield back to the chairman. >> i now recognize the gentleman from texas, mr. weber.
>> thank you, gentlemen. i want to do something before we get into the election discussion today regarding the earlier comment from one of the members on the other side of the i'aisl that she was appalled there was no republican outrage over the republican's hacking of the deep ccc. there is probably about the same amount of outrage from the democrats over hillary clinton's dumping of evidence and destroying evidence in a federal investigation. having said that, in full disclosure, i was an election judge and a precinct chair for about 16 years in texas in brazoria county when we had good, old-fashioned paper ballots. i raised my hands when they said we want to pass electronic voting. i said, i don't. i don't trust the internet. we have come full circle. y'all are saying there are some states considering going back to paper ballots.
here is a question for, i guess, all of you, one at a time. we'll start with you, d dr. romine. how many states have paper? five states that are completely without paper, some states have a mix depending on the county of paper and nonpaper sis stills. >> what state in your opinion has the best system, doctor romine? >> i don't have insight into the sis sfims that are being used statewide. >> you haven't formulated an opinion in that regard? >> i don't have the da ta. if you say louisiana, secretary schedler. >> the best system for which the people of that state feel
comfortable in voting. >> touche. new hampshire, think of the variety we have across the board from the east coast to west coast. totally different constituencies, totally different comfort zones. some people still like going to vote in the neighbor's garage. if that's what they want to do, that's good for that state. i guess that's the best answer i could give you. i wouldn't say we were the best but a few years ago pugh had us at number 18. if you interview people on the streets of new york on a late night television show, they never mention louisiana in the top 20. >> they usually don't know what they are talking about anyway. >> that's correct. i think that's a politically correct answer. out of respects for all my colleagues and all the states, i
think have to make that decision. >> mr. bakrum. >> i'll also be diplomatic. if you ask most election officials, most of them will say the technology we are using, none of them have found the ideal system. they are looking for something new to come around. >> you don't have an opinion. >> i don't have an opinion of the particular states. the work that's being done in los angeles county, that which is based on off the state components is going to be very instructive to the entire field. >> dr. wally. >> i'm going to toot the horn of three different states where i enjoy what they are doing. i like california's use of audits and florida, got rid of the paperless electronic voting machines. my parents live in ft. laud lauderdale. a laser printer will print out a ballot on demand. florida is doing remarkably good
stuff. i, of course, have to say something good about texas. in travis county, we are building a really great system that could be potentially applied in a lot of other places. >> are you from travis county? >> no. i live in houston. i grew up in dallas. >> let me also say here having been a recipient of when a lot of those ballot boxes were carried. where i grew up is like 40 miles north of the county seat. there is an election judge in the general election, i was in the primary and the general election too, we would always take our democratic counterpart and take the ballot boxes down and return them to the county. i have been on the receiving end of when it took 45 minutes to an hour just for the drive time. people are wanting those results. one quick question. what is the most critical time of a cyberattack?
>> a cyber actor who knows what they are doing is acting months to years in advance, because they don't necessarily have access. >> if they were going to affect the november election coming up, is that something done the night of, the week before? are you saying they get into this system? >> you get in way in advance and you have whatever effect you are frying to have. if your goal is to create chaos, you want to have your effect very late. it depends on what you are trying to do. >> mr. chairman, i yield back. >> thank you. i appreciate that. i want to thank the witnesses for their testimony and the members for your question. the record will remain open for two weeks for additional written comments and written questions. with that, this hearing is adjourned. thank you.
flip-flopping to call it honestly, why should we trust you to be our next president of the united states? >> hi, i'm alicia raman, a student at write state. as a future president, what are you doing to help with education fund sng. >> i'm natalie a senior at ohio northern university. i'm a medical laboratory science major. my question would be, what do you plan on doing to improve our health care system and end of life care for patients going through chemotherapy and things like that? many of them don't have access to good health care coverage and things we dook to improve the end of their lives. >> hi. i'm caylee moss from wright state university. as president of the united states, what would you do to help alleviate some of the racial tensions that are building? >> i'm a student at autobahn university. i'm i'm a cripple nolg major. the most important topic is getting money out of politics.
our elected officials are supposed to represent the people, not just those that can fill their pockets. voices from the road on c-span. coming up in about 50 minutes, we'll take you to capitol hill where law enforcement officials from around the country will brief lawmakers on their counter terrorism efforts and experiences. live coverage at 10:00 a.m. eastern. defense secretary, ash carter hosted the national p.o.w./m.i.a. ceremony at the pentagon. he was joined by senator john cornyn, and retired navy captain, jerry coffee, a prisoner of war at the hanoi hilton in vietnam for just under seven years. remain standing for the playing ott have national anthem and the invocation.
let's pray. all mighty god, we are honored to be here today. on this beautiful morning, to pause and remember special heroes in our history who gave so much to their country. we pause and give thanks for more than 140,000 men and women who were held against their wills in far off sta logs in germany, camp o'donnell at the end of the death march in the philippines, the who are errors of the north korean prison camp and the hanoi hilton. the 140,000 that were held in prison camps, over 17,000 never returned home to their families. may this event steal our hearts
to become living legacies to those patriots. grant us the courage and compassion for the man that allowed himself to be captured by the north koreans for staying behind to care for the wounded and dying. his extraordinary courage encouraged thousands of prisoners to retain their faith in god and country. yet it ultimately cost him his life. may we feel nine feet tall and like we could go bear hunt wg a switch like robbie rise ner as he was tortured in the hanoi hilton but swelled with prize when his fellow prisoners encouraged him with the national anthem and god bless america. we pause to reflect on more than 83,000 warriors scattered around the globe listed as missing in action. may we never rest until william
appleton is brought home and buried with his family in the land of lincoln. may we encourage with pash xwruns and funding. to bring home marine bailey lost in the solomon islands. may we never surrender to this sacred quest until we bring joel baker home to the palmetto state of south carolina and we ask for the divine favor in locating lester read boi lost during the pacific operation during world war ii. may we bring him home to south dakota to be with his family lord, we serve a great nation who cares enough to recognize those who have never come home and to honor those that have suffered by the hands of their captives. i would ask again for your favor in locating these citizens of our nation so that their sacred chapter in our history, of our nation's history, can be completed. finally, protect all of our comrades in arms scattered around the globes.
good morning, everyone. senator cornyn, vice chairman salva, captain coffee, distinguished guests, families, friends, thanks for joining us here today. we gather here to recognize our nation's former prisoners of war and those still missing and to recommit ourselves to fulfilling our solemn pledge to make every effort to bring all, all our men and women home to their families. we are honored to be joined by former p.o.w.s. individuals that endure captivity courageously and hon
ashley. people like captain gerald coffee who never gave up during seven long years as a p.o.w. in vietnam. thanks, captain coffee. thank you to all of you here who have served and endured captivity as you have. we are privileged to be joined by family members of those still missing and former p.o.w.s. senator john cornyn will speak in a moment. his father, then secretary lieutenant t.j. cornyn was shot down and captured as a p.o.w. in world war ii before being liberated. senator, thank you for being here. thank you also for your commitment to those who serve today, not only in the past, right up until this day including very recently when you visited our troops in iraq and afghanistan. it means a great deal to us, senator. thank you.
>> and all the families here today and around the world, whether you have been reunited or are still waiting for your loved one, thank you for your patriotism and courage in the face of uncertainty and thank you for all you have given to interest country. since we came together last year on p.o.w./m.i.a. recognition day, we have accounted for over 130 missing service personnel members like navy lieutenant julian jordan who served on the uss oklahoma at pearl harbor that fateful day 75 years ago. for decades, lieutenant jordan's remains were among the many, too many, listed as nonrecoverable. a renewed defense department effort to identify unknowns in 2015 led to the successful identification of his remains and his burial with full
military honors in washington state just last month. like lieutenant jordan's story, every soldier, sailor, airman and d.o.d. civilian accounted for is a promise met. we won't stop. i won't stop until we achieve the fullest possible accounting for all our missing. right now, far too many families still have to wonder about the fates of their fathers, grandfathers, husbands and daughters, their brothers, and sisters. we work hard to meet our commitment to yesterday's personnel to honor their service and their families. but there is another reason we do so. we know what it means to the men and women serving today. those who will serve in the future and their families. as they see everything we're doing to provide the fullest possible accounting of those who
serve before. they know we will do the same for them. one of the reasons our service members will stop at nothing to accomplish their missions, whether they are standing with our allies and standing up to russia's aggression in europe, managing change in the vital asia pacific, detouring north korea's provocations or countering malign for iran. or helping to defeat isis, which we will surely achieve. they know we will stop at nothing and make every effort to bring them home to their families. >> that's a promise we make not only to our force of the past but our force today and of the future. that's why this commitment is so important. that's why we are so fortunate to have a lot of help keeping
it. >> other nongovernment supports our work. it helps you re-account for and bring home our fallen. the men and women of dpaa, the defense p.o.w./m.i.a. accounting agency work day in and day out in remote field sites and high tech lab torres alike across the united states and around the world to meet that promise and to give hope and solace to our families. today, we can meet our sacred commitment to the force of yesterday, today and tomorrow. so thank you for your partnership. thank you, captain coffee, senator cornyn, for sharing your stories with us and thank all of you for joining us to commemorate our p.o.w./m.i.a. recognition day. my god bless you and may god bless this great nation in the years to come.
ladies and gentlemen, general sivva . thank you, secretary carter. distinguished guests, i am going to break from script, on behalf of chairman joe doneford and all the soldiers that wear the cloth of this nation, we salute you for your patriotism and courage and brifry. thank you for being here today. it is truly an honor to be here today as we pay omage to often unsung heros. i extend a very special welcome to former prisoners of war and to your families who join us
this day. you have taught us the legacy of honor and duty that we strive to carry out every single day. i would also like to welcome the families of those still missing in action. your sacrifice is humbling. we thank you for your faith and your perseverance. you are for us a beacon of hope. and welcome to the many of you who are committed to trying to bring every fallen american hero home from foreign shores. we are grateful for your continued determination. national prisoner of war and missing in action recognition day is specially important because it is our chance to recognize the sacrifices of our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines and coastguardsmen and the civilians that defend this nation. these proud men and women behind me represent that military hair tanlg, a heritage strengthened by every prisoner of war and members missing in action, all the service members they represent that we are here to
honor. today is important, because we make the time to show how much our heroes as far back as the world wars, the korean war, the cold war, the war in vietnam and our recent conflicts mean to every single one of us. we can say thank you to those who have faced the toughest of adversity and showcased the steel of our american character as prisoners of war. and know we still search for those who haven't made it home. they gave their live ns self-less service in missions across the world for our country. we place that mission on their shoulders. secretary carter shared several of those stories a moment ago. you will hear more from captain coffee and senator cornyn. it is also important that today, we take time to recognize the significance of the sacrifices that every family of every one of those prisoners of war missing in action have made through rebuilding their own lives, through the hardship of not knowing, through the
difficulty of holding out hope. please know that thousands of people are rest salute in their efforts to provide closure to you and your loved ones. we couldn't do any of this without the many organizations that have undertaken this task as a personal and professional mission. their tireless efforts and commitment to ensure we keep the promise echos our pride in this nation and our pride in the men and women hoff dedicated their lives to serve him. today, i want you to know that we remain steadfast in our nation's promise to bring home every prisoner of war and every member of our service missing in action. military and civilian. it is a promise to the men and women from the past and to those that serve today, again like those that stand right behind me. we will forever honor our sacred duty. we will never leave a fallen warrior on the battlefield. the motto that flies on the
p.o.w./m.i.a. flag is one we have internalized to our very core. we will never forget. it is emblazoned on our hearts as is the memory of every member that we have lost in battle and that remains missing in action. i would like to thank every family member that is here, every individual that served in captivity. all those who long for the knowledge of a missing loved one and to every service organization who assists in the rebuilding of those lives and the constant kindling of the flame of hope. thank you all for being here today.
this morning, secretary carter, thank you so much for the honor of being a part of this ceremony this morning. my fellow p.o.w.s, bob shoemaker, a great representative of all of the rest of them. good to see you again, bob. p.o.w. families and m.i.a. families, thank you for allowing me to exercise this honor of recognizing our losses and our wins. i was shot down over north vietnam in february of 1966. finally released from the communist dungeons of hanoi in february of 1973, seven years and nine days.
i want to tell you that we p.o.w.s looked at our time there in the prisons of north vietnam as another form of combat. we never, ever gave up. we never, ever gave in. we never lost faith in our country. as a matter of fact, faith was truly the key to our survival. faith in ourselves to do what was necessary to survive and not just survive but to take this opportunity to grow and build upon the uniqueness of our experience every day. we realize that we are simply in a different kind of combat, a combat of resistance. the communists tried to keep us separate as if we wouldn't even be able to know there were other p.o.w.s in whatever prison we
happened to be in. however, our challenge was to organize ourselves. if you can imagine, six or seven different prisons, that organization was challenging. i want to tell you about the p.o.w. code, because it really does illustrate the creativity and persistence and dedication of making the most of that opportunity and taking good care of each other. the tap code is based upon 25 letters of our alphabet. we live out the letter "k" because we can make a special name for "k." that alphabet was arranged in matrixs of five lines, five letters each. one row on top of the other. the top row consisted of a-e, the second row, f-j.
the third row, the next five with "z" in the lower right-hand corner. we had 25 letters and we were able to communicate with each other in way that is were just incredible. not only by listening to the tap code but by flashing it when there was a line of sight connection. tap code was very important in giving comfort and solace to one another. when you knew the man next to you was down and hurting, his feet locked in ankle cuffs at the foot of a concrete slab, his hands cuffed tightly behind him, and he had been like that for a week or a month, would you get up to your wall frequently and you would tap to him, g-b. you knew that meant god bless.
he knew it always meant, be tough, hang in there, i'm praying for you. you bet you were. in the future, a week or a month, he would be up on his wall to encourage you the same way. for example, on the p.o.w. flag, never forget, "n," "e," "v," "e," "r," "f," "o," "r," "g," "e "e," tenchts, never forget. it was in some ways like cramming a doctor's degree into
those years in prison. i would like to leave you this morning with a p.o.w. message. at the end of every day, we would sign off and say good night, g-n for good night. g-b-a, god bless america. every single night. thank you, those of you who are gathered here because of your loved ones, p.o.w.s, who may be missing in action even as of this date. thank you so much for your sacrifices. thank you, mr. secretary, for hosting this for this occasion. it is really significant and means a great deal to every person here. thank you.
>> ladies and gentlemen, senator cornyn. >> thank you, captain coffee, for sharing that story. thank you for your service to our country and the great example that you are for all of us. i know your story has served as i great inspiration for many and a beacon of hope for even more. i too want to thank secretary
carter for the invitation to be here today. running the department of defense is a tall order. thank you for rising to the challenge time and time again. i consider it a great privilege to join you and general selva on this special day. i know we are all particularly grateful for the defense p.o.w./m.i.a. accounting agency and its predecessors and their commitment to fulfilling our nation's promise to the families of our missing military men and women. it is an honor, of course, to be here today with all of you and those service members who represent those families of the p.o.w.s and those service members who have not yet returned to our country. today, we appropriately remember their tremendous sacrifice and the heavy burden put on the shoulders of their loved ones, those of you here in this audience. thank you to all of you for
helping us be here to honor these brave men and women. as secretary carter mentioned, my dad served in world war ii. he was a b-17 pilot, flying in the 303rd bomb group in the 8th air force stationed in molesworth, england. they were known as the hells angels. the 303rd was a force to be reckoned with for sure. they flew a record of 350 combat missions before the technology we have come to take for granted, laser-guided, gps, guided missions and the like. their success was not without great cost. they sustained more than 150 missing in action and 764 of them were captured and were prisoners of war. my dad was one of them.
i can't help but think of him and his story today in the presence of all of you. my dad flew on 26 missions. 26 of those 300 strategic bombing missions over german targets. on his 26th mission, his plane was hit several times by enemy fire, flack hit the nose of the aircraft. more of it hit the right wing in the number 3 engine, which erupted into flames and a third time, it hit the bombay. he and the rest of the crew bailed out at 20,000 feet and they were captured near the french border and sent to stalach 13-d, a p.o.w. camp in newer enburg, in what can only be described as pretty awful conditions. i remember later my dad told me to eat simple white bread tasted
like angel food cake. they were lucky to get a daily ration of bread, dehydrated vegetables and potatoes. sanitation was pretty abyss mal. the camp was infested with lice, flees, illness and disease ran rampant throughout the camp. of course, he was there in the dead of the bavarian winter in an unheated barracks. like so many of our men and women, though he per is he veered and survived, and after several months, he was liberated by patton's army, came home texas where he met my mother in corpus christi and mayor rid. even with all he went through, and my dad, like so many in that generation, didn't talk about it much, my dad's story was ultimately a happy one, about the power of perseverance that captain carter talked about. it is a story about doing about
everything you have when there is nothing left in the tank and never giving up. for me, it is a story about the hope that comes with the beginning of each new day. the truth is, there are many thousands of similar stories of sacrifice and commitment across the country. i think, for example, in addition to captain coffee, people like john mccain and sam johnson who i have the honor of serving with in the congress. there is a story of many of you here today, a father, a grandfather who survived torture, day after day in a japanese prison camp during world war ii or a brother or a husband who vanished in the midst of a fierce battle in the jungles of vietnam or the rice patties of korea or a mother or daughter who was captured on a far-away middle eastern battlefield and endured great hardships at the hand of the eny.
as we remember these lives and these stories of uncommon courage, let's also remember that my fathers and your loved ones sacrifice made the freedom and liberty we enjoy today possible. six months before the end of the civil war, president abraham lincoln, famously penned a letter to a widow who was said to have lost five sons in that terrible war. the note, about 130 word, is quite brief. president lincoln, as you know, knew how to get to the heart of the matter quickly. but he began humbly. he admits that any word of consolation he might offer would be weak and fruitless given her grief but he ends the letter with a prayer asking that god give her, the mother, relieve
from the tremendous burden of grief she was suffering and this god would leave her with cherished memories of her loved one and a solemn pride that sthe laid so costly a sacrifice on the altar of freedom. president lincoln's encouragement is timeless and it rings as true today as it must have then. many of you have suffered grief and have had burdens to bear. that's certain. you can also take in president lincoln's words solemn pride and enduring hope in the self-less sacrifice our loved ones made in the cause of liberty. today, it is good and right that we honor those of you who have made that sacrifice. i know each of us are experiencing mixed emotions. we can remember with fondness the countless brave men and women that remain missing. we also remember the survivors,
some of whom are with us here today. their incredible courage and perseverance as prisoners of war fighting each day for survival. they have served as a great reason for all of us to hope and a reminder to each of us to never, ever give up. for now, we rest in confidence that their memories live on in our hearts. we know that the many sacrifices they make were not in vain. with each day, we strive to leave no stone unturned and no person behind. to the families and friends representing hundreds of military men and women, thank you for letting me honor my dad and the thousands of others who were taken prisoner of war like he was and the families of those who have lost loved ones that have still not made it home. may god continue to bless you.
battleground. i now recognize myself for an opening statement. this weekend our nation was shaken by terrorists attacks in minnesota, new york and new jers jersey. we were thankful no one was killed. the thoughts and prayers go out to the injured victims and their family. i appreciate the police department deputy miller being here today to update us on the case. thank you for being here today. our hearts go out to the victims in new york.
last year we tracked the most plots ever and 2016 could be even worse. americans are rightfully worried that the city streets are once again becoming the battleground. ft. hood, boston, shat shat, san bernardino, orlando, some have said that this kind of of regular terrorism is the new normal. i regret that. it's not an option. terrorists are threatening american lives and livelihood and way of life. we can not falter with so much at stake. that's why yesterday i released a national strategy to win the war against the islamic terrorisms with fighting the terrorism over seas and fighting it. my strategy explain that one of the highest priorities must be
to make sure that the frontline defenders are better prepared to stop acts of terror. this means we need to be able to detect suspicious activity and detect the terrorists before it's too late. if a plot is undetected, we must be quick to respond quickly. we saw that play out this weekend when the first responders acted hero i cannily to protect the fellow citizen. to the witnesses testifying today, i want you to know that this committee is grateful for the community and the sacrifices for the country. i want to convey something else that we have your backs. we're committed to give you the tools to fight terror.
we will give you the pub tick support and it's been a hard year especially for law enforcement. you have faced tough questions in the press, and you're staring down violence in the streets everyday. that's why we have fought to protect the grant funding that you rely on. in fact later today the house will vote on my bill to authorize an additional $30 million in annual grants to help the communities guard against the dynamic threat including active shooter attack, ie d and suicide bombers. we have pushed federal agencies to share intelligence with you and share it more quickly. we need to insure the federal government properly evaluates what you have developed from the streets. the street intel and the
communities that you serve everyday. today i hope that you will share with us what is working on the frontlines and what is not. in particularly, we want to know how we can better support you to respond to this unprecedented terror threat. last week i went to the 9/11 memorial service and listened to all of the nearly 3,000 names of those killed read aloud. we do this each year to the remember the fallen and to honor what we saw on that fateful day from the first responders, police and everyday citizen. like those brave americans that we lost, our witnesses this morning have sworn an oath to protect the people. so before we start, let me just say again thank you. the chair recognizes the ranking
member mr. thompson. >> thank you mr. share and for holding the meeting. in light of the terror attacks in minnesota, new jersey and new york, i would like to offer my sympathy thinks to the victims and families. i believe that we all agree that terrorism and any other violence on the streets is an all too common occurrence. i would like to thank the witnesses for that service. mr. miller, thank you for coming to town. i know it's a busy time for you, and obviously you're still doing your work before the committee today. sheriff, thank you and we still stand with orlando and have not forgotten about the victims of the terrorists attacks. mr. chairman, in dens in --
compounding nature of the loan wolf threat. those railroad inspired to carry out such attacks do not meet or fit a single profile or single hateful or violent t ideology. we saw this scenario in orlando attacks and where the perpetrator has filed several ideologies and was not a part of a terror cell. this past saturday a loan actor that's being investigated to ties to isil is being investigated with ties and in new york and new jersey it's believe that had the suspected bomb i that also shot two police officers may have been inspired by al kqaeda and appears to hav acted alone.
last july one that may have been inspired by a black separatist group shot and killed five police officers in dallas, texas. we know by know that they're a target for terrorists. we know that the job is made more difficult by the ability of an assault weapon. earlier this month one of the committees received testimony from the representatives of the local law enforcement and the availability of guns in the loan wolf threat as serious problems for police. in fact, i would note that one of our witnesses today chief acevedo has gone further by stating that the wide spread of availability of the guns in the country make it possible for a person to legally aacquire weapons to cause mayhem and
casualties. chief acevedo goes on to state whether this is isis abroad, home grown extremist. it exists and haunts police chiefs everyday. i look forward to talk r speaking to chief acevedo. it's easy to carry out that attack on u.s. soil with a gun than in europe. a testimony by one former member of isil published this summer this point, the former terrorists explained isil's view on the terrorists recruitment in the u.s. as follow. for american it's easy to get them over the social network because americans are dumb. they have open gun policies. we can radicalize them easily, and if they were no prior record, they can buy a gun. we don't need a contact man to provide a gun for them.
mr. chairman, we have seen the scenario that the former one mentioned unfold with the assault weapons here in the country. we saw it in san bernardino where the perpetrators walked into a soft target and killed 14 people and injured another 22 with an assault style weapon. we saw it again in june in orlando when they walked into a night club and killed 49 people with an assault weapon. our witness, the sheriff of orange county recognized the impact the assault weapons were having on the homeland security. as the sheriff said in the aftermath, we have to look at some of the gun laws and make a determination of what we stand for and just how prevalent some of these assault rifles are available today. otherwise, we don't make some modifications, we're going to continue seeing some of what you
see happening here now here in orlando. mr. chairman, i hold heartedly agree with you that radicalization and recruitment is a problem. after 9/11 the nation made a vow not to give into terrorism. i will not concede that the places where they live, work and play are at risk of becoming battle grounds like syria and afghanistan. as lawmakers we must make it more difficult to carry out attacks on the u.s. soil and taking action to prevent them from having access to assault weapons would be a good start. however, it seems that in the days of this congress, there's more app tide for advance in un-american and counter productive proposals such as closing the borders to muslim or ethnic profiling whole communities. secretary j. johnson testified before this committee and said
that homeland security cannot be achieved without sensible gun control laws. it is time for us to rethink how we prevent terrorism. with that mr. chairman, i yield back. >> thank you. opening statements maybe submitted for the record. we're pleased to have a distinguished panel of o witnesses here before us today on the topic. i want to thank all of you for being here today. first we have a chief acevedo. he is my police chief and also my friend in my hometown of austin, texas. next we have sheriff michael bouchard from the oakland county sheriff's office in oakland county, michigan. next we have sheriff jerry from the orange county sheriff's office in orange county, florida. finally mr. john miller. deputy commissioner for intelligence and
counterterrorism at the new york city police department. i want to thank all of you for being here and particularly mr. miller that know is very busy with the work and task at hand back home in new york. thanks to all of you for being here and i would like to recognize chief acevedo for the opening statement. >> good morning chairman mccaul and members of the committee. i come here today as the first vice president and that's 68 of the largest cities in the united states and chairman of the homeland security committee. i want to thank you mr. chairman and the committee for the outstanding leadership and the work in this vital area at a time that i think that the threat not only continues toex pand but the consequences of terrorism are hitting the communities everyday. i can tell you that the one thing that keeps us all up is
the issue of the lone wolf. we have been talking about that for several years now, but in the last several days we have seen the consequences of the needles and the hay stacks that's radicalized and we can no longer call this an emerging threat. it's an ongoing threat and it's a threat that we must continue to fight. we witnessed the horror of these lone wolves not just this weekend but in my own city. although we're talking about muslim extremist, we have to keep in mind that we have our own home grown with different views and including extremely left or right extremist no matter which way you look at it. we can not lose sight of that. three thanksgivings ago we had a man by the name of mcwilliams. they was part of a group and who on that thanksgiving night went around austin trying to burn
down the mexican conciliate and attacked the conciliate and the federal courthouse and the headquarters firing 108 round sbo into the headquarters. we had an american texas hero that was able to stop the threat with one shot. only in texas can a sergeant take a shot with an ak47 from 312 feet away and strike the suspect in the heart and hold two horses with one hand. i think it speaks to the professionalism in the police officer and the courage of the national discussion around policing today, that i can tell you is in perfect as it is and we still have the best cops serving. now, we know that they're out there and going to hurt us and
going to continue to hurt us and that's how you get to that point. it's important for this committee especially for elected officials to temper the comments and temper the broad brushes that we're using the paint the members of a community and a race and national origin as criminals or as terrorists. we know that individuals that feel that they're not welcomed, end up being more acceptable to whether it's a street gang or group to radicalize folks. it's critical that we continue as a police department and sheriff department and as a nation to build bridges to make people feel welcome. the communities that we serve whether they're muslims, christian, jewish are the
greatest force multipliers. there are going to spot the suspicious behavior and have to feel that they're embraced and welcomed by law enforcement and the nation that they can come forward. if you look at what happened in new york city, it was a community member that found one of the unexploded devices. it was a member of the seat community that happened to own a bar that trusted the new york city police department that felt that they're included by the new york city police department and embraced them and came forward and helped the new york city police department capture that suspect before he could carry out more terror in the nation. so again, out reach is key, and we look forward continuing to do just that for the community. the intelligence enterprise is really important to us. we continue to work on the national level with the sheriff's department and with the intel commander groups to really be able to tie some of
the issues that we see across the country and to be able to not just disrupt but prevent terrorism. i look forward to talking about that. one of the areas that we need help is the terrorism prevention program. there's no national coordination and no designated official that prepares and implements a terrorism prevention plan and letp really needs to be explored and hopefully absolutely strengthened. one of the biggest frustrations that i have as a police chief and my colleagues will share this as it relates to grand funding is that fema is still not the right organization to be spear headed. it's much much too much focused on response. what we're responding to a terrorism attack, we have already failed the american people. we have got to have another office that understand the importance of prevention and the importance of disruption and
unfortunately fema despite the efforts of police executives to put more effort in funding and prevention and disruption continues to focus on the response. it's too late and not o only the psychological impact and then the economic impact that we have failed at this point. we really want you to look at how hard the funds are being distributed and who is responsible for being distributed. the law enforcement leader and the assistant secretary of the law enforcement was established and they can not deliver the results that i think was the division of congress because it lacks authority, budget and staffing. we hope that you will consider remedy this organization by further directing dhs to put some teeth in that direction. your hon
heather fawn continues to work with us, but she is able to do so because of the efforts of deputy secretary that's played a role in helping her despite the challenges. in correction as we have discussed, it's a great challenge, and i hope that we will look at having industry when we put in a search warrant and not sit on it. not sit on it for days on ends when we have seconds, hours, minutes to try to disrupt the next attack whether it's a person from mental illness, islamic or radical. we have to have laws that make these things a priority. it's extremely frustrating and emergency communication is an ongoing thing for us in major cities. i want to thank you for the leadership and making it stand alone at the federal level. lastly we were a city in austin and we're no longer -- the
funding is reduced to a third, and we hope that and pray that today your bill mr. chairman 5859 passes because it will be instrumental in helps us to prepare and disrupt and respond to the next threat and mr. donovan, i want to say thank you and mr. mccaul for doing what we should do. we absolutely should take the interest from terrorists organization and invest that interest in the safety of the american people and the communities from everyday crime and terrorism. i thank you all for the lead leadership and look forward to the discussion. >> okay. now recognizing chief bouchard. >> good morning. i am michael bouchard and i am the sheriff of oakland county. i have been in law enforcement
for over 30 years and run one of the nation's largest sheriff's office. i will be speaking briefly and in my testimony, i will go in more depth. i am the vice president in charge of governor affairs for the major county sheriffs and testifying on their behalf. like all of you and the fellow americans on 9/11 our world was changed dramatically. i was proud to lead a team to work at ground zero after the attack. in the last 15 years, our country has made great process to prepare and respond to prevent terrorists attacks. the men and woman of law enforcement work everyday to ensure the local streets as the chairman said so they do not become the next battleground. it's evolved and as the chief mentioned the expansion of enskripgs, inspiration of lone
wolf attacks is very evident and prevalent. we find ourself in a new age where they operate beyond the con finds of the law and the applications and mobile devices. the mcsa partners to exam that issue and then the depth of going dark. i would like to submit that into the record mr. chairman following the discussion. >> with that objection still going. >> the home grown is another example of the evolving dynamic threat facing the law enforcement. they can come by a variety of background or driven by factors. they prevent a uniquely dangerous situation because they're familiar with u.s. customs and the engagement that's mentioned by the chief is very important in a way of combatting extremism. it requires commitment from the leadership to meet with the
leader on diverse leader and those relationships are resilient. on resent attack in san bernardino and others, the threat to public safety and national and security posed by the government's refugee and visa programs are real. when a querrey is conducted and nothing is available from their home country, it's impossible to verify the information needed. the dis published a report on monday that found the u.s. citizenship granted citizenship to over 800 individuals from special countries that were deported or removed under a different name. that's the vetting process that we're talking about. the refugee act requires federal government to consult with the state and local governments concerning the sponsorship process and the distribution and
despite this requirement, no one from the federal government has made my effort to consult with my docounty members on the issu. there's been over 1,200 refugees settled in the state with my majority and not one phone call. with the increase threat the law enforcement has been asked to do more with less. they have proposed a budget that cuts the funding by 45 percent and the total amount of the reimbursements have been reduced every year. the administration recalls the military equipment and on the same day as the san bernardino terror attack, my office received an order to return an armored personal to be destroyed because it's too military. a car pulls up at a bank or grocery store to protect money.
if a law enforcement pulls up to protect life, it's bad. they allocated 39 million to help local governments prepare, prevent and respond a complex coordinated attacks. law enforcement stakeholders addressed the law enforcement needs and were quickly approa approaching and no progress has been made on that issue either. after i self-deployed at the direct request of involved agencies to ground zero and hurricane katrina, we in great dialogue how to formulate, create and equip and train regional response teams. where does that program tend today? i don't know. it's been two years that we worked on that and it's completely fallen off the map. the borders are more secure than ever and undocumented individuals continue to
illegally enter the homeland. if we don't have the border security, we do not have the national security. i want to thank the committee and staff for all of their work and bipartisan bills that have passed the committee to aim at the homeland. i want to thank the chairman for the collaboration and willing to engage us and the local law enforceme enforcement. we appreciate it and it's not heard at all levels. i want to thank the committee and thank you. >> thank you bouchard. >> good morning ranking members and members of the committee. it's an honor and a privilege for me to provide testimony today during the hearing to discuss ways to stop the next attack. i am not here today to be a doomsday reporter. i do believe that the nation has experienced a par dine shift in
the global war on terror. i agree with the chair and ranking member that we should not accept the current state of affairs as the new normal. there have been numerous resent incidents on u.s. soil that indicates that terror subjects have brought the fight to our homeland. they're focussing on the soft targets in the cities and counties that puts local law enforcement officers squarely in the cross hairs of violent extremist. my community, the metropolitan orlando area experienced such an attack on june 12th. we responded to assist the orlando police department in the initial response involving an active shootd er. the incident remains under investigation by the fbi, but it's believed that a lone gunman
killed 49 innocent people and injured another 53 persons in the pulse night club incident. the incident began shortly after 2:00 a.m. when omar mateen began firing in a club for the lgbt community on a night that was designated latin night. approximate if we're going to be successful in reducing the attacks on the citizen by violent extremist, federal state and local law enforcement authorities must improve the working relationships in three ways. number one, we must improve the access to information. the sharing of intelligence information that can be used to identify the arrest suspects in the plots of attacks before an
attack occurs. and number three the funding for the counterterrorism to include the training and equipment must be increased. as it relates to information, the department of homeland security dhs should reaccess the policy on the state and local law enforcement agencies from having access to the ice database that identifies individuals being in this country illegally. officer and public safety become a major issue in instances where law enforcement officers do checks in the field through the national crime and information center ncic and they are not made aware of a subjects immigration status. immigration enforcement is clearly a function of the federal government and the sheriff's do not seek this authority. we have enough on our plates already.
our concern is for the safety of the office everies when officers or deputies encounter someone and the person is here illegally, that person assumes that the police they are illegal and have the authority to arrest and deport them. local and state law enforcement should know who they are dealing with even if they cannot arrest for immigration violations. as it relates to sharing information, florida sheriffs have seen increased communication from the department of justice and dhs to state and local law enforcement concerning critical incidents. assistant secretary heather fong at dhs's office has been a driving force behind this and most sheriffs and police chiefs have been invited to participate in conference calls following significant national and international events affecting law enforcement and public safety.
i am the current president of the florida sheriff's association and give credit to dhs secretary johnson and fbi director comey for increasing communication with state and local law enforcement. and for pushing facts to sheriffs directly as opposed to sheriffs receiving information from the national news media. in order for american law enforcement to prevent, respond to and mitigate domestic terror attacks analytics and training will be integral to stopping the attacks from pro live rating. central florida has been the benefactor of numerous projects by the urban area security initiative program. we have been working for the past two years to get dhs funding restored to our region. primarily members of congress from both the house and senate have worked with orlando police
chief mena and me and these efforts. we have partitionened dhs and fema to reassess and the need to strengthen and secure central florida from another terror attack like the pulse nightclub incident. the central florida region has been fortunate to receive funding. the funding received prior to 2013 was critical to our region's ability to prevent, protect, respond to and recover from not only terrorism, but a broad range of other threats and hazards. we are only as good at preventing a terror attack as a quality of information we receive about that attack. our briefly discussed one of our
most notable regional partnerships in florida called the central florida intelligence exchanged located in orlando and only one of three centers in florida. it serves as a central repos toir of databases being used by the florida department of law enforcement and other agencies. in addition to its counterterrorism focus it serves as an all hazard fusion center assisting agencies in the mitigation and assistance needed to recover from hazards such as hurricanes and natural disasters. it assists with the investigation of crimes that possibly contain a nexus to terrorist activity or other homeland security issues. in other words, fusion centers located throughout the country are pivotal to our nation's mission of stopping terror
attacks. due to the lack of funding, some critical needs of our fusion center have been lost. we have reduced a number of analysts which could have worked to provide intelligence information that could prevent a terror attack. through the national infrastructure protection program we received funding for a video camera surveillance project in the tourist quarter downtown orlando and in areas near the university of central florida. due to a loss of funding we have not been able to expand the project into areas around our top tourist destinations. prior to june 12, 2016, we held more than a dozen training exercises over the past 12 years. i believe the agencies responding to the pulse incident flawlessly initiated an active shooter response because of training paid for through
historical funding. you have a list of the training exercises in your material. we train to respond as a region to a terror attack or other disaster. about 150 of my deputies along with multiple law enforcement, fire and ems agencies responded to assist the orlando police department during the pulse incident. because of the infrastructure connections in our region, it is a natural thing to have regional capability and vulnerability assessment. regional preparedness and response and recovery efforts are pivotal to the mission of stopping and/or reducing terror attacks. presently fema uses the office of management and budgets geographical boundaries when counting risk scores for msa's. we believe the boundary should be expanded to the east and to
the north. we realize that is a heavy lift. in september of 2015 we began the process of lobbying the federal government to combine the metro orlando msa with evolution. this was broadly supported by federal, state and locally elected officials and numerous letters were written to the administrator of grants program, and the office of information and regulatory affairs. you have a list and copies of the letters in your materials. with attacks in places like boston, san bernardino, orlando and dallas, most recently in new york, new jersey, minnesota, there is a need to have an overall increase in funding across the nation. an overall increase in funding would expand dhs's ability to
fund the top 100 high risk areas from 85% to 90% or better of the areas with the most risk. areas like central florida when no doubt make the list. congressman mica has expressed support to increase funding nationwide. in 2016 the orlando msa was 34th on the list of 100 when only 29 were funded. local and state agencies have equipment needs and the requisite training for use of the equipment including mobile command centers, surveillance equipment, technical weapons, armored vehicles and explosive detection is important. in closing, thank you for allowing me to speak and i ask the committee to analyze the current msa methodology and the data used in the formula to reflect current threats and
vulnerabilities. thank you. >> thank you sheriff. chair recognizing commissioner miller for his opening statement. >> thank you mr. chairman and thank you for your continued help in support with our programs as well as our new york delegation, peter king who we're always in close touch with and dan donovan who comes out of the new york city law enforcement community as does kathleen rice. good morning to the members of the committee. first, i would like to thank the chairman for giving us this opportunity to talk about this. when we talked about this testimony several weeks ago the idea was to talk about the emerging and changing threat and how we might respond to a terrorist attack. nobody had any idea that we would be sitting here within days of an actual terrorist attack talking about how we did respond. new york city has been the target of more than 20 terrorist attacks including this one. some have succeeded.
but most have been prevented through the use of good intelligence and a robust counterterrorism program. the threat we face today has grown out of a group called al qaeda that morphed into an international network of affiliates one of which turned into a movement on its own called isil that has pioneered exploiting every advantage of globalization. today while al qaeda operates in the shadows, occasionally sending out one way videos to adhere rens isil operating out of syria using the internet to deliver a call to arms to those who would travel to syria and fight for isil, there or in iraq but also understanding how to leverage propaganda that includes compelling videos, two-way conversations over social media applications, both encrypted and unencrypted and
online magazine filled with messages exploiting violence, giving useful tactical critiques on attacks that have already happened including the orlando shooting and giving instructions on how to make bombs. these are specific custom design messages to urge people who could not come to syria to fight or iraq to kill americans here. the message is hold a promise to those receiving them of valor, of belonging, of empowerment. these messages containing these false promises resonate particularly with recruits failing in life, living in the margins, who have low self-esteem or feel isolated. no city in america has been the target of as many plots and attacks as new york city. no city has paid as much in blood as we did on 9/11 and in
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