Skip to main content

tv   Tonight From Washington  CSPAN  May 5, 2010 8:00pm-11:00pm EDT

8:00 pm
>> wait, one more. >> one more question. i know. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] .
8:01 pm
>> congressman david obey on his decision to leave the house of representatives after his term is over. he spoke to reporters on capitol hill for 40 minutes. >> before i start, i want to introduce the happiest woman in wisconsin at this point. my wife, joan. [applause]
8:02 pm
>> i deeply resent that that is more applause than i usually get. next, my son, the dog. -- my son, doug. my son, craig. doug's wife, kate. and craig's wife, kirsten. [applause] >> this is going to be a long statement, longer than the press would like. after 42 years, i think i have earned it. in december, i will have been in
8:03 pm
public service for 48 years. over six in wisconsin cost state legislator and almost 42 in the u.s. congress. i served in the house want with an anybody in wisconsin history, my constituents have been incredibly good to me. when i was a kid growing up, i never dreamed i would have even one-tenth of the opportunities that have come my way. i hope that i have used those opportunities to do the most that could be done for the causes i believe in. more fair taxes, greater economic opportunity, better schools, affordable health care, expanded education, benefits for veterans, research to help us fight diseases like cancer and diabetes and parkinson's, a better economic security for workers and miners, cleaner air, and preservation of our
8:04 pm
national parks and public places. the people of northern wisconsin have given me the honor and privilege of representing them in dealing with the great issues of our time ranging from vietnam to watergate to the are iranian hostage crisis, the reagan deficits, iran-contras, the collapse of communism, two gulf wars, the economic budget reforms of the 1990's, the government shut down, 9/11, and the economic meltdown. for a decade as the chairman of the foreign operations subcommittee, i had the privilege to help lead the efforts to lead responsibilities to fellow human beings around the globe. they share the planet with us but do not necessarily share our same good fortune. during that time, we consistently moved money away from military dictators to the expansion of long-term
8:05 pm
development activities and to programs like unicef which saved millions of children's lives. i am especially proud of the role i played in resisting american colonialism and central america, working with people like james baker, jim wright, lee hamilton, and tom foley, to end the contra war in iraq -- in nicaragua. the bipartisan work we did with the george h. bush administration with officials in helping eastern europe transition from communism to western capitalist democracies after the fall of the berlin wall and the collapse of the soviet union. although it happened a long time ago, i am especially proud of the losing fight that iç helped wage with congressman henry royce prevent the passage of the
8:06 pm
fiscal year responsibility reagan budgets which at a time of devastating inflation, cut taxes at the same time the defense budget was being double, all paid for with borrowed money, for more than tripling the long-term deficit picture. the alternative budget at the time was a progressive alternative to both parties and produced lower deficits in both republican and democrat bills. at the time, our actions were hugely unpopular. about 70% of the voters in my district supported reagan paused budget. time has proven us right. i am similarly proud that i was the principal author of the much maligned but he central economic recovery act of 2009 which in the midst of the deepest and
8:07 pm
most dangerous economic catastrophe in 70 years, has pumped desperately needed purchasing power into the economy to cushion the fall and reduce the number of families whose breadwinners were thrown out of work. when it was passed last year, the american economy was losing 700,000 jobs per month. last month, by contrast, the economy added 162,000 jobs, the largest increase in three years. that corner could not have been turned without the recovery act. my only apology is that it shows have been larger but it was the most that the system would bear at the time. i am especially pleased to have also had the privilege of presiding over the house when it passed the historic health insurance reform legislation just about one month ago. i had been waiting for that moment for 41 years and its arrival finally made all of the
8:08 pm
frustrations of public life worth it. during my congressional service, i have tried to do but i could to keep us out of misguided wars and i fought to perform political institutions, especially congress, to improve the quality of work and the strength and public confidence in them. despite the misguided and disastrously destructive decisions of the u.s. supreme court that have put the system of american elections on the auction block, i have worked to limit the influence of private money in elections that by definition should be public events. along the way, i think that i have made a difference to the district and state i represent and for the country. there is a time to stay and a time to go and this is my time to go. frankly, i hate to do it. there is so much that needs to be done. even more frankly, i am tired.
8:09 pm
when i first put my name onç te ballot for the state assembly in 1962, i was 23 years old. 48 years later, i will soon be 72. when i went to congress by in 1069, i was the youngest member of the house of representatives. as you can tell by looking at me, i am not any more. çsince that first day if in 190 two2, i have a engaged in counts battles. i am ready to turn the page and i think my district is ready for somebody new to make a fresh start. not somebody who poses as a fresh face but who in reality will take us back to the good old days of bush tax cuts for the rich and misguided iraq war. not somebody who's idea of a fresh idea is the same. let the markets do it which translated means let the
8:10 pm
corporate elites, big banks and wall street big shots and insurance company ceo's do anything they dam well please -- damn well pleased with no interest to protect investors and consumers. there is nothing fresh about that. no district -- what the country deserves is for somebody to step up and be counted on to put working people first, somebody who will bring fresh eyes and fresh energy to the battle. if somebody who will not use slick words and an actors' ability to hide the fact that he is willing to got and privatize social security and medicare and abandon working people to the arbitrary power of america's corporate and economic elites. when i first ran, i wanted to do three things. i wanted to make our economic system more pair of bridget more fair for the poor and for the working class families of this
8:11 pm
country. unfortunately, powerful economic and political forces have largely frustrated that effort. over the last 30 years, we have seen the largest transfer of income at the top of the income scale. in fact, for six straight years under george bush, over 90% of all the income growth in the country went into the pockets of the wealthiest 10%. the other 90% of the population, the regular people of this country, but table scraps. i deeply regret not being able to do more to turn that around. that and the inability of the political system to achieve the public financing of campaigns remain the biggest disappointments of my public life. my second goal was to expand support for education in order to expand opportunity for every american.
8:12 pm
that has been a hard slog but a specially in the last three years, we have been able to move federal resources to do just that. we were able to greatly enhance federal support for student aid. it is not enough but it has made a big difference. my third goal is to help move the country into the ranks of civilized nations by making it possible for almost every american to receive quality health care without begging. for years, i despaired of ever getting that done. last month, i had the great privilege of presiding over the house of representatives as they finally completed action on historic health insurance reform legislation. over the past few years, whenever a member of the press asked me if i was contemplating retirement, i would respond by saying i did not want to leave congress until we passed health care reform. now it has and i can leave with
8:13 pm
the knowledge that things to nancy pelosi and president obama and so many others, we got the job done. i have not done all of the big things i wanted to do when i started out but i have done all the big things i am likely to do. frankly, i had considered retiring after the 2000 election. i became so angered by the policies of the bush administration that i decided to stick around as long as they were here. in 2002, after a yearlong reapportionment struggle with -- which the buyer might time and that of my colleagues, i publicly stated that i did not want to be around for another one. that is exactly what i was faced -- what i would face if i returned to congress next year. i simply do not want to do that. many years ago, in an interview
8:14 pm
, i said that the way i looked at public service, i believe the job of a good politician was to be used up fighting on behalf of causes you believe in and when you are used up, step aside and let somebody carry on the battle. today, i feel used up. in the last month, it two colleagues, charlie wilson and jack murtha, died. for me, at their age of this -- to be there at age is only four years away. the wear and tear is beginning to take its toll. given that fact, i have to ask myself how want to spend the time i have left.
8:15 pm
frankly, i do not know what i will do next. all i do know is that there has to be more to life than explaining the ridiculous accountability destroying rules of the united states senate to confused and angry and frustrated constituents. [laughter] i absolutely believe that after the economy returns to a decent level of growth, we must attack our long-term budget deficit. perhaps i expect too much because in addition to an attack on the federal budget deficit, i also want to say an equal determination to attack the family's security deficit, the family income deficit, and the opportunity deficit which also plays the american people. i am frankly weary of having to beg on a daily basis that both parties recognize that we do no
8:16 pm
favor to the country if we neglect to make the long term investments in education, science, health, and energy that are necessary to modernize our economy. at the same time, declined to raise the revenue required to pay for those crucial investments. i do not want to be in a position as chairman of the appropriations committee of producing and defendant lowest common denominator legislation that is inadequate to the task and given the mood of the country, that is likely to whatd i would have to do if i stayed. i am also frankly increasingly weary of having to deal with the press which is the coming increasingly focused on being driven on the collapse and the need of the 24-hour news cycle to fill the airwaves with hot air. i said that regretfully because
8:17 pm
i regard as what is happening to the news organization as a national tragedy. both our professions that have been apportioned in recent years and the nation is the loser for it. let me close by thanking some people. my wife, joan, who has put up with so much and in court so much that i might follow my dream of public service. when she agreed to marry me, she thought she was getting a college teacher. instead, she got stuck with the charms of political life. what ever could have done, i could not have done without her. let me also thank my two sons and their houses who have shared in the burden of public service. one has tried to protect workers
8:18 pm
in the workplace and tried to protect our precious public land from abuse by special interests and their mouthpieces and government and congress itself. doug has spent his life as a working journalist first covering -- capitol hill and informing readers about the realities of the politics of an garment the protection and the interaction between science and politics on the profoundly important issue of global climate change. let me thank all of those who worked with me as staff throughout the years, those who worked in my district office and my personal office in washington on the joint economic committee and on my appropriations committee. your ability and decency and fierce loyalty to me are greatly appreciated. you have not been just might counselors but my protectors and my understanding friends. that meet -- let me thank my
8:19 pm
special friends, yout( know who you are. by giving me your political and emotional support, you sustained me through the political pressures and ups and downs of political life and i will not forget it. i hope you feel that your support helped make possible what evergood i have done through the years. i am especially grateful to the dozens of calls that started coming into my office this morning when people learned that i was doing what i am doing. i am especially grateful that my predecessor called and talked for a good while. both of us are products of the kind of politics in which you may fight like the devil between 9:00 and 5:00 and then go out and have a drink and be friends afterwards. i wish to god that that era was
8:20 pm
not always -- not already so far from the practical practices of today. let me also thank others for teaching me how to be a legislator in madison. let me express special thanks to nancy pelosi who has provided the steel necessary to accomplish some extraordinary things. let me also thank so many of my congressional colleagues, past and present, who have worked shoulder to shoulder with me in pursuit of so many causes, some won, some lost, and for for giving me my excessive passion on occasion. it is said that in life, our strengths can be eyewitnesses'. i have demonstrated that on more than one occasion. let me profoundly thank everyone
8:21 pm
who has ever cast a vote for me for the privilege of representing you in madison and washington all these years. i want to say a special thank you to staff because we have on the table this package which lays out some of the things we have been able to do for my district through the years. the fact is, it was the staff that largely made that possible and i appreciate their efforts profoundly. i hope that in what every years i have remaining, i will still find occasion to help move the needle forward but for me, after 48 years, it is time to pass the torch. i had planned to end of this statement by doing a rendition of "god bless america" on the
8:22 pm
harmonica but given the unanimous request of the press, i have decided to forgo that. instead, i will take a few of your questions. [applause] >> thank you.
8:23 pm
>> this some people might read into this is you being concerned about reelection. [inaudible] >> let me put it this way, i have won 25 elections. this anybody really think i did not know how to win another one? for that matter, has anybody ever seen me walk away from my fight in my life? the fact is, there is not a chance of a snowball in hades of that progressive congressional district electing somebody who is a poor imitation of george bush policies on a bad day. the fact is that i have been thinking of retiring for a good long time.
8:24 pm
if george bush -- if i had not had a meeting at the white house that i had with george bush when we discussed homeland security matters after 9/11, if i had not experienced that meeting and the absolute stubbornness of the bush administration on that occasion, i would have loved this place a long time ago. i never dreamed -- when i was elected, i thought i was a one- term onwonder. i did not think i would be reelected. i did not dream of being lucky enough to spend 25 years here, much less over 40. the fact is, i am just plain tired. there have been very few people in american history that have served in this institution longer than i have and i need a change.
8:25 pm
my family needs me to have that change and i simply do not want to have to go through another reapportionment cycle. unless you have been through them, you do not know how time- consuming they are, how frustrating they are, and i have already given you my expression of love and affection for the procedures of the united states senate. i do not want to have to deal with that stuff anymore. it is that simple. after 9/11, bill young and i were frozen out of our offices because of the anthrax scare. our staff talked and we decided we would go to every security agency in town and tried to find out exactly what they thought
8:26 pm
they needed to respond to 9/11. we did that. we have always been good friends. he was the chairman of the committee, i was the ranking democrat. we went around and did that. we put together a package of additions to the budget we thought we needed for homeland security. we had expected to go down to the white house and talk about them. when the staff put them together, we looked at the list and we said ok, cut it in half so there is no garbage. we took it down to the white house. we were sitting around the cabinet table in the president walked in. he said that i understand some of you want to spend more money than we have asked for four homeland security. mike good friend, the budget director, tells me that we have
8:27 pm
asked for more than enough. i want you to understand that if you add a dollar to my budget, i will veto the bill. i have time for a few questions. >> that was virtually what he said. somebody expressed to him what he thought about that approach. ted stevens said we're not here for an argument. we just have done some work and we are looking for ways to improve the situation. we already agreed that if there is anything you do not like you can drop it. he would not budge. when it came to me, i said mr. president, i have been coming down here for almost 30 years. this is the first time i have ever been told that the president's mine was closed before the subject was open. i said i would ask you some questions about things we have
8:28 pm
been briefed on and i want to know what you have been told and if you have been told because i know what we have been told and it scares the out of me. we went through those items. to make a long story short, it was apparent to me that even though we had bipartisan agreement on a number of these items, that the president was not interested in listening to anybody else's ideas. at that point, i changed my mind about what i expected from the whole bush administration. i thought it would be a moderate and thoughtful a administration. i thought he had a great sense of humor and would be a great guy to work with. he does have a good sense of humor but his attitude that day convinced me that i was going to stick around for a while because i could see things happening
8:29 pm
that i did not like. it is a long story but i have never forgotten that meeting. if it was not for that meeting, i would have been out of here a long time ago. >> can you name a democrat that might run for your seat? >> we have six democrats in the stable right now. i have talked to all six of them this morning. i think that any one of them is capable of winning that seat. if i did not think so i would not have done this. i had wanted to do this and i hoped the health care bill would be done by september. then i would have been able to make my announcement then. as you know, it dragged on for ever and forever and even longer than that.
8:30 pm
i did not know until the last six weeks or so of that that baby was tied down. i also wanted to make sure that the economy looked like it was really going to be turning around, even if only slowly. i wanted to make sure those elements were in place before i did what i wanted to do a long time ago. i love this place. i love most of my colleagues. [laughter] after 48 years, it does get a bit much. i want to do something else for a few years starting with playing a lot more music than i have played in a long time. >> will you play the harmonica for us?
8:31 pm
>> no. [laughter] [applause] >> no. a harmonica is not a good solo instrument. if i had thought to have them bring their guitars, then i would have played. i tell you one thing, i did play at a party two weeks ago. i've played with a lot of good musicians. willie nelson, lots of people. i will do a lot more of that then i have been doing in the last few months. >> how much of your living has
8:32 pm
to do with how much friction you have had? >> do not overweight yourself. -- overrate yourself. [laughter] [applause] >> i have a great deal of respect for the press. you have a tough job. the economics of the newspaper industry fared just as devastating as the economics situation facing the economy as a whole. do i find the press irritating? yes. that is a natural state of affairs in a democracy. i was absolutely shocked to have one of my sons become a reporter. just as i was shocked to have one of my sons marry a minnesota viking fan. but there are certain things you can overcome with help. >> what would you like to get
8:33 pm
done in your remaining months? >> everything. i would hope that we would get real financial reform. i would hope that we would recognize that we have had such immense growth of income for the economic elite in this country that we need to turn that around and began to put average, middle-class people first so i would like to see us begin to develop a tax code that is a of a lot more fair to working families than the tax codes we're operating under today. we have to attack issues like climate change. after all, this is the planet that sustained us all. most of all, we have got to
8:34 pm
continue to deal with the jobs problem. we cannot allow half the jobs that we saved in last year's stimulus package with the aid package to state governments, we cannot allow half of those jobs to be lost this year because congress ceases to recognize the shambles that most state budgets are still in. i would hope that we would get something like that down. i would hope that we would continue to help states deal with their child health problems. there is no lack of things to accomplish. >> what about the argument that if the state you were not likely to many more big things?
8:35 pm
[unintelligible] >> frankly, the mood of the country seems to be, in some sectors of the economy, herbert hoover seems to have won the economic battle. in times of economic recession, i thought we needed to inflate the economy by providing temporary tax cuts and temporary spending increases. people seem to be so focused only on the federal budget deficit, which i agree it's a long-term obligation for us to deal with, but they seem to be so focused on that in the short term that there are recognizing
8:36 pm
the more important problem we have taken -- facing us is the jobs deficit. i am just tired of fighting that fight. i want somebody else to step in with fresh legs and a new pair of boxing gloves. >> you talked about the health care votes and the millions of dollars in your district. [inaudible] >> tell you what? [inaudible] >> in this packet, if you take a look at the page labeled health care and public safety, you will notice a lot of items described
8:37 pm
i remember going to dedicate a new dental clinic that was going to serve a three-county area in my district. i met a man who told me about his problem. the spouse was sick and could not work. the sun had braces on his teeth and had them for a long time. she called everyone of those dentists in the area that took medicaid patients trying to find one dentist who would take the breezes off the kid's teeth. -- braces off the kid's teeth.
8:38 pm
she held the kid down and took the breezes off with a pair of pliers. i ran into an elderly man who told the staff at the dental clinic that he had himself extracted six of his own teeth with a pair of pliers because he could not get into a dentist. that kind of nonsense should not happen. we have tried to put a special emphasis on providing dental care and as many places as we could. that is what we did with those nasty scurrilous things called their marks. -- earmarks. >> did you talk about who might replace you on the committee? >> who will replace me? that is always up to the caucus.
8:39 pm
i have no reason to assume that the next person in line will be chairman of the full committee. as he has indicated, it only took him 32 years to rise to the top of that subcommittee. he will do a fine job. >> is that it? thank you all very much for coming. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010]
8:40 pm
8:41 pm
>> confidence that we can come up that we will gain confidence of the senate and the country. >> as the president considers potential nominees, learned about the nation's highest court to the eyes of those who served there in our latest book, "the supreme court." interviews with all of the justices, active and retired. available now in hardcover and also as an ebook. >> a senate hearing with new york city mayor michael bloomberg and new york police commissioner raymond kelly. they discuss the attempted car bombing in new york city, the watch list and gun purchases.
8:42 pm
this panel is one hour and 20 minutes. >> the morning. [inaudible] i want to assure you that the last person to appear this late at a hearing because she was held up in washington traffic was secretary napolitano. there is good precedent here. we thank all of the witnesses for being here and i want to begin by extending, on behalf of all members of the committee and the entire american family, our famspecial thanks to you and
8:43 pm
all who work with you in new york city government and live in that great city for your grace under pressure which remains still about the best definition i know of courage and for the brilliant investigative work that you and your colleagues and federal, state, and local law- enforcement communities did to bring the suspect to justice just 53 hours after his attempted terrorist attack on times square. this hearing on what congress and the federal government can do to keep firearms out of the hands of terrorists was scheduled long ago but its urgency has certainly been made clear by the event of the past four days.
8:44 pm
our growing understanding of the dimensions of the plot to attack times square certainly should remind us of the reality i fear we sometimes forget which is that global is longest extremism, terrorists, have declared war on america. they are attacking our homeland with increasing frequency. in fact, they have attempted to carry out more than 12 attacks on america in just theç last year. most of them have been stopped before any damage could be done. that again by extraordinary law enforcement work. four of the attempted attacks broke through our homeland defenses, including the failed
8:45 pm
attempts on christmas day over detroit and last saturday night in new york city. here is the fact that i hope will focus our concern and attention and hopefully motivate our action this morning. the the only to terrorist attacks on america since 9/11 that have been carried out successfully in taking american lives were carried out with firearms. the most lethal was in november of last year when an army doctor opened fire with a semiautomatic weapon at a processing center in fort hood, texas, killing 14 americans and wounding 30 others. fort hood was the deadliest terrorist attack on america's since 9/11 and the deadliest domestic terrorist attack against american troops in the history of our country.
8:46 pm
it was carried out by one man with two guns. a 5.7 millimeter pistol and an older smith and wesson revolver. in june of last year, an event that not too many people remember, an american named carolos bledsoe changed his name and shot and killed an army recruiter and seriously wounded another at the in recruiting station in little rock, ark., simply because they were wearing the uniform of the u.s. military. he did so within semi-automatic rifle. in other recent cases, homegrown terrorist cells have stockpiled weapons. thankfully, great law
8:47 pm
enforcement work stopped both of those plots. but had those planned attacks succeeded, many other americans would surely have lost their lives as over 160 people did on the attacks in india in november of two dozen eight which were also carried out, largely with firearms. the threat we meet to discuss and attempt to prevent israel. terrorists armed with semiautomatic and powerful weapons can inflict heavy casualties in seconds. while it is true that homegrown terrorists, which we are ceasing increasingly in this country, heard generally, not always, less sophisticated than those sponsored and trained overseas by al qaeda and other terrorist groups, the truth is that they may also be harder to detect and stop, particularly if they are operating on their own.
8:48 pm
the easy availability of lethal weapons ensures that these homegrown terrorists can legally obtain sufficient firepower to cause terrible damage. senator lautenberg, mayor blumberg, and commissioner kelly, you know and will make clear that we are simply not doing all we can to stop terrorists from buying guns. the stark fact is that the united states department of justice has no authority to block the sale of firearms to suspected terrorists even when the department knows they are about to purchase guns. this unfortunately is not a rare occurrence. the number of times a suspected terrorist has been allowed, with the government knowledge, to buy guns in recent years is stunning and infuriating.
8:49 pm
this morning, the government accountability of this will testify that in the last six years, terror suspects, people on watch lists, have tried to buy guns more than 1200 times and in 91%, they did buy guns. the other 9%, they were stopped because they were on some other list such as having had a criminal record of some kind. i think most americans understand and once they hear this will certainly agree that this has to change. we can do so and block terrorists from obtaining guns without compromising constitutional second amendment rights. in fact, a recent survey done bshow that over 80% of nra
8:50 pm
members believe that suspected terrorists should not be allowed to buy guns. in 2007, the bush administration proposed legislation to give the attorney general of the discretion to prevent the sale of firearms to terrorists on the watch list. it was not enacted. and to look -- legislation has previously been introduced to do just that. it is a straightforward, bipartisan bill supported by mayors and others all over the country, but particularly the mayors of cities that are prime targets of terrorists, including the large diverse coalition of mayors that michael bloomberg leaves. in my personal opinion, this bill should be enacted as quickly as possible to close this dangerous loophole before another suspected terrorist is able to buy firearms legally and
8:51 pm
use them to kill americans. senator collins. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >our nation remains a target for terrorists. xdwhether sent from overseas or radicalized within the u.s., terrorists continue to target innocent men, women, and children. their callous disregard for human life was on full display in new york city this past saturday. had it not been for an alert street vendor and the courageous action of the new york city police department, many lives would have been lost and many people would have been injured. i applaud the quick and effective investigative work by federal, state, and local authorities that lead quickly to the identification and arrest of the suspect who allegedly placed
8:52 pm
the car bomb in the midst of times square. this attempted attack reminds us once again that terrorists are unrelenting in their desire to kill americans. we cannot let down our guard and we must continue to meet the need -- meet this ongoing threat with strength and resilience. from fort hood to the skies over detroit, and now to times square, our nation must come to grips with the terrorist threat, particularly the threat of homegrown terrorism. an alert citizens jury -- an alert citizenry is the best defense against terrorist attack. signs in the new york city subway system breeds if you see something, say something. the u.s. capitol police ask those of us who work on capitol
8:53 pm
hill to pay close attention to help beat the eyes and ears with our local law enforcement. as we saw in times square, and alert citizen can be ourç best line of defense against terrorist attacks. senator lieberman and i introduced bipartisan legislation that would encourage individuals to report suspicious activity to the appropriate officials. the legislation is straight forward. it would protect individuals from lawsuit wednesday, in good faith, report suspicious behavior that may indicate terrorist activity. our colleague, peter king, has introduced a bill on the house side. given the recent event in new york city, i encourage the senate judiciary committee to
8:54 pm
pass this important bill. during the past eight years, significant resources have been devoted to the prevention of a terrorist attack using a biological, chemical, or nuclear weapon. as recent attacks have shown, the improvised explosive device or ied, remains the weapon of choice for most terrorists. indeed, in 2009 alone, there were more than 3700 terrorist incidents involving an ied worldwide. the materials used to construct them are ubiquitous. it gas cans and propane tanks available at any home improvement store allegedly formed the core of the times square bomb. when terrorists can turn items that can be found in an average
8:55 pm
family garage into a weapon of death and destruction, it underscores the need for intelligence collection to identify threats as well as the need for vigilance by state and local authorities, business owners, and all citizens to learn the warning signs that distinguish legitimate activity from the precursors to a terrorist attack. of course, terrorists can also choose to use firearms. that is the issue that brings us here today. for many americans, including many maine families, the right toç own guns as part of their heritage and way of life. this right is protected by the second amendment. this committee and to this congress faces a difficult issue today. how do we protect the constitutional right of
8:56 pm
americans to bear arms while preventing terrorists from using guns to carry out their murderous plans? let me note that this dilemma it does not arise when we apply the terrorist watch list to the purchase of explosives. one of the more important accomplishments since september 11, 2001, has been the creation of a consolidated terrorist watch list based on information from all parts of the intelligence community and the fbi. our watchlist system properly implemented can be an effective mechanism for preventing individuals with suspected terrorist ties from boarding an airplane. it also averts law enforcement and burglar protection --
8:57 pm
border protection agencies to screen potential terrorists and allows the state department to revoke of pieces of foreign individuals when terrorist ties of people trying to -- travel to the u.s. airline the evidence remains that the evidence used to compile the watchlist is fragmentary and of varying degrees of credibility. as ted kennedy discovered when his name was included. the watch list can be inaccurate. it is not, in other words, the equivalent of a criminal history report. indeed, the latest doj report concluded that approximately 35% of those sampled from the list were left on the list based on outdated information or material on related to terrorism.
8:58 pm
incidents of mistaken application of the watch list are very unfortunate but those usually result only into the restriction of a privilege such as the right to board a plane or travel to the u.s. from overseas. the expansion of the watchlist system to potentially deprive law-abiding americans of a constitutional right is wholly different and raises many critical differences -- many critical questions. when we consider what at first blush seems to be an obvious step that we should take, we must carefully consider these questions. are there appropriate protections included within the watch list process to justify the potential denial of a constitutional right? if not, what procedural
8:59 pm
protection should be afforded those who are you erroneously denied the ability to purchase firearms. what guidelines are needed to constrain the attorney general's discretion to prevent law- abiding americans from purchasing firearms? let me emphasize that none of us wants the terrorists to be able to purchase the guns. neither should we want to infringe upon a constitutional right of law-abiding americans. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. we will begin with senator lautenberg and congressman king to describe the legislation and we will be honored to hear from the panel. you have been a real leader on this. the bill you introduced, but meat safe for the record, has been presented to the
9:00 pm
legislative commission. it is our responsibility to inquire as to the impact of the passage of the legislation. thank you very much for being here. we welcome your testimony. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. i want to offer my welcome to mayor bloomberg and to commissioner kelly. each of them has enormous responsibility and conducted very well across the river from new jersey and one cannot help but to note. -- the incredibly brilliant police work that went on to get this guy before he was able to leave the country. . .
9:01 pm
we were fortunate that this bomb did not explode. officials claim that they will do everything to stop future terrorist attacks. a loophole gives terrorists the
9:02 pm
upper hand. this loophole allows known and suspected terrorist to purchase military grade explosives and firearms legally and our country. -- and our country. we do not want to rob people of their constitutional rights, but i do not like saying this but i am going to do it, but to err on the side of protection, that is a chance we have to take. and as gao will testify, it just last year a person on the terrorist watchlist was cleared to buy explosive by the atf. the federal government cannot block the sale of these explosives to a person simply because they are in a terrorist
9:03 pm
watchlist. it sounds frightening to me. it defies common sense but it is the law of the land. in fact, some of the very explosive agents used in iraq and afghanistan are available for sale legally to known and suspected terrorists here in our country. we know that terrorists do not only used explosives, firearms are a weapon of choice. one u.s. citizen arrested at jfk airport in connection with the times where a car bombing had all loaded gun in the car that he drove to the airport. if you look at other recent terrorist attacks, if you see that assault weapons and small explosives are being used more and more. the fact is that they are able to compact these all are -- horrible weapons and the smaller packages. that is why we need to change
9:04 pm
this law. many are prevented from buying these weapons but nothing keeps the fanatics on the terrorist watchlist from purchasing explosives and firearms. it is hard to believe but unfortunately it is true. and this is not some theoretical concept. not only have documented terrorist what firearms in our country, they do. i have submitted some reports from the gao that the number of times this has been exploited. from 2004, february of this year, terrorists tried to buy guns and explosives 1228 times. 91% of those -- and i think the chairman knows this -- they were given an ok to buy a gun. imagine -- 10% of these people were able to buy guns.
9:05 pm
but because of this terror gap, america is affectively hanging out the welcome sign for terrorist. i introduced legislation in the senate to close this gap. there's an identical proposal and the house. our legislation would give the united states attorney general the power to review and denied guns and explosives to known and suspected terrorist. it does not sound like an impediment to living in this country. this common-sense legislation does not ban guns, it is anti- terrorists. the attorney general has the power to challenge the ruling. the bush administration which fiercely defended gun rights ask
9:06 pm
congress to pass my legislation. attorney general eric holder has indicated his support for our legislation. the former governor tom kean, the former department of homeland security secretary, has asked congress to pass this. many others have endorsed the legislation. some will say that gun owners oppose the bill. not true. republican pollster frank luntz found dead americans want congress to close the terror gap. it makes our country sector from terrorism. this is our chance to actually do it and i thank you again for holding this hearing. >> thank you very much, senator
9:07 pm
lautenberg. >> thank you for the opportunity to be here today. i want to thank you publicly. our privilege has been to be of the work with you and a totally bipartisan matter has been an honor to work with you closely on these issues. i want to commend the senator lautenberg for his work on this. and also mayor bloomberg, and the last few hours in apprehending the terrorist and new york, showing 100% police professionalism, it is a testament to the work that you would sunday and monday out by the nypd and mayor bloomberg. they've spent hundreds of millions of dollars to defend themselves against terrorist attack. the whole world and a country should be happy, because this is
9:08 pm
every day in new york. at least with commissioner kelly and mayor bloomberg. i would ask that my testimony be inserted into the record. >> without objection. >> is an issue of common sense. as she stated, we are at war with terrorism. the enemy is coming overseas and more frequently right here at home. one of the reasons is we have been effective in stopping terrorist from coming into the country. hawkeye of his off -- al qaeda is always adapting. there was a recent case on saturday evening and others were they recruit americans under the radar screen who do not have known ties to al qaeda. it is harder for us to follow this. we have to expect more attacks
9:09 pm
from those already within the country. it is harder for terrorists to come in and it also means that those who are not here -- that are here, they are more likely to rely on what happened -- whatever weapon they can get ahold of. when we say that terrorists can have access to guns, and explosives, as senator lautenberg said, we should remember september 11, the next day, what could we of done to prevent it? and i would just say that if we find out that islamic terrorists such as we saw on saturday night or others to a terrorist connections, some the lab terrorist connections have gone out and all weapons and carry that to whether times square or near chicago or tennessee or anywhere, when recruiting station in arkansas, how did we allow this to happen?
9:10 pm
and we have to explain to the american people that even though we know that this person as a terrorist and that al qaeda has declared war against us and we were facing a threat here at home, we allow that person on the terrorist list to buy a weapon and go out and slaughter people. the bank of what the american people make the bus. -- just think of what the american people think of us. we allow that to happen. it would be blood on our hands. we would be responsible for the death of all of those people. that is why this legislation is common sense. there's all possible violation of a constitutional right. i agree with that completely and we provide all legal mechanism that after a person is notified, they can go to court and challenges. senator lautenberg has even more extensive protections. i would certainly be willing to adopt my legislation toward that. no one wants to be having
9:11 pm
someone always strongly. if we balance this and we look at what we are facing -- all possible slaughter of american citizens, and murder of american citizens by al qaeda supporters, by islamic militants and terrorists -- to me there should be no real debate here. as long as there protections in here and they are in here, but the balanced equity is on the side of protecting the american people. we saw the guns were bought in a potential attack at fort dix. we saw a major homicide -- major hassad, and the tacky carried out at fort hood. these were domestic people and they did not have a terrorist record. what we allowed someone with a terrorist record the by that weapon, and 91% of them were able to apply for weapon, they
9:12 pm
were able to purchase them. it really is outrageous. this should not be a partisan issue in any way. the bush administration was certainly as pro-gone is any administration has we have ever had. they strongly supported this legislation and ask for it, and it is my understanding that the obama administration supports this as well. bipartisan legislation at this is targeted and dealing with the real and present danger -- maybe if this was the year 2000 and you say that it is a tom clancy novel, but the fact is our money more attacks and potential attacks do we have to have before the american people and all the house and senate realize that this is a real enemy, that they are among us and we have to protect the american people. i thank you very much for holding this hearing and i look for to working with you in a bipartisan way, whatever
9:13 pm
adjustments we have to make to make sure that the legislation is entirely compatible with reasonable things that people want in the legislation. i would be glad to change it any way that we can so long as the bottom line is that the american people are protected from derek -- domestic terrorists who have guns. that to me is common sense. it is the only logical step that we can take, depending on saturday night and how close this game. i'm going to thank you for allowing me to testified and i yield back the balance of my time. >> i accept it. understand, senator, thank you very much. mayor bloomberg, thank you for being here. this was scheduled a long time ago and we appreciate that notwithstanding the events of the recent days, you taken the time to come here. i can say a lot about you. all that good. well, most of it is good. [laughter]
9:14 pm
at a time when it is clear that the american people have lost confidence in so many ways in so much of their government, i think you set a standard of leadership and confidence and making government work, and i thank you for that as well as everything else. thank you for this morning. >> i could say some good things about you, senator lieberman, senator columns, and senator graham. thank you for having us today. it is a great opportunity tell you what is going on. in our city and why we need some help from washington. as frank just said, the government accountability office recently showed that suspects on the terrorist watchlist were able to buy guns and explosives from a licensed u.s. dealers well over 1000 times. that is a serious and dangerous breach of national security and it really raises a basic
9:15 pm
question -- when gun dealers run background checks that they have to buy loss into the fbi, shouldn't fbi agents have the authority to brock -- blog sales from those on terrorist watchlist and deemed too dangerous to fly? i happen to believe that they should and a bipartisan coalition of mayors does. but the fact is right now that they do not. and as they have said, it is time to close this terror gap in our gun laws. at a time when the threat of terrorism is really -- is still all too real as we end new york know, we should close this gap and close it quickly. but karr found in times square was not the only attempted terrorist attack on our cities since 9/11. far from it, and sad to say we do not think it will be allies.
9:16 pm
since 1980, there had been more than 20 actual or planned terrorist attacks against our city. that is why it is so important to fully fund homeland security programs like the secure cities initiatives and take other steps that will help us fight terrorists and make it even harder for them to attack. analyze your lawn, the nypd, working closely with federal law authorities, boiled two major attacks on our city. all first was last made -- the first was last may and the sec it was in september when the city and federal authority month broke up a plot to designate rejected detonate explosives in the new york city's subway system, and the planned attacks have not been limited to new york. in 2007, six men were arrested for plotting to attack fort dix in new jersey. that had an arsenal of high-
9:17 pm
powered fire arms. last june in little rock, a man went by on military recruiting agency. at the time of the shooting, and the fbi was already investigating this man after his arrest in yemen with a fake somali passport. and on november 10, 2009, major najal hassan attacked fort hood. after the fort hood shooting, i wrote an op-ed web the chair of the 9/11 commission urging congress to close the terror gap. our message was that we cannot wait for another for a good to happen before we take action. the bush to administration proposed closing the gap in 2007, but because nothing has
9:18 pm
happened, people who may want to do our country harm have no trouble buying guns and explosives as the gao report clearly shows. the legislation before you today would give the fbi did ability to make exceptions when they say that tipping -- that this might set off a suspect. it allows those on the list to appeal their status with the justice department and challenged the determination in court. attorney general eric holder supported this in testimony before the senate judiciary committee last year and so did the vast majority of americans. and senator lieberman, as you pointed out, a december poll by republican pollster frank luntz found that 82% of nra members support closing the terror gap. it is true that even if the terrorist gap and the background checks were face, terror
9:19 pm
suspects another dangerous people would still be able to go to gun shows to buy guns without any background checks at all and that is why our coalition of mayors is also urging congress to close the gun show loophole. but found the same 82% in favor of closing the gun show loophole as well as the terror debt. we're doing everything humanly possible to prevent another terrorist attack in new york city. under commissioner kelly is leadership, the new york city police department has developed an advanced counterterrorism programs and thousands of our best police officers work on counterterrorism and intelligence every day. a key element of any smart counterterrorism strategy is to make it harder for terrorists to strike. that is why air passengers walk through metal detectors. that is why our police randomly checked bags on the subway. that is why we patrol sensitive locations and that is why it is just common sense to give the fbi the authority terror
9:20 pm
suspects from buying guns and explosives. let me say something about the second amendment. our founding fathers did not write the second amendment to empower people who want to terrorize a free state. they wrote it to protect people who could defend the security of a free state. today the security of our free state is being tested by terrorists. i urge you to take the common sense that in this lot to strengthen our enforcement, including closing the terror gap and to protect the american people from more attacks. thank you very much. >> thank you very much, mayor bloomberg. commissioner kelly, thank you for being here. when i talked to law enforcement people around the country, they all feel that the standard of law enforcement in the country is set by the nypd, and if anything under your leadership, if you have raised that banner even higher.
9:21 pm
thank you for being here. we welcome your testimony now. bring that microphone around. >> senator collins, senator graham, thank you for being here. terrorist are determined to attack this country by any means. a car bomb attack on times square is just the latest example. septs -- since september 11, 2001, new york city has been the threat of 11 + that we know on -- know of. each highlights one of the myriad ways that terrorists might attack n.y., bombs, by torching bridge cables, for releasing cyanide in the subways. the police department trains constantly to defend against every type of threat, especially those from guns and explosives. obviously the more that we can do it to deny it would-be
9:22 pm
terrorists access to the weapons, the safer we will all be. it is urgent that we close the terror gap in our nation's gun laws. failure to do so places this country at even greater risk. last year, i testified before this committee about the nypd respond to the failed assault on mumbai, india in 2008. as you may recall, that attack was carried out by small teams of operatives using a k-56 assault rifles. they maximize casualties. as part of our comprehensive response to what happened in mumbai, we upheld tactical droll's and exercises with officers from our special operations division based on that scenario. we of train more than 250 additional officers in the use of heavy weapons so that they will be able to supplement the work of our emergency service officers in a crisis.
9:23 pm
we also decided to use the instructors in our firearms and attacked its units has another rumor force -- and tactic units in another reserve force. we've taken these and other mergers because we believe that attack is always the possibility. we also guard against terrorist armed against -- armed with homemade bombs like the one and times square or stowed in backpacks, like the one in december and the new york subways. our program which we implemented after the 2005 london bombings was designed to counter such a threat. in recent years, we've also conducted undercover operations demonstrating the ease with which terrorists in this country can purchase the explosive ingredients such as chlorine and ammonia nitrate. this is part of the counter-
9:24 pm
terrorism program we built from the ground up in 2002 when we realize that in addition to our focus, at the police department needed to build intelligence collection and analysis capabilities to defend new york city from another terrorist attack. we establish the nation's first counter-terrorism bureau and restructured our intelligence division 3 recruited the best that the federal government had to offer to head those operations. we created a new civilian intelligence program to support our field commanders with timely information and analysis. tapped the incredible adjusted versatility of the police department. we strengthen patrols into bridges and tunnels and other sensitive location. collaborated with the private sector up and down the east
9:25 pm
coast with federal agencies and especially the fbi and apartment homeland security for all our collective efforts would benefit from the passage of this bill which would exclude anyone who was on the terror watchlist from being able to legally purchase a gun, of pain -- obtain a permit to buy explosives, or a license to sell them. from the standpoint of the nypd, it would conflict and the strategies we already have in place. -- it would complement the strategies we already have in place. we're a national leader in combating gun violence. the police department has made significant progress in stemming the flow of illegal guns into the city. it is a principal reason we have been able to drive conventional crime down by 40% since the beginning of 2002. even after we to cover the additional responsibilities of counterterrorism. but we are by no marriage -- by no means declaring victory. there are still far too many guns available to people
9:26 pm
determined to obtain them. the same is true for international terrorist organizations which in all likelihood are plotting their next attack as we speak. this legislation would go along way in stopping them from exploiting a dangerous loophole and succeeding in their mission. for that reason, i hope that congress will pass this legislation without delay. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you very much, commissioner kelly. we will do a seven-minute round of questioning. the fact that you hear so soon after the events of the last four days gives us an opportunity before we get to the terror gap just to ask you if you have any immediate -- i might say -- lessons learned from the last four days. from my perspective, a lot of what we hoped would happen in a post-terrorist attempts
9:27 pm
situation which call for asian -- with cooperation between agencies happen, and it happened brilliantly. you're there on the ground. give us your reactions first of the cooperation between levels of government and if you came away with any lessons learned. >> i came away pleased that the public saw something. we keep telling the public that they do, turning the security over to the professionals. you can be the eyes in the years but they are the ones with the boots on the ground that we want to defend the spirit and that all of the training the commissioner khalid and the nypd, the commissioners bruno, what they do together and with federal agencies and state agencies, it showed itself instantly. a police officer was called over, amounted caught on his
9:28 pm
horse. he saw something wrong right away and other police officers in the area started pulling people back. there were well traded doing that. they called in the fire department. you saw a group of people working together. thank god it was not worse than it was because it did not go off. had they gone off, i think it is fair to say that the professionals that were called then did what they had to do to protect us. that it gives us comfort for the future, but as commissioner kelly will tell you, we are the target. we're going to be the target again. connect attack or attempted attack will be different. we do not know what that is but that is why we keep training for any eventuality. >> commissioner. >> this was clearly a team effort. it is the largest in the country and we worked seamlessly
9:29 pm
on this case. as we have on many others. sometimes people think the question that but the relationship is strong and certainly a very productive one, as this investigation showed. it also illustrated the benefits of technology. we were able to call in information from databases that was very helpful. the keep finding in this case was the vin number, which quickly identified the owner, and also for use in the federal data base, we could link up telephone numbers that led us to the suspect in short order. as a lot of people said, it was a remarkable amount time to close -- at least as far as the rest are was concerned, to bring
9:30 pm
the case to closure. the worst i could not agree more. i was pleased to understand that some of the databases that are within the department of common security, which this committee oversees, and congressman king does over in the house, were very helpful. there were able to bring that to bear very quickly in the case. >> yes, sir. >> mr. mayer, house banking about those two senators and comparing them -- i remember a lot of people who do not remember, the kiddie genevese case, a lot of people watching a woman being attacked. this is a dramatic contrast to that. two people see something suspicious, not clearly a problem immediately, going to
9:31 pm
the police officer and that prevented the worst from happening. whatever has changed -- and i give you credit for the campaign that you conducted in new york to alert citizens to their role -- because we are in open country. we have an intimate coming at us and they do not care about their lives and certainly not about the lives of innocent american civilians. we cannot stop every attempt no matter how hard we try. that is where the citizenry becomes 300 million people and more preventers, security providers for our country. commissioner kelly, let me ask your question about this proposal. i think people understand it -- the brady gun law says that if you apply for a federal license gun seller, your name is run across databases. some of them automatically
9:32 pm
disqualify you, if you have a criminal record. the terrorism botulism -- watchlist raises a red flag and delays the purchase for three days during which law enforcement is informed. oddly, strangely in this case, though the department justice -- the department of justice may be in force, they cannot stop you from buying the gun. that is a gap that we're trying to fill with this legislation. commissioner, apart from the obvious fact that you want to keep the gun at of a hand to as a suspected terrorist, talk a little bit about what the purchase of a gun may say about the moment in the would-be terrorist activity? might suggest that that person is about to go operational? >> certainly. it is a possibility. we're still gathering
9:33 pm
information about faisel s hahzad's purchase of a gun. we know that he purchased the gun in march and connecticut. he had with him in the car that he drove to jfk airport on monday night. it appears from some of his other activities that march is when he decided to put this plan in motion. he came back from pakistan on february 3, 2010 of this year it may very well be an indicator of putting something catastrophic in motion. >> my time is up and i'm going to senator gramm. i want to stress what i think it's been said.
9:34 pm
it does not mandate that the person on the terrorism watch list would be prohibited from buying the gun. it gives the department of justice the i authority to do so. there may be cases where it justice decides it wants the gun purchase to go forward because they are following that person and that individual may lead to other co-conspirators. senator graham. >> just for the record. we have the chance to have a good discussion about very important issues. you took time from a very busy job dto to come and talk with the spirit we have a difference of opinion on this particular issue, but the idea that america has gaps in her defenses is a timely topic. and we do. we have gaps in defending our southern border, allowing people to overstay their visas,
9:35 pm
all 19 hijackers were here illegally but they did not cross the border of mexico, the came here on a visa. they had multiple drivers license, so easy to fake documents, and we're almost 10 years out, and i don't that we have warned all of the lessons that we need to learn. that is one thing that we can agree on here. i was in new york city at the marriott marquee, the very place where this suv was found, and i could not have been better treated. by the police department and by people there. i went to a yankees game on monday and the 14-one. to anyone who was worried about new york, go. i've never seen a more professional group of people other than the united states military. at the ball game, on the streets, all over the place, and it was a wonderful experience, so new york is open for business and you're going to be well
9:36 pm
taken care of but there's a risk getting out of bed. maybe a media right will be to its home. -- and meet your -- meteor will hit you in the head. i am in the camp that i am not so sure that this is not our right solution to prevent what the dangers are. the d.c. gun ban all was an experiment that if you have a lot against owning a handgun, you would be safer. i do not think that worked. and the supreme court said that went too far, and they are about to issue rulings soon to determine whether not gun ownership is an individual right. i will argue that will affect the outcome of this legislation. but i had been told and i'm not going ask for specific numbers but here is a general question -- 1002 and a 28 people on the
9:37 pm
watch list that tried to purchase a handgun, is that right? >> close to that. >> what percentage of those people are facing terrorism charges now? >> i do not know, senator. i could not agree with you more -- border security does not have control of the borders and it should. forged documents, anybody can forge a green card. >> social security card. >> and we should do something about that. we should get control of our borders. we track people when it comes to immigration and we do not track them when they laid. >> absolutely. >> which should fix that. we have documents that are too easy to a fate. we have to get control of immigration in this country. we need immigrants, but we should be choosing who comes here, what skills.
9:38 pm
>> absolutely. >> and not let everyone who wants to come here come here. >> you have been buried for gleaning and a balanced way and that is why i look forward to fix and immigration. >> when it comes to reasonable restrictions with the supreme court said are acceptable and consistent with the second amendment, i'd think this is a reasonable restriction. i do not know whether any or -- any of the 1200 on the watchless are facing charges at the moment. i do note that if society decides that these people are too dangerous to get on an airplane with other people, then it is probably appropriate to look very hard before you let them buy a gun. >> i totally understand what you're saying, but we're talking about a constitutional right here, and the reason i
9:39 pm
brought that up, mayor, and mr. kelly, commissioner kelly -- if all these people are fanatics and every one of them on the watch list is a terrorist planning an attack, it would be odd that 1228 that when i tried to buy a gun, none of them are being charged with a terrorist- related offense prepared to -- there is a disconnect between what we're saying and reality -- 400,000 people on the watchless, what percentage are american citizens? >> i could not give you that number. >> the lot prohibits the purchase of a gun unless you are an american citizen or legal resident alien. i think we are talking about a small percentage of 400,000 people. in the nra, some people believe that banning handguns is the
9:40 pm
right answer -- i am not in that camp. i believe my right to own a gun should not be in france because some nut is going to take a gun and use it wrongfully. i think you should just prosecute him very swiftly and forcefully. i am all international security. i want to take social security cards and make them by a metric. i want to stop reading these guys there miranda rights. me and peter are so much on board here. your son is in the marine corps, is that right? he was a fighter pilot. >> my son was a former fighter pilot. >> i knew i liked you and now know why. at the end of the day, mr. chairman, you have been great on this issue. nobody in their right mind would accept and a marine to read it someone called on the battlefield their rights. you catch them and you
9:41 pm
interrogate them lawfully to gather intelligence. for a special unit is probably the best in the world at this but i do not think it is smart for us to say that the homeland is not part of the battlefield. you get to america, you get out much better deal? you get rewarded if you can be caught? if you get caught in pakistan, intelligence gathering can happen without your miranda warning being given. why should you get a better deal when you get here? even if you are an american citizen helping the enemy, you should be viewed as a potential military threat, not someone who tried to commit a crime in times square. i look for to working with a new york police department, the mayor of new york, and peter king to devise a law that recognizes that we are aboard, and that when you capture someone that you do -- and it was a marvelous piece of not
9:42 pm
just police work alone but a combination of intelligence gathering and police work -- that you have the opportunity to hold the suspect, because they represent a military threat, even though they are a citizen, and be able to gather intelligence before you get anything else, because i want to know more about not about how we committed the crime but let -- but what led him to commit the crime and to be worked at, and miranda warnings are counterproductive in my view. we need all that would allow you to go to optimize the judge and hold that a suspect like this and work with the intelligence officials of this country to gather intelligence and then make a prosecutorial decision. back to that matter in hand. the problem my have is that the watch list, when you look at the numbers, it has so many problems with it that i think it is not appropriate to go down the road
9:43 pm
that we're going, because the constitutional right is involved. and that is my only concern and i understand from your perspective how you feel about this issue. but please understand that i feel differently, not because i care less about terrorism. >> the watchlist is access billions of times a year, and the error rate is probably as low as on any large list. and keep in mind you in congress have passed laws preventing convicted felons from buying a gun. that does not mean every convicted felon is going to commit another crime. we have a lot that says you cannot sell guns to minors. that does not mean that if we gave guns to minors, they would use them and kill people. i think that this is a
9:44 pm
reasonable goal and a position to take, and there is an ability to contest, if you are on the list. and that there are problems with the less, let's fix the west. >> may be will have a good discussion about the fix they whispered my time is up. it is hard for me to believe that of 1000 to 28 people have tried to buy guns -- 1228 people have tried to buy guns, and 91% were able to buy guns, and none are being prosecuted for terrorism offense, there is a disconnect between the people on the list and the people we are actually going to prosecute three before we subject innocent americans to go into court and pay the cost of going to court to get the gun right back, i want to slow down and think about this. >> the part about mirandize ani,
9:45 pm
i agree with you. you can declare an american citizen an enemy combatant. we should find legislation to refine that and define it well. >> let me just set the record straight from my perspective. the fourth circuit held that an american citizen could be held as an enemy combatant. we had case law that says that an american citizen -- the supreme court has yet to rule on this issue. it is my belief that the supreme court will allow the congress to write a lot to say that the homeland is part of the battlefield. i cannot imagine the supreme court of the united states and the home -- saying that the homeland is not part of the battlefield. they have responsibility under the constitution not to betray their country, and once you go down that road, then you should be viewed not as a common criminal but a military threat, and you cannot try and american
9:46 pm
citizen by military commission. they can be tried in federal court. there is a place for a federal court, and net charge of treason should always be on the table. no one that called -- killed in this instant, thank god, but if it is proven that this man committed an act of treason against his fellow citizens, i want to keep the government of -- that charge available to this government. >> i agree with you is the question. they cannot be tried and ytterbium. then matriculate out. you get all the intelligent possibly can. [unintelligible] >> they know more about it than anybody in the country, quite frankly. >> thank you senator gramm. i am troubled by your concerns about this proposal because i think it is very limited. what can i say? in this committee, i have argued
9:47 pm
that we should more broadly applied that terrorism watch list to get secondary screening to people before they board airplanes. that is something a lot of us reached a conclusion about after the detroit bomber, because in the current state of operations, only people on the more limited list are actually given secondary screening when they show up for an airplane. it seems to me that if anybody is not -- is on a terrorism watch list, because someone suspects that they may be a terrorist, it is in the interest of everybody else on that plane and society to at least adopt them and give them a secondary screening. that would presumably found abdulmutallab had explosives on his person. but leave the specifics of that aside.
9:48 pm
if someone is on a terrorist watchlist, most of the people on the list are foreign nationals. but there are a good number of americans. why would we not want to give the department of justice discretionary authority when one of them comes in and to bygone, a suspected terrorist, after review of this during the three- day waiting period, no, they cannot have a gun they may want to kill americans. i just do not see an argument that holds up -- an argument that is based on the rights of law-abiding citizens -- listen. if you've got a criminal record today and that turns up when you go to buy a gun from a federal license gun dealer, you cannot buy that kind.
9:49 pm
that does not compromise the rights of law-abiding citizens to buy a gun. we're not even make it that strong. they are just saying give the department of justice discretionary authority -- >> can i take a shot at that? no pun intended. a bad choice of words. yes, you are my friends. >> i do not get your concern. >> let me try to explain it. i know i talk slowly and i have an accent. i assume that you're an ability to understand my argument is based on me, not you. >> you talk slow enough. i hear that spirit and i agree with it. >> there is no constitutional right to get on an airplane without being screened that i know of. when the founder sat down and wrote the constitution, they did not consider flying. i do not believe that the constitution protect any of us
9:50 pm
from being able to get on an airplane without being screened. and here's the big elephant in the room -- what it called a secondary screening happens to be 19 & muslim males? and that is where we're heading with this thing. >> only if they are on the terrorist watchlist. >> we are at war. and we have got to realize the profile of the enemy. you do not want to focus on law- abiding american muslim males who are serving in the military and justifiably. so as you said, mayor bloomberg, this is not about our religion. there are plenty of people in this country of the muslim faith who are fighting and dying for this country. we have to watch what we're doing and what we're saying here. but senator lieberman, joe, we're talking about a second
9:51 pm
amendment right. and some of the people pushing this idea are pushing the idea of banning handguns. i don't think banning handguns words, because every criminal but wants a gun seems to be able to get one. i don't believe that taking this concept of gun ownership, and denying it, not after you get your day in court, i think you're going to far here because there's a huge difference between losing your gun rights based on a felony charge that was proven by a court of law and appealed and is a conviction on the book, and being on some west that is at best suspect, and if everyone is that dangerous on the list, those that try to buy a gun, nobody can tell me i can be prosecuted. i've got a lot of concerned that this is not going in the right direction, because we're dealing with a constitutional right, and i am very concerned about the gap in our defenses, but maybe i
9:52 pm
am not making a good argument to you but it makes perfect sense to me that losing the ability to own a gun which is a constitutional right using this list the way it is constructing is under been at best. -- on nerving region unnerving at best. double and no one is trying to ban handguns here. i certainly would not support that. this is far from that. the sec amendment right, the second amendment constitutional right, just like the first, our the most prized right, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, they are not unlimited. and to meet this is an extraordinarily limited law that is being proposed by congressman king and others three to say that someone is suspected as a terrorist cannot buy a gun -- i am sure we will continue the discussion.
9:53 pm
i want to continue with a few more questions. what i'm about to ask is to slightly expanded data base against gun purchasers. mayor bloomberg, he said quite correctly that nidal hassan was not on the watch list but he was the subject of an active joint terrorism task force investigation. because of reportedly the e-mail contact that he had with the radical cleric in yemen. there is a larger fbi data base of people who are subjects of investigation. this could be done by the fbi are regulation. and i will ask about that on the
9:54 pm
second panel. what did not make sense to go beyond -- and this precautionary system that we're talking about, what did not make sense to offer it -- also ask that someone coming and to purchase a gun be run through the larger data base the fbi has of people under active investigation? >> senator, i would fully agree with that. all the records have not been made available to us, but yes, i am using that case as an example. i agree with you completely. >> thank you. commissioner kelly, a couple of quick question. you have a problem -- a program called operation nexus that reaches out to businesses that sell certain types of equipment seven days. i want to talk -- i want ask you to talk about it and how it has worked and whether the federal government should try to encourage other communities to
9:55 pm
adopt the same kind of program. >> that is ashley program similar to that and customs. haddad specifically to do with airplane parts leaving the country and that is where i got the idea. nexis is a program where we go to businesses that may unwittingly be used by terrorists, even garden supply stores as far as fertilizer is concerned, we would cut the marinas, insecticide spraying companies, we've gone to their conventions, that sort of things, and we have made probably 50,000 visits since the beginning of this program which started in 2002. and it gives them a certificate and a way of notifying that if they see something of a
9:56 pm
suspicious nature -- as a matter of fact, the british authorities came here in 2003 and said quite openly that they looked at this program and copied it, and it was helpful there in which there was an ammonium nitrate store and storage facility in the uk. i see no down side and doing a program -- in doing a program. people are under no obligation to call us, but these business owners to our approach seemed to support it and like it. they feel that they are in the game, you might say. we give them a certificate that says nypd and it seems to be helpful. >> i appreciate that. we will look at that and see if we can urge other communities to adopt a broad the last question -- some references to the so-
9:57 pm
called -- so-called gun show loophole. that is not specifically the topic of this hearing, but it is obviously another concern that we have about the ability of would-be terrorists to abide by an arc -- to buy firearms at gun shows without having to go to the checks, including the one that we're trying to expand and toughen here, than if they walked into of federal allies and gun dealer. i wanted to ask both the commissioner and the mayor, i believe the nypd did an investigation of gun shows recently, and reached what i thought were some very important conclusions. i wondered if either of you would want to share that with the spirit >> hired that investigation but let me just for the record explain what the gun show loophole is. the federal laws require background checks if you buy a
9:58 pm
gun from a dealer. there is an exemption for a gun show, ostensibly so that if you own one gun and you want to sell it to me, we would not have to go through any of the investigatory progress -- process. the trouble that -- the trouble is that if you go to gun shows, you find people coming in not one gun to sell but with hundreds of guns to sell. they are fundamentally dealers. they have the same size and inventory as the legally registered gun dealers who go to these gun shows, but the law does not apply to them. i do not think congress meant that loophole to me a way around have been professional sellers of guns avoid the regulation that you have to do a background check. it was meant for individual purchases, one gunner two, and and it's been used for something different.
9:59 pm
closing that loophole, requiring the same process for non- registered dealers that are effectively dealers as you do for registered dealers, it would help the government keep guns at of those that the federal government has already legislated should not have them, a convicted felon, miners, people with severe mental problems -- there are some categories. i think that terror gap is one of those terror -- those categories. i am senate -- i am sensitive to his concern. he has put a lot of time in this. hopefully we will be at a convince them and everyone else in congress that this is consistent with the other losaws that congress has passed and that the supreme court has said are reasonable. >> commissioner, talk as best you recall about the findings?
10:00 pm
i saw something about it and i was struck by how well a lot of the gun show dealers are to break the law. >> as the mayor said, this investigation was done by private investigators, but we are obviously concerned about the gun show little. it has been known and talked about on the street and in some states it is more of a problem than others. .
10:01 pm
>> it really helps distraught attention to this gap and hopefully will encourage our colleagues to vote to close the gap. have a good day. thank you.
10:02 pm
we will call the second panel into the first panel a moment or two to find their way out. " this weekend, an entrepreneur on his book, "the business of happen as."
10:03 pm
>> by this time tomorrow night, it will all be done and tested although -- the voters job, at least. our economics editor wonders what awful conditions degree crisis will give those, we have somebody royalist -- spreading himself to take a walk of fame with the sophisticated graphics. we will shoot over the campaign and russia in where angels fear to tread. we cast our i overstate labor manifesto. " house of lords reform -- it is so nice to meet an old friend. it was promised 13 years ago. i wonder when it will actually happen.
10:04 pm
>> look at me. he enjoyed the campaign. they have delivered in numerous speeches and now at last, it is almost over. gordon brown finished his final rally. nick clegg and david cameron have gone back to their constituencies. after all of that noise and effort, it is as clear as mud. what we can find out is what the parties say they believe is happening. we have one reporter who is and david cameron's constituency. what does it look like there? >> speaking to senior conservatives tonight, they think they have done enough to win at least 300 seats in this
10:05 pm
election which would be enough to form a viable minority government. some of them think they probably have done enough to achieve a small majority tomorrow. i spent much of the day following david cameron. i caught up with him at lunch time. it is just after midday and david cameron begins his fifth event since midnight last night. he stopped in lancashire, wakefield, and nottinghamshire. >> they are cooking roast beef. what have you ever done for us? [laughter] >> there is a good record of people getting to a hospital and not getting germed up. >> the hospital staff he met
10:06 pm
here shows just how undecided many voters still are. >> who will be voting for? >> i am still undecided and the courts what about you? >> i have not decided. >> you are undecided? >> it is hard to believe event like this will actually switch votes. it is all about the campaign showing momentum and energy. david cameron is saying that party workers around the country that if i can work this hard at the end of a grueling campaign, will you? next stop is in rural wales. the tories need a huge 11.5% swing to oust the sitting liberal democrat.
10:07 pm
>> what is the big society and welsh? >> this is a seat that david cameron might prefer not to win. only once in the past 130 years has the mp elected by the state supported the governing party. >> will you be supporting him? course i am undecided. >> what about you? >> will you vote? >> yes. [inaudible] >> the leader of the opposition, david cameron. [applause] [inaudible]
10:08 pm
>> what do we need tomorrow? change. that is what we need. when there are 1 million young people who are unemployed and the economy is stuck in a rut, what we need? change. when the schools are drowning in procuracy and red tape, what we need? change. when crime is too high and school standards are too low? what we need? change. >> amid the optimism, he knew tomorrow is full of unknowns. his acknowledged the possibility of a hung parliament and gordon brown hanging on and the dems holding the balance. not the kind of climax that david cameron once hoped for. >> he has been traveling with
10:09 pm
gordon brown today and he joins us for his final campaign rally. what is the mood up there? >> they have all come home for the night. this community center has a in big has our recent electoral history. on the eve of the 2001 and 2005 general elections, tony blair made this his last campaign stop. the message gordon brown delivered tonight was squarely aimed at those voters who supported labor and those contests. he said to the people that whatever your doubts or disappointments, at this moment of risk to our economy, i ask you to come home to labor. their hope is that voters will have looked at the change message offers from the other parties and have prodded the goods and asked the salesman some questions and still had significant doubts about the big issues of jobs and the economy. he left about 50 minutes ago to
10:10 pm
head to his constituency. it does he really believe he will be in possession of a common majority on friday? i did not know. having followed him all around, i can say that his energy levels are undimmed. by the time we caught up with him, he was already on his third campaign stop of the day. it is amazing that in the course of these shopping center and counters, nobody gets hurt. somehow, media kits their shares. -- gets their shots. if you voters get close. nobody gets trampled to death. >> i got my paper signed.
10:11 pm
>> could be a collector's item. >> i will get it framed. >> about 50 minutes after he arrived, he has been whisked off and his car. consider this. the state where mr. brown was campaigning, it is actually 139th on the conservative target list. if the seat is in danger, labor is in a lot of trouble. mr. brown can personally greet voters. >> it is great to be her. >> the next stop on his whistle
10:12 pm
stop trip on the last day of voting is here in carlisle. they argued to big machines rolling into town. last night it was david cameron, and in a few minutes, it will be gordon brown. between his arrival and scheduled speech, there is time just for a live interview for the 6:00 news. today, there was no such thing as downtime. >> reduce the deficit by half. >> after the interview, there are a few more inevitable hands to shake. it is trite to the car. >> how are you enjoying the last day of the campaign? >> energizing. talking to lots of people. our plan for the future is the only serious plan for the british economy and public services. people are seeing that. >> you will keep on trucking? >> i will keep campaigning.
10:13 pm
i have been round the whole of the country and have talked to lots of people. people want to know that they have a strong economic future. they see the event happening around the world and they know that we are a force of stability and a force for economic growth and jobs. >> one more campaign stop before bed and tomorrow, well tomorrow, mr. brown gets to vote like everybody else. >> finally, we are in sheffield with nick clegg. >> i must say that nick clegg still seems bright and cheerful. he says he would be happy to fight the entire campaign again he enjoyed it so much. he may have to do just that. if it is impossible to form a government after the election. it has been an extraordinary campaign for him with an incredible surge of support.
10:14 pm
his opinion poll ratings have fallen a bit recently but still, he is still able to draw a decent crowd. when this campaign began, there was unprecedented public anger against the political class. in other countries, that may have expressed itself with the riots or the rise of a dictator. not here in britain. hear, we go liberal. the lib dem leader is making the most of his last day of campaigning. first a tory seat and then an assault on one of labor's northern towns.
10:15 pm
the latest polls show a split in support. the question is, what he can actually deliver. even if they get as many votes as labor, they are only like -- there are only likely to get one seat that every three labor gets. how this nick clegg think his campaign has gone? >> would you describe yourself as a revolutionary? >> no. i would not make such statements. i am a very passionate reformer. >> my own view is that you cannot turn the clock back. you cannot return to the loss of patronizing culture where you have a red team and a blue team. that has changed.
10:16 pm
let's see what happens tomorrow even if the tories cut a small majority -- >> you have 24 hours to wait. just wait. we are off on the clegg battle bus. [inaudible] the reporters believe he will transform politics. >> he is very clever but trying to pin labor of the old parties. >> their heyday was a century ago. " exactly. >> and has a substantial portion of the popular vote and a number of states but if that happens, they could easily fade
10:17 pm
away if the conservatives get an open majority. things will move so quickly that this may fade away. >> nick clegg's tore and in sheffield, home to his constituency. also where a fateful rally was staged in 1992. is this your victory rally? >> he is staying positive till the last. >> do not let anybody tell you it cannot happen. it will. >> the truth is, only a hung parliament would enable the lib dems will him to deliver on ther promise of change. >> if anybody is in doubt of house -- of how high the stakes
10:18 pm
will be tomorrow, only has to look to greece. the measures necessary to sort out the mess have generated such anxiety and anger that there were riots on the streets which took the lives of three people in athens. as we report, the stakes are rising all the time. >> four weeks, the greeks have -- the ashes smolder and today it caught light. three people burned to death. the streets of athens released in teargas. -- wreathed in tear gas. the bailout bill was designed to
10:19 pm
put an end on the sovereign debt crisis but it has not. although the deal is bigger than initially designed, few people believe that the greek people stand for the levels of austerity demanded. the bailout gives them access to $110 -- 110 billion euros. under the deal, greek vat rise to 23%. there will slash bonuses, public-sector say to the tune of 5.4 billion euros. the greek economy will shrink 5.8%. to get the bailout money, they have to get this to parliament by the end of june. the greek parliament was visibly shocked at it. the p.m. said this is where violence leads. this is where political responsibility takes hold. for the market, even if the unrest blows over, a bigger problem remains. >> this package will only
10:20 pm
survive their needs for the next couple of needs and then there is still a huge mountain of debt and interest burden to pay and it will probably not have much growth, if any. it is more likely the recession will continue. if i think the markets are also looking forward to putting this over for the next year or two but then what happens? >> global markets have been falling as the details of the bailout filtered through. if it can push breeze into recession, it can do the same with portugal, spain, and ireland. people say spain is what frightens them put it is too big to save even if the political willpower can be found. its deficit is smaller but their growth projections are considered to be rubbish. that spread is the highest it
10:21 pm
has been since the era was formed. the credibility of the euro itself is under pressure. the greek bailout will cost the german taxpayers. the german chancellor has to sell the deal. >> this is needed to secure the financial stability of the gyro. we are protecting our own currency when we act. >> if it is not stopped in the very near future, you can see more problems developing in the banking system and throwing the euro zone back into recession. that could make the whole government situation a lot worse. >> britain stands outside the arose own but our guess it will be bigger in percentage terms than that of greece. the danger facing them could push the country into a double- dip recession.
10:22 pm
it is worth remembering that the greek prices were restricted with the incoming government discovered but the national accounts or wrong. >> there was one remark which all the main party leaders came out with today. it is what they say toward the end of every election campaign. there is only one poll which counts and that happens tomorrow. it is no less true because it is a cliche but the only evidence we have of what the public will say is a series of opinion polls conducted throughout the campaign. " let's look at the polls going back to the start of the campaign and see whether david cameron can have any confidence that he could get an overall majority and go to the door at
10:23 pm
number 10. you can see the conservatives on 38% with labour with 31% and the lib dems lower. look at this remarkable ramping affect on the lib dem vote. this second -- it is suddenly a tussle for second place. 28% for the labor and 27% for the lead dems. -- lib dems. where does that leave david cameron? does he have any chance of keeping all the way to downing street? here we have downing street.
10:24 pm
at the far and is the door of number 10. he needs paving stones. here they come. each paving stone has the name of a seat on it. these are the 116 seats that the conservatives need for an overall majority in the house of commons. will the hamptons southwest, conservative for decades, tony blair took it in 1997, they need that. as you go down the street, it gets harder to win. where have the former minister standing down. can the conservatives get them? the poll suggests they come down as popular. they do not get the extra ones they need. there is an additional problem for conservatives.
10:25 pm
as they came down the street, there were a number of lib dem seats they needed to take. cornwall north. richmond park. normally, as they advance, they would be taken but the lib dem surge may protect the seats against the conservative advance. david cameron needs more labor seats to get further down in this direction. as he tries for those six early receipts, there are better protected against the conservative advance but the thrust of all of this is david cameron does not have enough to come to the doorstep of #10 and go through the door with an overall majority. this extraordinary election takes place with nobody knowing how it will turn out. the talk is of a hung parliament. we have not seen anything like it in a generation since harold wilson.
10:26 pm
the man who was his principal private secretary wrote to this confidential account of what happened. he is in westminster now. lord armstrong, if a gordon brown or not to get the largest number of constituencies, could he remain as prime minister? >> he could explore whether there any means by which he could make a coalition or an understanding or of arrangement with the liberal democrats such as to give him an overall majority or an understanding which would give some assurances to carry on. >> how long would he have to do that? >> as long as it takes.
10:27 pm
it is up to him. he remains prime minister until he resigns. >> where is the justice of that? >> the justice would be, i suppose, that as he himself has been saying, was a conservative majority. he would be putting that at the head of affairs in the house of commons. >> constitutionally, could david cameron be at the same time trying to assemble some sort of group sufficiently large to give him an overall majority? >> he certainly could. he could be talking to the liberal democrats or other groups to see if he could conjure up or put together a package that would enable him to have a majority or, i suppose, if he had the largest number of seats, he might decide that he would do what mr. wilson did in
10:28 pm
1974 and run a minority government. i hope that he could make arrangements on each particular issue to enable him to get through. >> this is a very british way. it comes down to the queen and what she is asked to do. given the sensitivity about involving her in politics, how do you keep her out of it? >> the prime minister remains the prime minister until he resigns. if he does resign, it is his duty to recommend the queen who she should send for as his successor. she is not bound to accept that recommendation but he has a duty not to put a recommendation forward which is unlikely to reach a working success. >> what i am getting at, is the suggestion being made that nick clegg would not necessarily want to do any deal or ad hoc
10:29 pm
arrangement but he might consider such a thing if another person were to be leader of the party. >> it would be up to him. the queen would be bound to leave it to him to sort out what that position was. he is the prime minister and so long as he stays there, he continues to be the prime minister. he would need, no doubt, to consider with his colleagues whether to stand down or make another arrangement possible. in 1974, mr. heath would not have been prepared to do that. >> from the civil servants point of view, are there any advantages to dealing with parliament or an ad hoc arrangements? >> i should say that there are more disadvantages and advantages because it means that arrangements have to be made on
10:30 pm
each issue. we had the arrangements in 1977 to 1979. it does not make fort the size of government or a clear line. -- it does not make for a decisive government or a clear line. what is your instinct about the result? course the big problem we have is there are so many uncertainties, particularly, as you saw in my package today, when the large number of voters that are reporting have not decided yet. we also do not know the effect of all these mps who have stepped down because of a crisis. i think it will be a very patchy election. i think we are going to find
10:31 pm
that there is not the uniform swing we have seen in other places. we will see a lot of surprise results. we will see how they were managing to hold on. as an example of a possible surprise, we have been hearing from both labor and conservatives that the chief nick brown is under a lot of pressure from the liberal democrats within the newcastle seat. at the end of the day, david cameron will become in the next few did he begin in the next few days. >> there is some in the soil behind you pulling funny faces and doing funny walks. i think he has gone away now. >> i think david camry will probably become prime minister and the next few days with the caveat of all the unknowns i
10:32 pm
mentioned earlier. >> for the possibly less time in this election, the panel is considering every political possibility. do any of you have any idea what will happen? >> it is a good story. it is going to be a bad day for the labor party. they have held up the campaign reasonably well but they will lose a lot of seats. the swing would not necessarily justified. the liberal democrats may do less well than it seems they would to a week ago and vote terms but a lot better.
10:33 pm
>> are you surprised it is so close to call at this stage? that is the surprise of the election. given 13 years of labor and the mistakes and the sentiment against labor. i am surprised there is any doubt. >> it is closer than it should be. >> i want to ask you before these people cut you off, is there any remote possibility of a liberal tory deal? >> i.t. thank -- i think that the will of the nation will be revealed for us. it will give us something to go on. personally, when i looked across the country and see how many councils are working together,
10:34 pm
there is a fight to win on and london to wrest control from labor and what will probably end up will be an alliance. there are some sticking points and it will always come down to policy in the end. there is no point in it being based on personality or emotion. you have to get these very rigorous policies that you want. nick clegg it off with the policy pledges and they're there for a purpose. >> he said the package is full. >> all or nothing? >> it may well be. >> you do not really believe that. >> i think if you look north of the border and how it is in scotland, there are incredible packages that have to be
10:35 pm
delivered on. it was on the basis of policy. >> in 1974, labor and the conservatives came very close to each other. that is not going to happen. there is going to be a very big gap between the conservatives and the labor party. they will likely get more than 300 seats in the liberal party made it more than 200 but there would not get a huge number. i did not think it will necessarily produce a coalition situation. they will have to make concessions on policy. it is unlikely they would -- >> why should the tories go with the lib dems? i did not think there is anything in it.
10:36 pm
the question is when and if there would need a majority. >> as its strategic matter, if i were a liberal democrat, i would prefer the conservatives to win a small majority. >> that is the interesting thing. it will not be a majority. it is roughly just over one- third were under one-third. that is not a majority. >> one area of speculation, what happens to gordon brown if the labour party comes third or second? >> if david cameron is and number 10, normally what happens is the leader -- >> can you consider him the leader of the party if he comes in second? >> the chance they could do a deal with the liberal democrats then he might hang around. i cannot believe, he has been in power for 13 years. i would want to go anyway.
10:37 pm
>> but to deal with things we know about. i would like to look back on the campaign. what was the highlight for you? >> i think it has to have been the bigot comment because it was like an episode of "the thick of it." it was clear that what influences elections much more than we thought was the expenses which meant the conservative party was running against the feeling that you are all the same and that was not change. nick clegg seized that. he has not necessarily capitalized on that as he could have. >> besides the ballroom dancing which was a treat, this whole election, my basic view is
10:38 pm
whatever the polls were in january would not change and i thought this would be the same. nick clegg popping up in this first debate and suppressing everybody is clearly what made this election) that it took away from david cameron who was relying on the fighting. it was suddenly taken from under him. everybody had to recalibrate. i do not think it can burn cut it right after that. i think nick clegg has not had a response to doing so well put it shocked the liberal democrats. >> my highlight was the extraordinary sense after the leaders' debate. we nick clegg all nick clegg but the nation did not. -- we all knew about nick clegg, but the nation did not. for me, it was this sense of young people registering to vote. >> i thought that was really striking. and whatever happens, they grow
10:39 pm
into it. >> they engaged in politics for the first times in their lives. >> there are 100 students completely engaged in the debates. >> the debates were critical but i think the beginning of the debate was very interesting. a feeling of tremendous alienation against politics. >> all of these parties are refusing to talk about, in any detail, what they will do about this ridiculous, glaring deficit. >> that is going to be an extremely serious problem. the point made after the third debate, they did not seek a mandate for economic changes. that is going to be a problem. >> if i were a conservative, i would make that a very big issue. everybody relaxes tomorrow.
10:40 pm
what the conservatives want to say is to get constitutional issues, that democrat deals, we challenge everybody to support us. >> i think all three parties have been open and saying we have only felt a bit of the black hole and we know more. they have all played the game as far as they can. >> those are the questions -- >> i am saying that all three -- >> those are the questions coming through an e-mail all the time for every program being run on the bbc. they are asking about the budget deficit. we want to hear some answers. i do believe there is a genuine danger of anchor because there
10:41 pm
is no mandate. >> we ought to be calling for politicians to have more detail. >> it is a different election. >> it will all be revealed, maybe it will not be revealed. thank you. now to the last of our memos to the minister. politicians have droned on endlessly how about how the media is too interested in personality and not engage in of the policy. they do this by refusing to tell us how that are going to solve some of the most difficult problems. they have gotten their up twopence -- comeuppance. sir humphrey gets to grips with the labor manifesto.
10:42 pm
>> it is always a pleasure to read party manifestos, especially if you have a taste for fantasy fiction. they are a remarkable example of creative writing. such a pity that you have to convert them into tv's legislative documents. still, that is our job. what does the labor party have to say about immigration? budget? no. numbers? no. it takes? no. so unpoetic. people need to know that immigration is controlled. excellent. after all, the rocket in the stratosphere is controlled. what have we here? at the heart of our growth plan
10:43 pm
is the commitment to a high- speed rail line. i think we have a figure for that some more. hear, yes. $30 -- 30 billion pounds. where will that come from, i wonder? the scheme is due for completion in 200032. i must book a ticket on it to celebrate my 80th birthday. the department has noted the government's bold and imaginative commitment to a new high-speed rail network and will be conducting pulmonary investigations for engine tisane, financial structures, and our mental safeguards, commercial abridgments and health and safety considerations with immediate effect. freedom of information. oh, dear, dear.
10:44 pm
we strongly support measures that improve the transparency of parliamentary institutions and government. they cannot say we did not warn them. i think there is a way to clip its wings. we fully support the government's commitment to transparency but we should point out that meeting with information has already cost 30 million pounds. given the critical state of the u.k. finances, we recommend it be capped to say 2 million pounds per year to be allocated by the department of committee. which i shall chair. house of lords reform. it is so nice to meet an old friend. it was promised 13 years ago for until i wonder when it will actually happen. i bet it is on a dead heat with a new high-speed rail line.
10:45 pm
the biggest budget deficit and britain's history and a forecast that getting onto 1.5 trillion pounds. they say table salt but not exactly how. -- they say they will solve it but not exactly how. you do not want to spoil it, do you? which you can see all three demos on our website. if you want more, it is at a theater until the 13th of may. the candidates have been making their final push is for both. the volcanic ash cloud from iceland has cost thousands of two plays. hundreds of flights have been canceled. flights from dublin and belfast will remain grounded.
10:46 pm
attenborough airport opened earlier this evening. engineers working for bp have succeeded in blocking one of the sunken oil rigs and the gulf of mexico which is caused a massive oil spill. a plan by the potential to ask for $14 billion pounds and extra cash. the crew needs the money because they want to buy the asian operations of the insurance group aig. the dow jones also closed down. whoever emerges the victor tomorrow night or friday, we know one person who has had a good time and he is not trying for anything as volcker as votes. -- anything as a vulgar as
10:47 pm
votes. signs his name the dark lord. he often seems to think he can do a lot better than the chosen. ♪ >> not for the first time, boy george is sailing close to the wind. you know what a shrinking violet i am? i hate hawking the limelight. i'm quite okay. thank you, very much. thank you.
10:48 pm
[inaudible] >> i just hate hogging the limelight. do you know the prime minister? >> you do. >> i do indeed and i know the truth. >> i am afraid you're have to go -- i am afraid you are just going to have to wait for the answer. >> i just hate hogging the limelight. thank you, very much, indeed. >> the sun goes with a version of the chemist obama poster this time with david cameron.
10:49 pm
apparently our only hope. cameron is the prize is the front page of "the guardian." he is not endorsing him. the have come out with complicated suggestions about the left of center arrangement. "the daily telegraph" shows a shot of david cameron. "the independent" the people's election. it is a summary of what has happened. "the daily mirror" goes to david cameron. that is all from news night. there is no program tomorrow but we will be back on friday. good night.
10:50 pm
>> british voters had to the polls tomorrow to elect a new prime minister. and learn about the issues online at d.c.'s ban video library. watch what you want, when you want. you can watch election results tomorrow afternoon just before 5:00 eastern on c-span3. >> a debate for the special election in pennsylvania's 12th congressional district. they are running to serve out the remaining term of john murtha who died in february. the debate is being held and
10:51 pm
richland high school and is co- sponsored by the johnstown "tribune democrat." this is one hour. >> good evening and welcome to this debate that features candidates for the may 18, special election to fill the until term in the house of representatives. i will moderate tonight's debate with my partner who is editor of the johnstown newspaper. we are happy and proud to be able to co-sponsor tonight's debate. the debate will be one hour and it will feature opening and closing statements from each of our candidates as well as questions from both the moderator's and members of the audience who are submitting written questions. our candidates drew lots to determine the order of opening and closing statements and questions. we also want to point out that we did invite the libertarian
10:52 pm
party candidates to join us. he indicated he would be here, and he is here, but not quite sure we -- what we are going to do now. [laughter] i am sorry, sir. if you just wait for a second. let's at least stop here and tell you what is going to happen. we will be asking you a series of questions. we will be posing those questions, some of them will come from us and some of them will come from members of our studio audience who are submitted questions in writing. the candidates that is the question will get two minutes to respond and the other candidates will have one minute to respond.
10:53 pm
our opening and closing statements was -- opening order -- order of the opening and closing statements was predetermine. we will begin with their opening statements. >> thank you. thank you for putting us on. this is wonderful that the people around here get to hear the views of the candidates. i have to commend richmond school district. this is a beautiful auditorium. i am happy to be here. i have been traveling this district throughout this campaign. i have been traveling this district for many years working with people and talking about different things and trying to bring people together to solve problems. what people are most concerned
10:54 pm
about, what people are talking about, is jobs. what is going on but the economy? is the economy going to improve? will my job still be here in the next year or so? will my children be able to stay here? that is why i have a job plan which means ending unfair trade agreements, giving tax breaks to companies that pay little boy wages, ending tax loopholes for companies that ship jobs overseas -- companies that pay littlvable is. i was born and raised in our when comeuppance of an epoch of my mother is from canonsburg. my father is from uniontown. i went to iup and graduated which is where i met my wife who has a speech pathology degree. we live in johnstown. my wife is a teacher where my
10:55 pm
twins go. there are fifth graders. you can see, i am western pennsylvania all over. it is in my dna. my problems are your problems. my issues are your issues. what i am talking about is the issues. this campaign is not about washington d.c., it is about washington, pa. it is about johnstown. that is why i am running for congress. thank you. [applause] >> thank you. >> thank you. thank you for hosting this event. it is great to be here. as you know, this is my home town. i worked in my father's photography studio. i delivered newspaper for the "tribune democrat." i worked at a busboy at surf and turf. it is the work ethic i learned
10:56 pm
right here in johnstown that allows me to start a business that ultimately became a success. i have never been in politics before but i believe this country is in a fight for its very life. the entire country is now watching this election because of what it now represents. this election represents a battle that is between bigger government, more intrusive government, more regulation, higher taxes, and balanced budgets, fiscal responsibility, and a bright future for our children. the choice you have before you could not be more clear. it is a choice between a career bureaucrat who hopes to attract a job to the district and a proven job creator who knows how to create them. you have a choice between spending away your children's future or fiscal responsibility. you have the choice between somebody who supports nancy
10:57 pm
pelosi's health care bill and somebody who will go to washington and fight to repeal it. let me be clear. if this bill stands, this is what it will mean to you. it will mean 500 -- half a trillion dollars in new taxes. it means taxpayer-funded abortions. and if your interests truly live with this district, why will you not support in repealing this bill? >> thank you. the first question is determined by lots and goes to mr. burns. the that congressman was a staunch supporter of the johnstown area. as you campaign for the right to replace him, when you carry on the legacy of that support, regardless of whether you agreed with murtha on policy? >> first of all, neither one of us, whoever is elected, nobody will be able to replace john murtha. he was chairman of the defense
10:58 pm
appropriations committee. of that being said, i will fight to create jobs in this district. we talk about some of the earmarks, like most americans, i am against wasteful spending. it is hard to say that bulletproof vests for the troops is wasteful spending. it is hard to say that armor plating for humvees is wasteful spending. if the earmark process is going to survive, it has to be open, transparent, and the american people can support it. there is currently a moratorium on earmarks and both parties. that is because it is still not a process the american people can support. we need to come up with a process that is open and transparent. i would fully support continuing to work to continue
10:59 pm
the defense industry. you have to keep in mind, neither one of us will be able to replace john murtha. we have to send somebody to congress who is not only looking to attract jobs but has a real world experience in creating them. i happen. [applause] >> you have one minute to respond. >> thank you. will i go forward with congressman murtha's legacy? absolutely. what i see as the job of a congressman is to advocate for the people of the district on every issue as much as you can. as my opponent has said, neither one of us is going to be congressman murtha. he was able to do things that many people will never be able to do. what he had was a fire to


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on