tv Washington Journal Ken Blackwell CSPAN November 28, 2018 4:33am-5:11am EST
people. health care, health care, health care, like a jackhammer. that is what is important. and what was your's? i intend to win the speakership with democratic votes. that was your question. support inwhelming my caucus to be speaker of the wese, and certainly don't have many, many people in our caucus who could serve in this capacity. happen to think that, at this point, i am the best person for that. the houses choose their leader, there will be a full roll call. watch live coverage of the house here on c-span. in the new congress starts in january, there will be more than 100 new house and senate members. the democrats will control the house, the republicans, the senate.
watch the process unfold on c-span. first chance to chat with you since the 2018 election. i wonder what you're reading was, what message did voters try to send to washington? major i think there was a choice before the voters, and that was, do they choose gridlock or do they want cooperation, to get something done across party lines? i think what they did is they sort of evened the playing field. we saw the republicans take a couple seats advance in the
senate. just shy of 40on seats in the house and took over control of the house. , the onusquence now is on can the two parties find some common ground? i would hope that that common ground includes kernel justice reform, making sure we deal with the challenge of drug pricing, that we come together and figure improve, refresh our infrastructure. there is plenty of work to be done. , i believeof the day the parties will, in fact, have to really work hard to find their common ground. into instinct is to go
combat and to ready themselves for 2020. here is a clear message that the american people do not want gridlock. i think what they want is clarity and cooperation and the will the will be parties hear the call, the clearing call of the voters? host: we spent a lot of time on this program focusing on what the house democratic agenda will be when they take the gavels of the various committees. i wonder what role you see the house republicans playing next year in the minority? how do they stay relevant, is this a house republican minority that is any less divided between freedom caucus and leadership, under minority leader kevin
mccarthy? guest: i think there were moderates that lost, that if anything, there will be a clear, conservative voice coming from the house of representatives. leader willminority before thephone interests and concerns, and the policy initiatives of his caucus, conference. have made itocrats clear that what they are going , you know, investigate, investigate, investigate. there is a great chance that they will overreach, much like the republicans overreached in the late 1990's.
that will come back to haunt them. i hope there is not that ,verreach and that we find again, some common ground consistent with the interests and advance of this nation. look, the president has some simple, simple objectives at the beginning of this administration. , makerate economic growth sure we create an environment that would bring back 2 trillion to $3 trillion back that was parked offshore. he did that by dealing with a complicated regulatory environment, he made it more coherent, more capital and investment friendly. the other thing that he did, he cut taxes. as a consequence, we have now seen that flow of capital and we have seen accelerated economic
growth and job creation. that is important for all of us to focus on, republicans and democrats. there is still plenty of work to do, infrastructure. also ran on making sure that our borders were secure and that we could stop the unchecked flow of folks that would do us evil and who would, in fact, bring not only criminal behavior through human trafficking and the flow of harmful drugs, but that he would the securing of the borders to underline a respect for the rule of law. at the family research council we believe in the primacy of the individual in our political system, and the centrality of
god in the life of this nation. there has been a clear and consistent pushing of god and faith out of the public square. when that happens, it creates an environment for the expansion of government in our lives. what has made us unique as a country is the fact that god has been central, and as a consequence, individual do not depend on big government. but the cradle of liberty has been the family. haverk to make sure we constitutional governance, that there is an environment where people can practice their faith and thatblic square, we understand the privacy of individual liberty really does turn on putting a harness on the
reach and scope of government. that is what we believe, what we work for. actuallyhe president embraced that agenda, and therefore, we are working with the president to create that sort of environment, that sort of opportunity for americans and american families. host: ken blackwell with us until the bottom of the hour, taking your calls. democrats, (202) 748-8000. republicans, (202) 748-8001. independents, (202) 748-8002. james, mississippi. democrat. go ahead. you seemr. blackwell, like a man that was well raised. i wish we had more people like you in office. as far as trump being down here
yesterday -- i am just to the north of where he was at yesterday. i would not drive down the road to see him anyway. is, i don'tout it understand why so many people around here claim to be christians. i understand that, that is great . but it seems like trump is so against, the way that he ask, lies, and stuff. somebody said something about asking for forgiveness, and he said he didn't know what he had to ask forgiveness for. i don't know how these people can claim to be christian and somebody that seems to be in opposition of the way that -- the way that a man is supposed to live. anyway, i appreciate you being on this morning. i wish we had more people in
office like you that could come together and work together with folks. host: mr. blackwell. and wewe are all fallen all work dearly -- at the family research council, we start with a daily devotion. today, we are focusing our attention to genesis 33. you can go to your bibles to read about that. we understand there is often a gap in what we profess to believe and how we act, and we ask god to put us on the straight and arrow, a path of righteousness that helps us to close that gap, to get our behavior in line with those things that we profess to believe. then, us, every now and go off of that path and ask god for his guidance, his strength
to pull us back. at the end of the day, the president understands nations profess one thing and then behave another. has he has done, he embraced an agenda that puts us back on a path that respects religious liberty, that respects liberty in general, respects the fact that in a capitalist society, you need capital. that is why he has created an environment not only to create capital but to create jobs to put americans back to work so they can maintain their independence. his agenda is an agenda that i think is right on track. his embrace of a clear agenda of appointing justices to the supreme court and judges across
the federal system that respect the fundamental fact that the constitution puts a harness on the reach and the power of government to optimize individual liberty. as a consequence, i think this president, as he struggles day ,n, day out, like we all do with his personal behavior, to align with what he professes to believe, he has embraced a policy agenda that is in keeping with what has made the united states of america the most prosperous and most diverse mockery see in all of you and history. host: 15 minutes left, lots of phone calls.
robert is in chattanooga, tennessee. republican. caller: thank you for the opportunity. esther blackwell, i think you are very much an extremist. i don't think the african-americans or republican party think as you do. i will reflect on something that somebody said. i never want people to tell me how to live my life. ronald reagan oncerobert is in , tennessee. said, we want democrats in the party to vote for us, but we don't want to elect democrats. viewsve some very extreme from the people that i know. aam a black man and republican. i've been in this party all my life and i'm 70 years old. i do have ground to stand on. i come from a state where we have always had liberal senators , howard baker, lamar alexander. bob corker didn't know what he was doing. obviously, your pitch about the
party i think is wrong. i think you need to go back and stay away from those evangelicals. they are the most dangerous part of our party. host: mr. blackwell. guest: look, let me take a step back. i have had the privilege of ,eing the mayor of my hometown so i have had the opportunity to walk the streets, talk with folks, be very much a part of their lives. but i have also been blessed to have the opportunity to represent our nation at the united nations as the u.s. ambassador to the united nations in charge of human rights. so i had the opportunity to interact with representatives from 193 other nations. i have always been clear on a couple of things, and i don't
think this is extreme -- and i can bring it down to a current challenge. nations of the united nations, they are all defined by a nationstate by their borders. their borders to find them. as a consequence, all of those 193 nations work to control their borders. i don't think it is radical for the president of the united states to want to protect our borders. there are a lot of folks who believe in open borders. if you embrace that thinking, that undermines the notion that there is a nationstate defined by concrete mortars -- borders, governed by the rule of law. thinks that caller that is a radical notion, he has a funny definition of radical,
radicalism. i actually think what is radical is the notion that we can have voters without borders or a nation without borders, opening ourselves up to all of the criminality and disorder of a country that is lackadaisical about its borders and the rule of law. we are the most diverse democracy in all of human history. we have had open arms for those who want to find opportunity here. but since the existence of our nation, we have controlled the borders and we had determined and canfact, comes in pursue citizenship and life in this country.
there has not been an administration that has given ,nto this notion that we should in fact, have open borders and a complete collapse of the rule of law. that is not radical. that is common sense. state andserved in public office in ohio, plenty of calls from ohio this morning. tommy is in akron. a democrat. from wintry morning ohio. i've been winning to talk to you for a few years in a q&a. i heard you quoting out of genesis and the old testament. when you are at the pearly gates and st. peter pulls out the book of life and ask you about the time when you and former governor bob taft corrupt -- in fact, he is the only governor to be indicted on a felony charge. how would you answer the corruption charges? you use president trump's
montross it is all fake news. i will take your answer off the air. guest: thank you, sir. i think i have gone through the looking glass. i was elected by the voters of term ase of ohio for a treasurer and two terms as secretary of state, which means that i had hit my limit. we were term limited as secretary of state. know what the caller is talking about in terms of my corruption. let me give you an idea of how things do get turned around. i see radicals and leftists and extreme partisans say ken blackwell, in 2004, was responsible for long lines in franklin county, the county where our state capital is. and that was some form of voter
suppression. nobody ever goes to find out the secretary of state -- they said i did that because i did not place enough voting machines in certain precincts. the reality is, the secretary of state does not make that decision. elections boards of make that decision. that year, the head of the franklin county board of elections was a democrat labor leader. they made a decision as to where those voting machines, you know, were located. i will tell you, they didn't have a bank of voting machines. they had to make a decision based on past actresses and voting populations, turnout. they did the best they could. but this notion that all of a sudden, for convenience, that it
was the secretary of state who made that decision fits into this sort of alice in wonderland notion that the caller suggested, that i would ever be charged with some form of corruption. i was never charged. so the charge was not even there. we have political decisions, political back-and-forth, but when you take political back-and-forth and you try to criminalize those differences and political points of view, that is a very dangerous place to go to. host: i wonder what your thoughts are on the high profile recounts in florida, the charges of voter suppression in georgia from the 2018 election three weeks ago. again, i think in florida, particularly in broward there was really bad election administration.
there is a chronic pattern of bad election administration. led to that has sheicular supervisor saying will not run for reelection. there were 65 counties in florida that got it right. there were two counties that had chronic disorder and disruption. counties willtwo be dealt with by the incoming administration. she was duly elected by the district --r host: you are talking about brenda snipes. guest: yes. host: dawn is waiting in dayton,
ohio. caller: good morning, c-span. esther blackwell, you are still quite infamous in ohio, maybe not for the voting machines, but i remember something about some ballots, on inadequate paper? don't.no, you that is another one of those urban myths. mid-1990's, then made ary of state taft decision at the strong recommendation of a lot of election administrators from across the state. at that time, newspapers were running aggressively voter registration forms in the the were encouraged to fill them out and send them in.
what the post office then told secretary of state taft is that you need to get a stock of paper for those registrations because when that news print is coming back through our mail sorters, those registrations are being destroyed. in place as an when itration directive took over as secretary of state. electionrough the 2004 , people came and said, look, people are not sending in these voter registrations anymore. most of them are bring them in by the truckload. therefore, we no longer need that requirement because newspapers were not printing the voter registration forms on newsprint.
we then took a step back, changed that directive. this whole notion that that was voterseation to suppress is again an urban myth. newspapers, if you look at how they covered that change, they got it right. but this is politics, and i ,nderstand it, i engage in it but i will not allow urban myths to go unchecked. host: five minutes left, a couple more callers. republican, pasadena, california. i help you train for the dallas cowboys. i want to tell everyone, you were the mayor of cincinnati. i feel you are doing a great job, i'm proud of you. they dida democrat and not run you again, and then you
ran for counsel. you had bipartisan success in cincinnati, ohio around 1984. i know you know who i am. i'm proud of you, god bless you. you are remarkable man. you have gone way beyond what i thought you or i could ever be. guest: [laughter] host: your response? guest: the love is mutual. day, i tellf the you, i have been blessed. when my dad came back from world war ii, he came back to a city where there was a housing shortage, vestiges of segregation. abouted in public housing half a mile away from city hall. to think that i could come out of those projects, graduate from the cincinnati public schools come ago two xavier university,
and come back and be the mayor of my hometown really was a blessing. it is an experience that i would not trade for any that i have had. i served on the international and national level, but it is that hometown pride, that hometown connection that made public service meaningful for me , and inspired me. blessed toas been have its roots in cincinnati. you: earlier in the program talked about how you thought criminal justice reform could be a place where republicans and democrats could find common ground in the divided congress. can you talk about the first act that we have heard a lot about, whether you are supporting that prison reform legislation? guest: yes, i have worked with the jared kushner and the white
house on shaping that legislation. i have worked with the judiciary committee and senator grassley on giving it shape. was very much involved in its advocacy in the house where it passed overwhelmingly. we need to reform our criminal justice system at the federal level and we need to take the lead from states like georgia and texas, louisiana, where they was,stood the system as it in the case of the states, presently in the case of the federal system, all too often, as opposed to being a system for rehabilitation, actually hardened criminals. ,his is a common sense approach a tested approach at the state make humanitarian
changes to our system to give people a real chance at getting their lives together, holding families together, and contributing to the well-being and advancement of our community and nation. i'm a strong supporter of this initiative. host: when are you expecting a vote in the senate on that? guest: i'm hoping they will vote on it before the recess. this thing has been kicked for too long. there are 60 votes in the senate . senator mcconnell said if there were 60 votes, he would bring it to the floor. senator grassley and its bipartisan supporters have communicated to senator mcconnell that there are 60 votes ready to pass this bipartisan legislation. it will be a big feather in the
cap of the president, but more importantly, it will be justice for a system badly in need of reform. lisa has been waiting in indianapolis, indiana. a democrat. morning.ood mr. blackwell, i think you are the biggest part of the problem we have in this country. i cannot believe that you buy that he has embraced your christian agenda. if you were a true christian, you would understand that he does not follow any agenda except for what is in the wind at the moment. you say he respects liberty for christians, but what about liberty for muslims, gays, what about liberty for agnostics? you want him to only
embrace you, but he is the president of other people in this country. host: mr. blackwell. guest: look, religious liberty is religious liberty for all. demonstrateid not how the president's policy initiatives in any way discriminate against one religion or another. religious liberty within the actuallyional context knows no faith or affiliation. it basically allows for religion to be practiced in the public square that respects the rights of others to practice their religions without the dogma of one religion or another trampling on those other religious expressions. manassas, virginia. william. independent. caller: good morning.
i wanted to continue weighing on the previous caller. i think this man is unfortunate. he uses the bible and christianity to drive his own opportunist ideas. those who have used the bible or christianity to hold office, he is one of those people. i agree with the previous caller. betweenthe difference extremists who are being condemned, as month him -- muslim fundamentalists, and you say evangelical christians is the base for the foundation of this country and the constitution? i think you are unfortunate and you should not have another
chance to hold office. host: mr. blackwell, i will give you a chance to respond. number one, i'm not looking to hold office again, i'm 71 years old. i am here to advance various policies. i'm glad that i'm affiliated with a number of organizations that have allowed me to do that, and to do that quite successfully. day, i was a the mentee of someone from cincinnati who was also a mentor of martin luther king, an associate of fred shuttlesworth, one of martin luther king's lieutenants. i worked with a lot of religious-based civil rights leaders. the greatestod threat to religious liberty was moral relativism, the demolishing of moral absolute.
that was at the heart of what dr. king understood. when you have moral absolutes that guide you, that keeps everybody within the four squares of that morality. it is when you do away with those absolutes that you, in ,act, if you feel good, do it and a total disregard for other people's right to religious expression as a way of expressing their individual commitment to the furtherance of life. great tonow, it is hear that there are those who advocacy formy that sort of consistency in the civil rights movement of this it is fascinating,
interesting to hear those arguments. but i will not be deterred by them. just as the family research council will not be deterred. we are a christian-based organization but we respect the police -- the rights of others to believe their particular religious beliefs. frc.org if the viewers want to check it out. greensburg, kentucky. a republican. go ahead. caller: this is just an fyi. a guy called the other day about the 1960's and what he forgot, the program he was talking about , migration in, migration out. come to work seasonally, take the money back home. it helped their country. anyway, i traveled with my ex-husband in the 1990's. we went to south mexico.
he spoke fluent spanish. traveled.the bus and he could interact with the people. i could not but he could. he was asian. he could speak their language, he was learning the indian languages. anyway, when we got to the hotel, i would say, are they saying what i think they are saying? he would say, yes. were they really calling the stupid? he said yes. they give away their country, and we take it. that is what they were telling him. these were guys talking about how they would chain migrate up to the lines. just an fyi to everybody. watching the knives. very good with knives. host: mr. blackwell.
again, i worked within the united nations framework with 193 other nationstates. they were all defined by their borders and the rules that govern civic life within those borders. any notion that we should be is a notion that is really not worth giving a lot of time to. -- again, shey personalized something. let me just say, i had an uncle, hart hovered.ee he was the first black american to win an individual gold medal in track and field. he did it in the 1924 paris games. against he was to run eric liddell in the 100, high
hurdles. he was to compete in the long jump. he eventually -- set the world record in the long jump andwon the gold medal. but when he got to paris in 1924, he was told the 100 and the high hurdles were white only events and could not compete. he told my mother's generation that god has blessed me to put in front of him the example of eric liddell. showed,eric liddell more important than winning a gold medal or setting a world record was ability to his faith. that became a watchword, term in our family. fidelity to faith. what i dost suggest
on a day-to-day basis, what i do within the context of the family research council reflects a fidelity to my faith. nothing is more important to me than that fidelity. im anddelity defined to what my agenda is, and what other agendas i will join. host: ken blackwell is the senior fellow for human rights and governance at the family research council. you can also check out his columns at the patriot post. we appreciate your time. >> washington journal continues. harry bruinius joins us now from new york, staff writer for the christian science monitor. you point out in a recent story that public perception about crime rates in the u.s. is different from the actual data.