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tv   Washington Journal 08232021  CSPAN  August 23, 2021 7:00am-10:01am EDT

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talk about the covid-19 pandemic's impact on the u.s. health care system. join the discussion with your phone calls to my facebook comments, text messages, and tweets. -- phone calls, facebook comments, text messages, and tweets. washington journal is next. ♪ host: the evacuation, the rescue of americans and afghans from kabul's airport becomes more fast-paced but perilous by the day with the u.s. military going thousands out daily and president biden announcing some commercial airlines will join in moving evacuees and refugees around the world. the president's deadline for u.s. troop withdrawal is august 30 first, next tuesday. it is monday, august 23. we will spend this first hour here on the program playing some of the news briefing yesterday by the president, some of his
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comments, and hearing from you and your confidence in the biden administration -- on your confidence in the biden administration's afghanistan policy. republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents and others, (202) 748-8002. afghan war vets, (202) 748-8003. you can use that same line if you want to send us a text. we welcome your posts on instagram and twitter @cspanwj. some overnight news from afghanistan from the new york times. finally clashes at kabul's airport reinforce fears at -- about u.s. withdrawal. president biden is considering extending the deadline for u.s. troops to withdraw amid a groundswell of pressure from
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global leaders and veterans concerned that a security vacuum could risk lethal consequences. violent clashes at kabul's airport reinforced fears that the american withdrawal aggravate the security situation. the german military wrote on twitter that a member of the afghan security forces had died in a firefight with unidentified attackers in the early hours. it did not specify which group the afghans were affiliated with. they say three other members of the afghan forces were wounded in the skirmish outside the airport's north gate. it said u.s. and german soldiers were also drawn into the fight but were not harmed, that from the new york times. we are joined this morning by darlene superville, white house reporter for the associated press. good morning. you got the first question in that briefing yesterday about that deadline of august 31. what was the president's answer
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and your take away from the answer? guest: i asked him if he was considering extending the august 31 deadline, the deadline by which the president wants u.s. troops to be out of afghanistan and all the american citizens who are there and afghans who helped the united states and the war effort and other afghans considered vulnerable under the taliban. his response was that there are some discussions going on with the military about whether an extension of the deadline would be necessary, although he did say his hope is that he does not have to extend the deadline. we are eight days away from august 31 and we will have to see in the days ahead where the president and military come out on extending the deadline. the taliban said overnight they do not want to see the deadline extended.
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when august 31 comes, the taliban wants to see the united states and other coalition partners leave the country. host: we brought more forces into afghanistan to assist with the evacuation, correct? guest: there are several thousand troops that have -- the president has sent back into afghanistan to help with the evacuation efforts because the security situation there has become so precarious with americans and others having great difficulty getting to the airport, their only route out of the country. guest: the president mentioned -- host: the president mentioned a virtual meeting with leaders of the g7 expected tomorrow. what are they going to talk about when it comes to afghanistan? guest: that meeting is tomorrow. british prime minister boris johnson is the leader of the g7 group this year. he has called to the meeting for tomorrow. afghanistan will probably be the
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only thing they talk about. one thing they will talk about is humanitarian efforts for the thousands of afghans who have been removed from the country and the thousands who are still waiting to leave. another issue will be whether this august 31 deadline can be extended. there are some in europe who want to see the deadline extended. the president has said there are discussions about that. we will have to see where the group of seven leaders land on the issue and whether they agree on what to do when august 31 rolls around. host: has the president been asked about his confidence in his defense and national security team? guest: i have not heard him asked that question. i am sure if you were asked he would say he has great confidence in his national security team. he has been meeting with them almost daily this past week.
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to schedule the white house release -- the schedule released yesterday shows him eating every day this week with his national security team. host: our guest, darlene superville. let's talk about domestic issues with the house returning today for a brief session this week. the house with some very important issues to the president, the voting rights bill in particular, the budget resolution, and the infrastructure plan that has been passed in the u.s. senate. how will the white house lobby the democrats in particular on capitol hill and the reluctant moderates on the democratic side? guest: the white house will be logging the moderates to vote for budget resolution. some of the moderates do not want to vote for the budget resolution until they get a chance to vote on the hard
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infrastructure bill passed a few weeks ago to repair roads and bridges and airports and high-speed internet around the country, things like that. speaker pelosi does not want the house to vote on the infrastructure bill until there is a vote in the senate on the budget resolution, so she has some tricky politics to navigate . the white house is going to be pushing for moderates to vote for the budget resolution along with the planet speaker pelosi has laid out. host: it will be a busy -- the plan that speaker pelosi has laid out. host: it will be a busy week at the white house. darlene superville, thanks for being here. guest: thank you. host: we will show you some of the comments of president biden in just a moment. our opening question this morning your confidence in the biden administration's
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afghanistan policy. (202) 748-8001 for republicans. (202) 748-8000 for democrats. independents and others, it is (202) 748-8002. we welcome afghan fats -- vets as well. that line, (202) 748-8003. we will go to danny in missouri. caller: good morning. i got one question and a couple comments. do you recall how many troops we had in afghanistan when trump left? was it 2500 or did it go down under biden? host: i do not have that number, but we will look for it. caller: ok. so many people are calling saying trump would have done better with this. the only thing i say about
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trump's look how he handled the covid situation. i think that was a farce. and another thing is the weaponry they left. certain people are saying they do not have the technology to operate or maintain, but wouldn't it be ironic if they would get somebody from saudi arabia to train them? it would be a repeat of september 11. host: bob is in st. paul, minnesota, also on the independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. i am not into the blame game, but i'm trying to analyze what is going on. i keep hearing the nra -- inner ring is secure but the outer ring is not secure. it is kind of like a dog
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tailwagging, the tale being the taliban and the dog being the greatest military power in the world. it seems like they are dictating how things should go. i understand this is not an easy problem to deal with. i would think you can go two ways. you can continue with the taliban. the problem is not securing the airport. it is getting into the airport and all these checkpoints. you can continue with that or take your gloves off and say, look, we want all our people out. that is the bottom line. we need more soldiers. i know it is non-combative. if we need more soldiers to go out and secure these various checkpoints where they are making the value judgment on who is coming in and who is not coming in, i think that is the stick in the mud. i really think you have to go with number two. take the gloves off.
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i know you do not want to escalate this, but you cannot have them keep making the value judgment on whether you are an american citizen or those that have helped us during the 20 years. we make the value judgment. you should not make the value judgment. the other thing is i go crazy when president biden -- he is on script and does a great job on script but then when you want questions he either walks away or takes two questions or whatever. i saw that interview with george stephanopoulos. he pushed them a little bit, but you have to get more questions as president. whether it is short-term memory or long-term memory, there is a problem. we need more questions, q&a with the president. i know it is not an easy situation. i am sure a quarterback like
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myself, probably what we know is what we don't know. host: cnn was reporting 13 a back ues still -- 13,000 evacuees still at the airport in kabul. here's the latest on evacuation efforts from the president as of yesterday afternoon. [video clip] >> i continue to make progress. we have moved thousands of people each day via u.s. military aircraft and civilian charter flights, a little over 30 hours this weekend we have evacuated and a short number of people as i will detail in a minute, about 11,000 individuals. that number will change day-to-day as air and ground operations in kabul very -- vary . our first priority is getting american citizens out of the country as quickly and safely as possible. the state department continues
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to reach out to the remaining americans we have identified by phone, email, and other means to ascertain their whereabouts and plans. we are executing a plan to move groups of these americans to safety and to effectively move them to the airport compound. for security reasons, i am not going to go into details of what these plans entail, but i will say again today as i have said before. any american who wants to get home will get home. we have also been evacuating citizens of our nato allies and partners, including diplomats, embassy staff who remained in afghanistan to get them back to their homes as well. as we do this, we are working to move our afghan allies who stood with us and other vulnerable afghans such as women leaders and journalists out of the country. as of this morning, we've evacuated nearly 28,000 people
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since august 14 on u.s. and coalition aircraft. the total number of people we've evacuated since july is approximately 33,000 persons. in 120 four hour period this weekend, 23 u.s. military flights, including 14 c-17's, left kabul carrying 3900 passengers. we see no reason why this tempo will not be kept up. during the same period, our military facilitated another 35 charter flights carrying an additional 4000 evacuees. altogether, we lifted a proximally 11,000 people out of kabul and less -- approximately 11,000 people out of kabul in less than 36 hours. host: your confidence in the biden administration's afghanistan policy. this is the front page of the
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washington times. families hide, allies blame u.s. for shameful defeat to taliban. another story, biden's approval rating below 50% for the first time. president biden expressed optimism about the afghanistan evacuation as his administration struggled to regain his footing -- its footing after a chaotic military exit, escalate concerns with his competence and credibility. steve is on the republican line in ohio. steve, make sure you mute your volume. go ahead with your comment or question. we are going to go to herbert in virginia, democrat line. caller: i was calling in about the republicans calling in --
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afghani's out of afghanistan and brought the u.s.. it is friendly ironic how they agreed with trump when he wanted to ban muslims from coming to the united states. that is all i have. host: make sure you mute your volume when you come in. a previous caller asked about the numbers of troops. the new york times reporting in march of this year, facing high-stakes choice and running out of time to make it, the biden administration is wrestling with whether to follow through with a full withdrawal in the next seven weeks. of the 2500 troops still afghanistan, except the numbers actually 3500. the united states has about 1000 more troops in afghanistan than it disclosed according to u.s.
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got european, and afghan officials, that report from march of this year. we will hear from tim in atlanta, independent line. caller: good morning. can you tell me if, when they say they are withdrawing afghanistan's, are they talking about specifically the ones that help the americans and the ones that helps the americans? where are they talking about anyone there at the airport? host: the original intent has been to evacuate those who assisted the u.s. military. beyond that, i cannot tell you. you have some things to say? -- something else to say? caller: i agree that the ones that helps the u.s. and -- helped the u.s. and the
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embassies got the interpreters and afghani national forces who i feel sorry for because they put up a fight, i think there should be helped. those cowards at that airport that would not pick up a weapon and go out and fight the taliban or the ones that took off their uniforms and hid, why should we bring them anywhere? i do not agree with spending my tax dollars to bring them out of their. let's get the ones that worked to keep the americans safe out of their -- there, but the ones that ran quite let the taliban deal with them anyway they want. american money and american manpower should not be spent to bring cowards over who would not fight for their own country. host: how difficult do you think the task is going to be a come vet those people -- to be, to vet those people, to make sure the people we do let into the united states perhaps eventually were part of the effort to help
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the u.s.? caller: i did 11 years with the marine corps in the logistical field and the infantry field. when we went into iraq and had iraqis that were helping us, there was a database where we had the names. they had paperwork to show it. when they came into the zone, they had to show proof of that. i am pretty sure they had to have the same thing in afghanistan, so there should be a manifest where -- let's say mary worked at the u.s. embassy. here is mary's name. let's get mary out of here. if your name ain't on that manifest, good riddance. you do what you have to do to survive, but you are not getting on this american plane that took
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back american boys' bodies to keep your country free from the taliban. when you had to fight, you took off your uniform and went running into the woods. i do not agree with that. leave them there. there should be a manifest somewhere. if the biden administration does not have that, this shows what happens when you have nonmilitary people running the military. host: appreciate your experience and insight on that, tim in atlanta. yesterday, nebraska senator ben sasse commented on the white house's evacuation efforts. [video clip] >> the president needs to step up and be the commander-in-chief. we need enough troops to be sure we can evacuate all our people. we need to damn these deadlines. august 31 was a politically driven deadline. the taliban needs to know they
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do not dictate the timeline on american lives. we need to have an urgent meeting of the national security council to figure out we should retake bagram. we need the taliban to know we are going to get our people and allies are going to be able to get their people. our people are american citizens but also special visa holders who risked their lives on behalf of americans to take the fight to al qaeda and the taliban so we did not have to fight them here. we need the president to auction -- actually talk to our allies, to make sure all the -- we need to make sure those images cannot be used for their hit list to go and gather and kill these people and we need cyber command to be active. we need the president to make clear that we will finish the mission. we will save all of our people. i am against the withdrawal
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plan, but that is not the question for today's debate. the president's plan is to leave afghanistan, but he needs isis to understand that he may well change his mind on the departure if any fire comes down on americans as we are evacuating our people. >> what you're describing -- this president has made a decision, not that it necessarily matters, but the majority of the american people agree with him to get out of afghanistan. you start going beyond the border, you start launching raids to pick up american citizens or afghan allies, we are re-engaging in the war with the taliban. >> the false choice the president has laid out has never been true. the choice has never been between zero troops and withdrawing and giving the taliban back a sanctuary to allow terrorists to plot attacks of international reach or have
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150 thousand occupying ground forces. have not had 100,000 troops in afghanistan for a decade. that was never the choice and has always been false. we need a light footprint but a forward deployment of special forces that can stop these terror attacks. for the purposes of this moment and how the president and his team have gotten us here, they have put us in a situation where we have a hostage situation developing. host: asking about your confidence in the biden administration and their policy on afghanistan. on twitter, this says, if there is anything good about this withdrawal, it proves nationbuilding as a failure. the only ones who benefit are military contractors who make three times the norm. american citizens should never have been there. i'm confident in president biden's afghanistan policy.
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this evacuation will work itself out. this is a messy situation and evacuating has never been easy. this one says biden has no option. taliban has set august 31 as a hard deadline. if g7 follows boris johnson's on -- suggestion on sanctions, look for hostages to be held for ransom or worse. here is william in ohio. caller: yes. i cannot see it. we should never have been over there in the first place. i remember king george saying mission is accomplished. it continues. whenever you have crooks, the lobbyists, politicians, you are fighting a losing battle. host: pittsburgh, pennsylvania,
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bob on the republican line. caller: there was a british journalist on tv yesterday. i have never seen anybody as upset as him. he was really mad about biden saying soldiers ran. 50,000 soldiers, more than the total of the united states, britain, and the united nations -- he should be brought up for court-martial. there was a general from the united states who called over there and told them they were embarrassing the united states. now you're trying to get the united nations involved. nobody trusts him not, germany, anybody. everybody is criticizing this nutcase. we see the pictures on tv. we see phone calls from people
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contacting relatives over there. they are afraid the taliban's want to kill them. this is the reality. these democrats calling in our brain dead. host: to new york city next, democrats line. caller: i would like to find out why the contractors do not bring people home. they hired them. they cooked the soldiers' food. host: make sure you mute your volume on your tv and go ahead with your comment. caller: i would like to -- host: thanks for chiming in. crossville, tennessee, greg on the republican line. caller: i would like to say that biden said yesterday he was going to allow these refugees to hear from military bases and
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screen them. why wouldn't he just fly them into mexico? i just don't understand people not watching what is going on. everything he has done has been a disaster. host: this is a piece from the washington post this morning. the headline says, taliban leaders promise peace and amnesty, but afghans have heard it all before. the president was asked yesterday about his views on the taliban. here is what he said. [video clip] >> on the question of the taliban, do you trust them now? >> i do not trust anybody including you. i love you, but there are not a lot of people i trust. the taliban has to make a fundamental decision. is the taliban going to attempt to be able to unite and provide
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for the well-being of the people of afghanistan, which no one group has ever done since before -- for hundreds of years. if it does, it is going to need everything from additional help in terms of economic assistance and a whole range of things. they are seeking legitimacy to determine whether they will be recognized by other countries. they have told other countries as well as us they do not want us to remove our diplomatic presence completely. all this talk now -- so far the taliban has not taken action against u.s. forces. so far, they have by and large followed through on what they said in terms of allowing americans to pass through and the like. i am sure they do not control
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all their forces. it is a ragtag force. we will see. we will see whether what they say turns out to be true. the bottom line is this, folks. at the end of the day, if we did not leave afghanistan now, when do we leave? another 10 years? another five years? i am not about to send your son or your daughter to fight in afghanistan. i do not see where that is in our interest. and the talk but how our interests are going to be impacted -- you are sitting in beijing or moscow. are you happy with that? they love nothing better than for us to continue to be bogged down, totally occupied with what is going on. i think history is going to record this was the logical, rational, and right decision to make.
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host: there is an opinion piece in the new york times by former ambassador to many countries including afghanistan. the headline, why biden's lack of strategy led to a disaster. to my shock, mr. biden embraced trump's afghanistan policy. we have betrayed our promise to interpreters and others who are now trapped in afghanistan. i fear many will lose their lives because of mr. biden's impatience. we have their backs until biden decided we didn't. they will pay for it. it did not have to be this way. would i left afghanistan as ambassador in 2012, we had about 85,000 troops in the country. the taliban-controlled none of afghanistan's provincial capitals. when president barack obama left office, there were fewer than 10,000 troops. when mr. trump departed, there
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were fewer than 5000. the taliban did not hold major urban areas. now they hold the entire country. ? what changed so completely that -- what changed so completely? we did. even with full withdrawal, we might have managed steps that would have protected our interests. the ranking member of the house foreign affairs committee suggested how in these pages a few months ago. you can read that at ny malik is in texas. caller: i support president biden. he was not the one who decided there was going to be a pullout or in the pullout was scheduled by the previous administration -- a pullout. the pullout was scheduled by the previous administration. these people had time to get out on their own. i have never seen such cowardly
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men, the aft can army given $1 trillion, training -- afghan army given 100 -- $1 trillion, training. they have gotten military training, weaponry, salaries, and they all ran. that is the height of cowardice. how do you run firm a fight -- from a fight? you do not care about your daughter's, any of the women in your country? you allow them to suffer under theocratic rule and do nothing here and you run. why is my tax dollars supporting cowards? 300,000 supposedly afghan military personnel did not put up a fight one day. the taliban showed up wearing dress shoes and sandals and took over a nation and i'm supposed to be sympathetic to these men who are running to the airport,
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not a woman or child insight -- in sight? and these people are blaming president biden when they did not even have a commission to investigate the facts of who tried to overthrow the government? these people are not sick. they are not intelligent enough to know they are not intelligent. host: this is betty in blacksburg, south carolina. caller: i do not support nothing he has done. the speaker of the house or the senate or none of them people. they have caused every bit of this. they hate donald trump. they just hate donald trump and they have changed everything he tried to do and they blame him for everything. host: how do you think the withdrawal would have been different under president trump? caller: he would not have done what he did. he would not have went in and
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done what he did. he would have gotten people out before that happened. i cannot wait to see what he is going to do next because all these people -- there were two men on this morning and they were is right is right can be. they are not dumb, that is for sure. just keep on not seeing what he is doing and maybe you will change your mind when the american people do not look like he cares nothing about the american people. host: we will go to mississippi next and hear from linda on our democrat line. caller: good morning. please allow me as much time as you did that lady ramping about nothing.
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i am standing with joe biden completely. he is doing the best he can do. donald j. trump negotiated to pull out in may 1, 2021 with the taliban, with the leader that is standing there leading the people now. he not only negotiated, he led 5000 prisoners out of prison. that is where the trouble is. these people complaining about biden, the man before told the truth. we trained over 300,000 afghans with weapons, planes, guns, and they did not have a backbone to stay there to help their mothers, their fathers, their sisters, brothers.
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there are more over at the airport trying to get out. i am with biden. trump started this mess. those visas -- he blocked and slowed those down. those could have been out of there a long time ago but trump started the bottleneck in the beginning. host: if we knew the afghanistan army could not stand up to the taliban, should we have left anyway? caller: yes. we have been over there 20 years. if they could not stand up after 20 years of training, we could not there forever. they had to have some backbone. we had 23,000 americans die and they lost some too. they cannot expect us to stay there forever and we do not want
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them over here if they cannot fight for their own country. they will not fight for this country either. host: yesterday on meet the press, liz cheney talked about the continued threat of the taliban and other terrorist groups in the region. [video clip] >> i know you disagree with the withdrawal decision overall, but let's focus short-term. the security advisor did say if the president gets advice that more resources are needed to get americans out he would be open to that. should that be the next course of action? caller: -- >> we have to ensure we get every american out. that is our responsibility. as you pointed out, what we are watching unfold is a catastrophe. the national security advisor said it is a little turbulent were simply a civil war, fundamentally at odds with reality.
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our mission in afghanistan was to deny terrorists sanctuary. the decision to withdraw has handed them an entire country, insured not just the taliban but al qaeda, isis, terrorist organizations that want to attack the united states now have an entire country as a sanctuary from which to do so. >> is the taliban a threat to the united states? >> we know the taliban has never and dashed announced al qaeda. this is one of the things that was such an indefensible step by the trump administration. when president trump and secretary of state pompeo decided they were going to sign a surrender agreement with the taliban -- >> president trump's national security advisor -- >> mcmaster. >> he basically accused
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secretary of state pompeo at the time and the president and called it a surrender agreement. why do you? >> we sat down and negotiated with terrorists. beak completely excluded the afghan government. secretary pompeo told us the taliban was going to renounce al qaeda. they told us the taliban was going to fight terrorists. they forced the afghan national government, we did come up to release 5000 prisoners, so we undercut the afghan national government. we emboldened the taliban and we know now that the moment that agreement was signed the taliban went to members of the afghan national army and said the americans are leaving you and you should lay down your arms when the time comes or we will kill you and your families. that led directly to the catastrophe we are seeing today. host: and in opinion piece on the withdrawal from afghanistan this morning. this is a contributor to the
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hill. the headline, aydin is right on afghanistan. congratulations to president biden -- biden is right on afghanistan. congratulations to president biden. biden made no excuses here and where the last three presidents kicked the can down the road, refusing to end the u.s. war in afghanistan, biden took responsibility. he shut it down. the events we are seeing now are proof that no amount of military force would ever deliver a stable and secure afghanistan, as known in history as the graveyard of empires. what happened now could as easily have happened 15 years in the future. our mission in afghanistan has taken many missteps over the past two decades. now let me add to the speech. as an american father and grandfather, i cannot imagine having to send a child to afghanistan because another
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president is afraid of the political fallout for making an exit. i am speaking for a lot of people. 62% of americans said they were in afghanistan was not worth fighting. some comments on social media -- bring them home, this one says. the withdrawal is not the failure. it is the solution. this one said joe biden adapted to the situation the trump administration left him after they signed an agreement with the taliban. the u.s. military has confirmed it has pulled out of the largest airfield and with -- in afghanistan. why? and we need to evacuate afghanistan and bring americans home first. why are we behind on the planning? what role does general mark milley play? caller: good morning.
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huge disconnect when an american thinks that one man can bring us in a war and one man can bring us out of war. i believe the kool-aid is concentrated. trump had meetings in camp david with the so-called leaders of the taliban. we find out china is the proxy anchor of the taliban. -- banker of the taliban. they have been paying the taliban to fight us. at the same time, we are dealing with this corona thing that could be coming from china. we are looking at infrastructure on china's wishlist, our ports, our roads. it is the same thing they are doing in other countries. i think the veil of the two party system has been lifted to the one party system. but we are seeing here is a runaway train that is about to run out of track. host: here is chris in florida.
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caller: amen to what that gentleman said. people have no clue what is going on behind the scenes. a good example of that would be look at what has just happened in afghanistan. there was a consensus between the last administration and this administration that we needed to get out of afghanistan. i personally agree with that. however, the manner in which biden dropped everything and ran for the hills, left americans there as hostages, left the people who are now going to be beheaded or whatever the taliban does to them because they were loyal to americans. who is benefiting from this? the military-industrial complex.
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the lobbyists, the money, liz cheney. these are the people who will benefit from this because now they are sending people back in. they have created a disaster that now has to be fixed. i do not think this is a coincidence. our biggest enemy right now is china. people have got to wake up and realize that china is dictating a lot a policy. just look at twitter. look at facebook. who do you think they are more loyal to? they removed an american president from their platform. it is out of control. people have got to wake up before we become an authoritarian, chinese, communist territory. host: to chicago next, alvin on
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our democrat line. caller: people just do not understand that these guys from afghanistan are not cowards. they had reconnaissance, planes, drones. when we pulled out, they lost all those things. now when they get killed they go after their families. they killed their mothers, fathers, kids. they do not go back to philadelphia until your kids and your mother. they just kill you. over there, they had no choice because they did not have the advantage of united states forces with them. it is not about democrats and republicans. you must understand that. they lost 66,000 people. they are no cowards. host: this is from politico looking ahead to the g7 meeting. the taliban threatened consequences. the u.s. delays afghanistan
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exit. a report this morning says british prime minister boris johnson is expected to ask president joe biden to keep american boots on the ground in afghanistan after august 31 withdrawal deadline. the taliban said they will not accept any extension. they said johnson is set to push the american president for more time during an emergency summit tuesday. according to briefings to journalists from number 10 downing street. the meeting comes as people have gathered around kabul airport in an attempt to escape taliban rule. the taliban spokesperson told sky news the deadline was a redline. here is his quote. if the u.s. or u.k. were to seek additional time to continue evacuations, the answer is no where there would be consequences. that is from politico. in illinois, janet, your confidence in the biden
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administration. janet is on the republican line. >> -- caller: we were never going to war -- win the war there. they are surrounded by islamic nations and islamic religious people who will never surrender to a christian nation. it is an embarrassment. that is why they will not fight after we leave, because they are afraid of their own religion and the people that control them. we have to leave. that is a landlocked nation. we cannot get ships in their quick enough -- in there quick enough to fight a full-blown war. why have we been there this long? the public wanted us out. now suddenly the media has managed to change the public's mind and we are paralyzed with
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thinking we must stay there and help our friends. they do not want to fight the soldiers in afghanistan, the afghan army will not fight. they will turn and run rather than see the fall of their religious leaders. host: biden says it is possible the u.s. may extend august 31 deadline to remove troops. he was asked about that by the associated press yesterday afternoon. [video clip] >> we are nine days from the august 31 deadline. will you extend that? what is your thought process on extending the evacuation operation? >> there are discussions about extending. our hope is we will not have to extend, but there will be discussions on how far along we are in the process. >> mr. president?
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>> to piggyback off the august 31 deadline -- a larger or longer american presence, what would you tell them? >> i will tell the we will see what we can do. we are working closely with the g7. i have spoken with most of the leaders of the g7. i will do a conference with them i think tuesday. we will have that discussion. we already have helped get out diplomats from other countries. we have helped get out citizens from other countries. we will continue to do that. host: outline for afghan vets is (202) 748-8003. you can also -- our line for afghan vets is (202) 748-8003. you can also use that dissent is a text. -- to send us a text. with only 2500 support troops,
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no casualties in afghanistan for 18 months. it is not about leaving afghanistan. it is about the execution, a failure. steve tweets, quit blaming biden. afghan soldiers laid down their weapons. i feel more threatened by homegrown terrorists who have already attacked the u.s. capitol than the taliban. if trump would have done such a perfect job in ending the afghan war, why did he not do so when he had the chance? and bob in massachusetts. would obama -- when obama left, he said it would take less than a year to defeat them. it took less than a year. trump was better at foreign policy and proved it. and washington, d.c., here is eric -- in washington, d.c., here's eric on the democrats line. caller: if we have done such a good job in afghanistan, how did
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it only take days? we have to stop this blaming. it is all about the money. people try to blame biden. you have to blame the american people for allowing us to go into the country and fight. all these people are talking about how we should have stayed. all you had to do was join the military and do your thing. stop wining. we spent billions in another -- stop whining. we spent billions in another country. host: to the republican line next and donna in ohio. donna cannot mute your volume and go ahead with your comment.
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-- donna, mute your volume and go ahead with your comment. we lost that one. we will go to benny in california, democrats line. caller: i stand with joseph biden. if he made a mistake about withdrawing people out, soldiers out before he got the equipment, he can go back and get it at any time. i do stand with joseph biden. it has been 20 years and it is time to bring the boys home. host: on the independent line, cold spring, minnesota. caller: good morning. what is bothering me about all this is people don't point out
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we have not had an attack on our homeland for these 20 years. that is due to our courageous soldiers in afghanistan. i see the media starting to discount their contribution. we had a son in iraq. i know how these mothers are thinking. i do not believe we should have stayed there forever, but we should have had the residual force. i could have done a better job planning the withdrawal of troops than president biden did. first i would have taken the americans out. then i would have taken those who helped us because we know they are going to get slaughtered. we saw what these taliban did
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all along. we know with arp or and they have not changed their ideology. then i would have taken out to the equipment because we have $85 billion of equipment. so no longer is the taliban -- now they -- no longer is the taliban a ragtag force. now they have all that equipment and the terrorists that were released. they are on the podiums for the taliban, the most people who have done the most egregious atrocities in the world to people. now they are the leaders. i watched this whole media and
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on cnn i watched one reporter talking. then she said that one of the taliban got in back of her shouting "death to america." that is what we are going to hear. host: yesterday on face the nation, former you and ambassador -- you in -- u.n. ambassador nikki haley was asked about her thoughts. [video clip] >> euros on twitter to have our generals say they are negotiate with the taliban -- you wrote on twitter to have our generals say they are negotiate with the taliban -- biden administration says it is not negotiating with the taliban. >> they are not negotiate with the taliban. they completely surrendered to the taliban. they surrendered the air force base.
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they surrendered $85 billion of equipment and weapons that we should have gotten out of there. they have surrendered the american people and withdrew our troops before they withdrew the american people and abandoned our afghan allies who kept people like my husband safe while they were overseas. now, there was no negotiating. this was a complete surrender -- no, there was no negotiating. this was a complete surrender. host: on twitter, the biden administration pushed ahead with a plan to withdraw despite signs the taliban was not complying with the agreement. we will go to tom in ohio. independent line. caller: thank you for taking my call. you are shutting me off. host: no. caller: the pullout was
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dangerous -- lethal and deadly. we are now blind and deaf. now on 9/11 each year we have to decide if we want ribs to watch the carnage of americans dying on tv. unless you are one of the victims. thank you. host: to susan in seattle, republican line -- this is byron in virginia. byron, go ahead. >> a third grader would have had more common sense on how to pullout from afghanistan. a third grader would've had more sense on pulling out of afghanistan. first of all, he should not have publicized we were moving out.
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second of all, we started moving out american assets to the exit point, we should have done that first, then lastly move the military out. it has been a complete disaster, poor planning. and the government knows who works with us, our allies, those are the only people who should be coming to this nation for asylum. the rest of the people who would not fight under islamic belief, they should stay in their country. host: this is susan in seattle, go ahead. caller: hi. i'm very sorry, his generals -- it looks like a bonaparte retreat. what happened? in asia, taiwan, they must be quivering. china, afghanistan, we should not have given forces there.
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we are in germany, korea and italy, because the young people who are educated, they have been banished. they would have been the ones who could improve their country, because of all the taliban being older. afghanistan has lots of minerals, and china is just waiting in the wings to get those minerals. it is not a poor country. we should have given them -- this president wants to be a superman on the 9/11 anniversary. but he was in a hurry to get out of afghanistan and he really bungled this. what happened to our allies? look at ukraine. the obama administration would not give them the funds to fight russia, and blankets. china, they want to control the south china sea.
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they have minerals, the fishermen there. host: we appreciate the call. more ahead. next, the u.s. house is returning today for what should be a brief session, taking up a number of key legislative priorities. kristina peterson will join us to talk about why and what is on the agenda for the next couple days. later, breaking defense editor in chief aaron mehta discusses the military impact of the taliban takeover of afghanistan. ♪ announcer: the u.s. house this week is expected to begin working on the voting rights and election reform bill, as well as the infrastructure bill. it all starts later today when the rules committee needs -- me
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ets to work out the structure of the debate. watch, starting at 11:00 a.m. on eastern, online at, or listen on the free c-span radio app. ♪ announcer: if you choose to research the origins of a topic being discussed frequently in the u.s., and in recent months, called critical race theory, you will find the name derek bell. a law professor, who died in 2011, was one of the principal originators of this much discussed subject. in november of 1992, derek bell appeared on book notes to discuss his book "faces at the bottom of the well." announcer: the late derek bell, the first black tenured professor at harvard, on this
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episode of "booknotes." listen on wherever you get your podcasts. announcer: your opinion matters. you have a voice to be heard. be part of the national conversation by creating a documentary that answers the question, how does the federal government impact your life? new video will explore a policy that affects you in your community. the competition has $100,000 in total cash prizes and you have a shot at a grand prize of $5,000. entries will begin to be received on wednesday, september 8. for rules, tips and information on how to get started, visit our website at ♪
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[fireworks exploding] ♪ announcer: "washington journal" continues. host: "wall street journal" congressional reporter kristina peterson is with us to talk about the house coming back for a brief amount of work this week. good morning. guest: good morning. host: it is supposed to be august recess, what brings them back to session? guest: the house is only scheduled to be in for two days,
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but it could be very suspenseful days. earlier this month, the senate passed a roughly $1 trillion structure bill, and the budget resolution, which is the first step in the process known as reconciliation that will allow democrats, if they can stay united, to pass a larger $3.5 trillion budget package. and so, what we have developing now is a standoff between house speaker nancy pelosi and the group of nine moderate house democrats. and on the surface, it is a disagreement about which of those bills comes up first, but really this is a big fight over the overall strategy for democrats on passing both of these bills. and we have been at a standoff for a week and a half, and it will all come to a head tonight and tomorrow when the house takes its first procedural vote
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on advancing the two bills, and then tomorrow is scheduled to have a vote on passing the budget resolution. that is where those nine house democrats have said, we are not going to vote for this unless we vote first on the infrastructure bill. host: the nine democrats wrote a letter to their colleagues, and they published an opinion piece, and we will show that in a moment, over there disagreement with the speaker and the order of the vote. why do they want and that vote on the $1 trillion infrastructure package first? guest: because it has passed the senate and the argument is, let's pass this now. the president supports it. so they just want to be as quick as possible in getting that signed into law to start the process of getting the projects underway. they argue it will be a boost for job creation. they say there is no reason to delay. but the strategy that democratic
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leaders set out was to wait and not bring it up until the larger bucket patching -- budget package had passed the senate. effectively having the house act as a backstop, keeping these democrats onboard for both pieces of legislation, to keep everybody invested in the outcome. that the centrists wants to pass the bill -- want to pass the bill that is their priority first. but the top democrats say they want to maintain leverage in the process by holding that piece until both bills already. and the budget package could take a long time. $3.5 trillion is a huge piece of legislation, and the committee chairs and lawmakers are working now on unpacking that, but it could take months to be done with that. host: as we look at the policy measures in that three-point
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tribe -- a $3.5 trillion, including establishing universal pre-k, extending the child tax care credit and more policy goals of the liberal side of the democratic party in congress, and the president, is the liberal wing and progressive wing saying the same thing, we will not vote on the the infrastructure bill unless we take up the budget package first? guest: yes, the congressional progressive caucus, released a survey where they said more than a majority of its members would vote no on the infrastructure bill unless the full budget package had passed the senate, so we have two wings staring each other down and it is not clear if they will have the votes to move forward. host: you are right about the
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strategy. after a khairat a quick, -- after a chaotic week, focusing on the taliban in afghanistan, the week got more extensive with the news in kabul this morning. guest: there is a limited amount the president can do. his domestic policy is something he potentially has the ability to help put back on track. i think there is widespread expectation that president biden himself may get more involved in discussions with these lawmakers and see if there is a way to persuade them to come on board with the strategy that the leaders have in place. host: what are you hearing about any potential hearings? i know it is a short session, but hearings on afghanistan? guest: nancy pelosi has requested a briefing and at that there are several other briefings that lawmakers have
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requested and will be happening this week. they have questions about the continued evacuation of americans and allies out of afghanistan. host: our guest, who covers congress for the wall street journal, we are talking about the budget package and more. 202-748-8001 is the line for republicans. 202-748-8000 for democrats. independents and others, 202-748-8002. there will be a voting rights bill, the john lewis advancement act, that would extend his formula used to identify discriminating voting patterns. tell us about this legislation. this is different from things that have passed before hand, correct? guest: the house has passed broader, sweeping voting legislation that also includes things about how you draw congressional districts and
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campaign finance laws. this is a more pared down version that really focuses on federal oversight of state voting procedures. the broader package did not advance in the senate. joe manchin has concerns with some of the provisions. so this is an effort to try to get a more slimmed down piece of legislation through both chambers. they are looking to see if they can secure republican support for this. host: they have already gotten support from lisa murkowski, correct? guest: yes. it is interesting to note the rules coming up in the house would also procedurally advance this voting bill, the john lewis bill, so there is pressure on centrists to support the movement tonight that they are not blocking this john lewis voting rights bill. that does not necessarily mean they will be on board with the actual budget resolution vote on
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tuesday, so the coalition we could see on monday night in procedural motions could be different from what we see tomorrow. host: we will remind viewers too about that vote. the rules committee is meeting this morning at 11:00 a.m., and we will have live coverage here on c-span, we'll stream that as well. as kristina peterson mentioned, they will vote on that rule this evening. we will have gavel-to-gavel coverage, beginning at 5:00 p.m. eastern and we expect that vote at 6:30 p.m. take us to that evening about, it is a procedural vote. it's essential in moving forward. what will you be looking for? guest: the question is how many of the nine centrist democrats vote for the rule. that could indicate squishing this within the ranks. even though, at the lawmakers have noted, what they said they are unified on is not the
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procedural step, it is the vote on tuesday, and that is a key step the democrats need to take to advance in this budget process known as reconciliation. that is what will enable them to pass legislation in the senate with just democratic votes, otherwise they would need to clear the 60 vote threshold and get republican support, which they will not get on the budget package. host: how important it is to the speaker to get these measures passed before september, the budget package, the infrastructure package, and the voting rights piece? guest: i think that the congressional leadership has set september 15 as the deadline for committee chairs to finish their pieces of the budget package. i think there is skepticism on capitol hill that that is really possible. this is a huge piece of legislation. they have also said it will be paid for, so they have to agree on how to raise that revenue, and things like raising the corporate tax rate, changing the
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temperature around capital gains, those will be complicated and challenging because you have joe manchin and others who have signaled that they will have questions and concerns about that and the overall price tag. so, finishing in september is going to be very difficult. host: let's go to calls. on the republican line, arnold in ohio. good morning. caller: thank you for taking my call. i wish congress would reconsider on this $5 trillion plan. we seen just recently, and going on now, biden's plan getting out of afghanistan, and it is a total disaster. and i do not think this president is capable. and i'm requesting that they would consider not giving him the money. i do not even know if this guy is going to make it as a
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president. guest: i think that does echo a lot of concerns we hear from republicans, tha congress has already authorizedt so much federal spending and week of the intimate. ther -- wake of the pandemic. there's concerns on spending another $3.5 trillion, that it could fuel inflation and overheat the economy. that is a concern we hear from gop lawmakers. host: you mentioned in the internal deadline for getting the budget ready on september 15, but they are also facing the end of the budget year, because of september 30, but we are also approaching a debt ceiling deadline as well. guest: that is right. that is looking like a sticky situation. republicans have said they do not want to be involved in raising the debt limit. they point out that the democrats passed a relief package earlier this year without gop support, and
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therefore the democrats should be raising the debt limit on their own through this budget package. the democrats say, we spent a lot of money under president trump combating the pandemic, so this is not just on us. so there is no clear strategy for how they will increase the debt limit. and we will have to continue to fund the government as well, and that deadline is the end of september. host: it could be a long day on tuesday. i saw the email from the majority leader, the week ahead, its last of it predicted on tuesday has multiple question marks, so it could be a late date in the u.s. house, but those are the only wo days they have -- two days they have scheduled, correct? guest: right, there is uncertainty around whether there is enough support to advance the budget resolution, and that is why those question marks are there. host: james in st. louis.
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you are on with kristina peterson. caller: good morning. i want to say something about what congress should talk about. one of the reasons why biden won, because they had their soldiers gone. and imagine how much -- the rest of the americans and -- had in order to get along each day. host: kristina peterson you spoke earlier about the potential gang of eight briefing, explain what that is. guest: those are for the top elected leaders in the house and senate, and the leaders of the intelligence committee. so that is their chance to get the highest intelligence information from the administration. and it sounds like that will occur, but there will also be many other briefings for all
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lawmakers. they started last week, and they are expected to continue. there are questions and concerns about the evacuation. many lawmakers have been working to get individual constituents out of afghanistan, so there is a lot of questions and concerns on the hill about the situation there. host: before the august recess got underway, the speaker, based on the position of the house, extended the mask mandate on the house floor. at least until september. and notably, now four with the representative from texas testing positive, the restriction on masks and proxy voting, is that expected to continue past september? guest: i believe so. there is concern about the delta variant and the speaker referenced that in a letter she sent out to lawmakers on saturday night, urging everybody
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to get on board with the budget resolution and the infrastructure bill, and wanting to be able to pass this legislation. it was interesting about last week three senators all tested positive on the same day for covid, all three were vaccinated. the senate had not been in session for weeks. so it seemed like may be a coincidence, but reflecting the surge of the delta variant. host: watching from your reporting and colleagues there, the restrictions are off, but it still feels crowded. does that worry you, the groups of reporters, some masked and some not? guest: everybody is a little bit worried. i have a two-year-old at home. but reporters have been wearing masks on the hill for several weeks and we are all trying to stay safe. and people are doing the best they can. host: let's hear from diane in
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new jersey on the independent line. caller: i have a question. i would like to know how much is in the bill for military expenses, $3.5 trillion bill? guest: i am not sure. i would have to double check the details. most of this is focused on expanding the social safety net through programs like he'd leave, subsidized -- paid leave, subsidized childcare, and there is a component on climate change. through the appropriations process, there will be the normal defense spending bill and the nadaa, the policy bill that accompanies that. and that is generally very bipartisan. so, traditionally that sort of sails through congress with a few bumps. and we would expect that again
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this year, the only caveat being around the defense spending bill that all of these bills are running out at the end of september and if is a lot of policy conversations going on. host: they have moved some appropriations bills through, correct? guest: yes, but the house only needs to pass their bills with the support of the majority party, but in the senate they have to be bipartisan, so that is a was trickier. host: let's go to walter in butler, indiana, on the republican line. caller: thank you for taking my call. basically, nancy is holding everybody hostage on this infrastructure bill. it is as simple as that. i have always learned when something is free, you lose the value of it. i remember going to college, it was going to be wonderful. not many people in my area were going to make it to college and i was so impressed with myself when i made it.
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now lately do is they say it is going to be free. college for two years is going to be free, but i think the value of that degree will plummet. and i am waiting, as an old sarcastic vet, i am waiting for them to say we will pass a gazillion dollars bill, because we do not have the money anyway and as far as i'm calculating it will be $4.4 trillion in debt. and this infrastructure bill, only 10% to 15% is actually for building roads and bridges. i hope they argue and do not do anything, because every time they do something they spend money we do not have. i would like your input. host:host: he is referring to the two use -- host: he is referring to the two years of free community college in that measure. guest: some have made the same argument that nancy pelosi is holding that bill hostage. the other wing of the democratic
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party says if they pass the of structure bills, then the moderates would not have a stake in the outcome of the larger budget bill. i think one thing that is important to note is that many of the centrists do expected support the budget bill ultimately. for instance, the congressman of new jersey, one of the leaders of the group, has said he wants to support that. he wants to see tax changes that could affect new jersey. ultimately, this is more about the strategy, not necessarily that the centrists want to block the budget from passing, although i think we expected couple of them to probably ultimately block it. host: holding hostage is the term they used in the washington post today chimeric and solution can wait, let's pass infrastructure now, saying we are opposed to holding the president's legislation hostage, risking the passage and the bipartisan support behind it.
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we will hear from teresa now in tennessee, good morning. caller: hi, good morning. i was going to call about something else, but you just said that nancy pelosi was so worried about the mask mandate and was really going to enforce it on capitol hill, and going to do the proxy voting because she is very concerned about the coronavirus. did you happen to see the pictures of her in napa this weekend with about 75 of her biggest millionaire donors having a breakfast with no masks whatsoever on anyone of them? except for the servants, they had to be fully mast. -- masked. if they are dishonest, why hasn't washington journal not shown that picture at a super-spreader event? host: i have not seen it yet. if we find it in a publication,
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we will show it to you. anything to add? guest: the debate around proxy voting is interesting, some people think that it has been helpful to democratic leaders because they have such a narrow margin in the house on bills and that republicans are opposed to, and democrats can lose no more than three votes. there's speculation that this has been helpful to them in the close votes, that people who cannot make it to d.c. for whatever reason can still vote. republicans at the start of the pandemic did not engage in proxy voting, but over time they have started to do it as well. host: this is oje -- joe. caller: i think that the guest probably has little credibility. she's really part of the same network of the left media that came together to intentionally downplay bernie sanders's campaign, both and 2016 and
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2020. the same ones that said he cannot win, he will lose down ballot. and guess who won down ballot, joe biden. and you see this watered-down package, because it does not move the eligibility to medicare down to 55 or 60, which is what this country needs. we have early retirement at 62, but you cannot get health care at 65, that makes sense? every time she refers to joe manchin as a centrist, even fox news accidentally called him a republican the other night. let's start talking about the truth. the democrats in congress need a fall guy to stop all the plans they claim they want, that is nancy pelosi. host: let's give our guest a chance to respond. guest: you raise an interesting
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point about lowering the eligibility age for medicare. that's being discussed. democrats have made clear one thing they plan to do is extend medicare benefits for hearing, dental and vision. many of those democrats are also pushing to lower the eligibility age, which is something that the president said on the campaign trail he wanted to do. bernie sanders has repeatedly said he hopes to do that. and some of it is a question on whether they can make the math work as they taper the bill. a key piece of that, a big source of revenue they hope to tap into is negotiating for drug prices in medicare. at that is a question i have, to see how that shakes out. host: you mentioned the negotiating with the drug companies, how else is ways and means looking at raising the revenue for this package? guest: a lot will be through
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changes to the tax law. they aim to change some of what republicans do through the same process at the end of 2017 with their overhaul of the tax code. the president does not want to raise taxes on households making less than $400,000, so there will be changes to the corporate tax code and increasing taxes on wealthier americans. host: what happened to the proposition that they would expand the budget of the irs and go after delinquent taxes more diligently? guest: that was something the bipartisan group in the senate was looking at in order to offset the cost of the infrastructure package. ultimately, they could not agree on that, so we expect democrats to use that as a source of revenue in their package. host: mark on the republican line. caller: good morning. you know, it seems to me that i
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t's weird that we are repeating history. we had a crash in 1929 and unemployment rose. i think it could be argued we would not have had a decade of the great depression had of the federal government not gotten in and messed around with it. unemployment was already going back down five months after the stock market crash, but fdr had to get involved and make things worse. after this last year and a half of closing businesses down, it just reminded me of the manic state, giving everybody welfare. and there are a lot of things in these bills that have nothing to do with infrastructure and have a lot to do with registering illegals. and it says very specifically that no party will be responsible if illegal
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immigrants are registered, and actually get away with voting. there will be no penalties. this bill is a power grab. guest: that is an important part of the budget package that we have not talked about, which there is a part that would provide a path to citizenship for several groups of undocumented immigrants. it's unclear whether that will actually be permitted to stay in the final package. when you use reconciliation, there are limits as to what qualifies under that. ultimately, it will be up to the senate parliamentarian to decide whether that could be included, or she will issue guidance. so the lawmakers have admitted they are uncertain as to whether or not that will be allowed to remain. that is one of republicans' biggest sources of concern. host: new york city, a caller on
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the democrats line. caller: thank you for taking my call. i have to confirm -- i think it is about 12 million americans unemployed right now. and, as you know, we're ready to fall off a cliff on september 6. with all this stuff with immigrants, will illegal immigrants coming in the country come all the afghanistan's -- i am not against helping those in the human race, but what about all the americans that will lose unemployment? host: any talk of extending some of the covid benefits? guest: as we get closer to the date, i am sure that we will hear more. there's been concern about making sure that people can manage it through the rest of the pandemic and i am sure that delta variant will increase
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chatter around that. host: kristina peterson covers congress for the wall street journal, and you can follow her reporting online. as always, thank you for being here. coming up next, we will be joined by breaking defense editor in chief aaron mehta , talking about the aftermath of the taliban takeover of afghanistan. later, author, columnist, and former health care company ceo dr. robert pearl discusses the covid-19 pandemic's impact on the u.s. health care system. ♪ we will talk about its effect on doctors and nurses. that is all ahead. announcer: the u.s. house is expected begin work on the voting rights reform bill as well as infrastructure bill this week. it all starts today, when the rules committee meets to work out the structure of the debate. watch live starting at 11:00
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a.m. eastern on c-span, online at, or listen on the free c-span radio app. ♪ >> if you choose to research the origins of a topic being discussed frequently in the united states called critical race theory, you will find the name derek bell. the law professor, who died in 2011, was one of the originators of this much discussed subject. in november of 1992, bell appeared on booknotes to discuss his book, "faces at the bottom of the well." announcer: the late derrick bell on this episode of booknotes plus. listen on,
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or wherever you get your podcasts. ♪ announcer: weekends on c-span2 are an intellectual feast. every saturday you will find events that explore our past. on sunday, book tv brings you the latest in nonfiction books and authors. television for serious readers. learn, discover and explore, weekends on c-span2. ♪ announcer: "washington journal" continues. host: we are joined by aaron mehta, here to talk about afghanistan and the impact of the u.s. withdrawal there. good morning, welcome. guest: thank you for having me. host: when we talked a while ago, you were with a different
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publication. tell us about this publication and what your mission is at breaking defense. guest: we started as a small website and we have been growing ever since. i joined a couple weeks ago as the editor-in-chief. our goal is to take what happens in defense publications, focusing on the pentagon and military, broadening out to cover more strategic issues, an try to give the averaged reader a sense of what the people in the pentagon are really worried about in a way they have not had in the past. host: the last couple weeks must have been very busy for you in reporting that. what is your sense of around the pentagon in terms of both the preparedness and the readiness for what's happening in afghanistan right now? guest: i think it is no secret that the u.s. government as a whole was caught flat-footed by how quickly things escalated. if you have had serious
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conversations with people in the pentagon, there was not a lot of hope that after the u.s. military pulled out that the afghan government would be able to last long. there is a consensus that the best case would be some power-sharing agreement with the taliban. but even that was seen by many folks as, we will see, there is not a lot of hope there. but i think what clearly caught everybody by surprise, the president has not said it directly, but they did not think it would happen so quickly. those who were saying, if the u.s. military draws out, the afghan military has been structured in a way that they rely on u.s. military power to back them up, they will not be able to put up a fight that the people are expecting. those voices were clearly not coming from the ministration, or they were not listened to, and we are where we are now, a stunning eight or nine days since kabul fell.
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host: you call it a stunning effort, the administration over the weekend announcing in the activation of the air fleet, activating the civil airline fleet to help with the evacuation. that's the headline from the washington times. what is that fleet? has it ever been used? guest: it is an agreement between the u.s. government and the pentagon, and the major commercial airlines in the u.s. that says in a time of national emergency or crisis, we can ask you to provide airplanes and pilots to move stuff. this is the third time it has been enacted. the first was during the iraq war. and, ironically, operation iraqi freedom a decade later. it was used to move people around. in this case, 18 airplanes have
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been activated, three each from american airlines, atlas air, two from hawaiian airlines and four from united airlines. they will not be going to the airport in kabul, what they will be doing is willing military transports get people outside of afghanistan, that is when you will see the commercial planes pick people up and bring them to their further destination. there are three bases in the u.s. that are landing zones. there's one in the d.c. area. so that is the role the commercial airliners will be taking. it's vital because there has been a backlog in getting people from kabul to other places, because when they leave afghanistan, these places are overwhelmed and packed as well, so getting people from those places to the states --
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hopefully, the tempo will pick up. host: aaron mehta is our guest and we are talking about the withdrawal from afghanistan. your calls are welcome. 202-748-8001 for republicans. democrats at 202-748-8000. independents and others, 202-748-8002. if you are an afghan vet, 202-748-8003. we will play the president talking about the activation of the civilian reserve air fleet. [video clip] >> we've activated the civil reserve air -- to help with the movement of evacuees from transit centers. the military aircraft will get them to the centers, but then we will get the civil reserve fleet, a program designed in the wake of the berlin airlift, to use commercial aircraft to
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augment our capacity. this is a voluntary program for commercial airlines, and we are grateful to those airlines and u.s. carriers. this will only use about three palnes -- planes from the major carriers, so there should be minimal effect on commercial air traffic. and we will stay in close coordination with partners to mitigate the impact. these civil reserve flights will help facilitate the safe movement of people from locations and transit centers to the u.s. or to a third country. none will be landing in kabul. the american aircraft will not be going to any country but the united states. as this ever unfolds, i want to be clear about three things. one, planes taking off from kabul are not flying directly to the u.s., they are landing at
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u.s. military bases and a around the world. two, at these sites where they are landing, we are conducting security screenings for everybody that is not a u.s. citizen or a lawful permanent resident. anybody arriving in the u.s. will have undergone background checks. three, once screened and clear, we will welcome the afghans who helped us over the last 20 years to the new home in the u.s. because that is who we are, that is what america is. host: where is the security screening and background checking of afghans happening? is that happening before they come to the united states, or do you know? guest: in several stages. i think i represent a little bit of how there's not a ton of planning that went into this and they are doing it on the fly.
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there is a checking of credentials going on at that kabul airport. that is why there is a backlog, there has been a bear credit stack up, keeping people from getting into the airport. then when they go to a military base, there, is one in the middle east -- ther ise -- there' one in the middle easts and one in germany. they go through a screening. and more screening in the u.s. the administration was aware that there would be a flow of immigrants coming from afghanistan. and they are trying to make sure the american public feels comfortable with the fact that these are not secret terrorists we are smuggling into the united states, that these are truly people who have worked with the rest for the last 20 years in their country, many of whom, and i am sure we will talk about this, who were members of the
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military who feel extremely loyal to the u.s. and are working hard on their own to get colleagues and friends after afghanistan. part of this is the politics of immigration, it is very tricky. and the politics of afghanistan, which is very tricky. i think particularly with the refugee question, we are walking a very thin tightrope. we are trying to make sure the american people are comfortable with what is happening. host: i did want to get to a piece you published on breaking, the afghan aftermath, will specific states see it? you are looking at the role of the u.s. in southeast asia in particular after afghanistan, and one of the experts you quoted things that that really is now, that the thinking of the administration is they want to turn their attention to that part of the world, instead of
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focusing on afghanistan. guest: absolutely. it goes back to the end of the obama administration, and certainly it was picked up by the trump administration. one of the very few things where they are in lockstep, that we can no longer focus on the middle east in the smaller wars, we need to be focused on china, which is a growing threat. as a result, some defense money going to the middle east could be better spent in the pacific, and the best way to do that is to withdraw from the middle east. china seized on the images of americans fleeing from kabul and the sense of abandonment from the afghan government and immediately was putting this out through the pacific. taiwan, south korea, thailand and vietnam, countries that have built relationships with u.s. and china is trying to take
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advantage of the fact that right now some countries are looking at as and saying, the u.s. is suddenly gone, and the government fell. china wants to paint us as an unreliable partner, but how effective that will be is up for grabs. these governments are not dumb, they understand that the afghan situation is a unique one, but it is a message and that will resonate with some people. host: we will hear first from carl in yonkers, on the independent line. caller: good morning. beyond the immediate afghanistan crisis, i know at least in a previous administration the effort to d exceptional eyes u.s. presidents abroad was a very noteworthy objective in terms of both improving our image and bringing since to
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military spending in general. and it's unusual how a large number of republicans are taken aback by trump's efforts to shrink not the immediate size of the military, but its processes and responsibilities beyond the hobbyists, which is defense and containment. and i wanted to know if this world exists or is an opportunity for the u.s., as i mentioned, by modifying the resources that go into the military, whether they be in connecticut or in rhode island? and there's literally thousands of local military industries that i think would have a
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smaller role. any comments? guest: certainly with the trump administration, the defense budgets rose. and the plane had been to dramatically increase it -- plan had been to dramatically increase it. and this administration cut it down. and expectations are it will also -- are it will be cut down more. interest remained the same with alliances in the middle east. even if they shifted to the pacific, that is not a cheap shift. focusing on china requires investments. it requires investments in ships, more expensive than tanks. we have seen investments in the middle east in these in the last several years.
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the point is defense spending is a huge chunk of the u.s. defense budget, of the budget overall, and it will not shrink dramatically. and it probably will not grow dramatically. i think it will be about $15 billion, a giant amount of money, but that is probably where it will be for the foreseeable future. host: in terms of the u.s. presence in the region, a comment was made about the u.s. having an over the horizon presence, in terms of being able to monitor potential topics of radical behavior in terms of terrorist formation in afghanistan. from where will the u.s. have that over the horizon vantage point? guest: the u.s. maintains a lot of bases in the region, in qatar, in kuwait and in other countries, iraq still. the problem with the over horizon idea is it ends at being
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a little bit of a whack a mole strategy. it requires a lot of money, and if you are flying an f-16 to try to drop a bomb on one terrorist a leader, that is a financial trade-off that you take because humans are cheaper to replace. so, it's a strategy that can work in limited abilities, but we have seen it over the last 20 years. we need people in country to be able to effectively keep a terrorist group from spreading. and in afghanistan, it appears that will not be the case going forward. host: a question from richard. "can you comment on the magnitude of weapons lost to the taliban and other enemies?" guest: obviously, there is still accounting to be done. most of these systems are lower tier. the vehicles, guns and
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ammunition. it does not appear that any super high-end stuff was captured. the concern is the afghan air force planes were captured by the taliban. a-29's, able to launch weapons. one of the only real advantages and that the afghan military has had is they have had an air force, but it was largely supported by the united states to the level of the u.s. does all the contracting. there have been some stories that the contractors have left. they they have been on the phones, guiding afghanistan's on how to fly their airplanes. how much they will be able to use this stuff is unclear. but it is a concern. to me, not so much of that the taliban will be using this stuff, but that they could farm it out to other groups in other countries. that is a concern of
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proliferation. anti-concern of china, they they could find their way inside of china. and help spur rebellion there. that is something people will be watching. and one other aspect of this worth bringing up is at the end of the day, when the u.s. decides to leave, whether it is august 31, or is leader, -- is later, at some point the 6000 people we have now brought and all the equipment with them, that has to be fanned out. if there is an overwhelming of the airport at some point, even if all americans can get out and everybody can be saved, there's equipment there that can end up in the hands of the taliban as well. host: millions spent on afghan army benefited taliban is one
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headline. here is chuck on the republican line. caller: how are you doing? i have a couple things. i was a sergeant and vietnam -- in vietnam. i could have done a better job than biden. i do not understand why they didn't keep the air force base to begin with. i would've started moving people out earlier. i would not have done it during this season. is biden that stupid or is it all political? he wanted a political win with 9/11? what do you think about that? host: our caller said during the fighting season, because there is a distinct season for that because of the weather concerns, correct? guest: correct. there tends to be an increase of
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hostilities during that period. there is something with the anniversary of 9/11, the 20th anniversary coming up. the president announcing his plans, he was clear he wanted us out by then. there's no denying the political element, but there was always a political element to this. it was true in the previous administration, it was a medical compilation to end the forever war. regarding the military base that was shuttered in july, it is interesting, the appeared -- the chairman of the joint chiefs appeared last week and he was asked about this because the base would have been an obvious staging point, it has more runways, it is further set out and easier to protect. he said a decision was made to go with the number of troops that they had and they could not protect both of the airport --
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both the airport and embassy, and they decided the embassy was more important because that is where they were processing getting people out. so that was a decision that had to be made and there were not enough forces in country. the idea of trying to leave and take over the foreign military airport seems like a stretch, given the reluctance we have seen for any american forces to go away from the airport right now. host: benny in georgia, next up. go ahead. caller: i would like to ask what happened to the soldiers stationed in afghanistan? host: which soldiers? caller: the united nations
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soldiers. guest: there were other nations -- host: there were other nations involved. that's a good question. german forces and others have engaged in some firefights. guest: we know the germans and the u.k. have a presence at the airport. it's now a staging ground for all of the foreign forces involved in trying to get their people out. one interesting thing is there have been reports that the germans are sending out small groups to get their people and bring them to the airport. so far, the u.s. has resisted doing that over fears it would trigger a fight with either the taliban or among the crowds near the airport, or other elements. there has been reports of the isis members are looking for americans to do harm to.
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whether that changes will be a major storyline. if the u.s. says, we are going to get our people out, and they sent a helicopter in for a party in, the taliban could facilitate that because right now the taliban government is trying to project the image and that we are in control. they do not want a crowd getting involved in having a black hawk down situation. as much as some would love that to happen, the people are trying to run the government and they want to project that they are in control because they need to deal with the world stage and get investment in, run it like an actual government. so it is a tense situation. you mentioned apparently there was a sniper that took a shot at a couple people at the airport, and german forces, this morning, allegedly resolved that issue. it is something to watch. and we have heard from the european powers, there is frustration on how the biden
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administration has handled this. host: a question, "were visas given to allow translators to leave and avoid the crisis?" it seems to me that congress had just passed the enhanced visas for those afghans just before the august recess. guest: there has been an issue raised for really the last year, but certainly since may when the official announcement was made. the way that it was structured, you had to apply and go through the bureaucratic process. and there was a clear deadline on win that would no longer work. and people who have covered the transition, were asking almost every day, this is not going to work, how do we speed this up? i think you are seeing now the process was not in place. and there is criticism.
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i think you were hearing from both sides of the aisle over how the visa program has been handled. host: let's hear from regina in virginia, go ahead. caller: good morning. i'm glad to see that you have covered the isis threat, the forces changing things at the kabul airport. why do we have to think about military, our military equipment in the airfields there? can you push the pentagon and military to start destroying those pieces of equipment that belong to us and could be used or sold, or even if they were scrapped, basically that is money that is our money and it is a potential way to get back at us. all the fuss about the people. they are running away.
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and when they come to the u.s., if this equipment is in those areas, what is to say they cannot take it up against us and our allies? somebody can push of the military and ask them to destroy the equipment, so it is not used by our enemies against us or our allies. host: you addressed it earlier, but what has been the approach on the equipment? guest: it is typical when the u.s. leaves a military facility that there is some equipment that you cannot get out. it's not worth it in some cases. it might seem like a good idea to fly them back, but it could be a logistical challenge. so we saw that with the military airport outside of kabul, when it was abandoned in late june, a lot of equipment was destroyed. we saw that going on at the u.s. was withdrawing through afghanistan.
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but there is only stuff that falls through the cracks. as far as the equipment at the airport right now, it is a delicate dance because it is equipment that might be needed to potentially get americans out. so they want to maintain that perimeter against a large crush of humanity. so, it is a tough choice. you make sure that you advance. if you want to make sure that you get everybody out, you need this stuff until he certain amount of time, and then you realize, we have to destroy it, but you do not want to do it too quickly. i guarantee there is planning going on on that particular issue on the ground right now. how effective it is will depend on what the situation looks like when the u.s. finally leaves, is it controlled it situation with everything going relatively smoothly or a situation where there is a flood of humanity crashing through the gates and everybody has to get on airplanes and get out? we will see how that goes, and
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that will decide how they handle the equipment. host: we will get one more call. caller: hi. dean is in hawaii. caller: someone called asking about shutting down bob graham -- bagram, doesn't it make more sense to hold the airport inside couple -- kabul? guest: correct. the bagram exit, late to loan -- late june, july when that happened. is it to get more people out? on paper, it makes sense. the logistics of it and the political risk of sending forces out and having them run into a firefight, frankly, i do nothing that will be happening.
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right now, there is the hkaia airport, and expanding beyond that would require a major surge of forces, frankly. i do not really see that happening and do not think it is something the biden administration wants to do. they want to hold onto the airport and keep it safe as long as possible. host: aaron mehta with breaking defense. thanks for being with us this morning. more ahead here on "washington journal." next, we will speak with author, columnist, and former health care company ceo, dr. robert pearl, talking about the pandemic's impact on the u.s. health care system and its effect on providers, doctors, and nurses. that is ahead. >> if you choose to research the
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origins of a topic being discussed frequently in the u.s. in recent months called critical race theory, you will find the name derek bell. law professor bell who died in 2011 was one of the principal originators of this much-discussed subject. in november of 1992, he appeared on but notes to discuss his book "faces at the bottom of the well , permanence for racism." >> harvard law school's first black tenured professor, listen at or wherever you get your podcasts. >> middleton high school students, your opinion matters. let your voices be heard with our video competition.
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be part of the national conversation by creating a documentary that answers the question, how does the federal government impact your life? your five to six-minute video will look at federal policies or programs that affect you. the competition has one heard the thousand dollars in cash prizes -- $100,000 in cash prices. a shot at $5,000. for rules and more information on how to get started, visit our website, >> " washington journal" continues. host: our guest is dr. robert pearl, former ceo of permanente health care group, author of a book. he is with us this morning to talk about the effects of the pandemic on those doctors and nurses.
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dr. robert pearl, welcome to "washington journal." guest: great to be here. host: what has been the biggest effect, in the your observation, on america's front-line workers in health care? guest: the coronavirus has inflicted massive damage. i spoke with a physician who told me about losing four patients in one day and a resident that started a rotation in critical care unit with six patients, all dead by the end of the month. and that is the most terrible event that can happen for a health care professional, and that is a daily reality. and the stress is growing, and i really worry about ptsd at the end of this pandemic. host: even for doctors trained as emergency room doctors and nurses, as emergency room
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personnel, this is above and beyond anything they would have trained for, correct? guest: it is so much greater in magnitude, and every single day during the height of the pandemic over the last year and now happening again in a lot of parts of the nation as the number of cases and hospitalizations and the number of deaths rise, now over 1000 deaths a day. host: kaiser family foundation, "washington post" published a survey of frontline health care workers, and one of the pieces they found was of the younger frontline health care workers, probably similar to other ones, as well, in terms of total health care workers, those who have experienced physical or mental problems. 62% of all surveyed had mental health problems. 49%, physical health problems. over 40% with relationships with
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family members, and 40%, relationships with coworkers. dr. pearl, you mentioned ptsd a moment ago. so what is the solution when all this is over? how do we treat those front line workers and keep them in the profession they trained for? guest: when i wrote the book, "uncaring: how the culture of medicine kills," i did not realize that this pandemic would be coming, but it has the same issues. medicine includes a moderate amount of repression and denial. otherwise, you cannot do your job, cutting into humans to save their lives and dealing with consequences when some the goes wrong. but the magnitude is unimaginable, so the type of repression of emotion now poses a massive problem. so the answers, first, people
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have to feel comfortable talking about what they are experiencing. in health care, you never admit you are weak or that you are struggling. you learn early in medical school residency to deny that. you learn that emotion is a bad thing. during a pandemic like this, it is necessary, and those conversations have to start now if we are going to minimize the risk of something terrible happening later on. during war, it does not happen during the battle, it happens afterwards. the second thing is we have to make it ok to ask for professional help, psychological assistance. if you did so in the past in medicine, you would be ostracized, seen as an of doing your job. it is now simply a part that has to happen. we need to shift our understanding in mental health, not just for patients, but now
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for health care providers. host: is that asking for mental health -- you just mentioned, is that what you are getting at in your piece a couple months ago, saying doctors must have the courage to change? guest: absolutely. that was one of the changes i wrote about in that particular piece. this is the way, we need to have courage to go against the culture of the past and create and transform a culture of the future. i think we need to understand that asking for help in mental health areas is no different than asking for help in physical areas, whether it is chest or abdominal pain or care for diabetes. host: in addition to the mental strain, the strain physically, health-care providers of all kinds have had to deal with the same sort of political debate and discussions that all of us
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have, whether there is a mask mandate in our town or in the stores we go into, whether or not our employer, and in this case, a health-care organization, is asking us to be vaccinated before we returned to work. guest: you are absolutely correct that the cross current s today are greater than they have been in health care for a long time. as you say, we have to deal with the fact that doctors are taking care of patients who did not have to become so sick. they did not have to overwhelm the critical care units, but they chose not to be vaccinated. it is a consequence of that that they became very sick. and i think the frustration, really this sense of being unable to do what you set out as your career, to save lives, is
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continuing to create problems, and that is going to raise emotion, and it is going to increase the debate between those who are vaccinated and those who are not. host: our guest is dr. robert pearl, who is talking about the effects of the pandemic on medical professionals of all kinds. (202) 748-8000 is the line for medical professionals. we welcome your calls and comments. for all others, it is (202) 748-8002. -- for all others, it is (202) 748-8001. dr. pearl, what got you interested in going into medicine? guest: it is ironic, and i call it serendipity. i went to college to become a university professor, and in my freshman year, one of my heroes do not get tenured, a very skilled individual. it was because of his political views.
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believe it or not, i went into medicine to avoid politics. seemed to me that you either live or die, and medicine should be relatively apolitical. now years later, having observed the health care world, i know how absurd that feels, but i was 17 years old at the time. host: what is your observation of how the pandemic has affected those getting into the field, those interested in becoming doctors and nurses, physicians assistants, and other medical professionals? guest: ironically, it has been -- i do not want to call it positive, but the interest in medicine is greater than it has actually ever been. i think the spotlight on the way that the physician culture can make doctors into heroes -- you know, they went into the emergency rooms and critical care units taking care of individuals, and they did not have the protective gear they
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needed. they donned garbage bags when they cannot find gallons. they did it -- when they cannot find gowns. they did it anyway. when a patient could breathe and they had to put in a tube, and every time a patient with cough virus into their face, they did it anyway. i think that is the purpose and the mission and the heroic nature of being a doctor, and it is attractive to a lot of very smart individuals looking for a lifelong professional career. host: we have calls waiting for you. the line for medical professionals is (202) 748-8000. all others, (202) 748-8001. james is in hampton, new hampshire. you are on. caller: yes, hello, gentlemen, dr. pearl. i am calling in because i had an opportunity to observe the position for -- the specific impact of having a daughter in
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her third year of residency in new york city, a public health background from columbia. personally, i had to witness the impact of that upon the staff. the institution would be broadcasted on the television set with the difficulties in the early stages of this. and i have seen the impact, not only on the death of some of the staff but upon huge numbers of people affected through their own health, the general public. and i really applaud what you are stating to the public, emphasizing the impact upon health care deliverers who are nurses and doctors, who are delivering this service. host: how is your daughter doing?
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how is she surviving this? caller: she is in her third year now, and after i think six months of her original residency in new york city, she was impacted by this. i can only assume that it was a traumatic experience for her and the other staff in the large institution in brooklyn. she seems to have come along all right, but it is hard to gauge the impact of long-term stress. host: thanks for sharing your story. robert pearl? guest: first, congratulations on your daughter and thank her on behalf of all americans for her dedication and efforts during this pandemic. i want to and for size that, even more than just doctors and nurses, all the people in the hospital are having to address the challenges, including housekeepers, dietitians, the other individuals who are
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interacting with patients because they, too, know that patients are dying. i ask listeners to think about what it would be like if you dedicated your life to saving lives, and now every day you see death at a level you never could have imagined. james is absolutely right, the impact is going to be large. for some it has already impacted, for some it is happening now, and for many it will be in the future. host: let's hear from patricia in iowa. caller: good morning. dr. pearl, i just have a comment i wanted to make. and it is that it is no wonder that doctors and nurses are suffering from ptsd. they are in a war. no different than the military, except that this war, the enemy
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you cannot even see. and they are in their day after day after day, and they should not be ashamed to get help -- and they are in there day after day after day, and they should not be ashamed to get help. i do not understand how vaccinations and wearing masks became so political. it is about saving lives. and i just feel so much for those poor nurses and doctors. anyway, that is my comment. host: ok, thank you. guest: thank you, patricia. host: in south carolina, this is bridget. good morning. caller: good morning, gentlemen. i just wanted to shed the light on respiratory therapists also. i think the doctor probably knows how important they are. and my daughter is a respiratory therapist. i spoke with her this morning after a long night shift, and
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she is tired. and she really does not have time to suffer from ptsd. she is trying to keep people alive right now. later on, i do not know what the effects are going to be. but she is working very hard, but she is frustrated with the people being unvaccinated coming in, and that is who they are trying to save. and then other people with conditions that are not covid. so i would just like to shine a light on respiratory therapists. host: bridget, how much is she working in a typical week? caller: she is working five nights. she has said she would like to work seven. she could, but physically, she is just not capable of doing that. host: dr. robert perle, your thoughts. guest: first, bridget, you're
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absolutely right. respiratory therapists are crucial these patients go on a ventilator because they cannot breathe. it is the respiratory therapist to come by continually, making adjustments to the setting and ultimately assisting in the weaning to end the need for that and to allow the patient to be able to breathe more normally. you are right, she does not have time for the ptsd. that is what the last caller was talking about. the war, it is not during the battle. it is afterwards, when they have the time to look back at the experience and they realize how much damage has happened to them. it is going to be very broad and very major. and thank you daughter for being such a dedicated professional and to the many lives she has saved. and hopefully after people listen to this show, individuals
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will start getting the vaccination. that will save their lives. 95% plus people -- of people in the critical care units today are unvaccinated. they do not have to be there. we could prevent severe disease and the need for hospitalization. host: what is your view as the former ceo of a large medical organization, your view of health care organizations now requiring their staff to be vaccinated to work? guest: i think it is essential, because whether it is the physicians or the nurses or the staff who are coming in contact with patients, the last thing that you would want is to have them be very sick, transmitting the disease. it is possible you can have breakthrough infections, they do occur, but they are moderately rare. and it is also important we preserve the health of health care workers. early on in this pandemic, we
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did not really quite know about the vaccines, how safe they would be, how effective they would be. now we have over 150 million americans who have been vaccinated. we can compare the outcomes and results, measure the complications. there is a podcast -- i have a podcast that talks about the facts that exist. the data right now is overwhelmingly that vaccines save lives, and they are very safe to individuals receiving them. host: on our line for medical professionals, christine in rhode island. hello. caller: good morning. i was calling to make a comment. i have been in the health care profession my whole life, and i have worked with people in group homes -- and i worked with people in group homes towards the end. but to see what is going on in the hospitals, i am from the northeast, so we seen it coming
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and how it was progressing and getting worse, and we followed the science and tried to get the levels back down. it has been hard. i have a daughter that is in the hospital right now. she has pneumonia. she had asthma. she is 28 years old. i just lost a brother three weeks ago. he was 54 and ended up going into a nursing home, and he progressively just got worse. he just passed away three weeks ago. so please, please, folks, get your vaccine, protect your people. it is so hard. i had a daughter that was pregnant through this whole covid. i did not see my grandchildren for months. just protect your family. pray for our nurses and doctors. host: we are sorry to hear about the loss of your brother. dr. pearl, any comments? guest: my sympathies about the
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laws for your brother, and my best hopes for your daughter right now. you are raising a very important point, consequence of covid on everyone, not just health care professionals. bill mentioned earlier the data on all the hospital workers. we are seeing a lot of the same thing happening to individuals who have been isolated, who have been having to quarantine, avoid social contact. we are seeing it in children. a recent survey said half of children are suffering, and parents have psychological difficulties. this is the right time to talk about the mental health issues in our entire nation, and everyone should be comfortable talking about how they are feeling, the problems they are experiencing, and to get the assistance they need to deal with these real problems. it is not in your head. it is very real. host: several news organizations
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with the same story this morning, children fill hospital wards. a headline here, saying children's hospitals are bracing for even more cases as schools reopen. a related comment, this is on twitter from a viewer. there is not enough help both there. if every american needed it look for it, i doubt any hospital or provider has anything set up sufficient for all health care workers. usa does not have enough icu beds for children come on purpose, says the viewer, it is not profitable enough. guest: the problem is the delta variant, the new strain, mutant strain, highly transmissible. almost 99% of all infections in the united states now. this one appears to impact children far more than the original strain did. you're absolutely right, 500% increase
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in childhood hospitalizations today. early on, we did not think kids would be affected. now we are seeing it. we are only starting to learn about what is called long covid, which kids can have the symptoms over a long period of time. and kids are not yet eligible for any vaccine. they are unprotected. the best way to protect them is for those around them who can get vaccinated to be vaccinated and to wear masks whenever they are in an indoor area or are at possible risk of exposure to someone who is infected with the coronavirus. host: lois is in sandy hook, connecticut. good morning. caller: good morning. i live in connecticut, and our governor is leaving up to the mayors -- leaving it up to the mayors in the towns and cities as to whether or not people have to wear masks in the stores. and mine says it will be on the
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honor system, and it might be naive. i wrote to him and said i saw two people i know who did not get their vaccine in the stores without masks, because they are not asking for proof. it is just the honor system. no politician wants to be the bad guy. is there a political lobby for medical professionals? because you guys are on the front line. i mean, i can go to the store and still remain masks and can social distance, but you guys are right there. and there is no guarantee, even if you have the vaccine, that you won't get it. so can you lobby for bringing back masked mandates in the stores? guest: i wrote an article about the cdc, and i was critical. i usually and very supportive of the cdc. i think it is an amazing organization.
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i was critical of them for not coming out in favor of mandatory vaccines. i think it had the opportunity, and had it come out more strongly, it would have pushed more political officials, as well as businesses, to make vaccination a criterion. i have also been critical of the federal government for not creating an easy to view vaccine card. we have a driver's license, so why couldn't we have something that could be shown? as you go into the store, you show your card at costco, so why shouldn't people be required to show their vaccine card or wear a mask? i think it is very doable. but you made the point, politically, people are being hesitant. unfortunately, it is costing people their lives. host: let's hear from a call on our line for medical
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professionals. riverside, california. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i have a very good friend who is in his 80's, and him and his wife, they have not taken the vaccine. the reason is for their daughter who is a nurse and her husband who is an administrator of a large hospital in the los angeles, and the daughter has told the 80 year old parents -- this was months ago -- do not take the pfizer vaccine. do not take the pfizer vaccine. something that she believes and that her husband believes is that the immune system later in life is going to be affected. can you answer to that? guest: there is no scientific evidence that there is any type
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of long-term immune problem, and there is a lot of scientific evidence that the vaccine is far safer than any of the complications that have come along. the pfizer and moderna vaccines are very similar in their design. the johnson & johnson is a little bit different. some vary in different ways, and we could spend a lot of time talking about the slight variations. but overall, the complications of coming down with covid, particularly someone in that age group, mortality rates are moderately high, risks incredibly low. i disagree, and i think that is bad advice. and certainly everyone who is elderly, everyone with chronic diseases, i think the entire population, but those two groups have an extremely higher rate of becoming severely sick, requiring critical care, being
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ventilated, and a high rate of dying. i have not seen any piece of published scientific data supporting the idea of some type of long-term immune response. remember, we have a lot of vaccines, and these are not significantly different, their impact on the immune system. [video clip] headline from -- host: a headline from this money, pfizer vaccine may receive full approval today, and the u.s. is averaging more than 1000 daily deaths again. okeechobee, florida, is next. we will hear from dee. caller: good morning. i got a question. this covid thing has been going on about a year and a half now, two years. i have got some friends, ok, who have gotten sick, but i also have a lot of france who i run with who are not sick -- a
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couple of friends who i run with were not sick. some friends i have in the hospital, they have underlying illnesses. for all the time this has been on, there has never been any discussion by any scientists or doctors about who exactly is dying from the covid. is it the ones with the underlying conditions? i have friends my age, all seniors, who are healthy, no underlying problems, good to go. and i have friends with things like heart problems, diabetes, and they are the ones getting sick. i would appreciate an answer on that one. host: dr. pearl, any comments? guest: yes, you're absolutely right. the data out of new york city early on was that 88% of people who died, who became severely ill and died, had two or more chronic diseases. over 90% of people who die have one chronic disease. there is no question that it
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involved individuals who are older, at greater risk of people than -- at greater risk than people who are younger. in my book, "uncaring: how the culture of medicine kills," i am a little bit critical that we have not, as an american health care system, adequately addressed these types of chronic diseases. i think the coronavirus has shed light on it. there is a lot of information out there right now. the vaccine is the best way to take care of it. other ways include masking, include improving people's overall health, and please keep encouraging your friends. i am a runner, too, and exercising is one of the best ways to maximize your health. host: a piece from the "washington post" asked about if you considered leaving the health care field.
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they write that at least one third of frontline health care workers who assist with patient care and administrative staff say they have considered leaving health care. the other way to look at that is 71% have not thought about that. how do you view that statistic? is it less than you thought it might be, given the past 18 months? guest: i think it is about what i would expect. when there is a constant, constant anxiety, stress, difficulty, being a health care professional is, in my opinion -- a biased opinion -- the greatest profession you can choose. there are lots of different ways to provide that care, the opportunity to earn your living and every go home knowing you have saved lives and made the world better, improved people's opportunities with their friends, families, their loved ones, their life. it is a privilege.
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and the fact that that becomes the profession of so many people is great. i am saddened of the fact that so many people are contemplating leaving it because it is just too much. i think part of the problem is still this inability for us to talk about our feelings, our emotions, because that is needed in times of crisis. and to get the help individuals need. not all the people leaving need help, but i think the people leaving are a good example of the stress that covid has created on the caregivers and the disappointment they feel every night when they go home because they could not do more. it was not their fault, just simply this terrible virus. host: we will hear next from william in houston, texas. caller: good morning. the question i have is about early treatment protocols.
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looking back at some old clips from the team that met with congress, did the fda or nih ever look at the early treatment protocols, drugs that were recommended? the other question regarding that, what is the current treatment protocol for covid patients once they are diagnosed, like early on, and how has that changed since the start of the pandemic? host: thanks for that. guest: the fda's role is to authorize drugs based upon data submitted by drug companies. their role is actually not to come up with the protocols themselves. the cdc is working with physicians to accomplish that. a large number of drugs that theoretically could work have been proposed, and some of them are being used right now early
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in the process. but the impact has been moderately low. one drug that has been shown to have a major positive impact has been the administration of a steroid early in the process, trying to avoid the body's immune response actually harming the individual. the other part has been a major shift in how we take care of people who have breathing problems from this particular coronavirus. if we use our traditional protocols, a lot more patients would have breathing tubes inserted and being placed on ventilators. and we're learning in a very positive way opportunities to find alternatives, having them breathe in their stomachs, opportunities to give them high flow oxygen in place of intubation, and that along with the steroids have saved a huge
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number of lives. so far, unfortunately, none of the other early intervention drugs have been shown to save lives. a couple have been shown to shorten the course of the patient's illness. host: another thing from the past 18 months has been the use of telehealth, certainly in regular interactions with doctors and such. do you think using that will help alleviate some of the strain that frontline health care workers continue to see during this pandemic? guest: i am a major proponent of telehealth. seven years ago, i wrote an article in health affairs where i predicted that 30% of what physicians do in their offices would move on to telehealth. it would be far more convenient for patients. there is more rapid care and it is lower cost. and very little change. one reason is the regulatory restrictions that needed to be loosened around the use of
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telemedicine, and some had to do with reimbursement of health care providers of telemedicine. but much of it went back to the physician culture. as you pointed out, covid comes along, and now 70% of their practice is now telemedicine for many physicians. i am hoping this will be a tipping point for doctors in the united states. it is not appropriate for every problem, but it is far better than a lot of things we have today. and we could spend a lot of time talking about how telemedicine is not just for the individual doctor. doctors can come together to provide care. no single doctor can do that. but a physician can be available i video, -- by video, and we do that in kaiser permanente in the mid-atlantic physician, and a physician can provide advice to parents at night, and 70% of the
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time, there is success. telemedicine has massive opportunities. we are only scratching the surface today. host: here is lissie i bloomingtonn -- in bloomington, indiana. caller: hello, i have a question and also a comment. governor holcomb has given the power to the school boards and the school boards give the power to the teachers. i have grandchildren, and one of my grandchildren goes to a school in franklin, indiana, and they are just letting them go without masks. and i am very concerned. i have an autoimmune disease. i do not have a transplant or anything, so i am on low level prednisone. and i worry about that. and i want to know, too, do i
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need to wear a mask? i am having a couple of my grandchildren -- they are young, under the age of 12 -- spend the night with me and all weekend. and i do not know if it is safe or, should i wear a mask? it is not her, but i am around her, too so i am concerned. host: we will get a response. guest: you are appropriately concerned. some states have mandated vaccination for all people working in schools, in recognition of the fact that children under the age of 12 cannot be vaccinated. the national teachers association has actually come out in favor of mandatory vaccination, which was a remarkable, bold, and courageous step forward. but you have some immune issues. i would encourage you to talk
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with your physician. you may possibly need a third booster, because people with immune issues and people on steroids potentially could have a diminished protection at this particular point, eight months after the vaccine was first administered. so i would encourage you to ask these questions to your doctor, and he or she is likely to tell you that this is a good time to avoid being with your grandchildren until you have had the third booster. but i do not know enough about your medical history at this point. host: dr. robert pearl, columnist, author of the book, "uncaring: how the culture of medicine kills doctors & patients," we appreciate you being with us this morning on "washington journal." guest: it has been great. your listeners are incredibly smart, and the questions were terrific. thank you for having me. host: morehead here on "washington journal." -- more ahead here on "washington journal." coming up next, we will open the
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phones for an open forum to talk about any of the issues we have talked about today, including the pandemic. your calls on the administration's handling of the evacuation in afghanistan and the work had this week in the u.s. house on key legislation vital to president biden's success in the white house. that is ahead. >> this week, the u.s. house is expected to begin work on the voting rights and election reform bill, as well as the infrastructure bill. it all starts later today when the rules committee meets to work out the structure of the debate. watch their work live starting at 11:00 a.m. eastern on c-span, online at, or listen live on the free c-span radio app. >> weekends on c-span2 are an
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intellectual feast. saturday, you will find events about our past on american history tv. sunday, but tv. it is television -- book tv. television for serious readers. learn, discover, explore. weekends on c-span2. >> cpn --, a collection of c-span products. it will support nonprofit operations, and you still have time to order the congressional directory with contact information for members of congress and the biden administration. go to >> "washington journal" continues. host: open forum here on "washington journal." talking about public policy, political issues you are reading
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about, some that we talked about today including the covid-19 pandemic, the response of the biden administration to afghanistan, and the work in the house this week on infrastructure, on the $3.5 trillion budget proposal, and more. the house in later today. here's how to join the conversation. republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents and others, (202) 748-8002. or you can text at (202) 748-8003. updated report from the "washington post," taliban rejects extending august 3 one -- the august 31 pullout, saying the united states would be crossing a redline if the administration keeps troops in afghanistan after the deadline. british media reported that prime minister boris johnson is
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expected to ask president biden to extend the deadline at tuesday's meeting of the group of seven nations. if they extend it, it means they extend the occupation. it will create mistrust between us. if they are intent on continuing the occupation, it will provoke a reaction,, the taliban spokesman said. the biden administration said the u.s. may push back the august 31 deadline to facilitate more evacuations, adding that our hope is we will not have to extend. u.s. has evacuated about 37,000 people since the militants swept through the country this month on the heels of the u.s. military withdrawal. on some of those refugees, i was senator joni ernst yesterday was on abc's "this week," and talked about the fate and future of some of those refugees. [video clip]
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>> we all want to get those interpreters out and those who helped americans, but there is this catch-22 right now, some have their paperwork destroyed or their past work because the embassy was evacuated, and they did that to protect them. but now they do not have the paperwork. and some of the people trying to get out are just regular afghans, but how do you vet them? >> that is the question, martha. we know that this is one of the biggest debacles we have seen in the last several decades. and the fact that we had to evacuate our embassy, the heart and soul of our consular activities and vetting process, all of that has been pulled out from under us. so it is much more difficult to vet those who need to continue through the vetting process and to make sure the americans have safe passage to the airport. we have been on the administration for months now to be working on the vetting
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process, to make sure we're are working with those interpreters to get them safely out of the country. the state department has drug its feet. it has moved so slowly. and now we are at a point where these afghan interpreters, other partners, are in deep jeopardy with the taliban because they were not able to get there vetting done on time. so it is important we continue pressing on with this. if there are afghans that need to be evacuated that are not fully vetted, we do have third country partners that are working with us in this effort. we can evacuate these afghans to those countries and continue the vetting process. i think we should be doing absolutely everything we can to assist those who assisted us for the past two decades in the global war on terror. >> you talk about those third countries. there are not a whole lot of countries that want to take these afghan refugees. there is a backup in qatar.
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and where they will resettle them -- with you and your republican colleagues welcomed them here? >> we want to welcome those that are fully vetted. that is extremely important, that we make sure they are vetted before they touch down on american soil. and that is why it is so important that we continue working with these third country nations, providing them whatever support we can within those countries. this is where president biden, unfortunately, has really messed it up. i will just put it out there. host: open forum until 10:00 a.m. eastern. a quick follow-up to our conversation with dr. robert pearl, this story published this morning on politico. delta variant with case search with fewer health workers, the alarming spread of new cases is draining the pool of available health workers in ways not seen since the pandemic's winter peak.
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first to joan in cleveland on the republican line. caller: hi, i just had a question, and i do not know who to call. but i am in ohio. we have governor dewine, and he gives an update on how many deaths of covid, how many in the hospital, so forth and so on. but my question is, with all the illegals that come over our border, and i heard jim jordan say some are in ohio, why can't we be told how many illegals have been put in the hospital that we don't know about? host: mentioned a story earlier about pfizer, the fda, a headline -- grants full approval to pfizer's covid vaccine, the first covid-19 vaccine to receive full authorization from the federal government. experts hope it will encourage more unvaccinated people in the u.s. to get the shop, especially
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as a country experiences a certainly covid cases largely driven by the delta variant. west virginia is next, independent line. caller: yes, how are you doing today? thanks for taking my call. but i wanted to say is about unvaccinated people. they are not -- they don't realize that there were more people than themselves to consider. most of the people going in the hospital are unvaccinated. and chances are, if you are unvaccinated, you will probably catch the virus, and a lot of you're going to die. have you considered what is going to happen to the people you leave behind? i mean, is your will up to date? how are they going to get along without you? that is about as much as i want to have them think about. host: next is philip in minden,
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michigan. caller: yeah, hey, regardless of your political affiliation, russia and china are loving the fact -- whether china developed the thing on purpose or not -- russia and china are loving the fact we have so any ignorant americans. even though they got vaccinated when they were children in school and did not think about it at all, now they are worried about one little shot that they should all be getting. it is a damn shame that -- bush started this big mess over there, and finally it is over. you should be blaming bush for the war. i cannot believe -- i remember in the air force, the space shuttle system, it was -- he ended it so we could all be subservient to russia. russia and americans are looking down every day taking pictures of what is going on.
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they are on our space station and need to be kicked off. host: tom next in fort myers, florida, independent line. caller: hello, this is tom. my essential view is that this has been screwed up for thousands of years, but let's just go back to 100 years, to how the ottoman empire was divided. let's get over blame, blame, blame, blame. all wars end messy. my father was kicked out of the temple in macon, georgia, when he said all smart jews got out way ahead of time of hitler. host: this is roll call this morning on the u.s. house returning to take up budget and voting rights with democrats divided. the house rules committee coming in this morning at 11:00 eastern. look for live coverage here on c-span. the house itself gaveling in at
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5:00 eastern. live coverage will begin then. we expect the first vote, the procedural vote on the rules, at about 6:30 eastern or so. open forum here on "washington journal" for the next few minutes. mary in johnstown, colorado, democrat. caller: thank you for taking my call. i am a former air force nurse officer, and i want to tell you what i heard, olivia troye from the covid commission with vice president pence, and a member of dhs, assistant secretary of the department, said that because of stephen miller having so many people put in the various agencies, there was a slowdown, almost totally, of these siv's.
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and they are both very upset, and i heard acosta yesterday say, after the president's speech, when all the people were completing about biden's means of departure, that this was done so poorly, and he said exactly what livia troy -- what olivia troye and elizabeth newman said, because they were there in the trump administration, and they did not want these immigrants in. stephen miller is a very unfortunate individual who does not like the immigrants. this is why we have had this terrible, terrible slowdown of approving them. there is a process. they were defunding them, doing all kinds of things to stop these special visas. the people need to know this.
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also, the doctors in florida this morning came out in protest over covid. they are working double and triple shifts, doctors and nurses, and i know what it is like. i served in the vietnam era. it was a different compliance, scientific process, and we were a great team of enlisted officers, and we worked together and believed in science. and these people that are unvaccinated are taking the beds. host: we will hear from mark in florida, panama city. cases you have covid. how are you doing? -- it says you have covid. how are you doing? caller: i am doing good. i feel like hell, but we are hanging in there. i got it about, i feel like it
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was around august 7. host: are you vaccinated? caller: i was not vaccinated. no, i wasn't. i have been treated with some, you know, treated with some off label stuff. this is not the time or place for that. the stuff worked for me. ok? i have got pneumonia now, and i have also got a pulmonary embolism. and that is why i am here. host: are you calling from a hospital? caller: i am in the hospital right now, got in here yesterday. host: wow. caller: got in here yesterday. these people are awesome. i have got nothing but good things to say about the people here at gulf coast. the way they have treated me.
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and they have made me feel really good and positive. and i know i am going to get past this with them. they are talking to me like a normal person. you know, they really want me to feel better. nim -- and i am. i am feeling better. i have got nothing but good things to say. these people here have been honest. they have been happy, positive. i love them to death. host: we want you to get better, too, so you can call us back after all this is done and tell us how you made it through. will you do that? caller: you bet. you got it, brother. host: expecting your call here in 30 days. that is the time limit.
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when you get out and get better, give us a call we want you to get through it. caller: i will beat this. host: thanks for calling. kevin is in new jersey, independent line. caller: how you doing? i wish that gentleman, mark, a speedy recovery. i wish him well. my comment is that this is what we mean by transfer of power. donald trump is saying that the election was stolen. we should have had it easy transfer of power so that our politicians would know what to do in this situation. but hey, that is where we are. we are still saying that the election was stolen. it is a quagmire that we are in. thank you. host: we do not read stuff from
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the sports page that much, but this is an interesting piece on the afghan national women's soccer team. from page of the "washington post" sports section. the writer speaks by phone to a mother trying to protect the afghan girls and women who found freedom in soccer and joy on the soccer field. a founder and former captain of the afghanistan women's national team knows she is privileged to live with her mother and father in denmark, place of safety and freedom, although threats of violence and messages of hate still reach her, she will not be silent. but silence is what she urges of the soccer playing girls and young women now under taliban rule. burn the jerseys you were with such pride, she begs them. take down the photos, destroy evidence that you played, disappear in every way possible. it is very painful, she says of her message, because for all these years i have been fighting to empower women and girls to
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earn the right to wear the jersey, i am now saying take them off, destroy them. we will go to baltimore next, it is lb. go ahead. caller: hello? yeah, well, i don't know what you would be expecting from somebody like joe biden and the democrats and whatever that thing is as the vice president there. these aren't the kind of people you have running anything, especially anything that is critical, anything where people's lives are in jeopardy or real harm can come to real people. that is what they do. when they have anything to say about it, real harm comes to real people, democrats, whatever
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criminal organization people. you got to remember, they are preoccupied. remember now, the worst terrorist, the worst thing you have to worry we will wrap it ue and look forward to seeing you tomorrow morning. washington journal live every morning at 7:00 a.m. eastern. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2021] ♪ >> this week, the u.s. house is expected to


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