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tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  July 22, 2012 7:00am-10:00am EDT

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president elect dr. chris bailor. "washington journal" is next. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> good morning. president obama leaves later today for colorado where he will meet with some of the family members both candidates will be on the west coast, the vfw convention gets under way. governor romney and the president will be speaking before the gathering. c-span will be covering their remarks. meanwhile here in washington on capitol hill congress returns this week and the debate resumes over the tax breaks. the house taking up the issue of offshore oil drilling. a busy week in advance of the august recess.
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sunday, july 22 as the images come continue to come from friday's movie theater shooting. your calls and comments on the second amendment versus gun control. >> the sunday denver post has this headline, everybody is hurting, with images of those 12 that were killed in friday's shooting as well as the dozens who remain hospitalized on this sunday morning. and the christian science monitor has this headline, the colorado shooting high lights the barriers to tough gun controls. obama and romney. the piece by brian nicker boker says there are two major
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reasons. . we went to the nra website. there is no statement on the shooting but on friday evening one of the web programs called the daily news had this statement from the anchor of the newscast, at this hour the nra is telling all media, including the daily news, that its policy is that it will have no comment until all the facts are known in this case. and you can get that information also available on line at the nra website. in the front page of the "washington post" a grim accounting of the violence toll. this from colorado.
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we'll get to your phone calls on the debate that has resumed once again. gup control laws in america. the second amendment. the nra. jordan on the phone. good morning. caller: good morning. host: good morning. go ahead, please. guest: i just think that we should have continue to have our right to bear arms.
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i think it's just in the constitution and it's porpt. host: glenn on the phone from lakeland florida as we look at the front page of today's denver post. caller: the way i look at it, right now you have to take a second look at the amendment because the intention was not have to have military style weapons in the possession of everyday civilians. you look at the gun show, you consider buying on the internet. you're talking about military weapons like this young man had, with the 100 gun clip. those type of things should not be at the possession of civilians. you're talking about a person with gas mask fully armored. he had grenadse. those type of things is not supposed to be in the possession of everyday civilians.
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those are military possessions. those are wartime. people go hunting and have shotguns, go hunt for fezznt or turkeys but you don't need to have these things in the possession. host: joseph has this point. you can get more information on line. carlos on the phone. atlanta, georgia. welcome to the program. guest: thank you for having me. host: good morning. caller: i personally feel like if president obama gets a second term, he will definitely do something about the gun
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control laws throughout the country. having had a congress who won't wo with him on thungs such as this i feel like if he gets four more years he definitely will do something about gun control. host: darrell from detroit. good morning. caller: good morning. i would like to talk about the situation here. the assault rifles that they're trying to ban are semi-automatic, one pull of the trigger one shot. it's not different than the glock he had, glock pistol which carries 15 rounds by itself. it would be the same thing, they had have the same weapons to use. third thing is when you think about it with 320 million americans in this country it's kind of amazing that this thing, does not happen more often. host: thanks for the call. again this headline from inside
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the "washington post." the president who was scheduled to travel tot west coast but stops in oregon, seattle, san francisco, and reno for the conventions will be leaving at about noon eastern time today from the white house to head to colorado before resuming his campaign appearances this week. mitt romney is off the campaign trail through the weekend. he is back on the west coast this week with his remarks at the vfw. and then later this week he heads to london for the opening ceremonies of the summer games. he headed up the winter games in salt lake city and then visits to poland and israel. a week long visit by the republican presidential candidate. back to your calls and comments. and the debate which is back front and center on gun control in america. democrat's line. good morning. caller: good morning. my comment about the second
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amendment rights or any other rights pertinent to average american citizens. as long as there's money in washington, lobbyists, there's just lobbying against your average american citizens, i believe. and until we can get the lobbyists out of washington with their power and with the politicians in their pocket, i don't think we'll ever be able to get justified laws that's going to benefit the average american citizen. host: thanks for the call. this headline from examiner.com.
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yesterday morning jim and sarah brady, of course jim brady who was injured in the attempt on president reagan's life back in march of 2001 now the cofounder of the pradey campaign issued this stame. next on the republican line. chris is on the phone. caller: good morning. my thoughts on what happened i
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was up when it happened. i think there should be a restriction on it for they shouldn't have it so this won't happen again. host: next from wisconsin. eric on our line from independents. good morning. caller: good morning. i think all this is an attack on our second amendment rights how all this is being played out. we've got old hillary about to sign this u.n. convention treaty on gun control. and i think that's just the beginning of this country losing its sovereign rights. we're all going into this one world government and this is going to be the first attack to get the u.s. to follow in line. that's all i have to say on the issue of gun control. >> thank you for the call.
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bill is on the phone democrat's line from seattle, washington. good morning. welcome to the program. caller: good morning. i don't think this is a second amendment issue. we have countries in the world that have as many guns per capita as we do here. you have switzerland, israel. and in those countries you
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don't have this kind of gun violence. it's the problem with society. and we have to reevaluate our mental health system and i just don't think that the second amendment is a right to guarantee all americans independents democrat or republicans. that's all i have to say. host: thanks for the call next california republican line. you're take on this. caller: good morning. thank you for c-span being so diverse to talk about all kinds of issues not just political. well, i think that the second amendment right to bear arms just like the first amendment right is going to be challenged. we could take away guns, all assault rifles for people have knives and crazy people will still commit crazy things. they're still going to find a way. i think this could be worked out.
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there were obviously issues with this gentleman at school, possibly with the family. if you nip it in the rear ahead of time these people won't commit these acts. i was in a movie theater in california and the alarms went off, and it is absolutely nerve racking because we all sat tht theater not knowing what to do. you're sitting there ready to see a movie and i can just imagine how those people felt. and god bless them and god bless america. host: john has this point.
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from this weekend a number of different websites. paul on the phone from portland, oregon. a self-described libertarian. what's your take on this?
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caller: may take is a lot of people are jumping to a lot of rash conclusions without thinking it through. if you look at it, the second amendment is there so the people have the right to keep and bear arms so if a citizens militia is needed to form they're able to. the people are armed. for the people calling the ar-15 use of military style assault rifle that is completely incorrect. an assault rifle is fully automatic. that was semi-automatic. however, well study have shown look at britain. gun homicides have been up 40% since hand guns were made illegal in britain. everywhere where gun control isn't stated, hand gun homicides go up.
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they go up because criminals do not care about laws. they don't care about a charge when they're going out to commit murders. this is common sense. if there was a consealed carry holder right behind this gentleman he could vum ended in mere seconds by putting a plult in the back of the gentleman's head. making people defenseless is nots the solution to gun violence. governments have killed more than -- have occurred more. hitler 20rks million. stalin 40 pl many. mao, over 20 million in the first couple of years that ultimate number is unknown. before they do this, they always always disarm the pop list that they're trying to protect. they get people to beg for them to be disarmed then tragedy
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ensuse. the same with poll pot. host: i'll stop you there. thank you for the call from oregon. again our phone lines are open or you can send us an e-mail. jody has this point. the right to bear arms overshadows the rights of everyone who believes that only people of sound mind should have access to guns. the daily caller has this piece available on line. tea party familiar with being wrongly blamed. it is now a familiar knee jerk reaction. the tea party movement is blamed in the immediate aftermath of a horrific tragedy.
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your thoughts on the tee bait now front and center over second amendment rights and gun control. caller: good morning. i do agree. you can do all the criminal background checks you want on people before they get a gun but what about the psych lonlcal testings? i look at you, you look like a normal clean cut american mad. psychologically i don't know what's going on in your life. people don't know. you can do all the criminal checks but what about psychological checks? it's just like you get a drivers license, get a brand new car. and they go through a crowd sbrd section and kill 50 people. what do you do blame in k the
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car? no. you blame the person. it's the person behind that trigger. >> sfloo thanks for the call. on the republican line from tennessee victoria is on the phone. caller: good morning. i would like to say that i believe that the second amendment should stay as it is. there's too much gun control. it's like the former person just said it's not the gun, it is the person that kills people. look at how many military men have gone off the deep end and hurt people with guns. it's not the gun, it's the person. the public needs to have arms to bear to protect themselves during crisis time not have the gu taken away from them. and also the second amendment was written not just for us to protect ourselves from burglars or whatever, but to protect us
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from rogue government, an out of control government. so that needs to stay the way it is. when we lose our gun rights we lose everything. >> on friday the president ordering flags at half staff and will remain so in respect for the dozens injured in the shooting in colorado. good morning. caller: my thought is when it happens around the rest of the world in mexico with 50,000 in the last couple of years, we are professional in america and it is like disneyland so when something happens here we're horrified. i'm in a wheel chair. so i can still carry permits even more important because i
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might be assaulted. but probably the moat vasion of the shooter, people say it's hard to understand. it's really simple. he couldn't get what he wanted. he wanted to go to neuro school and couldn't make the grades so he decided to take it out on everyone in the theetter. it is unfortunate. people in mexico are dying, in syria p they're killing people. in iraq. there's violence all over the world. the thing is that since we're the capital of the planet we should be a civilized society and you measure a civilized society by how benignly its populous treats each other. host: thanks for the call. coming up later as the international aids conference gets under way we will take a closer look at aids in america how far we've come what needs to be done coming up later in the program.
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and also chris is going to be joining us the managing political editor for the "washington post" and the editor of the fix out with a new book as we talk presidential politics. the examiner has this headline. mark lewis wrating if next call
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from matthew from new jersey. caller: thank you for taking my call. i'm a super conservative democrat. one of the things i like about the democratic party is there is a wide tent for people, some people even voted against the health care bill because they're conservative democrats as well as liberal democrats so i believe in the right to bear arms. i'm a hard core believer in the right to bear arms but what i disagree with is the right to bear certain types of weapons. and i feel strongly about that. for example, let's sound silly for half a second. take bill gates. he's got a lot of money. let's say he wants to buy a nuclear submarine because he has a right to bear armaments. why would he? because he can certainly afford it. it can become ridiculous. so if i can be ridiculous.
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this kid spent $15,000, 6,000 rounds of ammunition, gas mask, throat protector shield. he was dressed like a military nip ja of some kind. we're talking about somebody who was doing something very extreme. i believe we have the right to keep and bear arms but i don't believe that we get to go out in a couple of months and spend 15 grand on ammo to go deer hunting. this guy was planning to go people hunting. and when you look at the way he rigged that apartment, remember he's still within his rights. he has the right to keep and bear arms. i strongly pleeve in the right to keep arms. but we have to think about as a country to what extent does that meep? does that mean as my income goes up that means i can buy more? my dog is bigger than your dog? can i really go out and go buy
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myself a nuclear submarine because i have the right to keep and bear arms? host: thanks for the call from new jersey. don has this point. host: good morning. welcome to the program. good morning. caller: yeah. host: you're on the air please go ahead. caller: can you hear me? host: we sure can. caller:
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[inaudible] host: you're breaking up. i apologize. you're calling on a cell phone we couldn't hear your comment. pictures of the victims. the real movie hero whose saved their sweethearts, the 1 who were killed. troit is next. good morning. >> good morning to you. first of all i would like to say that i am prosecond amendment. but as far as a few other callers make the same point, had this gentleman had no access to guns whatsoever, if he had decided to do it via verk, it would have happened. would that attack -- i mean, second amendment is a part of american sovereignty. i know this [inaudible] there for the gun control people to exploit as a tragedy.
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it's just not right. i knew it was coming. >> next is robert. good morning. caller: good morning. i'm 75 years old and i predicted 20some years ago when people go out in the united states they will have to put on bullet proof suits instead of pants, they will have to protect themselves from debris falling from the sky. you have some crazy people in this country. there are more plults made in this country than anywhere in the world. in this country there are some of t most incorgible people came from europe, they got
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wealthy and they sold these weapons all over the world. and i see a lot of people who are now crying about their young ones but look what has happened to our guns and bombs all over the world. now, the chickens are coming home to roost. we can't help this. we're spreading bombs and this all over the world. i hate that for my young grandchildren who have to live such as this because some of the most violent people in the world are here. host: thanks for your call.
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this is an opinion piece from inside the huffington post website. lynne on the phone from georgia. good morning. welcome to the program. caller: good morning. first i would like to express my condolences to those who were injured or killed and their families in colorado.
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second, i sleep with a gin under my pill of. i believe in the second amendment but i do not pleeve in these gun shows going out selling dozens of guns and ammunition and such to groups of people without any background check, without anything, not that i background check would have done any good on colorado but my biggest fear is that the united states is spread all over the world and we owe china so much money what's going to happen when china walks in and says we're here to collect? host: thanks to the call. front page above the fold in boston the globe, the.
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. .
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>> so i definitely agree that we definitely need to be able to protect ourselves. you can't predict who's going to snap and who's going to go crazy with a gun. i mean you've got cops who make it through the academy and they've been through background checks and everything else and you've got some crazy cops so what do we do. i don't think you have to set up a -- i think you have to have checks and balances when it comes to this. host: thank you for the call. the question continues to develop in syria with questions over whether president assad will stay in power and what it means long term for the middle east. we'll be focusing on that in 15 minutes. juanita says the nra should be leading the way, gun owners are managing if the solution proposed is reasonable.
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danielle hal per addressing the gun law issue in the wake of the colorado shooting, jay carney on friday saying i would say as you know the president believes we need to take common sense measures that protect second amendment rights of americans while ensuring those who should not have guns under existing laws do not get them. again, in cased you missed it at the top of the hour this statement from the nra indirectly from jenny simone, anchor of a webcast on the nra website titled the daily news, at this hour they says -- she says: mary ann is on the phone, springfield, illinois, good morning, welcome to the program. caller: good morning. host: good morning, go ahead mary ann. caller: i just wanted to tell you a little story. back in 1992, i decided to
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drive to lesta -- on the highway, i crossed the border into canada. of course you have to declare you don't carry guns and so forth. and the announcement came over the radio that vancouver they had the first -- this was late june, june 29th, and they had the first killing with a gun. i was just wondering at the time how many killings with a gun we had in illinois. or the united states. and i don't know, i know we can't ever get back to that, but i can't see anybody buying 6000 rounds of ammunition without any controls. host: mary ann, thank you for the call. on our twitter page: from the examiner.com:
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out in colorado, he says the nra is considered a left wing washington-based organization instead of this eastern establishment group, gun owners took the rocky mountain gun owner and their voice in the legislation and congress. you can get more details at politico.com. next is keith, republican line, myrtle beach, south carolina, as we weigh in on the debate over america's second amendment rights, good morning keith. caller: good morning. well, i'll tell you, growing up here in the south, you know, your parents teach you when you're about six years old how to handle a gun. and you know, the safety of it. and to respect it. the bottom line is new laws
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don't fix stupid acts. people are crazy, some people, and a law is not going to fix somebody from going out and killing somebody. that's just the facts. so people that respect a gun and value life at all levels, you can't punish them because the criminals are still going to get the guns, and they're going to kill the innocent people. now, if you're an innocent people, you don't have that right to protect your family or yourself, then we're no longer america. i mean, back in the old days, people thought twice about messing with you because well, you had a gun. and you or your daddy or your mama or somebody had a gun, and they were going to -- they wouldn't most with you because they knew there would be consequences and repercussions. host: keith, thank you, anthony has this point, i
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believe in gun ownership, however, assault rifles should be banned, the headline from the sunday denver post, everybody is hurting, the aftermath of the aurora shooting from friday morning, and from the new york pains, pain and puzzles in the wake of the deadly colorado attack is a front page story above the fold in the "new york times", and next is doug on the phone from willington, florida, good morning, welcome to the program. caller: yes hello. yes, only in america is a dui a crime while a pui is not, that is, packing under the influence. the supreme court, same justice in the supreme supreme court decides the first amendment applies to everybody in all states but the second amendment is to be determined by each state separately and since the constitution, the government, laws of the land, contracts with the people, and the threshold for a contract,
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legal threshold, is what a reasonable person would understand something to mean, and it's determined differently by the layman or nonauthors, at that clause, or law is null and void, it's not applicable, because it is determined by different people, and also, the second amendment says nothing about guns. it starts out with a well regulated militia, coma, which a well regulated my tissuea in new millennium terms is law enforcement, so they're the ones -- and also, if you interpret it that way, that you can have -- that you can own any kind of arms you want, then any congressman, both senator and representative, u.s. representative, would not be
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-- it's a double negative. in that part of the constitution, it said no person from any state, then it is dot dot dot, shall be -- shall not be a resident of the state which in they're representing. host: doug, thank you for the call from willington, florida. in a couple of weeks, q & a program in which the constitution, part of the constitution with antonin scalia, out with a new book on the supreme court, q & a airs every sunday, 8:00 eastern pacific time. tina says telling that the nra could not even offer condolences to the dead and injured in aurora, she says that is telling of the nra, we did as of 6:45 on the nra website, there is no official statement on the shooting but we did get that statement from jen gentlemen simone, which says the nra is going to wait until the facts are in. there was a quote from jaime
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and sarah brady, quote. >> we have a couple more minutes with your calls and comments and then our attention goes to syria. follow our newsmakers programs which airs every sunday at 10:00 a.m., rebroadcast at 6:00 p.m., our guest is congressman adam smith, democrat from washington's ninth congressional district, ranking democratic member of the house armed services committee as congress takes up the debate over the budget specifically, budget cuts for defense spending. i think de commissioning some of our weapons systems is going to have to be part of it. then we're going to have to
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be very cautious about what we buy in the future but the f35, for instance, it is slated to be 95 percent of our attack force going forward. we have to continue with that program. we have to try to get the costs under control, and you know, who knows what the total buy is going to be in the future. but it is essential to our national security. so there are some tough decisions that are going to have to be made in the next year or two, no question. host: our conversation with representative adam smith on newsmakers at 10:00 eastern time. speaking of budget cuts, deep cuts rejected, this as the house passed $5,600,000,000,000 defense bill, about $3 billion more than the president requested, and so the debate continues on capitol hill. oscar is on the phone from new york city, good morning, welcome to the program. good morning, oscar, go ahead. caller: good morning. first of all the founding fathers they did believe in gun rights but they also want that to be balanced with
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public safety. now, i know a little bit about this. my dad was a policeman in the 1970s and '80s and most of the police in this country broke what the nra because the nra would not ban bullets. they used to call them dumb dumb or hollow points, that could pierce a policeman's bullet proof vest. they finally did but only after years of fighting over this issue. george w. bush overturned the ban on assault weapons. obama has to reinstate that ban, get rid of the high capacity magazine. we're turning into a gun happy, gun crazy country and i'm more concerned that their motto is don't tread on me. well, my motto is don't tread on the american people anymore. host: that was not oscar, that was jennifer, thank you very much for the call from new york city. jermaine has this point,:
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the denver post has punished some -- published some of the most horrific shootings in history, leading the list is suspect james egan holmes, who shot 71 people, killing 12. in the virginia tech shooting, # two were killed, 27 wounded, in 1966, charles whitman, 47 people shot, 16 were killed, 31 wounded, killeen, texas, 45 people were shot at luby's cafeteria, 23 fatally shot, at mcdonald's in san ysidro, california, 40 people shot, 19 wounded, and at columbine high school in littleton, colorado, 39 people were shot, 13 died, 26 wounded, the list is available at denver post.com. thank you for your calls and comments on the second
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amendment and continue the conversation on twitter.com twitter.com/cwj. coming up, chris cillizza, managing political director of the "washington post" to talk about his book and the campaign. and does syria have control over its chemical weapons stockpile? we'll ask a leading scholar on this issue, and andrew tab ler, the washington institute for near east politics. the sunday programs can be heard on c-span radio every sunday afternoon. good morning, nancy. >> good morning. on today's network, the mat shooting in suburban denver dominating the discussions, plans for defendants -- guests from both presidential campaigns were canceled. on "meet the press" host david gregory talks with john hickenlooper, bill bratton and michael chert wrof. on abc's this week, more
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coverage of the colorado shootings. fox news sunday's host chris wallace welcomes the chairs of the house and senate intelligence committees, republican representative mike rodgers and democratic senator dianne feinstein. on cnn state of the union, candy krollly talks with john hinken looper as well as arizona republican senator john mccain, he's expected to talk about gun control, on face the nation from cbs, bob schiffer talks with governor hicken looper, aurora colorado mayor steve hogan and new york city mayor michael bloomberg. he's expected to discuss the politics of gun control. all five network talk shows reair on c c-span radio, beginning at noon eastern time, with nbc's meet the press, at 1:00, it's abc's this week, 2:00 p.m., fox news sunday, 3:00, cnn state of the union and finally at 4:00 eastern, it's face the nation from cbs.
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you can listen to them all on c-span radio on 91fm in the washington, d.c. area. on xm, channel 119, listen on your blackberry, download as an app or go online to c-span radio.org. >> it was about those men and women who are almost mortally injured in war who because of the huge advances that have been made in medical trauma treatment over the last ten years, never being saved, an incredible number of them are being saved, almost everybody who falls on the battlefield is being saved. and i wanted to write about what life was like for these people and i really started off with a question having seen some people who were pretty, pretty dpru somely
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mamed -- gruesomely mamed, wouldn't it be better off if they were dead, don't they wish they were dead. >> in beyond the battlefield, pulitzer winning series for "the washington post" and subsequent e book, david wood spoke with vets and their families, surge georges -- surgeons on the daily struggle for those wounded in military operations. learn more tonight at 8:00 on c-span's q & a. >> we want to welcome andrew tabler, senior fellow at the washington institute for near east institute. your story in the "new york times", the u.s. has been stymied by the u.n., the latest action with russia and china vetoing any effort by the united nations, and so the essence of this story indicate thank with diplomatic efforts really now on the back burner the u.s.
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is taking a different approach. how so? >> what you're going to see now, the last 18 months or so, the united states has pursued its policy and based it on a diplomatic strategy concerning the opposition, and what's happened is time and time again, russia and china have vetoed resolutions to deal with this, so now we're going to see a shift to working directly with the opposition on the ground and a lot of other forces and a lot of other countries as well. we have a number of countries who are in the room now concerning some sort of more active robust approach and they're mostly gathered with the friends of the syrian people, a coalition of countries, and the core of that is the p3 plus one, germany and also turkey, qatar, saudi arabia. east host let me get your reaction to the quote in the "new york times". we are looking at a controlled demolition of the assad regime you write but
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like any other controlled demolition, anything can go wrong. >> guest: that's absolutely right. in the case of syria, syria is a mosaic of different sects, it's a little like lebanon, a little like iraq and in this case, abelites run the state, like the baathist regime and minority, the sunni population ran iraq, they're extremely hard to displace and they're very well armed, so they're going to try and bring down the regime which is the state of policy of the obama administration going back nearly a year, but of course, what breaks off, the regime probably will not fall like we saw the regimes fall in tunisia and in egypt but rather, it could simply contract, and the truth could pull back towards damascus but most importantly towards the adeloi homeland on the syrian coast, a police i spent a lot of time while in syria. it's a mountainous area that could be defended and they
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have one of the middle east's largest stockpiles of biological weapons and it's a deterrent against further attacks. host: we'll talk about this, and author of the in the lion's den, you indicated your time there, "the new york times" this morning, life during wartime, what is it like for the syrian people guest: the syrian people have been slengs under bombardment by shelling, canon fire, attacks by helicopters, and just arrest and torture for the better part of 18 months and we never really expected they would be able to stay out in the streets until this day. at first the protests were very much peaceful but time and time again the regime has been using shelling and other more lethal forms of weapons and so on. that now has accelerated, and so what's happened is over
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time, the opposition has become -- gone from a protest movement now to an arms movement and those are the ones who are fighting the president outside of the capitol. host: "the washington post", scenes around syria, u.s. options in syria, i'm going to share her thoughts and recommendations in a roment. let me get your reaction to u.n. ambassador susan rice who had these comments thursday in new york: >> this is the third time in ten months that two members, russia and china, have prevented the security council from responding credibly to the syrian conflict. the first two vetoes they cast were very destructive. this veto is even more dangerous and deplorable. yesterday's dramatic attack in damascus is indicative of how the situation in syria will continue to deteriorate
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in the face of this council's inaction. the perpetuation of the status quo is in no way static. it is, in fact, a recipe for intensified conflict, increased terrorism, and a proxy war that could engulf the region. host: andrew tabler, comments to susan rice, ambassador of the united nations. you could sense the ang ner her voice. there's an editorial from the baltimore sunday, again, about blocking u.n. efforts. what's the story behind that? guest: russia and china, especially yawsh is a long time ally of the outside regime. they've armed them, 50,000 reductions live inside sira, many are trailers in military forces an beyond, they have a well established relationship going back to the cold war when syria was one of the
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main satellites for the soviet union in the middle east. they don't want to give them up. the second variable is vladimir putin is back in charge literally in russia and wants to project their power. he can get a tremendous amount of power simply by saying no, no, no at the united nations. i think there are a lot of other reasons as well. they're afraid of extremism, they think the next hour inside of syria will come from some sort of sunni extremists although i don't know anyone who agrees with him on this. so there are a myriad of reasons, but in the end it's very simple, russia's interests don't match ours and that of the western countries, as well as that of the majority of the syrian people. unlike that during the cold war we have all of the regional powers we need in the room, the turks, the saudis, and beyond, to confront this because the other main backer of the assad regime are the
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iranians, and syria allows them to project their power to hezbollah on the mediterranean and both russia and iran are keen to support the outside regime even as it contracts. host: i'm going to ask you about that next. this is a photograph in the "new york times" to give you a sense of how much damage is in the streets of syria. but with regard to iran, it's had a close ally in syria and the iran-iraq access -- axis, but the axis powers between the two nations, can you explain? guest: sure, the relationship with the islamic republic iran and syria goes back to 1979, because syria was a long time rival of iraq which is also a rival of iran so it started out that way but it's deeper. the assad regime -- alloites are shia, an offshoot of islam, they are 12ers,
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waiting for the 12th date, alloites are 11ers and there's a difference in culture between the shia and alloites but in terms of politics, they feel an affinity politically for each other because they are aligned against the majority sunni population in syria. iran would like to see that that regime in syria continue into the future. they get a lot out of backing it. it allows them to supply hezbollah with weapons and not only just weapons, but increasingly long language weapons that syria -- scud ds and 600 rockets over the years. so that relationship has just deepened, and now the relationship between iran and syria is extensive. >> guest: jan has this point. i don't know much about syria, how did assad get the power he has, he does not look very powerful.
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guest: that's a very good point. bashar inherited the country from his father, who many of you remember from the cold war, a major figure in the arab-israeli conflict. what happened is the alloites from which the assad regime hails, the assad family, they made their way through the military. they represent a minority of the population. they were in the period which the -- when the french administered the syrian republic, they made their way up through the military and after ku de ta they seized power and assad took the reigns completely. host: this headline, pentagon prepares for the collapse of the syrian regime, he points out the pentagon has set up a special team for the imminent collapse of the regime of
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president assad, the crisis asset team will help prepare the u.s. military for whatever role it might take in the conflict. it appears to be reaching a decisive moment in which the government could fall apart. can you elaborate? guest: what the stories are alluding to is that the u.s. government has finally realized the assad regime and the situation in syria cannot be contained by diplomacy at the u.n. a lot of people in the administration have been there for a long time that this conflict is being driven from the ground up. it has been for actual will well over a year but oftentimes the perspective on these things when you're far away in washington and elsewhere, it's a little harder to come to grips with. so the big issue is yes, the regime is increasingly fighting the opposition. there's another part of this, though, that because syria has such a large chemical and biological weapons stockpile, they have 40 or so sites in
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the country, that means that now that they're moving them around, we think to -- the regime is trying to maintain their safety, but if they then go -- if the regime contracts and eventually goes back to damascus and to the coastal mountains where the alloites are from they can take those weapons with them and the lick li hood of those being used to commit atrocities as the regime goes out goes up, or the areas over the stockpiles are overrun by the opposition in a very chaotic fashion, someone could simply sell those weapons or give those weapons to those who are not only enemies of the outside regime but also the enemies of the united states as well. that's where it becomes a national security concern for the united states. guest: and john says any concerns about assad's biological and chemical weapons, you just addressed part of that issue, how real are the concerns? guest: no, they're very real.
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this is not a situation like iraq where -- which had a weapons of mass destruction program, discontinued it and then when the united states invaded, very little if nothing was found, and in this particular case, we know that they have this stockpile. they haven't actually openly hid it, it was developed by the iranians and most importantly by the soviets and this has been one of the major concerns, and these weapons can be used as a deterrent for others to attack that regime on the way out. and we're really worried now that as bashar leftist hour disintegrates he could get them or god forbid get them near hezbollah or other parties which could use them in the future or even the present, use them against israel or other allies of the united states as well. guest: if you're listening to c-span on the radio, our conversation with andrew
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tabler, he is author of in the lion's den, an account with washington's battle with syria, also a senior fellow at the washington institute for near east policy, former editor in chief of syria today, and graduate of washington and jefferson college and yearn university in cairo. linda is on the phone, good morning, thank you for waiting. caller: good morning. guest: good morning. host: good morning linda. caller: i have a comment and then a question. my comment is when bush 43 was president, nancy pelosi went over to syria against the president's wishes, again the state department wishes. and mrs. pelosi met with bashar assad, and headlines across the world stated that mrs. pelosi had said that the road to peace is through
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damascus. guest: right. caller: when this first started over a year ago, my question is, could not mrs. pelosi have gone as an envoy, and led a peace mission to syria? guest: it's funny you mention that, it brings back memories i was actually there that day in damascus when she was visiting. what she was needing concerning peace was the policy -- and this is very popular, it has been for decades, an especially in democratic party circles -- of basing u.s. policy and large parts of it on the peace process, and here we were talking about facilitate ago peace treaty between israel and syria, and that's for the first couple of years of the obama administration, was the policy. with the uprisings, we have the problem of the assad regime versus its own people, open hostilities. mrs. pelosi did not go over,
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but we did have others who have been along the way -- who had been engaging the assad regime like senator john kerry, had been making -- had made overture toss damascus and carefully watched the situation there. very interestingly, he had shifted, along with everyone else who was engaging the assist sad regime on that basis. the reason why is the brutality of the regime and bashar al assad and his family have lost all legitimacy inside syria and their ability to rule is simply in question, so i don't think mrs. palestinian pell is going to go to damn as even as bashar assad exits. host: was not syria a coalition partner during desert storm? guest: it was, that was under bashar al assad's father and actually it helped seal the iraqi border and actually committed troops to the invasion of iraq.
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not very many but it committed some troops. that was long ago, and a very different regime. but the regime's brutality has endured over the decades. it's something that everybody in syria knows. and while we're able to work together with them during that time, the current uprising, as well as actually bashar al assad's 12 years in office, have made it impossible for the united states and syria to work together. and i think it's pretty plain to see now what's going on, why that is. guest: andrew tabler, malcolm is on the phone, phoenix, good morning, independent line. caller: good morning mr. tabler. guest: good morning. caller: one of the questions i had was regarding the customer role, i don't know for how many years. one of the things i'm dumbfounded about, it seems as though for i don't know how many decades is that the environment in these islamic countries has been unstable for quite some time, and yet,
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they criticize the u.s. and our way of lifestyle as one in which is not to be desired yet, at the same time, we're always taking the lead in trying to resolve these conflicts abroad. why is it that the islam countryies did not take more of the role in actually resolving the issues with the islamic people and yet the united states are the ones that are doing that, and is it -- is there any reason why then that we profile them after 9/11, saying they sit back and willingly watch their people be destroyed? thank you. guest: yes, the question in the sense -- there has been a number of initiatives, in terms of a faith-based response, there have been a number of initiatives by the organization of islamic countries and similar to the crisis, but most of the time in the middle east, it's states and other body that is
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link states together that in charge of the response and here we actually had a really robust response by a lot of the regional countries, qatar, saudi arabia, egypt, libya, a number of other countries, and they have helped through -- mostly through the arab league, which is a bit like the united nations of the arab world in the sense that it links the arab countries together and they put together a number of initiatives to get president assad to step aside. the problem is that president assad doesn't listen to anything, of course, unless he's forced to and it's there that they have been trying to work with us at the united nations to try and get president assad to step aside. so there has an regional response. in terms of your -- the overall -- i understand a little about what you were saying. yes, i mean, it's true, if you turn your television sets on and read the paper it seems like the middle east is in turmoil and of course that's been going on --
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there's been a lot of problems there for decades. what's going on now, though, what we call the arab spring or the arab awakening, is simply about regimes that don't reform and are extremely repressive, and populations that are just completely transformed and increasingly young, and it's very difficult for these political entities to rule over such young populations which are increasingly globalizing. and what we're looking at now is systemic failure, not just in syria but all over the middle east. host: a followup, mark says how does syria's inner circle, this conflict, affect the developing countries like egypt and libya, and i'm going to add israel to that as well. guest: it's a good question. what happens in syria doesn't just stay in syria. syria is not vegas, and in that sense, the fight in syria, because you have a regime which is minority-based, alloites,
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christians and some other 12ers, the offshoots are gathered around the regime, that's 20 percent of the population, versus a sunni majority primarily. these different sects are then backed by different countries in the region with iran backing the regime and the other minorities and then saudi arabia, qatar and so on backing the majority sunni population. so what happens is that you rapidly get into a proxy war. that proxy war then continues, which it has, and then finally, when it gets to a situation where a power, the regime power starts to erode seriously, then you get into a situation where things like chemical weapons and biological weapons stockpiles get loose. that's where israel, their security, is challenged, and i think israelis are now increasingly worried about what's going on in syria as this transition continues. host: let me go back to your book in the lion's den. how much time did you spend in syria?
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guest: i spent about seven years in syria and it was a wonderful experience, and in the -- and the book chronicles that. it talks about my time. i worked -- i had an interesting entry into syria is that i worked for a journalist, i worked for bashar al assad's wife's charities concerning world development and helped at the magazine when i was there. that was my day job. what i actually did, though, was i was on fellowship by a number of organizations, institute of current world affairs and the national crisis group and that's where i eventually work now, the washington institute, and i wrote about what was happening in syria, the corruption i saw, and i think most importantly, about the battle between the united states and syria over the years. and which was something i witnessed and was kind of part of. and what i learned by being there and as the book chronicles is that is that
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regime was unable to deal with the demographic waves inside the country. the president's wife knew about that. they tried to launch a number of initiatives to deal with it but the system was unable to reform because it was minority-based. it's too corrupt. in chapter three of the book you can read about how to turn down a bag of money that someone is trying to off you who's around the president and his wife, and how it turn it down and stay in syria and get away with it. and i -- that gave me a little window, turning down that bag of money gave me a window into how corrupt that system really is and how it was one that we really couldn't work with. host: jordan that -- jordan from albuquerque, good morning. caller: good morning, thank you for taking my call. i just wanted to call mostly to commend our president and show my support for secretary of state hillary clinton and susan rice.
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i think they're doing a great job. i think their polices are leading our country in the right direction, and i think our former president, bush, and his father and bill clinton are on the same page on this as well. that being said, i think the situation is very complicated, and that the right thing is to help as much as we can, and i hope you agree with that. i just want to leave you with one further quote from -- >> [inaudible] >> it's that all that's necessary for the forces of evil to win in the world is for good men to do nothing. it's important to keep in mind that we need to push the country in the right
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direction and the people of the world to freedom and prosperity. host: thank you for the comment. let me pick up on this comment and frame it in terms of a question from danielle plecka, a fellow from the american enterprise washington in washington, she has penned this, first of all, this question, how does the u.s. make a difference in state of the international community's paralysis and obama administration's reluctance to support syrian opposition, and damascus has been the linchpin of the strategy, and she concludes: guest: i think that's something that the obama administrationo thee they get. the problem is, until now, there have been a number of very real problems. one of them is that the
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opposition inside the country is horribly divided, much more divided than the libyan opposition. and of course, that presents challenges because it becomes -- it's easier to facilitate a transition and work with people if they are well organized. second, if you know what's coming next, so you can bet on that emerging in the future, we don't know so much about that in syria. so much about when the regime falling comes down to what also replaces it. and at the moment we have a maintenancor ally in the regime under serious attack and going down but we don't know what's going to emerge from that political entity. i think it's going to be very chaotic for years and that's something that's created a challenge and i think that's the reason why you've seen mitt romney criticizing president obama on syria but not doing so in the way you might expect because syria is a complicated case, and i expect that that's
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increasingly going to be so, and sadly, it's going to be happening at the same time with a lot of death and destruction. guest: and one of the opinion pieces, the "new york post", mira teragi writes. caller: i don't know there's been much perspective given to history about the middle east and referring it back to our own history. we're celebrating the 150th anniversary of a rebellion in this country, you know, in which the president has called up the troops and we had a fairly bloody war for four years in which many thousands, tens of thousands, of especiallies were also
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killed, and we had a general sherman who basically destroyed the entire countryside as he marched from atlanta to the sea to just make a point and hundreds of thousands people died. we do not condemn him as a mass murderer for doing that. and i don't see how we can condemn bashar's son for basically fighting a civil war, but fighting against rebels. i mean, what they do inside their own country should not be any more of our concern than what we did inside of our own country 150 years ago host: thank you for the call. guest: i don't agree. in the case of the american civil war, you have a civil war. in the case of syria, syria hasn't always been in a state of civil war.
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actually the syrian opposition and the syrian upvising was overwhelmingly peaceful in nature for about i would say -- it's only been about the last eight months or so that the things have accelerated in terms of the armed groups and it's very simple, because the assad regime was using live fire and shelling on a civilian population. they took it for nine months, the international community didn't come to their rescue, so they said well, this is something many americans relate to, we're going to pick up weapons and fight back, and president assad said we're fighting terrorists and fighting a civil war. the syrian uprising was not always an armed uprising. president assad is getting what he deserves in return for his repressive polices. i realize it's not always as simple as who started it, but in this particular case, i think the president assad and his regime are to blame, and that's the zone why we have the position we do by the obama administration and its allies that the regime in
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syria bears responsibility and that president assad should step aside. host: "the new york times" story, you're quoted in the front page, it's available online, and they quote admiral william mcraveen, head of the special operations, he told congress it is going to take an international effort when assad falls and he will fall in order to secure these weapons. the story points out that americans and other western intelligence officials have expressed concern that some of the more than 100 rebel formations fighting inside syria may have tie toss al-qaeda and they could exploit as the security worsens. this is a point you brought up earlier as well. guest guest the arms groups i met with in lebanon and turkey, and i'm going there shortly with a colleague, what simply happened is that the armed groups have grown in number, they are, though
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-- they're not organizing in a linear fashion. they're not leader less, but they're head less. and that's for a couple of reasons. one of which is that the geographic distribution of these groups in the country is wide. second though, if this organization had a head, assad would try and cut it off. it will be interesting to see who emerges as the strong military or political figure during this transition. until now i can't point to one of them who would be able to work with or cut deals with. but the u.s. government has scrambled over the last six months to get a better knowledge of these groups, and i think we're going to see an increase in the united states working with such groups. now, as you mentioned, al-qaeda does operate in the country but it's not part of the opposition. it's only in the sense that they also oppose the assad regime. but i don't believe that al-qaeda is going to take over opposed assad syria. i think it's going to however
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play a role as a third party and one that serves our short term interests of -- that shares our interests in terms of bringing down the assad regime but certainly not our long term interests in any way, and i think it's very important we are cautious about working with groups in syria, making sure they are not involved with al-qaeda or their affiliates. host: to be clear, the photograph we showed, one of those rebel groups from "the new york times", a section of the "new york times". but this is from joy, who says syria took in so many war refugees from iraq and now they are smack dab in the middle of a civil war. are they moving back to iraq. guest: yes they are, and some of them are moving back to iraq and that's just unfortunately, you know -- a lot of iraqis have suffered in the process and we'll have to wait and see what their choices are here going forward. it also depends upon those refugees, where are they from, are they sunni, shia.
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a lot of these refugees have returned as iraq has stabilized over the last couple of years. guest: -- host: carter, good morning. caller: yes. can you hear me. host: sure can. caller: mr. tabler, good morning. i'd like to just start off by saying i -- i'm disturbed by some misleading comments that i think you've made, just to give an example of one is that you've stated that the assad government has lost all legitimacy within inside syria and i don't believe that's to be true. i've been following this situation for a number of months very closely by many multiple news sources, and i believe that the picture that you're pointing is very misleading. because the free syrian army which has been painted in much of the media as a spontaneous uprising of syrian citizens is nothing of
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the sort. apparently it's neither free nor syrian, nor is it an army. basically what you have here is a group of hired groups -- groups of hired mer sen areas -- mer senaries, then not syrian internationals who are basically hired thugs, killers, terrorists and assassins. the syrian government in my view has every right to protect itself against such attacks. host: i want him to respond and we'll follow up. guest: i don't agree with you. i think that line that you just put forward is that of the syrian regime. i read all the sources and i read them in multiple hangs. i would -- languages. i would agree with you in that the situation in syria is not simple. i think that the assad regime has lost legitimacy in terms of its legitimacy to govern. i think also the most importantly now, that the regime's power is contracting.
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you're not fighting in your capitol and then using combat aircraft and these kinds of things, weapons, unless you absolutely have to, so i don't think what i said was misleading. i think it's just -- i think it just doesn't agree with your point of view which i think is very close to the regime's account. host: carter are you with us? caller: let me finish with the question. what i see is that nato is heavily involved in this, turkey is actively involved, there have been foreign nationals who have been found who have come into the country from germany, from france, britain special ops in there, certainly turkey has special ops in there and the muslim brotherhood is involved in this, the assad regime has been at war with the muslim brotherhood for a long time, this is still an issue for this government. within the larger geopolitical context, i
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believe that the reasons that russia and china are opposed to what's happening is that they see a gross violation of the sovereignty of the country of syria and its government by outside forces that are trying to destroy it host: -- guest: i don't agree. i don't think this is a plot by the international community to destroy syria. it's true a lot of powers are betting on different factions inside of syria. i don't think that sovereignty -- sovereignty is not something that a regime should be able to hide behind. in terms of when you're entrusted with sovereignty you also are entrusted with protecting your own people, this is under the u.n. charter. when you don't do that or when you violate their rights to this degree, i don't think you can stand beside it and i don't think that we should. president assad had a choice, 12 years ago, when he took power. he could have reformed and tried to get ahead of this
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demographic wave sweeping over the country. he just couldn't do it. and in this country, when your polices can't deal with the situation, you're voted out of office. in syria, the assad regime has ruled supreme since 1970 and the syrian people didn't have that dhois -- that choice and they're fighting back and they deserve our support. host: how much influence does his mother have on him? guest: that's a good question. we're not sure but she's still around. she is an alloite like bashar. bashar's wife is a sunni. i talk about this in the book. many times i would go to the minister of administration and phi say first lady, and they'd say andrew, no, the first lady is bashar assad's wife. this is the wife of the president. so they revere her. how much of an influence does she have an bashar is
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unclear. she's not in the public realm. but we do know this is a regime which is dominated by the assad family so we think she plays a role but i don't think we understand what. host: donna has this point, anything to get us into war. is that what this is about? guest: no. i mean, for 18 months or so, the obama administration has gone out of its way and bent over backwards to go through the u.n. so it hasn't had to end up in a war. but sometimes wars happen. it's because you have two irreconcilable sides. a minority dominated regime that is brutal, that has a proven track record of being unable to reform, ruling over one of the youngest populations in the middle east outside the palestinian territories. these two forces are just swirling around each other like a hurricane and anyone who's visited syria over the past year, or the areas around it, gets that. western policymakers, though,
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thought that oh well, maybe it would settle down or maybe eventually people would go home. that didn't happen. so i think what we're looking at here is a conflict, and a hurricane which has been gathering for some time and of course it's harder to deal with a hurricane if you don't take procedures in advance to get people to safety and to deal with a fallout and that's what the obama administration i believe is doing now. host: our guest is andrew tay. let me go back to the front page of the "new york times", united nations works to oust president assad, points out the administration officials have been in talks with officials in turkey and israel on how to manage a syrian government collapse. leon panetta head to go israel in the next several days to meet with the counter parties in israel and the white house is holding daily high level meetings to discuss a broad range of contingency plans with regard to syria. john is on the phone from capitol heights. goodgood morning, democrats' line.
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caller: good morning. that last caller was somewhere on the mark about what's happening over there. but you all talking about 12 years ago, libya, iraq, syria, were all friends of the american government, all those dictators were friends of america, and america knew then that what they were doing was undemocratic so now all of the sudden oh, syria and the president and whoever he is is such a bad guy. i mean, but what's amazing to me is the two faces, the hypocrisy, lies, selective justice, no accountability, of what america is doing in that part of world, what israel is doing in that part of the world an everybody over there is so wrong but nothing is said or dub about our hands, our footprints, our cia, our manipulations and all all that part of the world, seeking oil and putting whoever we want to be in there to protect israel. israel can kill who they want to and justify it but at the same time, those people aren't stupid and crazy.
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although they are different regimes and tribals, and in the meantime, i cannot disagree with russia or china when they sit back and see just how two faced and unjustified we are in what we do, and want to hold everybody else accountable. guest: firstle on of all we didn't support libya. they're a listening term adversary of the u.s., although there was some reconciliation before. getting to your point, i agree with new that the u.s. had been backing a lot of these regimes earlier. it was because we thought they were stable. there is a lot of hypocrisy. are you particularly surprised that international politics like domestic politics -- that our politicians are not consistent? and maybe a greater question, are even people consistent in pursuing -- and pursuing your interests is sometimes
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complicated. i wish it wasn't so. i wish we were supporting -- and this is what i learned by living in the region -- i wished we were supporting regimes or governments that were more in touch with their people. anybody who lives in the middle east for a long time understands that. but some of the -- but for some of the reasons you mentioned, we don't. and that's because they've got -- i think a lot of people believed and tried to boil down our policy to a couple of things, and of course, in democratic party circles, it was that the peace process reigned supreme, and that was the way we should approach the region. peace process is important and the settlement between the israelis and palestinians is important to the two-state solution, but that conflict is not the reason why people get up in the morning in the middle east. they are -- their concerns have broadened over time. and hopefully they have solved that problem eventually but until that time they're going to be dealing with basic issues of governance i think here for the coming years if not
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decades. host: headlines, clashes affecting the largest city in syria, a comment from robert saying this is a manufactured war by the military industrial complex. we can't have one year of peace? we'll get cal, last call, ogden, utah, if morning. caller: thank you c-span. we're dealing with a region of the world that's been at war with one another for 2000 years. there's always been conflict in the middle east, there will always be conflict in the middle east and here we are talking about peace and talking about dumping weapons into an area to arm the other side, if you will, so they can fight back, and the next thing you know you have 12-year-olds carrying ak47s or m16s, shoulder launched rocket propelled grenades, dumping weapons into the hands of people that don't mind giving weapons to children. guest: speaking of weapons to children, i think we have a big problem in this country with that as well.
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look, i get your point. the middle east is a place which is in turmoil, has been for a while. but i think it depends upon what the nature of it is, and in this particular case, by backing the opposition inside of syria and trying to understand them, we are able to better affect the outcome in kir z syria, and that is the assad regime is contracting and this new political entity is coming into place. i remember as a kid launching the iranian revolution -- watching the iranian revolution on television and the war in lebanon and watching iran emerge, and its asendance on the regional scene. the assad regime going down would be a major blow for iran's ability to project its power in the region. so strategically, i think this is one of these times when our values and our
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interests line up. now, how you achieve that is another matter, and that's -- because syria is so complicated is the reason why it's taken so long for the administration to come up with a coherent policy. host: andrew tabler, senior fellow at the near east institute, washington institute.org, thank you for sharing your perspective with us, appreciate your time. guest: my pleasure. host: coming up, the gospel according to the fix, the fix , chris cillizza, he'll be here to talk about his book and presidential politics, and later two leading experts on the issue of aids as the international aids conference gets underway today here in washington, d.c. the washington journal continues on this sunday morning. it's july 22nd. we're back in a moment.
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>> a lot of the stores i've seen fail are stores that are opened by people who are interested in having a business, not that they had an attachment to books or a love of books, but you know, they were business people. i think you really have to have kind of a gut attachment to books to care enough about
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them, because your customers are like that. i mean, they come because they really care about books. >> watch for book tv and american history tv in louisville, august 4 and 5 on c-span2 and three. >> it was about those men and women who are almost mortally injured in war who, because of the huge advances that have been made in medical trauma treatment over the last ten years, now they're being saved, an incredible number of them are being saved. almost everybody who falls on the battlefield is being saved. and i wanted to write about what life was like for these people, and i really started off with a question, having seen some people who were pretty, pretty gruesomely mamed, wouldn't it be better off if they were dead? don't they wish that they were dead? >> in "beyond the battle
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battlefield" his ten part series for the huffington and subsequent e book, david wood spoke with vets and their families, as well as surgeon, combat medics, therapists rand nurses on the daily struggles for those severely wounded in military operations. learn more tonight at 8:00 on c-span's q & a. >> we want to welcome back to c-span chris cillizza of the "washington post" and your newest book, actually your first book, the gospel according to the fix, an insider's guide to a less than holy world of politics of the let's dive into it. you write campaigns are not won on paper for those that argue that retail politics has little to do with what you actually do when you're elected president, here is my response. what is diplomacy if not using your powers of persuasion with regard to foreign policy or in dealing with congress. guest: i think we have a tendency to, especially if
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you are not a political reporter, if you're someone watching, you have a tendency to think that basically what these campaigns are you match up one candidate's set of issue positions, you match up the other candidate's set of issue positions, you go down and see which you agree with more and whichever one what's more check, that's the one you choose an in truth it's more about feel, particularly with a president, you feel like who relates to you, who understands you in some meaningful way and that's not won on paper. i always say this, if campaigns won on paper meg whitman would be governor of california, john kerry would have beat george bush and mitt romney would be far ahead of barack obama at the moment. campaigns do matter. the context, the landscape on which they're fought is very important but what happens day to day and week to week and particularly month to month really does matter. host: these are the ten issues you won't hear about this fall.
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this is surprising. number one is immigration, number two is health care, number three is education, number four is debt reduction, number five is energy, number six and seven is foreign policy, you list that twice. guest: they said is that a tiny. i said no, that's not a typo, that's right. host: campaign finance, gun control, and terrorism. these seem to be the foreign and domestic issues we are going to be dealing with. guest: they're absolutely the foreign policy and domestic policy issues we will be dealing with in the future and should be dealing with now. they are not i believe issues thatry will talk about because almost all of them, steve, require difficult decisions to be made, tough choices to be made. immigration, we know how that went. when mccain and teddy kennedy tried to do immigration reform mccain had to walk away from it because of the chance it would cost him the nomination in 2008. they are issues we should be
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talking about. they are not issues we will talk about. we'll talk about largely this broad scale discussion we've been having about who's better on the economy, that will devolve as it almost always does into a more personal attack, if you live anywhere near where we live in the washington, d.c. media market you've seen the ad of roth romney singing america the beautiful while some stats while he did at bain capital and as governor of massachusetts runs. that's what we're going to see. the idea we're going to delve into immigration, education, even debt reduction, which i assume will come up after the election, it will have to, these are things that will get glossed over and shouldn't but i believe -- i hate to sound cynical on a sunday morning but i think will, which gets to one of the -- >> host: which gets to anxiety about our collective future reigns obama and romney have to find ways to soothe that anxiety.
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whoever does that better is likely to win in november. the poll from "the washington post", abc news, cbs news, "new york times" poll saying this race is a dead heat, 46, 47 percent. so this campaign over the six or 8 percent of the country still undecided? guest: yes. it's a remarkable thing. i would say it's probably closer to the 6 percent than the 8 percent. you have a regardingable level of polarization. partisans are going to go to their camps early. if you're a liberal democrat you're not going to be voting for mitt romney but what's is the soft partisans, people who say they're independents but ultimately vote for democrats or vote for republicans, those people have lined up. so what you're left with, steve, is 5 percent or 7 percent of folks who really are legitimately undecided and don't have an opinion. those 7 percent of the people is what the $2 billion or so dollars that will be spent in this election when campaigns, committees, superpacs, organizations, that's what
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all that money will be spent on. it's a remarkable sum of money for a remarkably small group of likes. host: you've been busy, i've seen your byline, giving michele bachmann the worst rateing in washington, because? guest: it came to light she was one of five republican legislateor -- legislators essentially asking for more information, investigations, about federal officials of those working with federal officials who had ties to the muslim brotherwood, one is huma abadin, close to secretary of state hellery clinton and happens to be married to anthony weiner, john mccain, went to the senate floor to denounce not bachmann particularly but bachmann almost particularly for this. you saw other people, john boehner, coming out and saying it's a pretty dangerous course to go down this sort of thing, they
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compared bachmann to joe mccarthy. any time i write that you're compared to joe mccarthy is not good for your political career. this is nothing new to michelle backman, she courts controversy but usually you can turn on a cable tv show and she is talking. she went silent in the wake of this criticism. host: and i have to tell people it's the person you don't expect -- few people predicted joe biden, few people predicted sarah palin. guest: no one predicted sarah palin, no one predicted joe biden, you're right. host: in terms of establishment, tea party, minority, house senate -- >> guest: it kind of depends. in some ways it depends on what you want. we have a tendency to think the number of people being vetted is larger than the actual number of people being vetted. i wrote a piece that said if you've ever seen fight club, the first rule of fight club is don't talk about fight
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club. that's how the veep pick works. people who know what's going on, i would say that's mitt romney, ann romney, bev myers, leading the search and probably matt rhodes, campaign manager, those are the four people who can give us a full picture. their not interested in giving you and i a full picture. maybe if they are they can tall in on the republican -- call in on the republican line and let us know. what you're doing is guesswork. we're down to a narrow group. i do think tim pawlenty is in that, rob portman, ohio senator, they're probably the top two folks on that list. i think bobby jindal, louisiana governor, should span that list, john thune, senator from south dakota should be on that list but so much is guesswork. it's knowing what mitt romney wants out of his v.p. i will almost guarantee you we will not see someone that's in-- as inexperienced and as little known as sarah palin. i believe the romney team isun believably cognizant of the dangers of the post-palin
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vice presidential pick for them, that they will pick somebody who is unassailable from a resume perspective, even they are someone as a rob portman, whose reputation is this guy is borings, they'd much better go in the direction of faith and reliable and someone who can't be criticized for his resume, that can step in on day one. host: there was speculation the announcement would come friday from compton, new hampshire and then friday dealing with the horrific tragedy in denver, but if it were to happen it gives you an indication of how sometimes the events can be out of their control. guest: i always say one of the things that's -- about politics that's hard for me, we spend every day coughing this and they spend every day living it an yet so much of it is determined in many ways by things you can't control. george w. bush couldn't control september 11th, that fund financially reshaped his presidency one year into it. the things happen, i think,
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that -- these things, the tragedy in colorado, they happen within a political context, and i think politicians have to react to that. you saw both barack obama and mitt romney come out and speak on friday. barack obama is headed to colorado today. this doesn't mean either of them are politicizing this event. what it means is that at times of national crisis or at times of national tragedy we look for our leaders to be leaders and they need to step town that. if they don't step up to it can hurt them in the long run. the impression made in comoments -- in moments like this, when everyone is paying attention to a single story, when they are those impressions and perceptions can haas well beyond the story. host: dan writes there's a pattern or protocol. guest: sadly, there is. we've had a number of events at this point. i thought barack obama -- and i don't say this because he meant to do himself political
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good but i think barack obama did himself political good with his speech in tucson in the wake of the attempted assassination of former congresswoman gab rail giffords, he seemed big, he talked personally about what this meant for he and his family. because i believe campaigns are decided not on paper but in the actions of politicians when big things happen, how candidates and politicians react is important. host: our guest, chris cillizza, the gospel according to the fix. call us, or twitter us or send us an e-mail. robert on the independent line from miami, good morning. caller: im morning -- good morning, how you doing. i wanted to say, i was watching larry king and barbara walters and they were talking about the state of journalism and how the question informs rather than the person, and i'm just -- i'm just real dissatisfied with how journalists -- it's
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become entertainment journalism now. you all don't report anymore. it's more like your opinion, it's more like your thoughts and you want to -- as a viewer you want to turn it off because you're not informed anymore on it, and i just wanted to -- i've seen this a couple of tiles on the morning shows, what have you, and i would like -- sometimes i just a error to report, rather than you put your opinion on it. what do you think about that? >> host: thank you. guest: look, i think it's a very legitimate question. i would say i, speaking as just me, try to do my best to report and provide some analysis to it. i think it is critically important that we as reporters continue to report. we don't just say well, i think this and i think that, that it's uninformed. i would say however i think there's real value in saying look i'm someone who brings some level of expertise to
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this. you can debate how much. but i bring some level of expertise to this. here's what people i've talked to say and here's why i think they're saying it. again i would agree with you, if we walk on to the side of a pion, we're doing ourselves the people who consume the news harm. reported analysis is different from opinion. reported analysis is a space i try to occupy. may fall down on that on occasion but i can assure you i'm doing my absolute level best to always have real reporting behind what i'm saying, either on television, on the blog, or in the book or anywhere else, as a way -- or anything else. heft heft we focused on the contenders, those candidates who ran for elective office, ran for president and failed, one of them, ross perot, who you write about today saying the maybe has finally met his moment, ross perot. guest: there was a little tongue in cheek. ross perot is 82 years old,
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he's not going to run for president again, but i would say, i spent a fair amount of time in the book trying to sort of construct the perfect third party candidate. jon huntsman's good looks, michael bloomberg's willsness to speak truth to power, the million dollars man, take pieces and connect them together and as i was writing, i thought you know what, there is won with all his flaws, message wise, persona, are a perfect fit for this legs and it's ross perot. go back and watch, and i said to folks thanks to the c-span video library, quick plug, with the most a-- was the most amazing tool for a political junkie to harvest these old things. you can type ross perot in and you can watch his old 30 minute --y, not 302nd, 30 minute infomercials in which he bought network ad time and explained his polices. sure they're hoy and he uses
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a voo do stick, and you've got to watch it to find it. what he talks about is how bad the debt it, it was $4.1 trillion, it's $16 trillion now, it's remarkable, and his persona, outsider, businessman, again, a speak truth to power guy, there is a case to be made that ross perot was a man ahead of his time. his most legitimate run for president, he got 19 percent in 1982, was 20 years ago. if he was running in 2012, ross perot i think would have a legitimate chance at being elected president. obviously you can't reverse engineer and it was 20 years ago, not today, but go back and watch his infomercials, his television ads, and i saw thank you to c-span for letting us be able to do that. it's remarkably precient about the debt and kind of where we are as a country fiscally. host: chris cillizza, we appreciate the plug.
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c-span.org, the video library, it's very easy to navigate. type in what you're looking for and as little or as much as you want is available free. guest: it is amazing. it's something that as reporter i use weekly, sometimes daily. host: we approve that announcement! ed, go ahead. caller: thank you for having me on. my watch word in this campaign is comfortable. comfortableness, if i can get that out, this early in the morning. really, i guess the 6 percent or 7 percent of the people are undecided, but most people, almost everybody, has a leaning one way or the other, and i think it will come down to what's going to happen in october with the debates. the debates are always intense, we watch them intently and we will certainly do that this time because we're being primed for that attitude now with what's happening during the summer, and there will be
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some decision making based on those debates and i think it will be people looking at the two of them standing close together on the same stage, answering questions and the way they answer them, the way they behave, the way they relate to the audience, those there in the room and those ofis watching by the millions. i remember an event in '08 that was certainly the case and i watched with a mixed group of republicans and democrats, and there was cheering for the democrats' points and cheering by the republicans for other points, but we came away with sort of a pretty good feel thank we could be comfortable with bin laden and many people were i guess and still are, although there is that firmly entrenched opposition that's been there from the very beginning, and i regret seeing that, i wish people would be a little more open minded. host: thank you for the call. of course few people remember in 1980 the only debate between ronald reagan and jimmy quarter and next day, reagan opened up to a huge
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lead and it was a dead heat race. guest: this shows my nerd democrats dom. '80, people thought reagan was ahead and that was not true. this was a very close race until that debate and ronald reagan, the knock had been he was the governor of california, this guy was an actor, was he up to the job and keep soured on carter but they weren't sure, and to ed's point, when you saw them together, reagan looked presidential. what does that mean, it looks like you can lead the country, it looks like you can lead us both domestically and in foreign policy. point to go the '08 debates, one of the things people say, is barack obama going to do a star turn. what did barack obama do? very serious, very careful, but sober of the challenges before him. so it wasn't --o his challenge was people thought he's a rock star, loves the
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way he does speeches but what does he do, and in the debates he proved he was credible on the economy, foreign policy and ready to be president of the united states. it's a very rare thing, when as many people as will watch those debates you almost never get that opportunity in politician, so i would agree. the conventions, the v.p. pick to a certain extent, jobs numbers, all the way to november, certainly the debates, those are four huge things that will shift an electorate that remarkably almost nothing has shifted. we've had all these huge things happen and it's 47 romney, 47 obama. host: you brought up october in your book. you say when scanning back over the last 30 years of october surprises there's no question the pace of them has picked up. whatever you believe about the 2000 election and bush's dui which came out the weekend before the election it very clearly ushered in the age in which october surprises were the rule, not the exception. of course, you might argue in 2008 the october surprise came in september.
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guest: with the economy. no question. when i went into this book, one of the reasons i went into that book is there was a lot of stuff i didn't know about. there were things i knew recently but i was a late convert to politics and a lot of things i wasn't totally sure about. a lot of people say well, that happens every october, every four years and i thought i'm not sure about that. certainly we know in '08, kind of with the economy and '04, it was bin laden tape, in 2000, certainly the bush d.u.i., so he went back and looked and in truth, there haven't been all that many. this is a relatively new phenomenon is that something happens in the month before the election that change things, an one thing i would add is the bush dui may be an outlier. i do think the bush dui did have some impact. you have karl rove on the record in the wake of the election saying it hurt us by a few points. obviously that went from bush being ahead by a few points to literally a dead heat tie on election day. but i think that's the exception to the rule. i think largely the october
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surprises, they get a lot of attention but i'm not convinced they have that such impact. particularly in an election like this one, steve, where literally the electorate is so locked in, it feels like the supreme court ruling on health care, the capturing, killing of usama bin laden, the debt ceiling debate, the budget showdown debate, all of these huge things that galvanize not just attention in washington but attention nationally, internationally, you think it's going to have a real impact on the race, nope. so that's what i'm wondering about, have people, with the exemption of the 5 percent or 8 percent of undecideds, have people made up their mind that any external event will not impact them. host: your predecessor was a print reporter. you've now written a book, you're on television, you write a blog, you're on newspaper. part of new age of journalism guest: i hope, and i'm thankful for you to comparing me in the same sense to david. he is someone who i mad the pleasure of working with for
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several years before he passed away. the great thing about david bro devment er and i'll add dan ball to this list who is writing a book about this campaign, who will release it after the campaign, they're in the position, neither david nor dan have to work anymore, they are david and dan, known as huge commodities, yet they're the foans making the phone calls, they're the ones o'clock nothing on the doors of people in iowa and new hampshire, they're the ones continually looking to figure out what they don't know and not assuming they have a monopoly on knowledge. to the first caller's call about reporters reporting, those are guys who reported, david up until his death and dan, every day i see him, they still report every single day and that's what i admire about them and that's a great thing about working at "the washington post", we have that tradition, but if i could be excluded in that conditions -- in that sentence, even way down in
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the sentence, i include that. robert in kansas city, republican line with chris cillizza, "washington post", good morning. causecol good morning. -- caller: good morning. you know, i could speak on a lot of these issues. it never ceases to amaze me that when guys like mr. cillizza are on that you don't have the word "democrat" plastered across that screen, and when you said that michele bachmann is on tv all the time, there are people i see on tv a lot more than michele bachmann and you're on of them. you're on msnbc almost all day long, every day, it seems like, spouting the democrat point of view. you know, it just boggles me that you would criticize a congressman for being on tv all the time. i wish my congressman was on tv a lot more speaking out for these issues.
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guest: guilty as charged on being on television a lot. it would be tough for me to dispute that, particularly being on television at the moment. i would directly disagree with you about the characterization of being a democrat. i'm someone who is -- i've worked very hard to not be partisan, i'm not someone who comes from a partisan background, in fact, i don't vote, i've never voted, not that this is evidence of whether you are partisan or not, but i would say i understand if you believe that to be the case, but i can tell you that i'm just not someone who's terribly political as it relates to my own personal life. i view it much more lime kind of intrigued by personalities, the statistics, the histories. that's what draws me to podtician, not necessarily the ideological values. on bachmann, i may not be clear enough, i was not criticizing her for being on television. as you point out, that would be a little cynical of me to do, given my amount of television i do. what i was saying is sme is
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someone who is regularly on -- she is someone who is regularly on the talk shows that, is not a bad thing but it is worth noteing in the weighing of this controversy regarding humea ab deny and -- abaden and the muslim brotherhood, that was my point, so i apologize if i did not make that point as well as i should of. host: and a followup, a caller said please, michele bachmann practically runs to the tv cameras. this is first from the romney campaign, taking aim at a comment made by the president early in the week. >> i'm always struck by people who think i must sob
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smart. there must be a lot of smart people out there. must be because i worked hard enough. let me tell you something. if you got a business, you didn't build that, somebody else made that happen. >> did somebody else take out the len on my father's house that financed the equipment, did somebody else make payroll every week or figure out where it's coming from? president obama, you're killing us out here. through hard work and a little luck, we built this business. why are you demonizing us for it? we are the solution. not the problem. time we had somebody who believes in us. someone who believes that achievement should be rewarded, not punished. >> we need somebody who believes in america. >> the idea to say that steve jobs didn't build apple, that henry ford didn't build ford motor, to say something like that is not just foolishness, it's insulting to every
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entrepreneur, every innovator in america. president obama attacks success and therefore, under president obama, we have less success and i will change that. host: from the rom they campaign -- from the romney campaign last weekend. this response from the obama campaign: >> president obama exposed what he really thinks about free people and the american vision, he said this. if you've got a business, you didn't build that. somebody else made that happen. if you were successful, somebody along the lines gave you some help. there was a great teacher somewhere in your life.
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we value school teachers, fireet e. investments in road. sue: somebody built roads. if you've got a business, you didn't build that, somebody else made that happen. >> you really couldn't have a business if you didn't have those things. >> the point is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also, because we do things together. host: chris, what's going on here? you have a comment that is then turned into a web ad by the opponent, and the back and forth on really these micro issues. guest: i would say gasp, one side is taking the other side's comments a little out of context. it's kind of nothing new sund the -- under the sun, it's a dog bites man situation. at the root of this is barack obama in his comments that myth rmny's ad played, did he reveal something that he really believes, which is you don't make or build anything on your own, that it's a
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collective evident. what the obama folks say is look at the context of it. he is simply saying if you have a business, someone billion the road to that business, someone helped you construct the walls of that business, not that you as a individual don't deserve credit for kind of the broad success of business. the romney campaign is taking it to say this is a winnow into how he views things, he thinks that private enterprise does not work, he does not understand it. it's an echo of what romney has been talking about throughout the campaign is look, i've been in the private sector, i'm a businessman, i know how to create jobs. this is someone who has been a college professor and they say this can disdane, community organizer and someone who frankly doesn't understand the private sector and has disdane for the private sector. in some ways this is politics as politician, steve-oo as politics, steve. i don't think the election will be ultimately decided o this comment. this election looks to me, if you look at polls, "new york times", they had a fascinating poll about the
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level to which the economy drives obama down, 35 percent approve of his handling of the economy, 55 percent disapprove and 51 percent say a president can do a lot about the state of the economy. that's troubling if you're barack obama because in truth if you talk to economists they say the president gets too much credit when the economy is good, and i would say mitt romney has not run a perfect campaign but he seems to be credible alternative if that's what people are looking to. host: and donna saying yeah, i saw that ad coming. michael on the phone from colorado springs, member of the green party. caller: good morning and thank you for having me on this morning. my only question is i keep hearing on c-span, and i watch it almost every morning for the past year is everybody keeps talking about mitt romney or barack obama being the next president. how come we never hear about
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the third party? dr. jill stein is also running, has anybody given credibility to her campaign at all. host: we featured her last sunday on the washington journal and covered her acceptance speech in baltimore, along with her running mate. guest: and i write about this in the book, which is that if you look at polling about dissatisfaction with the two major parties, if you look at the fastest growing success and the fastest growing political affiliation in the country is independents by far, you would say jill stein or someone else who wanted to run as a third party candidate. host: ross poaro. guest: would have a legitimate -- perot. guest guest would have a legitimate constituency. there are lots of serious credit people from both sides of the aisle ments what they did is say we've made a mistake about the approach of third party candidate. instead of waiting for a
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person to mearnlg we're going to put the pieces in place orally and fine the person. what they did is collected ballot signatures. this is not an insignificant list. every state has their own laws of how you qualify for a presidential ballot. it usually involves signature and petition gathering. that is dossly -- costly and time-consuming. they did that and got the ballot in half a dozen states and were on the way to getting more. early in the year they held an online convention designed to pick a candidate, a candidate had to reach a certain threshold. no one reached that threshold. the person who came closest was a person who was not in fact officially competing for the nomination. it will not surprise folks to know that was texas congressman ron paul. he's an amazing active online and off linele forking. what that told me is yes the idea of a third party candidacy is appealing because people do not like the two parties, they feel like the two parties don't do that, you sthee in congressional approval, you see that in presidential
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approval, and yet, when it comes down to actually picking a third party person, putting a name to a third party, oh, that person has his or her own weaknesses, his or her own flaws, it is not the ideal third party candidate, it's the third party candidate you wind up getting. that's why i put the exercise together of could we construct a perfect third party candidate. foes -- for those that talked about michael bloomberg, a lot of people talked about him in 2008, and we haven't talked about gun control, but that is outside the majority of most peep, this won from hails from a large liberal city that is disdained by lots of the country, this is someone who is a single jewish man. i'm not sure michael bloomberg plays outside the corridor. we like to talk about the fact that he'd be a good candidate. i think he has real appeal in the fact that he's will to go
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speak truth, but i don't see a broad constituency for someone like a michael bloomberg. >> and finally, there is talk about the thid parties and if you watch to watch the green party convention or libertarian convention or other third party events it's on our website, part of the c-span library that chris cillizza talked about. he's not a third party candidate, congress ron paul, republican of texas, presidential candidate, he'll be speaking at the convention in august, a chance for you to tweet in your comments, tuesday morning, c-span. florence, new york city, democrats' line with chris cillizza, good morning. col my issue is with this campaign, listens -- republicans, they don't like being attacked but they always try to justify attacking democrats and they don't really have any tools.
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republicans to me, they want to play the race game at the end of the day. obama did everything, what he said he was going to do, but he never gets any credit for this. guest get certainly a viewpoint hell on many democrats' circles. if you look at the tone of the campaign, i would actually say the obama campaign has been the more aggressive in terms of really taking it in a somewhat personal way to mitt romney. that's not to say that mitt romney and his allies won't respond in kind but i would say that it's striking that barack obama has not pulled punches here, he has gone directly at mitt romney often in a personal way. that approach frankly has won him plaudits from folks i know on the democratic strategist say who say -- side who say for long times democrats have won moral victories and lost actual
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victories, the swift vote is an example, that john kerry and his allies said no one is going to believe this is beneath contempt, yet it did undermine his candidacy and helped reelect george w. bush. i don't think barack obama will make that mistake, he understands the ultimate goal is winning campaigns and getting reletting, that's the best way to push his agenda forward and they are doing that. host: the gospel according to the fix and your blog, entitled the fix, where did you come up with that? guest: i recently did a book signing and someone asked me that question and i said it was a compromise in a lot of ways. first of all, any time you try to name any political plog at this point that has campaign or 2012 or two on -- it's already taken. number two, we did this in '05 and the goal was, the conceit of the fix, the blog, was are there enough people who are political addicts and that's kind of where we got the fix from, this would be
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your fiction, if you were a political junkie and you loved the granular politics, if you wanted to talk about -- in the book i say my fest of a political junkie is if at this point in the 2012 campaign, if i mention the 2016 handicapping for president, if your eyes glaze over, you're not a real political junkie. if you lean forward in your seat,ure a political junkie. that's our litmus test. host: you have the list. we're going to have you stick around to have you share the list, this is the five must read books, we featured these , richard ben chaimer, what it takes, john barry's, the ambition and the power, game change, path to power, means of assent and masor of the senate, trilogy. >> and passage to power, the new one out of there. >> and joe klein's primary colors. >> guest: the one i would love to talk about is richard van
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cramer's book, it was about the '98 campaign, it's about 1000 campaign, it's not an easy undertaking but this is a book that for me was genuine inspiration as to why i wanted to cover and write about politics and politicians. richard van cramer, the title is meant to signify what it means for a person to run for president. i think people don't understand how incredibly taxing, how incredibly difficult it is to do this thing and who are the people that out of this whole country, decide you know what, i think i would be the best person to represent them. ben cramer, i had the chance to meet him a while back with several of my colleagues, i went back to the eastern shore, because literally the first thing i did when i went on book leave is visit him. i wanted to talk to him about writing books but i also wanted to talk to him about what it makes in the '88 campaign and just a fascinating individual. he went on to write a well reviewed book about joe dimaggio, if you care about baseball and even if you
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don't, you should read. just a fascinating take on who these people are and where they emerge from. ben cramer, he was just a guy. he wasn't anybody, and particularly, he didn't work for ag big news organization. he decided he want to write this book. he started calling press secretaries and he was getting no response. what did he do, he went to st. louis, and interviewed dick geoff heart's mother and found his brother and he found -- he went bottom up, which is so -- it seems so obvious, but at the time, people weren't doing it. so he found out who the friends of all these people, what they were kids, he talks about what they were like when they were kids, what they were like in high school, in college. just a great thing and i would say read it solely for the stuff on joe biden. biden obviously ran for president, was considered a frontrunner at one time in the '88 race, they have a
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close relationship. insight into the of the united states is remarkable and we forget what joe biden, the tremendous tragedy of losing his wife and his child early in his life, his struggle with that and who he has become as a result, i think for the bidden stuff and bob dole stuff, obviously the kansas republican senator , ben cramer writes as convincingly, more convincingly than anyone i've ever read before about bob dole's struggles after his injuries, his post-war injuries and how he, through literally sure force of will, willed himself back to health, then to the senate and then to a presidential race, obviously the nominee in 1996. so just stunning stuff there, and i can't recommend that book highly enough. host: our last call is minda from tennessee with chris cillizza. caller: i was surprised that
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the post pointed out the lies that obama told about romney's time at bain but most of the lines, about hillary, saying he has instincts of a chicago thug. you see where he has an enemies list and labor department and irs investigate the contributors to the romney campaign. we have never had anything like that happen before. >> thank you minda. kathleen parker writing about it in the washington post, obama's team aims low. guest: look, i agree broadly with the idea that the obama team is doing what it takes to win this race. and that includes savaging mitt romney's time at bain. i always say to people when they say in politician, that's not fair, campaign politics is not a moral fable, campaign politics is about winning and losing. you may not like that reality but the truth of the matter is -- my wife is a college field hockey coach, there are wins and losses. there is no asterisk next to the losses, well, they played
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better and they pushed us around and we were more skilled. that's not how it works. you win or lose. that's campaign politician, too. there is no -- politics. there is no gray area. there's book and white. there's winning and losing. the caller mentioned hillary clinton and bill clinton. mitt romney is running ads in which he features clinton saying shame on you barack obama. my guess is we may see more in the mitt romney ads in the time to come. host: i want to go through your all star list, marco rubio on the republican side, bob gentlemen jindal, nicky haley, chris yisie of new jersey, mcdonald's donl, senator john thune of south carolina. one of the names could be on the list of the v.p. list if romney is elected. on the democratic side, andrew cuomo of new york, martin o'malley of maryland, senator mark warner of virginia, elizabeth warren,
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rahm emanuel of chicago and secretary of state hillary clinton. >> if jeb bush runs in 2016 on the republican side or 2020 if romney is elected, he's the overwhelming favorite. if clinton decides she wants to run again, i would say she's not likely to do so but she has not ruled out doing so, she is the de facto nominee. if not we have a much wider contest. if secretary clinton doesn't run, andrew cuomo, governor of new york, the son of a former governor of new york who himself was a much talked about though never realized presidential candidate, mario cuomo, would be on that side. if jeb bush doesn't run, much more wide open. some of it would decide on who mitt romney picks as his president. if he picks indual or rubio if they lost in 2012, they would be first among equals in 2016. host: chris cillizza, your first book, thank you very much for being with us. guest: thank you for taking
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the time, i appreciate it. host: your work is online at "washington post".com. the international aids conference is getting underway today here in washington, d.c., and when we come back, we're going to take a closer look at the issue of aids an specifically, the disease in this country, with two experts in the field. but first a look at some of the other issues and guests, making news this sunday morning, all from the programs that can be heard on c-span radio. >> on today's network talk shows, the mat shootings in dn ver dominate discussions and plans from defendants from both presidentical campaigns were canceled after those shootings. on meet the press david dpregry talks with hick hickenlooper, former los angeles chief of police bill bratton and former secretary of homeland security michael chertoff, on this week, more of the colorado shootings, on fox news sunday, chris wallace welcomes the chairs
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of the house and senate intelligence committee, republican representative mike rodgers and democratic senator dianne feinstein. cnn's state of the union with candy crowley, hosting governor hickenlooper, as well as arizona republican senator john mccain. he's expected to discuss gun controlful on face the nation from cbs, host bob schiffer talks again with colorado governor hickenlooper and aurora california mayor steve hogan and mayor michael bloomberg, expected to discuss the politics of gun control. all five network talk shows reair on c-span radio, brought to you as a applicable service by the networks and c-span. the rebroadcasts begin at noon eastern with meet the press, at 1:00, hear abc's this week, followed at 2:00, fox news sunday, at 3:00, cnn's state of the union, and finally, at 4:00 p.m., face the nation from cbs. listen to them all on c-span nadeo on 91 -- 90.1
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financial, on xm satellite radio nationwide, channel 119, listen on your blackberry, download us as an iphone app or go online, cspan radio.org. >> a lot of the stores i've seen fail are stores opened by people who were interested in having a business, not that they had an attachment to books or lub of books. but they were business people. i think you really have to have a gut attachment to book
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toss care about them. bar your customers are like that. they come because they really care about books. >> watch for book tv and american history tv in louisville, august 4 and 5 on c-span2 and three. >> host: we want to well come president elect of the aids society, thank you very much for being with us. >> and regan hofmann, editor in chief of poz magazine which stands for -- >> guest: positive outlook. host: you were dying niece dollars with aids when? guest: there's a difference between the virus and the diagnosis of aids. i was diagnosed in 1996 after having unprotected sex. host: as you went through the treatment process what did you learn?
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guest: i learned that you can survive hiv. you have to access care and treatment which is challenging for people because there's a stigma surrounding the disease so i was one of the lucky ones. i was able to have the support of my friends and family and access to care. host: you made an important clarification, hiv and aids. do you want to elaborate. guest: aids is the virus that causes aids, it's what happens when the virus comes into your body and it sort of borrows the dna of your immune health and in the process kills them. having the virus can lead to a lack of an immune system that can make you get sick from other diseases. with treatment, the virus does not destroy the immune system and you can stay healthy and well and you can actually have a much lower risk of transmission of hiv. we now know that treatment can reduce the risk of transmission of the virus by 96 percent in people living with it so it's a very
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powerful tool. not only to keep people alive but also to stop the spread of the virus. host: you have turned this into your cause. why? what motivated you? guest: first of all, i was fighting for my life so that's a pretty good motivator and i felt so forth national. there are so many people who don't have care and treatment. we have 30 million people globally, 26 million, not in care, 750,000 americans with hiv, not accessing treatment that can save their lives, and stop the spread of the disease. so that's got to stop. that's something we can correct. since we have the answers medically we need to do a better job of applying this so i want to try to help and also try to destigmatize it. host: let me toll up, because of the stigma of the disease and relationship to aids, how far have we come from the 1980s? host: -- guest: we have come from a
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fatal infection to what is a treatable and preventable disease. but unfortunately, we still have a sustained epidemic in the united states. we have 55,000 new infections in the year in the plus, plus -- in the u.s., plus the number of people who remain untested and untreated. we have a lot of work still to do in this country. we have a lot of work to do globally, but this is a moment of extraordinary optimism in the feeltd and optimism in the hiv world because of some of the prevention tools and the finding that successful treatment is hiv prevention. >> let me go through some of the figures in terms of the transmission of the disease, male to male sexual contact is number one but drug use is a prevalent factor and often the combination of the sex and the drug use.
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>> well, that's true for the u.s., absolutely, yes. about 60 percent or so of new infections in this country are attributed to men having sex with other men. that part of the epidemic is one that we're concerned about, the numbers with gay young men are rising in this country and this is a particular challenge for minority bisexual men where the rates are really the heist and it's a very important health disparities issue and it's one that we're working hard to address. >> host: let me put numbers to that and get your reaction. among african-american men and it's 22,000, white, about half, about 11,000. guest: the disproportionate rate of african-american infection in america, it's important to point out this is because people who are african-americans often have
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less access to health care. they're not doing anything d there's no reason an african-american person, young, gay, male or female, straight, would be mosh at risk, other than the situation they're living in, the disparity and inequality that exists in their lifestyles. it's not that the virus is sort of targeting people. it's more that people don't have access to health care or there's a very high rate of infection in certain communities. host: the numbers are from 2009, but if you look at the age group among those diagnosed with hiv and aids, it is high among most age groups between ages of 13 to 50, but it's especially high among those between the ages of 20-24. is that lack of education? or just maybe disregard that it can't happen to me? >> well, i think when you look at this virus, transmission globally, it's always learn reproductive age we see the highest rates and that is because this is still
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predominantly a sexually transmitted infetion and those are the ages at which people are most active, in the process of finding life partners, for women, very likely to be starting child bearing and this is a virus that is transmitted through some of the most basic and fundamental human behaviors, conception, breast feeding, reproductive life. when we look at hiv transmission, we're always looking at people of reproductive age. >> regan hofmann, when you were diagnosed in 1996, 1997, what was your reaction, what were you thinking? >> i was shocked. honestly, i grew up with aids in the world, i knew about it but it was off my radar. i had never heard of a woman, my age, my background, getting hiv. it didn't seem like a real concern and when we let down our guard and think that hiv can't happen to us, that's
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when we're perhaps most vulnerable. so i was shocked and i was diagnosed by a doctor, who which is often the case for people in america, was not an aids specialist so he didn't know what to say, he gave me a prescription for xanax and the 800 number for the gay man's health crisis and i said i'm not a gay man, can i install get help. there are people getting help outside the aids office and that's the thing we have to address, people are in community health centers and i think we need to do a better job of screening people and have doctors look at hiv as something that everybody should be tested for. it's not something that we should only test people who appear to be high risk. >> what were your symptoms? >> guest: i had a swollen lymph gland in my groin and i went to the doctor and he said perhaps i had mono. i had' tested -- tested for tiv many times, i never
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thought it could be hiv and i just couldn't even speak when he told me, i just could not believe this happened. i had been careful for so slong and i was no longer careful, because i was worried he could become pregnant, contraception but not worried about my hiv risk. host: what's your lesson to the rest of the country and the world? guest: i think it's a critical thing to keep in mind is that practicing safe sex, getting tested, understanding your risk, really is the basis of hiv prevention. this virus it turns out has been with us a long time. hiv is a serious problem in america. it remains a serous problem, 55,000 new infections a year, so it is critically important it stays on peoples' radar screen. it was off her radar screen.
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i think that's true for too many americans. >> host: we're here at the tail as the international aids conference gets underway in washington, d.c. wee will be streaming the events a theath -- events at c-span.com, check out information at c-span.or gsm. robert is on the con from pennsylvania, good morning. caller: good morning. my question is i was diagnosed in 2000, and i've been taking my meds. i'm on an oral drug, virmin. i've' taking that for ten years. last month, i got my first prescription for a generic version. however, my bill to my insurance is exactly the same amount for this generic version as it is the regular medication. can anyone explain that to me? and why?
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host: doctor. guest: i think often what happens, and i should say, we still have a complex system with multiple insurance programs in this country, many state programs that kick in. it's a complex picture, as we all know. so i can't speak specifically to your program or why it is. but often, you know, what we see is that people are paying what are essentially set rates, higher rates, for brand name drugs, and that is an issue that we really need to address as a country. one of the big issues that's also on the there is the new uses of antivirals for prevedges and right now those drugs are really very expensive, and so there's a lot of concern about wanting
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to be sure that we can move toward the use of generics for treatment and prevention. and i think that that's an important area of advocacy for the future and i'm sorry that's happened to you personally. .
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guest: you cannot underestimate the stigma. it is still the predominant barrier to solving the problem. we have the medical solutions and. had to keep people alive and well. we need people to understand that this is just a disease of the immune system. people are uncomfortable because it is sexually transmitted. because of people's reticence to talk about sex, they do not want to talk about hiv. we need to make people aware that this is a real risk. we talk to older women, divorced women that were married back in the 1960's so we have opportunity to help people understand the risk and overcome the stigma that this is a virus, just a disease.
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host: according to the cdc, of 61% with an estimated 29,000 infections in the death from aids is 286,000 among gay and bisexual men. guest: it has been a longstanding and devastating epidemic. many of these deaths were in the 1980's and 1990's. the death rates have fallen dramatically with the success of the cocktail to triple therapy that we began in 1996. we all remember the vancouver aids conference where, for the first time, we saw real survival with this disease. host: is this a totally preventable diseases you take on the precautions you mentioned
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earlier? guest: yes. we can prevent hiv. it's difficult to say that it is totally preventable and that is true for several reasons. one certainly is, as we know, on the most at risk group, young people, very often embarked in a sexual life and risk behavior. first of all, and the studies are not entirely under their control. often before they have the tools then the skills to protect themselves, it is a real challenge, hiv prevention. but what is really good and what will be coming out is this conference in a major way where we now have some new tools that we think will make a difference. certainly one of the most important is the successful treatment of people living with hiv who can really reduce their
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risk of transmission. that will be a critical part of the u.s. strategy now going forward. host: dr. beyrer is the author of a book that came out in 1998, "war in the blood." and regan hofman from "poz" magazine. from washington, thank you for waiting. caller: a very interesting conversation and i'm glad you're discussing this topic here today. i have two questions actually. my first question is along the lines of prevention. is it possible that there could be, because you have this in the gay community, but these people continue to want to push their agenda and everything. it is just not enough to be able
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to be gay. they have to be embraced and accepted by all people. is this some kind of legislation that can mandate that these gay men who are determined to deceive straight heterosexual women, is there some sort of legislation that can be adopted in order to protect women from this? make it against the law. make it a crime not to disclose the fact that you are a gay man. host: regan hofman? guest: you raise an excellent point about partner responsibility in sexual experiences. many ask if they can be angry at the person who gave them the
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virus. each person should be responsible for their own personal risk and protect themselves. even if what you're saying is true then there are people who are not necessarily willing or able to disclose their status, and everyone has to remember that people may not know that they're living with hiv and they may not be intending to harm anyone. anyone needs to be addressed, but there are existing laws in place to handle the rare cases when someone intentionally wishes to harm someone. hiv statusof one's as possible, but we all have individual responsibility in a consensual relationship and there are existing laws to protect people in the few cases where someone would intentionally want to hurt them. host: for those who have hiv and want to carry on living a normal life, how can they? guest: first and most important
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is to treat the infection. it's critically important that they are tested in the first place and given care and successfully treated. what we mean by that now is we can measure the amount of virus in the blood. what we want to see is that the viral load is not detectable. that we have suppressed the infection down with anti-viral therapy so the person is no longer infectious. that's critical. the second thing is disclosure of hiv status as a part of personal responsibility. in the community of gay and bisexual men, that has been a very important part of the negotiation and taking on the responsibility. of course, old fashioned condoms, the male condom, the female condom, they are a
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critical part of the hiv protection. there remain remarkably effective, if they're used. those are really the pillars. certainly, one of the things that we have seen which has really been encouraging is that hiv treatment than the fact that people do well and live normal lives have had an impact. this is destigmatizing because there is less fear. it is allowing people to be more open about their status. host: canada less about the side effects of the cocktail's? guest: and taking your pills per day, which is easier to remember. the side effects are better, but they are significant. you can feel them affecting your body. we do not know what the ultimate
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long term impact of the drug on the body is. the stigma for me is different because i have become openly hiv-positive. so i'm not afraid of someone look semi dinner cabinet, so i'm not living in constant fear that someone will find out i have hiv. that's not true for many people. they are concerned about having their status out it. if you can afford the bills, remembering to take them every day, they can be averted in and of itself. host: mike was on the phone from the independent line in florida. caller: is it possible that part of the reason for the continuation of people getting newly infected is because people are not keeping to a personal philosophy of safer sex?
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guest: i think that certainly is a part of the challenge. we had a tremendous major change in the gay community with condom use and with safer sex. that did reduce infections. we now are in a new war era. we have a very different community to deal with. happily is much more disseminated, not just in a few cities, but more open communities all over the country. many more people are meeting in different venues, online. people were socializing in very different ways and we need to use these new tools and technologies for new kinds of hiv prevention that are relevant to this next-generation. host: we will be covering the international aids conference here in washington, d.c. how big of a deal is it that
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this conference is happening here? guest: what we do this week, what will be decided, what we discussed will have an implication. now it is up to humanity to see whether we will respond as we should. host: on poz.com, you say aids has a pr problem. guest: this conference will be very helpful. it is appropriate to remind people that this is a pandemic that is not over. it's a complicated message. we have made remarkable headway, but we have a long way to go. the good news is we have the answers which should drive renewed vigor and detention so hopefully we can secure the resources we need to actually
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end aids once and for all. host: we're talking about aids. 34 million people around the world living with hiv and aids. michael on the phone from brooklyn. caller: good morning. i would like to talk about a few things. one comment, actually. i have aids. i have been positive since 1991. it is a drag. nobody wants to be on this for life. please, everyone out there, get tested. get yourself care if you are positive. the sooner you know, the better, and the greater the chance to have a healthy life. host: how did you contract aids? what was the circumstance? i.v. drugm not an user, of so i will just say sex. i do not know which kind,
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actually. there's no need in pinpointing it. i'm not going to point blank. it is what it is, you know? comment that you say to yourself how many people, for real, use a condom when they have oral sex? i mean, come on? that's a reality. i will just leave it there. two things. generics. we have medications now that can basically get to everybody that needs it around the planet. we have the capability. we just need the will to do it. as regan mentioned, it is up to humanity. the lead to get this under control is to get people in treatment. host: thank you for the call. guest: the generic drug
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manufacturing, distribution in developing countries has been a critical part of this response. it has been really remarkable. in 2000, when we gathered for the first international aids conference in africa, 95 percent said people living with hiv uber in developing countries, 90% of those in treatment were in first world countries. with current drug costs, it was impossible to consider that we could really provide treatment people in developing countries. the generic drug effort really changed that. the cost of the drug is about $85 per year. president george bush with the president's emergency plan for aids relief, founded in 2003, was the largest, and remains the largest, commitment to global health to a single disease that any u.s. president has made.
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it has been a game changer really much of the world. it relies on generic drugs. host: regan hofman, as the outcome of this treatment led to an increasingly careless behavior? host: -- guest: i think the opposite is true. when someone recoils at the survivor in states, i tell them i'm on antibiotics and they relax. people a hearing to treatment can become so much less infectious and it is just human nature that they become less frightened. it helps reduce the stigma. when people understand that we are not people to be feared. we can be touched. my little sister had her baby and one of the highlights was my sister handing me a 3-month-old baby and she is being treated as i was before had the virus. she understood that i could not
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give the baby the disease and what it did for my sense of normalcy was amazing. this is also a disease of the mind. we need to be treated as normal. i think that will help people come forward for testing and treatment that will keep them well and protect public health. host: normal life span under the treatment so far? guest: it is now estimated to easily be more than 40 years from the time of diagnosis, which takes most people into their 60's and 70's. we're really looking at hiv as a chronic disease. the caller from brooklyn alluded to the fact that it is still tough to have a chronic disease. but nevertheless, that is a change. host: the incoming president of the international aids society, dr. chris beyrer and regan
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hofman from "poz" magazine. petersburg, va., your on the line. caller: how're you doing? host: go ahead with your question. caller: the tuskegee experiment in 1921, eventually president clinton apologized because they found that the government was involved in inoculating african- american men with that virus. there are two doctors that actually went down and did the research on the origins of aids and attracted to the american government. host: any response? guest: the tuskegee experiment
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was a violation of human rights and there's no question about that. the caller alluded to something that is a common message about the tuskegee experiment, that they are actually infected people. what they did it was to follow them and not treatment -- and not treat them when treatment became available. that is different from actively infecting people. i have to say that these ideas and concerns, these fears that hiv was somehow manufactured and there was a plot involved have circulated for many years. i think what has laid them to rest in the scientific community is that we really have now understood that we are able to do genetic sequencing of the virus that we understand now
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actually where it came from. this is a virus that is indigenous to a subspecies of west african monkeys and it had to go through a passage in the came in to humans almost certainly from the practice of haunting, butchering, and eating primates, chimpanzees and monkeys, which is common practice among people in western and central africa. we know where it came from and how what entered human than that's important because many of those animals survive quite well with the virus and there is a big research effort underway to try to understand the immune relationship there. it may help in form hiv vaccine research. host: from tim, any discussion on vaccines? guest: there has been some
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significant headway made recently in understanding where we are headed. there are seven prime questions from amfar, and there's a lot of focus right now on the science around a cure. we have made headway on a vaccine as well. we do not have a silver bullet yet, but it is time to work. we have the answers that need to be looked at immediately. with the right investments right now, we could make a significant impact in shorter amount of time and hasten both a vaccine and a cure. we cannot cure this with just three months alone. it retreated all 34 million people, we do not want people to deal with this the rest of their lives. host: from jason, he remembers
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the media discussion years ago about condom ads to promote sexual activity. guest: talking about safer sex and promoting condoms, some think will increase the rate. there has been a lot of research into that question and it's clear that it is not the case. what we have seen as frank discussions about sexual health, education, and does not do much about changing adolescence sexual behavior in terms of when it starts and the numbers of partners but it has a huge factor in reducing risk and importantly the other sexually transmitted infections like chlamydia, infections that are very common in adolescents and young adults. the data is there is quite clear. host: the opening section of the international aids conference can be viewed on our
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web site and we will be featuring some of the key sections and speeches during the course of the week. all of the information is on our website. jacksonville, fla., good morning. caller: i the question specifically since he said aids came from primates. why is that that -- what is the proportion of people in the different blood groups affected with aids? also, can you talk about people who are ih- and about rhogam? -- rh negative. guest: rh is a blood factor that is important. fist is men and women have different factors, a woman can end up carrying a baby with a different the new marker from herself and then you got blue baby syndrome. we do not see and much anymore
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because there is good preventative treatment and therapy for it. as for the relationship between hiv and blood groups, there are age factors, but there really is not a relationship there. there are a handful of genetic markers that are associated with reduced risk of hiv infections. there is a small proportion of people, 2%, of those with european descent who have relatives resistance to have the hiv infection. that fact has been the basis of the one person who has been cured. this will be discussed a great deal of the conference. there is enthusiasm for the potential for aid care of hiv because there's one person who has now been cured. he is referred to as the berlin patient, an american man living in berlin at the time. he had an aids-related cancer
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and got a bone marrow transplant from someone with this and you know resistance. he has remained free of hiv, as far as we can tell, and is considered to be the first person that we have documented who has at least a functional cure of an hiv infection. one shows the way forward. host: elton john is out with a new book and he talks about his own sexual activities, unprotected sex, and he has not been diagnosed with any illnesses, but it could have been him just as easily. guest: to his point, this idea that it would do not talk about sex that people will not have it is insane. i speak regularly in schools and they are so hungry for the information and we shall be able to call money give them the intimation. i would not put a child in the
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car without giving them a seat belt and showing them the turn signals. we need to do a better job telling children how to protect their bodies from viral agents. it should not become politicized or about religion. : john has been in-- elton john has been an incredible spokesperson for the disease and this book is powerful in that it out lines that we have not solved the problem. host: off of twitter -- guest: the idea of monogamy as hiv prevention was originally part of the program and it was put forward as a potential
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preventive intervention. the challenge there, of course, is that, first of all, and in many parts of the world where hiv spreads among special -- sexually promiscuous adolescence, they come in with hiv and do not know it. it turned out to be a harder prevention approach than many had thought it would be. there is no question that the partners can maintain monogamy, they can be very effective for prevention. the challenge for us as public health officials and scientists is that those are very hard programs to implement. they are important personal choices. if people can really hold to them, they can be tremendously effective for hiv prevention. host: our gests, dr. chris
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beyrer with the johns hopkins center for aids research and regan hofman, editor for "poz" magazine in town for the international aids conference. thank you for being with us. as always, we continue the conversation tomorrow morning on "washington journal." we will be talking about the $15 trillion budget deficit. from the neweas america foundation. his defense issues with the aerospace industries association here in d.c. to talk about the defense budget in the house passing in just this past weekend debate continues in conference. and talking about the devastating fires in colorado and what to expect for the rest of the season. that is tomorrow morning at 7:00
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a.m. "newsmakers" is next. enjoy the rest of your sunday and have a great weekend. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012] >> next, "newsmakers" with adam smith, a member of the armed services committee. then secretary of the peloton not testifying before a committee. then the federal reserve board chairman ben bernanke. >> joining us on "newsmakers,"

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