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tv   Gov. John Hickenlooper D-CO on Education Gun Violence and School Safety  CSPAN  February 24, 2018 3:07pm-3:32pm EST

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of north carolina chapel hill as a morehead scholar, a week from tomorrow -- a week from today we carolina,and north duke's favored, what say you? >> i think carolina is going to win for the second time. people say you are governor of the entire state, i have a lot of supporters and it is a tremendous university, what -- but when it comes time to play basketball, you have to be chewed yourself. -- you have to be true to your self. [laughter] welcome back, thank all of you for joining axios where our events follow our brevity format. now we are honored to welcome to the stage a governor who just gave his final state of the city address and who has been on the
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circuit a few times. honor to welcome colorado governor john hickenlooper. thank you so much for coming. you were just telling me backstage about morning rituals you have with your phone. >> i left my cell phone off. i have a counter, this morning it said 321 days left in our administration. we have a lot of programs we want to finish strong and if you're trying to worry about your next job or people are not focused on finishing what they started, then you do not get the same outcome. have seen education from a variety of perspectives. i first knew you as mayor of denver.
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two thousand eight democratic convention that you mount up making history with it. jim mu seen a, who was running candidate obama's campaign calls up i think it was 12 days before his acceptance speech and said we are going to do it in the pepsi center, and we like that, but would it be possible to move it half a mile south to mile high stadium. idea the- you have no number of fiber optics and cables -- it would have stretched from coast-to-coast and that is how much we had to move and put in -- and put in place. having been there, i think everyone who was in that city will remember it for the rest of their lives. it was a moment the country came together in hope and change. >> you've been traveling the country and what would you say is the biggest mistake we make with k-12 education? gov. hickenlooper: the mistake
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wehave made right now is have tried to create a one-size-fits-all solution and people are so -- they look at their children's education as part of their intimate life, a question they care about more than almost anything else in their daily routine. i have been into this for a while, i thought longer school years was the answer. we keep looking for the answer. i think there is probably an assemblage of answers. we have to reach out and engage school districts and parents and have them feeling they are part of the discussion and they own the decision. one thing we have seen in colorado again and again, when i ran for mayor in 2003, and i never run for student council or plastic washer, -- or glass dish dishwasher.lass
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i do young man on my campaign -- i had a young man on my campaign. city wherethe first i will visit every public school in my first four years. i said great, i will do it. later he said maybe if you had been better staffed someone would've pointed out there are 161 schools. i went to a school every week for four years and immersed myself and my goal, two years later became superintendent of schools in denver and played a staggeringly important role in transforming public schools. that process of meeting all those teachers, all of those parents, you try to meet with a bunch of parents at every single school, and drove home the fact that everybody had the same --
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everyone loved their school and thought their teachers were great and the overall school system was failing. that is impossible. there are schools that are failing and what should we do for students that are stuck going to them? gov. hickenlooper: i think denver is a good model and we probably do this statewide. if you have a failing school, you have to be willing to step up and try to provide the tools for massive change over. in some schools the culture is so bad you need to close the school, clean it out and then reopen it. that has proven successful. michael bennet started that, he was superintendent for three years. , youurrent superintendent see the outcomes in the last decade. denver public schools has reduced their dropout rate by
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70% and a lot of that is taking failing schools -- a failing school does not engage their kids at all. a better school system with less failing schools you have a much lower dropout rate. are so heroic,rs buying supplies with their own money, governor cooper was talking about how much money they spend out of the classroom preparing. my mother was a first grade teacher, our ceo has a sister who is a special education teacher in wisconsin. as you were visiting those 161 -- gov. hickenlooper: now i think there about 190. mike: tell us about a classroom that was memorable, a school that was different, a principal or teacher who found something that works and cracked the code. gov. hickenlooper: i could spend all morning talking about it. there were so many examples. one of the things i loved most
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was when local businesses would connect. there was a middle school and they were right behind a large cheese manufacturing. but theynot know it, were constantly finding ways to get them free cheese and free food. the kidsted following from middle school as they went to high school and finding mentors and then started funding the kids to go to college. it became a part of the denver scholarship foundation, the foods helped -- do not repeat that, i should be more careful. i have a special interest in mentoring and i wonder what you have found as the most successful non-bureaucratic approach to mentoring? if someone wants to help a school in that area that may be does not have the resources of other schools, what can you do?
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my. hickenlooper: this is opinion. i'm not a professional. if i were able to wave a magic wand and look at some of these cloud-based technology companies, if there was a way to get past all the federal laws about sharing information about , most mentors are not there when kids need them. when you look at at risk kids, especially when they move -- this kid is in seventh grade, 12 ,o 13 years old and they move low income families are moving all the time, often times once or twice a year, they move into a different neighborhood or school district, that magnified the risk of that kid dropping out by about four times, huge risk, yet the mentor programs we ofe, the rec centers, all that stuff, no one has a system by which we connect all that
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support we have created for these at risk kids. way throughto be a technology that when those kids move, everybody gets alerted. tomany cases the kids come the new schools and the schools are so busy that no one pays to that kid who feels like an outsider. they do not have the same friends a network of support as their school, the parents do not have it at home. if there was some way to do that, that would be very powerful. another thing is just to listen to the kids. i once was backstage with meryl streep and she and four kids and you never hear about her kids. her youngest daughter is an actress stated here occasionally about the youngest daughter. i said how do you raise kids that are having normal jobs in normal lives? she said my husband and i never talk about our careers. every conversation with our kids
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was always about their lives and their world, what was going on with them and trying to listen more deeply. i think that is good advice for mentors as well. mike: you're a celebrity governor, everybody is interested in what you have to say. you're headed over to the white house. what are you going to say to president trump about his idea of giving bonuses to teachers who are trying to take their guns to school? gov. hickenlooper: i think he has heard enough in the last 24 hours. those went to all of schools, even back then, people were discussing whether to arm, ever since columbine which was 1999, this has been an issue. , i have met aber few teachers that thought that was a good idea. almost every teacher thought it was a terrible idea. they thought it would make the schools less safe.
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if you look at people with handguns in their bedrooms to protect themselves, more often than successful protection is used against them. you would have to train teachers at a level that most teachers -- you would have to train teachers about things they do not want to learn about. to talkingg forward about president trump about other things in terms of education. i think in terms of gun safety, he wants to ban bump stocks, they could raise the age everywhere for kids to be able to own an assault weapon, that is the first step to making sure assault weapons are pulled out. we will come back to what else you're going to tell him. coloradof columbine, does know best practices and has sometimes been a topic in your state longer limited has been a topic everywhere. what has colorado learned through that event that other schools should know?
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what are best practices to reduce the likelihood of something like that? --. hickenlooper: training nowadays every school has security, certainly every high school does that i am aware of. most every middle school. i do not think there is a single one thing that makes sense. trained in terms of what happens if there is a shooter, but we have seen again and again the human failure. we have universal background checks, we got that passed in 2014. even with universal background checks, even with restraint, security people will make mistakes. having guns so available to so many people makes the task of keeping schools safe almost impossible. have gone freeze at the
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schools. freeze at the schools and i do not think that makes them more vulnerable. i do not think the data reflects that. you think the proposal from the president is -- gov. hickenlooper: dead on arrival. that is a horrible phrase, i do not mean that. i do not think it is going to get traction. even every republican i know does not think that is a great solution. even in the old west, colorado is a representation of the old west, as the community became more successful, they would make you check your six gun at the town gate. when wyatt earp was getting his training, the idea was to get guns out of the everyday situations of life. alcohol, people's emotional makeup, if there are guns everywhere bad things are going to happen.
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if you look at the number of suicides that are gun related, i think it is over half. people that want to take their own life, it is a momentary phase, it is a kudo of ofression -- it is a period depression and they want to kill himself. get past that and they cannot immediately put their hands on a gun. i think it is exaggerated even more in kids because they are more subject to these emotions. you can make it harder for them to get their hands on a gun, once they go through that pinto they can -- once they go through that period they can live through their whole lives. mike: i thought that was interesting drawing the analogy to statistics of what happened when people have guns in their homes. gov. hickenlooper: i think it is a misconception that having guns in your bedroom drawer is going to make you safer. most people who do that, it is
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not most, but the statistics i saw, you were more likely to have that gun used against you then you were to successfully defend your home. the atlantic did an article in 2014 and said no single issue altered hickenlooper's fortunes than gun control. colorado is one of the most lyrically interesting states because it is the mountain west and it is growing so fast. one ofargued that it was the swinging asked swing states. what have you learned in your hard-won experience for modern democrats about how to navigate gun control? gov. hickenlooper: part of the problem is a reflection of the continued divide between rural america and urban america. is almost a different facet of what lincoln talked about when he talked about a house divided against itself
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shall not long stand. i think we have to fix it. urban who lives in an area and thinks they are not dependent on where their food comes from his crazy. we do not often do a good enough job in urban areas of going out and getting involved in the rural parts of the state representing those self interests and making sure those people get a real chance, if they are living and they are raising cattle and growing corn, get a real chance to be appreciated and i think we put a lot of time of going out and trying to listen harder. if you want to persuade someone to think about an issue differently, do not tell them why you think are wrong, it is better just to keep asking. people to rupee back why they feel so strongly about something and keep asking them questions about their concerns,
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and almost always makes them think about the issue in different ways. bey're getting a chance to heard and they feel hurt and they become more open to some sort of compromise. in the great depression, i think they outlawed the thompson submachine gun. they sold the tommy gun as a self-defense weapon. a machine gun, and automatic weapon. after all of the bootleggers used tommy guns, the st. valentine's day massacre, the american public had enough and when franklin roosevelt became president he ran on gun safety of getting rid of some of these violent forms and that was one of them. mike: the takeaway for the modern democratic party is?
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gov. hickenlooper: keep listening and allow public sentiment at a certain point -- i think this might well be a tipping point where it has been incremental and now people are going to say let's raise the age for assault weapons and let's look at, maybe assault weapons should belong in a shooting range and do not need to be taken home and should not be used for everyday life. mike: for people who are tweeting along, that is a good tweet. tell us about this tipping point. what do you believe is the tipping point? gov. hickenlooper: i have had people in my office for the last few days that are so fed up, a couple of them are republicans, conservative people saying enough is enough. i'm going to put my dollars towards electing people that will enact reasonable, thoughtful, gun safety measures and i think that process of being so partisan
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and get down to the basic common sense, we are allowing ourselves to be terrorized. if you were someone in a basement in leningrad and you wanted to hurt america as badly as you could, what better way than to make our children feel they are unsafe at school, they should not go to school, that while they are in school there anxious, they will not learn as well, you will cripple a generation. we are allowing this to be done to ourselves. mike: you've been traveling the country with john kasich, you are a democrat, he is a republican. what have you learned in traveling and appearing with a republican? gov. hickenlooper: i had dinner with john last night. -- when i ran for mayor in 2003, the first election i ever did, john kasich back in 1994 became the chair of the house budget committee.
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he has been there for so long and he gives me a great perspective. i came out of the restaurant business. in the restaurant business when there is a big rush, everybody is the same, you are all in it together. partisanure i am less than most people. governors are less partisan. inn kasich is a classic case point. he is a republican but he cares more about the country and about the state. good republican, at least in the old sense about what being a republican meant. i think the willingness of people to get past the partisanship is the only way this country is ever going to create a good legislation. yorker article called you a middleman. is there a market for the middleman? gov. hickenlooper: at times there is not.
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we are saying backstage that anger is the new black. there is a real frustration among a lot of people and that pushes people toward the extremes. i think most great solutions come as a result of compromise and compromise almost always moves you somewhere to the middle. what are the chances that the buddy picture of you and governor kasich become a presidential ticket? gov. hickenlooper: i think that is a long shot. most of the funding comes from people who have a strong tied to one party or the other and they fight relentlessly to support their party's candidate. there are people that would fund an independent campaign but not at the same level you would need to be credible. i think sometimes it's statements are powerful but i has more public
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service and i might see how that works out. mike: 352 days? gov. hickenlooper: 321 days. mike: what is your next act in public service? gov. hickenlooper: we are working on a number of projects. we were talking backstage about two thirds of our kids will never get a college degree. we are now doing an apprenticeship program, not just for trades but for bankers and insurance companies, allowing kids, their last two years of high school to work three days a week and get trained in a curriculum that helps them be more successful. time that into a partnership with linkedin and microsoft called skillful that is still based as people go through their whole lives and see what skills they are missing. and ituff is so exciting
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think we are ahead of the rest of the country. this is going to be a big improvement in the country. the moment i start worrying about what am i going to do next, not only do i get distracted, we just hired this new secretary of education. everyone gets distracted. not to say my wife and i do not occasionally have discussions. we are focused on getting things done. mike: how to she feel about you running for president? gov. hickenlooper: my wife is the senior executive for a $75 billion company, she thinks it is hilarious. she also thinks it is interesting. we will see where those discussions go. indicated --tioned you mentioned independent candidacy is, do you think that is feasible in america at this moment? >> not in a way that is viable.
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an independent candidacy could have power in terms of getting statements out. mike: there were two firsts when he became governor. you're are the first geologists to ever be a governor and you brew pup owner since samuel adams to become a governor. what did you learn about running a brew pub that helps you govern? gov. hickenlooper: something you learn in every service industry is there is no profit in having enemies. keep talking and work it out because there's always tomorrow , thesepolitics politicians define themselves by who their enemies are and how they can put them down. that is never constructive. mike: thank you very much governor hickenlooper. appreciate it.


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