tv UVA Institute of Democracy Discussion on Government Leadership CSPAN April 30, 2021 4:03pm-5:07pm EDT
>> up next. west virginia senator and virginia democrat senator tim crane. they answer questions on bipartisanship in congress. presidents joint address to congress, the january 6 attack on the capital and other house and senate agenda items. the institute of democracy is the host. it is about one hour. >> good morning everyone. my name is jim ryan. and the president of uva and i am delighted to welcome you to the second installment of the democracy dialog which is cosponsored by my office and uva's institute of them up or
say. the goal of democracy dialogue is twofold. the first is to explore critical issues facing our democracy to aid a variety of different perspectives. the second is to model what it means to engage in civil discourse and debate with those whose perspectives or opinion might differ. our belief is that these two goals are interrelated because our ability as people to address critical issues facing our democracy will depend on our ability to engage in productive conversation and debate with those of different opinions and perspectives. these dialogues omit possible with the support of ingrid and david haynes and uva director jim haynes. we extend thanks to george and judy marcus whose practice fun at the miller center helps support today's program. today's conversation will export the prospects of moving our country forward in a time of
great polarization. you're honored to be joined today between two u.s. senators 12 worked across the aisle to sponsor wide range of legislation and have a record of supporting bipartisan efforts to improve the lives of americans. senator shelley moore capito is a republic and senate from west virginia. she is the first u.s. senator female and west virginia history. she was like with the largest margin of victory or in state history. she serves on the appropriations committee, commerce, science, and just patient many, and the rules and administration to many. perhaps most important, she is also a uva up -- alum. as she comforted her masters of education and uva. she is joined by senator tim kaine, democrat accent therefrom virginia. he was elected in 2012 he serves on the armed services, budget, and health education labor and
pensions committee. he was flooded to public office in 19 and before, serving as a city councilmember and the mayor of richmond. he became lieutenant governor in 2002 and was inaugurated as the seventh governor in 2006. senator, thank you both for joining us and welcome back. i am also pleased to injuries are co-moderators for today's event. not only barns. she has this thing wish experience in the world of politics and all the policy and is codirector of the democracy initiative at uva. she also serves as a professor the north center, senior fellow the carter center, and a member of the school of law. melody is joined by miss jimenez, who is a fourth-year student studying history and
government in the college of arts and sciences. she is a former president of the letter next student alliance. thank you melody and moderating for today's discussion. for those of you joining us on the zoom webinar, i encourage you submit questions be senators via the question and answer box at the bottom of your screen. with that, i will turn it over to melody and pill are, and thank you for joining us. >> thank you so much, president ryan for that wonderful introduction. and be half of the lara and myself, a welcome home to senator o and also of them senator kaine we are fortunate to have as our senator. we are both so pleased to have you with us to explore the issues that animate the title of
today's program. self-governance in the age of disunion. my guess is that you would both agree with me that our micro seat requires us to do something that is extremely difficult. to organize ourselves, people of different interest, background, and belief for self-governance. that work is essential to the vibrancy and sustainability, the very existence of our constitutional republic. what happens to this democracy lend this comfort is really distrust? when does taste comes antithesis? what happens amino so little about one another that we don't have the capacity to identify our common goals? when we fail to agree and at least as important as were able to disagree peacefully. we want to start the conversation there. before we jump into our conversation, i want to pose a
question that brings the audience into this. and to learn more about their views and their experiences and working with or engaging with people of different political views. audience numbers, we put a pull up in front of you. if you can answer that, we will quickly see the results and learn more about you as well. we'll give you a couple of minutes to do that. all right, so as our audience is answering that question and the senators, i'm curious once we see the result to find out if you are surprised i them given your experience in public life. here is my other question to you. in spite of our conversations about polarization, i think there are a lot of things that
americans share with one another. we know that americans are often described as being aspirational or innovative or creative. at the same time that our political culture often reflects profound disagreement and generations old battle for power. that political culture for as a polarization we are talking about this morning. the kind of antitheses that keeps us from engaging with one another. senator o, i want to start with you. i want to ask you how do you think our polarized culture affects self-governance and the stability and vibrance of our credit institutions like congress, like the u.s. senate. ? >> i want to thank you and my friend tim kaine and it's nice to be with you. as a uva fourth-year, i think you'll be graduating shortly. thank you everybody who is joined the discussion.
you know, the granular level, as somebody who is trying to represent my state also to get things done, not just occupied the seat or get to walk on the senate floor, i think what we end up with is a lot of frustration for many of us who are doers or -- we are all politically motivated but may be less politically motivated and more motivated and feel like we are being measured by what we can achieve together and how we can sort of bring that home to the folks that we represent. i think that the polarization really leads to stagnation which leads to frustration and then you say to yourself, is it worth it to keep trying?
it is always worth it because we know it is a great country and we want to see all of the value of the country reach to everybody. the other thing i would say is i think good for people to know of 100 senators, this really is a lot more behind the scenes, not really behind-the-scenes but it's not public on the new shows or in press releases. there are a lot more back-and-forth between unlikely comrades i guess you would say from both sides of the political spectrum and what you might imagine. sometimes, you find yourself with strange that fellows in terms of, i can imagine i would ever agree with elizabeth warren on something, yet we do have a lot of common ground with how we will handle the opioid crisis and what might be good for our states there.
if i could offer a measure of comfort, there are a lot more that really feeds into how we can accomplish things than what might me vi or meets the immediate attention. that is good. you have a lot of frustration and i think that is where we then start to separate. >> i think that is one of the things we were talking about. we curious if much more happens behind the scenes that leads to people to work across the aisle, depending on what the issue is the me often hear about. there is a narrative that continues to play out, particularly about congress and people's inability to get things done. one of the things i want to do is pull up the response to that audience question that we have so we will be able. 70% of people say that they sometimes engage people who differ from them politically.
60% believe who answered the question saying that sometimes are never engaging with someone of a different view say that the idea makes them feel uncomfortable or fearful. senator kaine, i am wondering if you have a reaction to that? do is that surprising to you? given your expense in public life, given your spirits working in congress right now? >> melody, that doesn't surprise me. i also want to thank my friend kelly for doing this shelley would have been the right person to have even if she wasn't a uva grad, so the fact that she's a uva grad makes her right. i am a little bit surprised by that because shelley and i answer that question two, how often feel guilt someone with a different view and we say every day. for those who aren't do what we do, i would have thought a number often would be higher.
i am intrigued by the answer that 60% that say it makes me fearful or uncomfortable. that makes me sad to see that. i guess the first thing that comes to mind is you are afraid or uncountable doing with somebody has a different point of view, maybe we need to develop some tunicates and techniques that take away the fear or discomfort. i am immediately struck by dealing with somebody with a different point of view, you can say we are different, or you can say hey i have a question for you. give somebody an open-ended opportunity. have a question about what you said. tell me what you meant by this so i can really understand. if folks are fearful or uncomfortable, then we probably need to develop communication tools to break that down. i do want to acknowledge what shelley said because she is right. there's so much bipartisanship that goes on in the senate every
day. i am on committees that are extremely bipartisan. for relationships, health, labor, pension, even with really diverse membership we tend to be. we live in a media culture that will always emphasize the disputes rather than the cooperation. cooperation is not sexy. disputes are. i had an english teacher once who shouted at the class, what is the outstanding characteristic of any good novel? i remember saying i am a fifth grader. but she said conflict. there has to be conflict. you have to resolve conflict. news and social media culture thrives on conflict. shelley and i agree on some things good i'm introducing a bill today with a bunch of republican cosponsors on the childcare workforce. that won't get the attention. the bipartisan things don't get attention. what gets attention are the areas we disagree. we still don't do enough bipartisan. i'm not saying we are doing
enough. we do a lot more than what people think. it just does not seem interesting to a media culture we live in. >> i want to ask one more question before turning this over to pilar for her question. something i want to focus on is what happened on january 6. because, it seems given what you have described as the opportunity for collaboration that exist on capitol hill and that we, as he lay public are not seeing much of that, the january 6 not only reflected something deep in our culture and our political culture, but it also potentially could have been a turning point on capitol hill. not only the events of the day but the impeachment trial, the
hearings, the proposed investigations, whether or not those go further and i am curious how you all see that affecting your ability and your colleagues ability to work together and the institutions like the senate, were both there, the institution of the senate itself? what was the impact of that day and all that has followed in terms of your ability to do day-to-day business or even the way that engage with one another when you are off the floor, when you're on the coat room for example? >> shelley, you wanted? no one first? >> go ahead. >> at today that i will never forget and should never be repeated. in my dying breath, i think back on moments of my life, it will be probably the top 10 that i will remember because it was so vivid.
i will tell you, we still gotta go to work with each other every day. one observation about the day and one about our relationships. people who invaded the capital that they, including some bad folks, including members of a virginian who were wearing an auschwitz t-shirt. it made me sad that most of the people that day were not violent people, but they were so gullible that they had been fed a big lie over and over again and believe it. it makes me wonder about our education system. it makes me wonder why people will fall for the most outlandish, ridiculous lies and conspiracies there are. i think we have to grapple with that. there is a difference between neo-nazis and people who are gullible enough to fall for the big lie. i think that is something we have to think about as a society.
with respect to working together, i was part of a group of six in the senate but filed an ethics complaint against two republican colleagues. ted cruz and josh howley. the reason we did that is that some were calling for them to resign or kicked out because we viewed them as instigators. i thought, let's do this. the ethics committee in the senate is strictly bipartisan. it is three and three. if the senate was 90 were up against and 10 democrats, it would still be three and three. it is set up that way. if we have a concern, rather than you should resign or be kicked out or whatever, let's hand it to the most bipartisan group let's take a look and figured out. once we have made that complaint, i put it in the rearview mirror. that proof will figure itself out in their own time. i think senator howley filed an ethics complaint against all of
us so they'll figure that out as well. my attitude was put it in the hands as neutral a body that we have in this place that self polices and just go back to working with my colleagues. i know maybe in the house, i think some of the motions were tougher in the house because frankly, their experience of being barricaded in was a little more edgy than most of our experiences in the senate. it was as you're in the house and some of the emotions are more raw they are. i just think that you know, we have work to do for our constituents and we have to be able to work with each other as colleagues. i am kind in -- kind of trying to set aside. >> i agree with everything that tim has said. i think of collecting on for me, sitting in the chamber that day what i realized -- when i
realized something bad was going on, we could not see what was going on because supposedly, we're not supposed to have our phone but you get these snippets of people in the building. i'm sure tim thought and i thought, yeah there are people in the building and they will get them out as soon as possible. we did not see any of the run-up to the real violence and passion of the crowd trying to get in. we were caught offguard that way and when i realized that they took the vp out of the room rapidly, you could see people come around him and i was watching that. i'm not the most observant person in the world but i was watching that. i leaned over to the guy next to me and said wow, something bad
is happening here. you can tell they are really urgently getting amount. honestly, my first reaction was that 9/11 reaction. i was here on 9/11. it was that feeling of this is so out of control for me and all of us sitting here that i don't know what is going on, and that's if i had any reaction of fear, it was right then. dissipated very quickly because as tim said, we were well taken care of and i matured they had a plan for us, but a plant came together quickly. being a republican, being two seats away from ted cruz, who were flipped because there were a lot of us like me who thought this was a fools errand. we have been vocal on disagreeing an election is over and safe and certified. let's move on. that is the beauty of the senate
is that independent voices are allowed to grow i don't want to say kink, but their own independent opinions and whenever they want. one voice can be very powerful on that day. i will tell you a little story about what happened to me that morning. i was driving and i anticipated it would be a big crowd so i did not actually drive in. i asked if i can get the capital police to get me at my apartment which is very unusual but, i was here by myself and i thought that would be the safe thing to do. so, i get in the car with another senator and we are driving and new concealed the trump people coming up and literally, the people tim was talking about that is just your basic believers. they are not violent, they are just waving the flags and we see them in all kinds of rally, whether republican or democrat, just american.
the person i was writing with was one of the people who had signed on to discount the electoral result. that person says to me, something about this is really making me nervous. it is not good. i don't understand what they believe is going to happen. this person says to me, that the maintenance gators the one of the site and seekers, they say they think we will overturn the election. that's what you're telling them. you're telling them that we are going to overturn the election. no wonder that's what they think. i was literally wanted to run to the other side of the car because not even listening to yourself. i was just astounded at that. they go on further. all we want to do is send us back to the state.
really? is that the message -- that was not the message i was hearing everywhere another does long-winded. tim is right. when you are in a shared tragedy like we were, sometimes it pulls you apart and sometimes it pulls you together. there was a joyous commitment we were, all of us together. there were suggestions that we carry our business on an alternate site or maybe we get into a bus and go somewhere which was ludicrous. we can convene right here in this room. it was a bipartisan heck no, we won't do this. will not let this get the better of us and we will waited out of here until it is considered safe for us to get back in that hollow chamber and do what we are supposed to do which is to confirm our election result. there was a bit of camaraderie
there. some people had mixed experiences. another in their hideaways, that people banging on the doors. that much more of a close call. trauma associated with that as well. so, i mean it definitely was a moment i will never forget but it was so odd for me to reflect back that i had that same feeling on 9/11 like wow, what is going on here? i was probably one of the few people in the chamber that they that was there on 9/11. anyway, those are my reflections. >> thank you for that. i will turn this to pilar and her next question relates to what you are saying senator, what people were thinking but also how the messages get magnet -- magnetized and rippled through the broader population. >> thank you guidance for having
me today. thank you, melody as well. i think we were talking about social media earlier in the impact of it. i think over the last couple of deck at some of the rise of the internet and social media, we have seen an increase of productive conversation, as well as harmful speech online. obviously, inflammatory speech is nothing new. is that more harmful given social media and the reality that a comment can reach hundred it millie people in like 10 seconds? i was wondering does the government have responsibility to regulate speech online and his social media more harmful because you can reach more people more quickly or is it kind of the same thing as the kind of territory is understanding the public square?
>> do you want to tackle or want me to? >> i will go briefly. thanks. that is a question of the age, i think. that's interesting because were talking about bipartisanship. this is an interesting and shoot that crosses a lot of political lines for different -- different reasons. or different fundamental beliefs. i am on commerce committee. we do a lot with google. if you see them coming into testify, they come in before the commerce committee. there is a section and dealing with these internet companies where they have a liability shield that when they were created, they were not considered journalists or whatever, so they have free reign to determine what they want to have, twitter is the one that is taking down comments more frequently than anything else.
or making those decisions and so they have all these algorithms and -- that begins to make the judgment into whether we should come down or the person should be off for 24 hours or a week. in other words, containing speech. you have free speech advocates who sit your hair on fire. then you have folks on the other -- not on the other, on a side that say if you don't take inflammatory actions, how do you judge what is inflammatory and what it leads to. lily to violence, a sit in, burning the house down? it is not black and white. there are shades of gray. then, there are folks -- probably more on the republican side, who believe it is curving
a certain political orientation. it comes down to the accountability, or what kind of liability we want to have and liability shield we want to have for twitter, facebook, twitter, google, and something else. so, we can't decide, we have tried to get something through that makes sense. there is a public outcry from this. we will be doing something that will address this issue of regulating -- regulating their ability to regulate speech. sen. kaine: you are right that social media takes things that
have existed forever, anonymous speech. we have a strong tradition in this country of allowing anonymous speech. everyone who wrote the federalist papers wrote them under pseudonyms, either to avoid persecution or other reasons. we allow freedom of speech of the time, and we allow all kinds of direct by having a bigger first amendment. thomas jefferson said the price of liberty is eternal vigilance and george orwell restated it as the price of liberty as eternal direct. meaning, if you allow liberty you will get stuff you don't like. that is our culture. i am intrigued -- there is one piece of legislation that the senate did a couple years ago that i don't know whether it is work or not. i think we ought to analyze to see if it has worked and apply
to this. shelley talks about the immunity internet service providers were given in the late 90's. a couple years ago we passed a very private heart -- bipartisan bill that basically said the immunity for internet service providers does not allow providers to willy-nilly post content that will promote sex trafficking. a lot of the internet service platforms there were particular ones that were being utilized by sex traffickers. we did an exception to the immunity shield to make sure sex trafficking can't occur under the shield. it was criticized at the time for a number of reasons. free speech advocates do not like it, people engaged in sex work said this will make our lives more dangerous if you do this. we did it for years ago, there
have been four years of experience on it. i think what we have to do is look at it, say ok, we have the role to do something to try to curb sex trafficking because we have unacceptable side consequent is. if we conclude that it has been ok, we might want to consider something similar where you don't get like it immunity or -- for posting material that is false if the false material is likely to lead to violence. for example, it if you can say if there is material that would fit in that category, what -- once you are notified you have obligations to remove it within a particular. of time. if you don't there could be penalties. one thing i think we don't do well in congress is passed a bill. we don't go back and ask did it work? to do what we wanted to do? we do the bill side and move on. it was controversial at the time
but, if we analyze it we might learn something from it that could enable us to tackle the issue of falsehood that is encouraged by violence. he don't want to tackle falsehoods, but falsehoods that encourage violence we might be able to learn something from the past experience in figuring that out. >> i think that makes a lot of sense. thank you you guys for bringing up this point. you guys have talked a lot about bipartisanship, senator kaine just dr. bipartisan, do you think congress encourages pluralization, reflects -- or both? we will do a quick pull on that it will take some time. do you agree or disagree, there is a loud bipartisanship going on.
sen. capito: as the audience members are responding to the question, senators we want to delve more into your work in government. >> it is not surprising to you it has also probably been painful to know that people think the government is the problem. one of the recent post i read was a new york times poll indicating the sentiment starts often, it was a pole of 13 to 17-year-olds that revealed they were disillusioned by government and politics. we are looking at the results of the poll, 19% think congress encourages polarization, another almost equivalent think it reflects, 60% think it is both. congress both reflects and encourages polarization. that seems to be what the group of soon to be voters think.
american adults often have views that ran from the fact that they think bureaucrats are incompetent or politicians are craven or they don't do enough. as you said earlier senator o, the government is stuck. yet, as we have been describing, the two of you have found a way to work together. you have indicated that is not as uncommon as people might think. we are curious to know how you started working together and what makes that relationship work, and also, are there institutional barriers? are there things that sit in the structure of the senate that tend to foster the inability for people to work across partisan lines, to build the relationships that lead to bipartisan legislation. i am curious what you hear from folks at home when they find out
that you are working with senator kaine the democrat from virginia or senator cap tell the senator from west virginia. why does that relationship work? sen. kaine: we are not on committees together. the most work you do with your colleagues on the others i'll are when you are on the same committees in we are not on the same committees. here is what i believe about shelley. this is something that if i can say this about a colleague -- if i can convince her, will she stick with me whenever her leadership says or whatever the polls say? the answer is, she will. that does not mean i will always convince her we are in different parties and we think of things differently, we have different priorities. i want a colleague where if i can convince you and you say you
are right will you stick with me even if your leadership says don't tell me? he is up for reelection next year. or if the polls don't look at on the issue. shelley is kind of person. we have a drinking water bill coming in on the floor this week. that is in shelley's jurisdiction, part of the bipartisan in putting it together, part of it is the group allowing amendments some today some will be partisan, some won't. she is managing it with her democratic colleagues to what i think will be a good -- >> one thing about what young people think. go to, i will tell you young people if you are not dissatisfied and want better -- when i was a kid i was five years old when john f. kennedy
was assassinated, the first time i saw my mother cry. i was 10 years old when martin luther king was assassinated in april, 1968 and rfk was assassinated. i was watching on tv living in my all-white neighborhood, watching war protests and civil rights protests and i was 16 when a president resigned because he was going to be impeached. i had a lot of feelings about government not being good. vietnam war, all kinds of things , leaders being assassinated. i had a lot of feelings about the government but i saw young people going to freedom summer, young people marching against the vietnam war, young people demanding the right to vote at 18 not 21. i saw young people doing things making society better. if you are not happy with what you see in we are not making
enough progress on climate change, or we need to do more than that or do criminal justice reform then i am fine with that. i was unhappy also when i was a young person. i hope that some significant portion of the unhappy will challenge their discontent into trying to make things better. thomas edison said discontent is the first sign of progress. he don't make progress if anyone is complacent. you make progress when people can channel it the right way. i generation, the young people were slightly older than me were channeling their discontent and trying to make changes in society, and they did. you can also. >> i want to turn to you with that question, playing off of something that senator kaine said, does that sentiment acquire a belief that the government can be a force for good? versus government is in fact a
problem. and, perhaps going back to january 6 or referencing it, people who think we need to get rid of not just the party and a new election, but get rid of governments as we know it or as we see it in the u.s. verses, there is a challenge in society and government can help us to better. i am curious what you think, and if your constituents are supportive of the idea that you are working across party lines. or, do they look at it in a bit of wariness and a bit of scarce? sen. capito: this is a good question. a lot of times when you are looking for bipartisanship tim and i are not on the same city, he has a different group and i have a different group.
it's a bipartisan bill, it will be the first bipartisan with amendments to get in the infrastructure today. we expect it to be successful and it will demonstrate at least .1 we can do this. i might look at tim originally. southwest virginia is very similar to west virginia. when we are looking for areas tim and i have worked on anything, because the areas were affected by the opioid issue and we looked at trying to get naloxone over the counter so when you recognize an addict that you can have that at your house to save a person in an overdose. we were going to have a joint
appearance but we never quite got there. we have similarities. for me it is different because i come from a state that has a democrat senator, joe manchin, and west virginia i think it fortifies us and a lot of ways on the national scene. we have input from both sides and both parties. he has a leadership and i have one. i think it magnifies it. we have core beliefs that are very similar. i have that -- i was in the legislature early in my career and west virginia where i was one of 20 republicans in a 100 person delegate body and i realized if i don't really -- work with the other side i won't get there. tim being a governor, it is fun to serve -- serve as former
governor because they have more ideas than anyone i have ever seen. governors are doers. my father was a governor so i could see that if i want to get something done, i have to forge this relationship with the other side. it was easy. i was able to do things with children's health insurance program early on. so, the other idea i have is on this one. on your survey you did, when asking people if they are interacting with people that don't have the same political beliefs is that awkward and anything? we are used to being in the political realm, we are used to interacting with people who don't have the same political beliefs. that does not make me
uncomfortable, you go to a town hall meeting you will get somebody up yelling at you, that is how it is. if you are at the thanksgiving dinner table with your aunts and uncles, sons and daughters, personal relationships it is a heck of a lot harder. i think that is where the responsiveness on your survey is , it is probably more about people trying to interact in their social life with people who don't have the same clinical beliefs. i think that is where we have a major disconnect. some of my best friend at home are rocksolid democrats and have probably never supported me, i don't ask. i think it is hard for people -- young people to be put in a position where you are trying to figure out what you want to do, what your belief systems are, you run into somebody so far upfield from what you think and you can't forge a personal
relationship because it aggravates you. i think that is what we lost. honestly, i will give you an example of someone, bernie sanders who has been around forever. he has run for president. bernie and i -- i am sure we voted for things together, i hope people's for my water bill today, you would not find us on the same side of too many issues. i have great respect for him, he is a believer. he has been a in what he believes from probably the time he was in school until he is right now. for better or worse. i don't want to does his personal feelings or his political feelings because what he is saying. you get over that and when you
get in the elevator together i ask him where he got his mittens. i did ask him that. [indiscernible] when he has his hands up like this. i don't know why i bring that up, i am sure tim has instances of folks he interacts with on a personal level that have no political similarities for what he believes in. i think that is what is harder for young people. we have polarized everything, our parties are pulling up this direction whereas, in the 60's and 70's the middle was getting bigger. now, the ends are getting bigger, people have more primaries stay used to, -- you're seeing in a republic and party over the last decade. he see people getting challenged in primaries and they are not liberal enough, or not going far
enough. instead of -- we think people are thinking which is more centerleft center-right in order to win a primary, you have to pull way over to the left. the problem with the president of primaries also. that feeds into everybody else who is watching this. you really feel like you are picking sides. so, when one person comes at the victor it is almost like i can't say this is for us. it is still for you. i think that feeling is more intensified now than it ever has been. sen. kaine: part of your question was, are there structural problems in the senate. let me tell you one i would do this in a minute because i know people want to ask questions. i think the caucus has too much power in the senate committee. what we're doing today is an
example of the committee working on something and bipartisan support and we will handle it on the court to look it should be. too often, the committee will do something and it won't see light of day on the court because either one leader or the other -- and i am happy with chuck schumer i voted for him, the senate has devolved into a institution where each caucus leadership says, that may have come out of committee but that will not help me get the majority, or won't help me maintain my verdict so we won't look. i wish we would empower this, i am not a committee chair, i am subcommittee chair. i wish we would empower the committee more so something comes out of the committee with a minimum level of bipartisanship, say two thirds of the vote. -- whether or not the leaders like it or not. if we did that people would see us doing more together and we might break down some of the barriers. there are structural things i
would like to see. >> thank you. we could talk about these issues for hours. i will turn this back over to -- and pull some questions from the audience. >> i think our final question is talking about what is coming up in a bipartisanship. it seems like in the structure seems to be the next big issue. the biden administration put forth their vision and the gop has put forward there is. both of these plans, they differ a bit in what infra-structure is. senator capito, i'm wondering on how you think you can get to a yes. and senator kaine -- sen. capito: i am in the middle of this and happy to be so and
encouraged by what i am hearing. if you look at the signals, which we do every day, we look at the signals -- there are certain degrees of disagreements you could say in a public statement that tim and i might read into while sitting there. while -- where if you're looking on the outside you might go they hate that idea. the white house is giving big signals that republicans come to the table, we felt burned of the covid thing but you have to live to fight another day. that is over. so, the white house is giving signal -- come to the table and give us an idea of what you have. i ended up doing that with some of my other ranking membership and, i was worried because i am
not one -- i thought the worst thing i want to do is get up there and be laughed at -- laughed out of the room. again we put it out there we thought we did a good job defining infrastructure and where it is. we put it out there and i look for the signals, what will i hear? what i heard from the white house spokesperson was, this is a solid offer, we are willing to talk. i week felt so good after that -- i felt so good after that. now we are at a point where i think it appears the president mentioned this in his speech that there is a willingness to break off the physical core infrastructure to try to find a bipartisan solution. i am so -- a glass half-full
person and i think this is doable and we can go to the rose garden and i will buy a new outfit if we get there. all those things that women think about more than guys. i just think that -- i will not be deterred here. if you look for the signals, -- i got dissed by some of my democrat colleagues, it is not big enough, it is a joke, a slap in the face. but, it could have been worse. there could have been more people saying forget you. so, i said what tim said. let's send it to the committee to see what they can do and that is how we should do it. i am optimistic we can do this, it is something we have done for decades together. i am ever hopeful i will get --
i'm not the kind think it will definitely happen but there is light here and i am getting a lot of encouragement from democrats, repugnance, and the white house to keep moving forward. >> what i said about shelley's plan i said i want the size of it to be bigger but her effort is doable. we are saying the same thing. here is a thing for people to pay attention to, what if we get to the end and reloaded the infrastructure bill and will be bipartisan. what if we get to the end of the day and there is an infrastructure done by reconciliation with democratic votes never converts. like proponents of the reform bill in 2017 or like we did the rescue plan in march. does that mean there is no bipartisanship? no, it does not. because, yesterday i introduced
a bill that was very bipartisan with some republican sponsors that we are trying to get the info structure bill in my republicans cosponsor said i will probably not vote for the infrastructure bill, but let's get this in. that is fine. the president last night mentioned a bill of mind that is externally bipartisan about using health grants for short-term career education. i think shelley is a cosponsor on that. cosponsor, not shelley, said i think president biden will talk about our job bill. i am glad this is included. let me reverse it, joe biden wants to finance his plan by raising the corporate tax rate from 21 to 28. republicans in their tax bill shrunk it from 35 to 21, democrats voted against it. biden is not rolling back the republican tax plan completely, he is saying we will take it to
the midpoint. some republicans say president biden we still don't agree with you but at least you realize like we did, 35% was too high of a corporate tax rate. president biden has shown with his financing that he is listening to the republicans without wiping out the adjustment they made. you can see a bill that would be a reconciliation bill. if we put everything in that belt that had been a bipartisan proposal and we leafed through the hundreds of patients, there would be hundreds of -- the work shelley is doing will advance and involved in making sure the package has components that are bipartisan. at the end of the day will shelley be at the rose garden? [indiscernible]
i think we are likely to get in and restrict rebel and there will be components to it that have been advanced by republicans or making them stronger. >> i want to ask the question from the audience, there are several questions from the audience. they go back to the same scene, you all in your responses have said -- set this up beautifully. people are asking questions about unity, being divided, the fact that biden ran on a platform that stressed unity. and, 100 days end where are we? i am wondering when we think about last night's speech the address to a joint session -- laid out a big agenda and we heard senator scott's's response to it and other responses. i am curious, if we don't take
the route of reconciliation, but we have a bill not only the majority but potentially a super majority given the filibuster and where we are with that, how do we go about doing it? when you listen to last night's speech you both reference in that speech, where you see the opportunity to find legislation that could get that kind of majority? in our last few minutes give us the anatomy of the negotiation or the legislative process. how do you build unity about -- around some of these ideas that you can get sinister cap toes no center, tim kaine can get a new >> shelly, could i tackle this quickly? i am introducing a biden appointee before a committee in four-minute so i don't want to be late. let me give you a minute and maybe let shelley be the closer.
i really appreciate the entire uva community for having us today. the anatomy of negotiation on supper like this, and funny because we use the term reconciliation for one of the least reconciling things that we do up here so that's kind of odd, but i think the key is to take things that president biden has put on the table and to break it into smaller units. let's do as much as we can that we can do together. we will whittle down the core of what we can do together and then will try to do that by reconciliation, which is the only person who understood it was one of shelley's predecessors in west virginia. when we try to take the core of what we can do together through reconciliation, the promontory will start to kick some of it out. we can do -- we could not do
nonwage and the rescue plan because it could not reach the rules. we do what we can together, proposal weekend through reconciliation, some of it will get kicked out but the reconciliation process is therefore reason. when republicans use it for tax reform, we said we did not like to build, we did not say how dare you. we do not like the bill but is there for a reason. let's try to get it as much done is bipartisan as we can. with credit to shelley and her colleagues on the committee, we will see the beginnings of that in this boat on the sanko on drinking. i'm off to be health committee. we got a good closer here. thank you guys. >> thanks, tim. we have no difference on how we get there. he is absolutely correct. if we could call down a great
hope for bipartisanship in areas and obviously focusing on infrastructure right now. there are some other aspects of what he proposed last night that i think we have some bipartisan agreement or desire on. if and when that is segregated out, the democrats, which is well within their right, can their members to vote that is not an easy thing for any leader. usually, you have one, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 votes or leeway right there. they can't lose anybody. that is the real challenge for the leader and the whole democrat caucus and i think if they can do that, my attitude is that they can do it right now,
today. there is a reason that the democrats are not taking the bundle and making it all reconciliation. that is what this whole discussion is about. at the president core, while i agree with a lot of he passes forward, at his core he is a senator. he knows negotiation. he knows the other side. he loves that. you get into a room with him, you can tell he's like what you got tailored what i got. he realizes that. we will see what happens. i am encouraged but even under president trump, he was a very admit lee very polarizing figure. we did criminal justice reform. we did things that we've been trying to do for years and they were done by partisan. --
unfortunately, and never got the recognition probably thought it should have because it was done very bipartisan. there were not easy issues. we can do this. maybe the young folks, i would encourage everybody listening to this thinking that politics is a waste of time, it is a most exciting thing i've ever done. i think uva -- i think uva. actually got my masters in counseling in counseling and the best thing i ever learned to do with counseling was to listen. i think that is our problem today. we don't do a not -- we do not do enough listening. we do a lot of talking. i would encourage our students to encourage those listening skills and listen to the other side. when you do that, you find that your differences aren't as great as they might be. thank you all very much. i have got to go. thank you. >> thank you senator. president ryan? >> i want to thank you millie
and pilar for moderating this discussion. thank you to the senators for your time and insights. on behalf of the entire audience, i want to thank you for your service and your effort to find common ground. to the audience, thank you all for joining us. i hope you will continue to be minus as we host additional democracy dialogues. i'm optimistic that the next one will be able to host in person. with that, thank you all again. i hope you are well. thank you. take care. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org]
>> saturday on the communicators, brookings institute vice president darrell west discusses his book turning point, policymaking in the era of artificial intelligence. >> it is not just one revolution taking place, it is 10 or 20, or 30 different things taking place simultaneously. it is the growing ubiquity of technology and all of our lives. in every sector, and domestic policy application as well as the national defense, have a long chapter on military applications of ai. i think that is the unusual aspect of this. what makes difficult to deal with is that there is so much change taking p o